Dalmatians like all dogs need to have a period of training when young to learn basic commands and good manners. Dalmatians are large, energetic dogs and if they are not under the full control of their owner they can be a serious liability. As part of this training an extended period of socialisation should take place as early on as possible in your young dogs life allowing him or her to grow up happy and confident. In Welfare many of the Dogs needing rehoming have issues relating to poor socialisation and training as a youngster. Training of any breed of dog is a commitment with many hours of work needed to achieve results. All too often we see owners who have bought from breed for profit kennels who are totally unprepared for the task of training and socialisation.
Choosing a puppy and preventing problems!
We would always recommend that you approach the Dalmatian breed clubs when planning to purchase a puppy. The UK Dalmatian breed clubs produce a puppy list of members who have litters. These members have a strict code of conduct to follow and will give you support, advice and help you plan for your new dog. Responsible breeders should be able to recommend a dog trainer or canine society near your home, go along and meet the trainers before you get your puppy have a chat and see what they offer. Most canine societies or Dog trainers will offer classes daytime or evening these are a great opportunity to meet other dog owners and make new doggy friends. The Association of pet dog trainers APDT they have a great website and will direct you to a Dog trainer near you. The Kennel club offer awards for training your dog and run the UK’s largest dog training scheme called the Kennel Club Good Citizen Training Scheme or KCGCDS for short! Follow this KCGCDS link for more details and explanation of the classes.
Often people don’t want a puppy or young Dalmatian for many reasons and some find the whole process of training and dealing with puppy accidents and chewing daunting, however most Dogs need lifelong, ongoing training and Dalmatians are no exception. Many of the dogs we get in Welfare are being given up as they may have problems with obedience or have issues relating to their lack of socialisation. So if you are considering a Welfare dog be aware that you may have to be prepared to put in some work. All of our dogs have a period of assessment before being taken on by us but we have to rely on old owners being honest and sadly this isn’t always the case and problems that we weren’t aware of can arise when dogs are moved to their new homes. We do provide extensive support for adopters including funding behaviourists and dog trainers in certain circumstances. We can call of the resources of several hundred members of the British Dalmatian Club and their collective knowledge of the breed. Please don’t be put off by this. Training your newly adopted Dalmatian can be great fun and will assist in helping you and your family form a bond with your new spotty dog.
Many of our Dalmatians are given up through no fault of their own and are happy healthy examples of the breed. We find these dogs easy to re-home.
We do however have Dalmatians that have had a very poor start in life. We have brood bitches that have been used to produce puppies at every season. Once they are unable to produce enough puppies for their breed for profit owners these dogs are often just let loose to fend for themselves. Many Welfare Dogs have rarely met people and other dogs and have been kept in outbuildings or in crates without the comforts that many of us feel are basic requirements for any dog. In welfare we are often surprised by the sweet natures of these dogs and despite their ordeal will still wag their tails and be pleased to meet people. Thankfully we rarely see Dalmatians that have been cruelly treated, but occasionally we are asked to help a Dalmatian in this situation. All of these Dalmatians need a special kind of home, with experienced adopters who have the time to re-train, nurture and care for these special Dogs. We do ask that if you are able to, please consider these Dalmatians Don’t they deserve a second chance at a happy life?
Some deaf Dalmatians who come into Welfare are already very well trained to respond to hand signals. Even so the change of ownership is probably a bit more stressful for them as they can often be very attached to their original owner and trainer. In other cases the dogs deafness has not been recognised or there has been very little effort to train the to respond to hand signals.
We select homes for deaf Dalmatians very carefully, often with people who have had a deaf dog before. We provide additional information in advance on what it is like to live with a deaf Dalmatians and, where possible, arrange in advance for a meeting with a deaf dalmatian and their owner so that they can see at first hand the hand signals that can be used and the techniques to use so the dog remains focused on his /her owner. If required we supply additional support and training to adopters who take on a deaf Dalmatian from experienced owners of deaf Dalmatians.
Despite, or perhaps because of, their deafness these Dalmatians can become very loyal and rewarding companions and can take part on many activities such as agility and can pass the Kennel Club Good Citizens tests
British Dalmatian Welfare would provide you with full support with our special dogs for life and we are able to provide trainers and behaviourists to help our adopters, help these dogs.