Acquired: Other (stray, given dog by friend etc.)
Posted February 11, 2015
"My" Dalmatian is originally my boyfriend's Mom's dog. She got it from a friend after the boyfriend was beating the dog and was about to shoot the dog. Her friend was afraid for the dog's life and wanted to get it to a safe place. So my boyfriend's Mom brought it home to her 3 kids and Lady laid right on the couch and declared it her home. I started dating my boyfriend when we were sophomores in High School. When he told me his family had a Dalmatian I was so excited to meet her, until I saw her in the front yard. She didn't know me and was afraid I would hurt her new family, so she bared her teeth at me and barked. It took about 1 month of going over to his house about 2 times a week for Lady to be able to come near me on a leash held by my boyfriend. I was honestly scared, by the way she looked at me like I was a piece of meat, that she wanted to attack me. But, she never did. She took another month for me to be able to pet her and give her treats (I also gave her at least one treat whenever I came over). Now, after my boyfriend and I being together for almost 6 years (in May) and living together for almost 4 years (June), I couldn't imagine a better pet for me. She is completely used to me, and I know this because she lets me do whatever I want to her and I pick on her almost every day! She likes to be the little boss of the house and she frequently gets a spot on the bed...after much up and down (she must think we fall asleep fast!). She stays inside 24/7 except for about 4-5 bathroom breaks per day where we take her to the back yard. One thing that makes me feel the deepest guilt about keeping her with us is that she can't get as many walks as she needs. We have read up on Dalmatians and it says that they are very hyper and need somewhere to let out that energy. Sometimes she results to eating paper, even though we do have a rope for her to chew on, to relieve stress. We only minorly punish her for eating the paper (we say bad girl in a stern tone of voice), because we know that it is not entirely her fault. We know that she gets stressed having to stay in the house alone while we both have school and work. If we go on trips, we rely heavily on my boyfriend's Mom to take her out to the bathroom while we're gone. We cannot hire someone to take care of her or bring her to a doggy daycare. But, keep in mind that the main and probably most understandable reason for her lack of trust with humans is because of her being beaten for a large portion of her growing up. She is also spayed, so she cannot have puppies. She is not and was not socialized with other pets at a young age and therefore gets anxious when other animals are around..except bunnies and squirrels, she'll chase those all day! She is also protective of the house, if she sees someone out the window walking by on the sidewalk, she will bark at them until we tell her to stop. Other than her emotional scarring from being beaten, she is the most intelligent dog, with the most distinctive and unforgettable personality. My boyfriend and I talked at one point about what kind of dog we want when Lady has passed, and we were contemplating a Husky, but with each passing day with Lady, we realize that we NEED another Dalmatian. Lady is such a huge part in our lives and when she passes it will be devastating, we know we want another Dalmatian with cute floppy ears like hers, and that exotic look like hers, and a personalty like hers, to remind us of Lady when she is gone. Overall, I recommend Dalmatians to anyone that is active and can pay for the dog training at an early age so that you can take her outside and run with her as much as possible. We read somewhere that Dalmatians can run (also watch out for them trying to run away because they will try if given the slightest opportunity!) for up to 4 miles without even getting tired!