Once you’ve decided that you’re ready to take on all the demands of a new puppy, the next challenge comes from trying to determine exactly what kind to get. Basing this crucial decision simply on how a dog looks is a recipe for disaster. It’s also the reason why so many rescue centers are filled to overflowing with abandoned pets. Needless to say, it pays to do your research so you can find the right dog to fit your lifestyle.
If you’re looking for a Doodle that’s on the littler side and extremely low-shed to boot, then the delightful Maltipoo might have already come to your attention (we’re assuming so as you’re here reading this article). This darling cross between the Maltese and Poodle is undoubtedly gorgeous, yet there are still some vital things you’ll need to get your head around before taking the plunge. Are Maltipoos good dogs? Here we’ll talk you through it.
Table of Contents
- What To Know Before Getting A Maltipoo
- Weighing Up The Pros And Cons
- Further Things To Factor In
- Price And Ongoing Costs
- Health Considerations
- Suitability For First-Time Owners
- Are Maltipoos Good Dogs: Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Thoughts
What To Know Before Getting A Maltipoo
Doodles are in-demand dogs, and for that very reason, the Poodle has also enjoyed a surge in popularity. So you’re likely approaching this article with a very good knowledge of the kind of dogs these are. Originally utilized as water-retrieving hounds, these days you can find Poodles in three distinct sizes, with the smaller ones being much more suited to being companion pups than the working animals they were bred from.
It’s these smaller Poodles that are combined with the even teenier Maltese (for obvious reasons). Another working-turned-companion dog, the Maltese are known for that glamorous straight white hair of theirs that can grow all the way to the ground. While the pet part of their nature makes them super cuddly and very protective of their families, that working dog side provides them with a surprising amount of energy for a pup of this size.
Friendly, intelligent, and utterly adorable, Maltipoos are the result of mixing these two excellent breeds. Found in a surprising assortment of colors thanks to those wacky rainbow-esque Poodle genes, they are increasingly popular among those in the know. While both parent breeds are fab in their own right, the combination of the two locks the very best traits of each into one fluffy pint-sized package, but is this the right dog for you? Let’s find out!
Weighing Up The Pros And Cons
Like every other kind of Doodle, Maltipoos have their distinct personality that shines through. While we wouldn’t ever say that there are any definite disadvantages to owning any type of dog (and especially not any kind of Doodle), it’s fair to say that some elements of these pups are likely to be more compatible with certain types of home and family set-ups over others. It’s these you need to weigh up when making the decision to adopt.
- Maltipoos Make Great Family Dogs
The Maltipoo temperament, while a little on the sensitive side (as we’ll explore below), places them on the list of very good family dogs. They are very sociable and do well in both small and larger households. Their slightly higher-than-average (for small dogs, at least) energy levels mean they are eager to go out adventuring and love playing games of fetch. Yet, their mostly companion dog nature ensures they are happy to curl up on the couch for a bit of cuddle time too. Their small size and delicate nature make these dogs better suited to families with older children, though – there’s less risk of them getting hurt.
- Maltipoos Are Super Smart
Another blessing from the Poodle side is that given that the breed is listed among the top five most intelligent dogs, Maltipoos can be very clever pups indeed! Not only does this make them enormous fun to have about, but with the right owner using the proper training methods, they are straightforward to teach too. This can be a real boon as anybody who has ever taken a puppy into their home knows, toilet training, leash training, sleep training, and generally getting them to just not chew everything up, dig out the whole garden, and bark until your neighbors bear a serious grudge can be a total headache!
- Maltipoos Are Very Hypoallergenic
If you or someone in your family is unlucky enough to suffer from allergies, the Maltipoo could be what you’ve been searching for. Numbered among the more hypoallergenic of the Doodles, Maltipoos have the advantage of having two extremely low-shed parent dogs. So whichever coat type they inherit, you won’t be seeing much hair about the place. However, caring for your Malti’s coat is vital for keeping this the case. The right brush, designed for the particular challenges of their coat, can make all the difference. Shampoo can also be used to lock in moisture for hair that’s shiny, healthy, and stays put.
- Maltipoos Are Apartment Friendly
While Maltipoos come in two distinct sizes, both of these fall firmly within the toy dog category. Mini Maltipoos are 11 – 14 inches in height and weigh somewhere in the region of 15 – 25 pounds. Toy Maltipoos are even smaller than that, being 6 – 11 inches and 5 – 15 pounds. This makes each of these varieties perfect for those with slightly more limited space to work with. The one caveat is that you will have to ensure they get plenty of daily exercise to keep those energy levels in check – especially if you don’t have a yard for them to happily run amok in whenever they feel inclined to do so.
- Maltipoos Have A Long Lifespan
It’s not something that any prospective pet owner once to think about, but given that dogs have a much shorter lifespan than us, there will come a time when your pal is no longer with you. Luckily though, the Maltipoo will be around far longer than most. In fact, the healthiest Maltipoos live for a lovely long time. You might expect your furry friend to be with you somewhere in the region for 12 to 16 years! Keep them happy and healthy to place them on the higher side of this range. Part of this is feeding them a top-quality kibble suitable for their size and unique breed-related needs.
- Maltipoos Suffer From Separation Anxiety
Maltipoos tend to be a little more sensitive, even when compared to their Maltese parent pups. For this reason, they really don’t do well with being left alone for a long time. So if you and all your family tend to be out of the house for extended periods and cannot take your pet with you, you may want to rethink your choice of dog. That being said, there aren’t that many breeds around that do well with being left for a long time on a daily basis; dogs were “made” to be extra sociable animals, after all. Happily, organizations such as doggy daycare are a good option for those with long working hours.
- Maltipoos Can Be Hyperactive And Vocal
You’re likely more than aware that the smaller the dog, the yappier they tend to be. Sadly the Maltipoo is no exception to this rule. These pups are definite barkers given the opportunity. While you might be less worried about this behavior while your pet is out playing in the park with other dogs – and this is lovely to see, it might become a little more irksome when they are letting you know about every passing car, pedestrian, dog, cat… Luckily, there’s a lot you can do to curb excessive barking; you just have to understand what lies behind it. Excitement, fear, and possessiveness are all potential causes.
- Maltipoos Can Be Hard To Train
While Maltipoos are undoubtedly intelligent and should have no issues with understanding various commands and how you would like them to respond, they lean towards stubbornness, which can be a problem for some. As independent little pooches (mostly from their Maltese side), the Maltipoo is going to do what they what to the extent that you will let them get away with that kind of behavior. That’s why it’s vital for any owners of these lovely teddy bear pups to have a firm grasp of the more successful training techniques. Baxter and Bella’s Online Puppy School can really help with this.
Further Things To Factor In
Hopefully, the points on this pro/con list have given you paws(!) for thought with regards to whether you are ready and able to take on a Maltipoo. Beyond these, there are a few other things you should think about before you do welcome a new puppy into your home:
Price And Ongoing Costs
Expense is certainly something to consider when deciding on the right kind of Doodle for you. That is not just the initial output but the various ongoing expenses of one of these dogs too. For the former, you should set aside, on average, $2,000. However, these dogs can run to $4,500, depending on the type of breeder and how established, they are, their geographical location, various other services they provide, the type of dogs they offer, and the sorts of health guarantees given. This places them in the middle of the road.
For the latter, you’ve got to think about food, training, supplies, and vet costs. As smaller dogs, much of these will naturally be much less than they would be with a larger breed. But you do need to think that the Maltipoo will live far longer. You might spend between $40 – $50 a month on food alone. Vet costs, like most other things, will be higher in those first few years as you’re dealing with various inoculations, but throughout your pet’s life, you’ll need to set up regular checkups to ensure they remain in good health.
Benefiting from something known as “hybrid vigor,” the good news when it comes to Malitpoos (and most other Doodles, for that matter) is that these dogs are typically far healthier than their purebred counterparts. This is because diseases that run through breeds are rarely expressed when the gene isn’t inherited from both parents.
You do need to be aware of such conditions as white shaker syndrome, epilepsy patellar luxation, portosystemic shunt (PSS), Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), but, on the whole, these are healthy pups. Naturally, this is all based on the understanding that you purchased them from a responsible breeder.
Trauma is, by far, the biggest problem for these pups. This is especially the case given their small size. Being stood on, dropped, or otherwise accidentally hurt is why so many of these guys and gals end up at the vets. The most significant risk factor for this is small children, which is why we don’t recommend these dogs for such households.
Suitability For First-Time Owners
As dogs go, Maltipoos are a pretty good shout for novice owners in many ways. Especially if they have taken the time to research the time and effort commitment needed for looking after one of these pups. Firstly their coat requires regular and constant care, and then it’s crucial to understand just how important early training and socialization are for these dogs. As smaller, slightly more stubborn hounds, things can start to go really wrong when either or both of these areas are neglected. Like most other puppies, young Maltipoos can be hard work! Luckily, there are plenty of online resources (including this site) that can help guide new pet parents on each of these and more besides.
Are Maltipoos Good Dogs: Frequently Asked Questions
While we don’t like to talk of any dogs having “problems,” there are perhaps a few behavioral considerations that you’ll need to think through before adopting one of these dogs. They can be very energetic, pretty sensitive, a little on the clingy side, and a teensy bit more vocal than other breeds. If you can handle all this, then great!
Smaller dogs are more prone to yappiness. This can be down to excitement, but often it’s because they have a slightly more nervous disposition than their larger cousins. A fear response is only to be expected when everything around them is so much larger than they are. The good news is that this behavior can be tempered, but it’s best if you begin early.
While Maltipoos can handle a little time on their own, these are highly sociable pups. Therefore they are going to want to be with their family at just about every opportunity. If you have other dogs at home, they might get by just fine, but these might not be the best pup for you if you’re looking for a pet that’s just a little more independent than most.
In some ways, Maltipoos are much lower maintenance than other dogs – they don’t require insanely long, exhaustive walks for one, they get by well in a smaller space, and they are reasonably easy to train. However, whichever coat type they inherit, you can be sure you’ll be spending two or three times (at least) a week grooming and caring for it.
In the question of Maltese vs. Maltipoos, there are a few things to think about – that’s why it’s good to read our more in-depth article on the matter. However, generally speaking, Maltese dogs, as an established breed, are a lot more of a known entity in terms of both their appearance and temperament, while Maltipoos will be more of a happy surprise.
If you’ve got your heart set on a smaller-sized Doodle that will get along well with your family, won’t constantly set off your allergies, and will eagerly participate in both active and more relaxed activities alike, then the Maltipoo could be the one. Before making a decision, though, it’s good to get to grips with the more challenging aspects of owning one of these dogs. That’s why we’ve compiled this helpful guide with its detailed pro/con list to help you determine if the Maltipoo should be the newest member of your pack.
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