Maltese | Dog Breed Guide

Maltese | Dog Breed Guide

by Scritch

People lovers and loyal friends, Maltese are family pets that are adaptable and sweet.

Weight – Female: 5-7 pounds; Male: 7 pounds

Height – Female: 7 inches; Male: 9 inches

Life Expectancy: 12-15 years

Group: Toy group

Temperament: fearless, kind

Energy Level:

Ease of Training:

Grooming Requirements:

History and Personality

The Maltese dog breed dates back to around 500 BCE, where they were referenced by Aristotle himself as dogs from the island of Malta, in the Mediterranean Sea. Many of these small and fluffy buds are the pets of famous people, like Halle Berry and Lindsay Lohan. 

Signature silky white hair makes them a pick for the allergy prone, and their various haircuts delight owners all over the world. This hair can grow long enough to drag on the ground, so care must be taken to groom Maltese dogs regularly. They have large brown eyes that show plenty of expressions, and the black button nose creates a very identifiable breed profile.

Maltese have a fearlessness that compares to larger dogs, but are friendly as can be, and this combination leads to lots of human affection—their favorite. These pups are portable and make great travel companions and lap dogs. Their small size makes them a great choice for families of all types. Maltese won’t overwhelm an elderly person or a small child, and can get along with other pets with proper introductions.


No shedding will happen with a Maltese coat, but keeping its hair soft and tangle-free will require outside help if you aren’t handy with a brush. Many owners get their Maltese a puppy cut to reduce matting. Maltese require frequent tooth brushing to maintain good dental health.  

Energy Level

Small and sweet but still vocal, Maltese dogs need to get their energy out with play and walks outdoors. These dogs need to play to keep boredom at bay, but unlike larger energetic dogs, they don’t need a big backyard or long runs to get the exercise they need.

Health Concerns

  • Shaker dog syndrome
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Dental health

Though Maltese dogs are an older breed, they can have genetic health concerns if not bred responsibly. Insurance can help you manage livable conditions like hypoglycemia and tooth decay with less up-front cost and concern.