What kind of dog is the Coton de Tulear?

  • By: Mick Whitefield
  • Time to read: 2 min.

This is a very small dog that is considered to be the Royal Dog of Madagascar. A white bundle of fluff and fun.

Coton De Tulear 1
Coton de Tulear dog playing in the garden

Origin: ~ Madagascar.
Bred for: ~ Lap Dogs, Fun loving, Gentle natured Family Pets.
Colour: ~ White, occasionally Grey or Black and Tri-Colours.
Coat: ~ A soft coat to touch mid to long length, wavy in places.
Height: ~ 9 to 11 inches or 23 to 28cms.
Weight: ~ 8 to 13lbs or 3.6 to 5.9kgs.
Lifespan: ~ 13 to 16 years.
AKC Group – Toy Group.

History of the Coton De Tulear

It is so named because the city of its history is Tulear now known as Toliara in Madagascar. The two main languages spoken there are Austronesian and French, Coton is French for cotton which is used as a descriptive for the distinctive look and feel of this dogs coat.

Coton De Tulear 2
A soft happy bundle of fluff

Thus the name Coton De Tulear reverts in English as the Cotton of Tulear, a name most likely adopted by the French Buccaneers who landed on the island in the 17th Century and used the island as a trading post and a resting area during voyages.

Temperament of the Coton

Described by some as Jesters these dogs perform tricks of their own volition including walking upright on their hindlegs. Friendly and affable in nature they become very attached to their families.

They integrate well with other dogs and household pets as they have a low prey drive.

Not always easy to train, but given regular encouragement and consistent training they can be very good party trick animals. Occasionally they may bark unnecessarily which is where regular training will help to keep them quiet.

Exercise is minimal simply because of their size and they will usually wear themselves out just running around the house or garden.

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