The Coton de Tulear is friendly, intelligent, gentle, playful and affectionate. The Coton de Tulear is an extremely sociable breed that happily gets along with other dogs, household pets and strangers. These dogs make ideal playmates for children and become very attached to their handler and family. The Coton de Tulear has the ability to learn quickly and is always eager to work and please it's owner. Although these small dogs aim to please, they can still show a stubborn streak at times and can have a mind of their own.
Click here on how to stop your Coton de Tulear's behavior problems
The Coton de Tulear does not shed hair, but the dead hairs can be removed with brushing. Their coats should be brushed and combed several times a week to keep them tangle-free. Any excess hair between the pads of the feet and in the ear canals should be removed. These dogs do not need to be washed often and a bath once or twice a year is sufficient to keep the coat clean. The coat of the Coton de Tulear should not be clipped.
The Coton de Tulear generally fulfills it's exercise needs by adapting to it's family's activities. These dogs enjoy swimming and playing ball games and are known to do well in various dog sports, including agility and fly-ball. Coton de Tulears love spending time with their family and being taken on outings.
The Coton de Tulear is thought to have evolved from the Bichon-type companion dogs that were bought to Madagascar by European merchants. This breed was bred for companionship and was favoured by the wealthy residents in southern Madagascar and it was forbidden for anyone other than royalty to own the breed. The Coton de Tulear gained the title of "Royal Dog of Madagascar." This breed became more well known when it was reintroduced to America and Europe in the last 20 years. The Coton de Tulear is still rare, but it is becoming increasingly popular in America.
General Appearance: Small with a long, cotton-like coat and intelligent, expressive eyes.
Color: White with or without yellow to dark grey patches (particularly around the ears).
Coat: Fine, long and slightly wavy with a cotton-like texture.
Tail: Set low, tapering, about 18 cm (7 in) in length and carried over the back when in action.
Ears: Set high, thin, triangular and dropped.
Body: The backline is muscular and slightly convex with a broad chest. The withers are slightly pronounced and the round belly has a slight tuck-up.
- 'Coton' is the French word for Cotton. Like the name suggests the most distinctive feature of the Coton de Tuléar is it's coat, which has a cottony or fluffy texture rather than a silky feel