“Dogs are not our whole life, but they make

our lives whole.” ― Roger A. Caras


The history of Dalmatians is still one that leaves us with questions. Out of the most reliable sources indicates that Dalmatians first appeared in Europe and India. Some say that the migration of Dalmatians occurred while traveling with gypsies. The name of the breed suggests that they came from Dalmatia which is a historical region in Croatia, but many researchers say this isn’t the case. However, Dalmatia remains the first proven home of the breed.

The true historical roles of this breed are as varied as its origin. Many believe Dalmatians were mainly used as dogs of war and guards of the borders of Dalmatia and Croatia. Historical art from the early seventeen hundreds has given Dalmatians their second name “The Carriage Dog.” Hundreds of paintings and artifacts have displayed Dalmatians along side war chariots and horse drawn carriages. It is believed that they were mainly present to be a protector of the property and a transport guard. Many say that this role progressed Dalmatians into the firehouse dog since fire men and women once arrived to scenes on horse drawn carriages.

They are also apparent as circus performers. Their distinctive markings, intellect and powerful memory has made them an exceptional candidate. Dalmatians are also commonly seen as hunting dogs. The breed demonstrates a strong hunting instinct and have been commonly used as retrievers, bird dogs and trail hounds. Today Dalmatians are commonly associated with firehouses and seen on firetrucks. Although they may no longer have a dominant purpose the history still stands.


[1]            Bauer M., & Lemo N. 2008. The origin and evolution of Dalmatian and relation with other  

                Croatian native breeds   of dog. Revue de Médecine Véterinaire 159(12):618\ 623.           


[2]            http://www.theinfolist.com/php/SummaryGet.php?FindGo=Coat%20(dog)

[3]            Hancock, Col. David.  1990.  The Heritage of the Dog.  pg. 120-126.

[4]            Silverstone, Patches. The History of the Dalmatian.  http://carriagedog.org/BCDS/History

[5]            https://ccdalmatians.com.au/historyorigin-of-the-dalmatian/

To read more about Dalmatian specifics select from the following:

- History                                                   - Characteristics

- Health & Nutrition                                    - Competitions

- Grooming

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