All About the Long-Haired Dalmatian

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When you hear the word “Dalmatian” you might reminisce about a certain Disney movie with 101 of them!

Or think fondly of your local fire station. You are also likely picturing a short-haired dalmatian with black spots over a soft white coat. But did you know there are also long-haired Dalmatians? After all, one guaranteed way to up the adorable factor in any dog is to make it fluffier!

long haired dalmatian standing outside

Thinking about adopting one of these polka dot cuties?

Today on Doggie HQ, let’s learn all about the long-haired Dalmatian.

Is there a long-haired Dalmatian?

Long haired Dalmatians (just like their short-haired counterparts) are purebred Dalmatians. The long-haired gene is recessive, which is a fancy genetic way to say that long-haired dalmatians are on the rare and more unique side of things. Techinally two dalmatians with the recessive gene are bred together to make a long haired dalmatian.

So yes, they are Dalmatians, with a little extra fluff.

If you are looking for a champion competition dog however, the long-haired Dalmatian isn’t it. It isn’t the dog’s fault, though. While most kennel associations like the American Kennel Club do recognize Dalmatians as a breed, they consider the long-haired Dalmatian “non-standard“. Therefore, they will not enjoy the same welcome that their short-haired counterparts do on competition day.

Facts about Dalmatians with Long Coats

While we don’t know exactly where Dalmatians originated from, CCDalmatians suggests they likely originated in the eastern Mediterranean, later spreading to Europe. In the 17th century, they were prized as carriage dogs.

Nowadays, you can expect to see the following in a long-haired dalmatian:

Size: Males tend to be 21-23 inches while females tend to be 19-22 inches tall. These are long, slender dogs. They will be able to sneak food off your coffee table…if you aren’t paying attention!

Weight: Both genders tend to be 45-60 pounds.

Lifespan: On average. Pet MD puts a Dalmatians lifespan at 12 – 14 years. This is relatively long-lived for a dog of this size.

Unique Qualities: Long-haired Dalmatians are unique just for being, well…long-haired dalmatians! The beautiful coats on these pooches are sure to turn heads. Also, puppies are born without spots. It’s only later that the black pigment appears. Very special indeed!

Hypoallergenic: No, long haired dalmatians are not hypoallergenic. Got allergies? This long-haired designer dog might not be a good fit.

Family friendly: Long-haired Dalmatians can be absolutely wonderful family pets, however, in order to achieve this, it’s critical that they receive proper training and care when they are young. For your happiness (and for the dog’s happiness) make sure you really understand how to set yourself up for success if you choose to go this route. Training is a must.

Health issues: Long-haired Dalmatians are prone to deafness and should be tested as puppies. It’s important to be aware that a dog with partial or total hearing loss may struggle to cope with family life. For example, being easily startled and reacting inappropriately to normal noise or movement from young children.

long haired dalmatian puppy sitting on the patio

What do they look like?

The Disney villain Cruella de Vil was obsessed with Dalmatians, and we totally understand why. They are gorgeous dogs.

Long-haired dalmatians look exactly like any other Dalmatian but are a little extra “wispy” or “fluffy“. Coats are not super long, they have just a few extra inches compared to the length of fur on short-haired Dalmatians. Additionally, they can also show up with black spots, brown spots or “lemon” spots which appear so light brown they’re almost yellow.

For facial features, a Dalmatian will have a long muzzle, brown or dark blue eyes, floppy ears, and a dignified expression.

Legs are long, sleek, and strong. Bubbly Pet describes them in one word: “graceful.”

How much does a long-haired Dalmatian cost?

This will vary from breeder to breeder but expect to pay from $600-1200 to purchase the puppy.

Don’t forget to factor in other costs such as initial shots and vet check-ups, food, treats and puppy supplies.

Common Health Problems

The long-haired Dalmatian is a truly beautiful hybrid dog. However, they due come with a handful of health concerns that must be seriously considered.

For instance, Dalmatians are prone to deafness. While this condition is relatively easy for the dog to live with, it can result in related behaviour concerns. When dogs are startled by unexpected movement or touch, they may react by snapping their jaws, jumping, barking or growling. It’s understandable…you might do the same if you were often snuck up on!

Secondly, Dalmatians are prone to hyperuricemia (kidney stones, bladder stones, etc). 

Additionally, they don’t do diets well. This is because they have a tendency to overeat. Nutritious food with minimal fillers is a must for Dalmatians.

Are Long Haired-Dalmatians Registered?


While purebred Dalmatians are a registered breed, the long-haired variety is considered non-standard and therefore cannot participate in things like dog shows or competitions. All that really means, though, is that they’re all about being your fur-baby and best friend and won’t be spending time participating in competitions.

Common FAQs

Can Dalmatians be aggressive?

Dalmatians have a bad reputation for being snappy. But is it true?

Only so far as most dog breeds are prone to aggression when not trained properly. With proper training, love, and exercise there is no reason to expect a Dalmatian to be especially aggressive.

Are Dalmatians Hypoallergenic?

Dalmatian costs may be one-of-a-kind, but they are not hypoallergenic. They shed twelve months per year, according to PupVine

Why are Dalmatians fire dogs?

This is a very long history. Dalmatians love their owners fiercely and have a strong desire to be near them. Therefore, they started out running alongside horse drawn carriages, guarding whoever or whatever rode within. This skillset saw them welcomed to follow fire carriages too, and well, it was a match that stuck! Even once fire stations moved on to mechanical trucks, the position of the dalmatians as a “fireman’s best friend” remained.
That’s why they are the classic fire station dog!  

How rare is the long-haired Dalmatian?

Final Thoughts

In summary, Dalmatians are not an easy-breezy dog that is meant for everyone. They require patience, strict training, and do better in households where they won’t spend a lot of time alone. Yet for the right household, these are friendly, loyal and energetic dogs who will protect and love you throughout their entire life.

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