It’s summer and it’s too darn hot for heavy brainwork. So, here’s the easiest quiz about dogs you’ll ever take—and let’s face it, it’s all just a lame excuse to show you some adorable Dalmatian videos anyway.
Here’s the question: The Dalmatian was originally bred to work closely with which other type of animal?
Is it the cat?
No, as the video demonstrates, cats have at best a thinly veiled contempt for Dalmatians. A recent survey shows that “101 Dalmatians” ranks among the least popular movies among all cats with Netflix accounts.
Is it the Chicken?
No, not the chicken either. Dalmatians weren’t bred for farm work. Chickens sense this weakness and exploit it. Roosters have been known to pressure an insecure Dalmatian to get up before dawn and crow while the rooster catches an extra hour of sleep.
Is it the lamb?
Well, that certainly ended better for all concerned than the cat and chicken videos did. But, no, Dalmatians were not bred for the benefit of lambkind.
If your answer is the horse, congratulations—you win absolutely nothing. Dalmatians and horses have worked together for centuries. Dalmatians are, in fact, known as “coach dogs.” Beneath the delightful black or liver spots is a formidable athlete, bred to trot alongside a horse-drawn rig and to guard the horses and coach when left unattended. This guarding instinct and a certain polite reserve with strangers has never left Dals, making them dependable watchdogs to this day.
Muscular, durable Dals were alongside the caravans of the Romani people, commonly known as gypsies, during their ceaseless European wanderings. British aristocrats, too, utilized Dals as striking accents to their livery. It was back in the days of horse-drawn fire engines that Dals began their long association with firefighters. These days Dals accompany the famous Budweiser Clydesdales on parade, and the Dalmatian Club of America holds road trials to test their dogs’ “coach dog” instincts.
A classic commercial immortalized the Dal’s long relationship with the horse, and also brought a whole new meaning to the words “coach dog”:
Dalmatians are smart, loyal, and loving companions. Learn more about the breed here. If you think this breed is right for you, check out the AKC Marketplace for Dalmatian puppies.