5 Surprising Maltese Facts

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There has been some debate over the past few centuries about whether the Maltese should be classified as a terrier (since it was such a good ratter and had a terrier-like temperament) or a spaniel (since it was a good hunter and physically resembled a spaniel). In 1907, Lillian C. Raymond-Mallock, an English spaniel breeder and author of the reference book "Toy Dogs," wrote that the Maltese should be classified as neither spaniel nor terrier, but suggested that the Maltese and spaniel probably owed their similar good looks to a shared source. The AKC currently classifies the Maltese simply as a toy dog.

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