MN Maltese Breeders Specializing in Breeding Top Quality AKC Maltese Puppies for Companion and Show

Do I Want a Male or Female Maltese?

Before deciding on male or female, please give these points some consideration.

      Some people believe that female dogs make better pets.  A lot of people think that they want a 'sweet girl'.  They may not realize that females display alpha behaviors like marking and /or humping.  They believe that they are more docile and attentive and do not participate in fighting over dominance.  This could not be further from the truth!  In the dog pack makeup, females usually rule the roost, determine pecking order, and she is the one who competes to maintain or alter that order.  As a result, the females are more independent, stubborn, and territorial than their male counterparts.  The females are much more intent upon exercising their dominance by participating in alpha behaviors such as 'humping' and being 'in charge' of all other dogs around.  There is a reason people utilize the technical dog term of 'bitch' in a negative way, it refers directly to the behaviors exhibited by the females of the dog world.  Most dog fights will usually occur between two females.
 
    Males, on the other hand, are usually more affectionate, exuberant, attentive, and more demanding of your attention.  They become very attached to people.  They also tend to be more steadfast, reliable, and less moody.  They are more outgoing, more accepting of other pets, and they usually take quicker to children.  Most boys are easily motivated by food and praise, and very eager to please, so training can be easier.  However, males do like to play so they can be more easily distracted during their training.  But at any age, he is more likely to act silly and play like a puppy.  Boys usually love to play with children and play games.  Boys stay fun loving, up until the day they die.  Females tend to be more reserved or dignified as they age.
 
     Neutered males rarely exhibit secondary sexual behavior such as humping or marking or lifting of their legs.  Once the testosterone levels recede.  "After the neutering", most of these behaviors ( if they ever existed ) will disappear.  Boys should be neutered at an early age (by around 4-6 months) which I highly recommend!  Please check with your Vet to see what age they suggest.  Once they are neutered, they usually won't even raise their leg to urinate ( as long as they are neutered before their hormones kick in).
 
     The female will usually come to you for attention, but when she's had enough, she will move away.  While boys are always eager for your attention and always near at hand.  Females are usually less distracted during training, as she is more eager to get it over with, and get back to her comfy spot on the couch.  The female is less likely to wage a dominance battle with you, but she can be cunning and resourceful in getting her own way.  She is way more prone to mood swings.  One day she may be sweet and affectionate, the next day reserved and withdrawn or even grumpy.
 
     The females also have periods of being in heat unless she is spayed.  Seasonal heats can be a month long nightmare not just for the female, but for you and every male dog in the neighborhood.  During this time she can leave a bloody discharge on carpets, couches, or anywhere else that she goes.  She will be particularly "moody and emotional" during this time also.  Just a walk outside can become hazardous if male dogs are in the vicinity, she will leave a 'scent' for wandering intact males to follow you right back to your yard, where they will hang out, and wait for days.  And then she will come back in heat about every five to eight months, until you have her spayed.  If you are not breeding, it is best to have her spayed.