Coton De Tulear Information

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The Coton De Tulear is a standard bichon-type dog with a distinctive coat. Their fur is fluffy, cottony, and long. This hair covers almost all of the dog’s body, including their slender, lightly-muscled forelegs. Coat colors for this breed include white & black and white, although white is heavily preferred by breeders. Yellowish marking may exist on this breed’s ears.

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All three varieties, white, black and white, and tri-color are equally accepted by the Coton de Tulear Club of America (CTCA). In adult tri-colors, the brown usually fades to champagne or white by two years of age, with the black tips remaining. A few adult tri-colors will retain their brown color, with some breeding females regaining their brown during heat and pregnancy. Black and white Cotons retain their color throughout life, but older dogs may fade to silver or gray as they age.

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The Coton De Tulear is gentle, affectionate, and cheerful. This breed loves to play and is very sociable, and they easily get along with children and other dogs and animals. They are very loyal and attached to their owner(s), and they constantly aim to please. They are alert and make great watchdogs. They are clever and will go to great and creative lengths to fulfill the wish of their master(s). They are known to jump and walk around on their hind legs. They are intelligent and learn quite quickly, but they do have a stubborn streak and a mind of their own.

The Coton makes a terrible watchdog, unless a burglar is afraid of getting licked to death. Cotons are friendly and most view every visitor as a potential playmate. Most Cotons are also relatively quiet, barking only when necessary. Some are known not to bark at all. A purebred Coton should exhibit no aggression at all. A dog that exhibits aggression is likely a crossbreed.

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10 – 12 inches
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12 – 15 pounds

Cotons bred to CTCA standards are slightly heavier (up to 18 lbs.) than cotons bred to European standards.
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General Health

The Coton De Tulear has no recorded health-related concerns or issues. This breed typically lives for 14 to 16 years.

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The Coton De Tulear is a bichon-type breed that is related to the French Bichons and the Italian Bolognese. Some believe that additional dog breeds were also included in the Coton De Tulear’s development. The breed most likely came to Madagascar alongside the French troops or with the administrator that shortly followed. The Coton De Tulear was virtually unknown until it came back to Europe in America over the course of the last two decades. For centuries prior, this breed was kept by the wealthy residents of Tulear, in southern Madagascar. It was in this location that the breed was developed. The original bichon-type dog was believed to have existed as far back as 1,000 years ago. While the Coton De Tulear is still a rare breed, it has been very popular with the upper-class in Madagascar for quite some time. They are also increasing in popularity in the United States. The Coton De Tulear achieved official recognition by the FCI in the year 1970.

AKC is now starting to recognize the Coton De tulear breed. Although a large number of experienced Coton breeders do not want to see the breed recognized by the AKC. They prefer to keep the Rare Breed status.

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The Coton De Tulear’s long, fine coat requires significant maintenance and attention. It should be brushed and combed on a daily basis to remove dead hair. Excess hair between the inner ears and foot pads should be clipped. This breed doesn’t need a bath more than once or twice per year. Because the Coton De Tulear sheds little to no hair, it is a good choice for those that suffer from allergies.

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Ideal Environment

The Coton De Tulear is content to live in a small household or apartment. They are a comparatively active breed indoors, and they will live happily without a yard. They do, however, enjoy exercising and playing. They like to swim and go for walks, and they enjoy running around in open spaces. They excel at sports and adapt well to many environmental situations.

This breed prefers to live indoors. Although they love to go outside, even in winter, they are not equipped to live outdoors. Their long hair is a single coat and is not a particularly good insulator. They were bred for a tropical environment and don't fare well in a long term cold environment.

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Coton De Tulear Q&A

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We have a coton de tulear that is predominantly black. Is it possible to have a pure coton that has alot of black color?

Yes, but it depends on the breed line. Many CTCA cotons are heavily marked both as black & whites and tri-colors. If you link to breeders from the CTCA website, you will see many heavily maked dogs and puppies. European standard cotons tend to be almost all white, with some having a few black markings. I would be surprised if any legitimate European standard coton were heavily black. Again, it all comes down to which breed line your dog is from. But be aware that the coton is heavily counterfeited due to the high price purebred puppies bring. A puppy with CTCA papers will sell for $2000-$3000.

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