Coton de Tulear Breeders, Breed Clubs and Rescue
The Coton de Tulear has a very romantic history; belonging to the small group of toydogs from the Mediterranean area it is believed that his immediate ancestor, the Bichon Tenerife, was taken to Reunion by French colonists in the 15th and 16th centuries. Some time in the 17th century some of these small dogs with cotton-textured coats arrived in Tulear, then a port famous for slavery and piracy on the coast of Madagascar where it was taken up by the ruling Merina tribe, who forbade ownership to all but the nobility. It is believed that crosses were made with the indigenous Morondava Hunting Dog which resulted in the forerunner of the present Coton de Tulear. He is still known as the Royal Dog of Madagascar and features on the island’s stamps. In 1974 the Coton de Tulear appeared in the USA and in 1977 the first dogs were imported into France; the breed has taken very different directions in Europe and North America. They are still a rare breed, sharing with the Bichon Frise an exceptionally outgoing and playful temperament which suits it well to family life. Happy with children, the Coton de Tulear makes a perfect companion dog too and shows great loyalty to his owner, though can be reserved with strangers.
He is the largest member of the Bichon family (Bichon Frise, Bolognese, Havanese and Maltese) at up to 12″ tall and weighing as much as 7kg. His coat is unusual; it has a cotton-like texture with no undercoat and needs considerable care to keep him looking nice. The coton de Tulear should not be trimmed. Colours are white with a little grey or lemon allowed on the ears.
Rescue and Rehoming
In the unfortunate event you need to re-home your dog, or you are looking to give a home to an older dog, contact the Breed Clubs for their assistance. It is always wise to speak to people who are expert in the breed so you can get the best possible help.