Comparing all of the white dogs in the world may take some time, but let’s start with comparing the Bichon Frise vs Maltese. What are their differences, and what things bring them together besides their white fur? They may have more things that separate them than you think, but what might those things be?
In this article, we will compare and contrast the Bichon Frise and the Maltese so that you can gain a true understanding of both breeds. We will go over their appearances and sizes, as well as their lifespans. Finally, we will address their behaviors and ancestries so that you can fully comprehend both of these dog breeds. Let’s get started now!
Comparing Bichon Frise vs Maltese
|Size||9.5-11.5 inches tall; 11-18 pounds||7-9 inches tall; 5-7 pounds|
|Appearance||Fluffy white coat similar to a poodle in texture; floppy ears, though they are difficult to see through fur around the face. Sturdy and strong legs.||Small and covered in beautiful fur in white shades; fur is straight and silky. Hard to find their ears, as it looks like hair, and stubby snout|
|Ancestry||An old breed originally bred in France and Spain. Used as a rodent hunting dog onboard ships, as a royal lap dog, and as a circus performer in later years||Bred for companionship and rodent hunting; an ancient breed dating back thousands of years. Unknown where exactly the breed originated, but is depicted in many cultures, including Egyptian and European|
|Behavior||Incredibly happy and excitable; prefers to get its exercise by following its owners around the house. Not a very good guard dog, given their friendly nature, and can be stubborn when training||Very friendly and compassionate with humans that they know; needs more exercise than you may think. Alert and focused, making an excellent watchdog. Needs plenty of exposure to avoid anxious behavior|
|Lifespan||12-15 years||13-17 years|
Key Differences Between Bichon Frise vs Maltese
There are many key differences between a Bichon Frise and a Maltese. The Maltese is smaller than the Bichon Frise, in both height and weight. Additionally, the texture of the Bichon Frise coat is curly or wavy, while Maltese coats are straight and long. Finally, the Maltese lives a slightly longer life on average compared to the Bichon Frise.
Let’s take a look at all of these differences in more detail now.
Bichon Frise vs Maltese: Size
One of the main differences between the Maltese and the Bichon Frise is their sizes. The Maltese is smaller than the Bichon Frise, in both height and weight. This is one of the easiest ways to tell them apart just by looking at them. But what are their weights and heights in more detail? Let’s take a look at the figures now.
The Maltese only reaches 7-9 inches tall, while the Bichon Frise grows anywhere from 9.5-11.5 inches tall. Additionally, the Bichon Frise weighs anywhere from 11-18 pounds, while the Maltese reaches 5-7 pounds on average. This makes the Maltese a toy dog breed and the Bichon Frise a small dog breed.
Bichon Frise vs Maltese: Appearance
It can be extraordinarily difficult to tell the difference between a Maltese and a Bichon Frise based on appearance. Both of these dogs have soft white coats, often long and covering all of their bodies. However, the fur of the Bichon Frise is curly or wavy in texture, while the Maltese coat is long and smooth, almost silky in appearance.
Both of these dogs have floppy ears that get lost in their fur. They also have similarly shaped faces and noses, including dark eyes. Even their tails are extremely similar, though the tail of the Bichon Frise curls up and over their back more than the tail of the Maltese. However, no one would blame you for mistaking a Maltese for a Bichon Frise, and vice versa!
Bichon Frise vs Maltese: Ancestry and Breeding
There are some significant differences in the ancestry and breeding of the Bichon Frise and the Maltese. For example, the Maltese is an ancient dog breed dating back thousands of years, while the Bichon Frise is a more recent breed by comparison. This isn’t to say that the Bichon Frise isn’t an old breed- both of these dogs have been around for quite some time!
However, the Bichon Frise was used as a performing dog in circuses and became a favorite among royalty, while the Maltese was commonly used to hunt rodents aboard merchant vessels. Both dog breeds are capable rat hunters, and they were highly prized for their compact sizes and ease of care.
Bichon Frise vs Maltese: Behavior
The behavior of the Bichon Frise and the Maltese vary slightly. While both dogs are capable and intelligent breeds, the Bichon Frise is more cheerful compared to the alert Maltese. In fact, the Maltese makes a much better watch dog compared to the Bichon Frise, given their opposite feelings toward strangers!
Bichon Frise vs Maltese: Lifespan
A final difference between the Maltese and the Bichon Frise has to do with their lifespans. The Bichon Frise lives slightly less on average compared to the Maltese. But by just how much? Let’s take a closer look at the figures now.
On average, the Maltese lives anywhere from 13-17 years, while the Bichon Frise only lives 12-15 years. This difference may seem subtle, and of course it depends on the health and wellness of the individual dog. However, Maltese dogs are some of the longest living dogs on the planet, while Bichon Frises live slightly less on average.
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