Friday, February 25, 2011

Something Different

Oscar is a longcoated Dalmatian

Because of the color pages on my website, I often get pictures of "odd-colored" or unusually marked Dalmatians.  Occasionally I get correspondence from people who own long-coated Dalmatians.  While not by any means common, the gene for long-coats does exist in the breed and functions as a simple recessive.  Texas & Southern California are the most typical spots for long-coated Dals to show up, but this story is rather unique, and the dog especially handsome.  There are long-coated mixed breeds who are "Dal-like" but only purebred Dals have spotting as clean and crisp as Oscar's.  Dal mixes and backcross dogs (but that's another story) normally do not have markings like Oscar's.

My name is Gill and I am the proud owner of Oscar the Long Haired Dalmatian. I was trawling around on the internet and found your web site, and thought you may be interested in this rather handsome boy.

Oscar (or Ozzie as he is affectionately known) began life in a pet shop on Sukhumvit Road in Bangkok. The shop was next to my Grocery store and I always popped in there to make a fuss of the kittens. The shop always had Dalmatian puppies for sale as '101 Dalmatians' was still a popular movie in Thailand, but with so many street dogs looking for homes, it was our policy not to encourage the pet shops by buying over-bred dogs, but to home rescue dogs instead.

However one day I was confronted with a beautiful puppy with ringlets !! What was a girl to do? I fell in love and enquired as to his 'mix'. I was assured by the shop owner, that ; 'he was a very rare, long haired dalmatian from North America...because it is colder there', ??!

I didn't really believe him, but Ozzies fate was sealed. I didn't care what he was (or wasn't) and I bought him there and then for (probably) all the wrong reasons.

He was a lovely boy from the start. He's loyal, friendly, obedient, v. loving and just the right amount of 'mad'. He is never far from my side and is stretched out at my feet as I write.

He is now a well travelled dog with a passport and an international fame. We left Thailand for the UK, and Ozzie flew to France, where he spent 6 months enjoying life in a French farmhouse on the coast of Brittany. This 'holiday' was the alternative to 6 months in quarantine in the UK.

Once in the UK he settled into his new life, walking for miles along the South Downs, chasing rabbits and messing with his friends. But, after 5 years, Ozzie was once again on a plane and landed in his next destination - California. This has been a short visit for us, just 11 months, but we have made the most of it, hiking our way through the State Parks of Northern California.

Next week he will again board a flight for the UK , where I know he has been sorely missed by his friends and their owners.
We have always assumed Oscar was a mixed breed, probably Dalmatian and Retriever. When we go walking, everyone (almost without exception) comments on his look, and he has managed to turn even the most indifferent into an 'Oscar' convert.

It was in our local vets that I met a breeder, with a rather pretty young Dalmatian, who was adamant that Oscar was a pure bred and informed me of other Long haired Dalmatians.

Being America, I was able to purchase a DNA kit, which I sent off immediately... and.... Yes, he is 100% Dalmatian!!

We love our pet dearly and he has given us 10 years of pleasure. He is unique and the day fate crossed our paths, was a lucky day for both of us.

1 comment:

Sara Pruyne, Blackthorn Dalmatians said...

What spectacular markings. Makes me want one. Except can you imagine the shedding? Long black hair sticking to everything? Just beatuiful!