There are a lot of dog breeds in the world, and choosing exactly one to have as your family pet is not easy. Every dog is special in its own way and has its pros and cons.
Luckily, however, there is a possibility of combining the best of both worlds – let me introduce to you the notion of the mixed breed.
A long time ago, breeders came up with the idea to breed two different dog breeds in order to create a completely new breed that would be a perfect combination of the two, and a whole new world of adorable canines opened up.
This way, you can have what you always desired… a pup with the amazing qualities of your favorite dogs. In this article, we are going to meet one of those beautiful mixes – the Pitmatian – the Pitbull Dalmatian mix.
Does this pup have spots like a Dalmatian or the wonderful personality of the Pitbull? Or maybe it has both? Well, if you would like to find out, keep on reading as we present you with everything a new Pitmatian owner must know!
What Is A Pitbull Dalmatian Mix?
Photo from: @coleowingsphotography
A Pitbull Dalmatian mix, or Pitmatian for short, is a mixed breed dog made by crossing the favorite spotted dog breed (the purebred Dalmatian) with the most famous bully dog breed (the purebred American Pit Bull Terrier).
Since this dog is, of course, a crossbreed, their appearance, behavior, and everything else depend on the parent breeds and which genes are dominant in the offspring.
Whether the puppy is going to look more like the Dalmatian or a Pitbull parent can never be guessed with 100% accuracy.
There is always a dose of uncertainty. So, in order to know what we are dealing with and what kind of offspring can be expected, the parent breeds should be introduced, and this is exactly what we are going to do first.
Firstly, let’s briefly say a little about the beautiful Dalmatian and Pitbull breeds.
The Pitbulls’ origin can be traced to the United Kingdom in the early 1800s, where they were used in the cruel sport known as bull-baiting. Fortunately, this “sport” was banned a long time ago.
However, after this, these poor pups were also used in dog fighting. The dogs that were “the best”, meaning those that showed extreme strength, were usually preferred and used for breeding.
Unfortunately, dog fighting, re-emerged again in the USA in the 1980s, and people started to seek Pitbulls for this illegal sport.
Soon, dogs that were once considered “America’s sweetheart” became seen by the public as dangerous and aggressive dogs that everyone should beware of.
This resulted in a great number of Pitbulls in shelters and the beginning of an unjustly bad reputation for these pups.
While there is still sometimes a negative connotation around this breed, today, people see them for what this breed actually is – loyal and loving companions.
The name Pitbull actually stands for several dog breeds, such as Staffordshire Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier,
American Pit Bull Terrier, and the American Bulldog; however, it refers mostly to the American Pit Bull Terrier.
At the time of writing, they are still not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) as the club didn’t want to have anything to do with dog fighting.
Pitbull Breed Characteristics
Temperament: good-natured, loyal, affectionate, confident, friendly
Height: 18 to 21 inches (males); 17 to 20 inches (females)
Weight: 35 to 60 pounds (males); 30 to 50 pounds (females)
Coat: smooth, short
Dalmatians have to be one of the most famous dog breeds thanks to Disney and the super popular movie “101 Dalmatians”, which was released in 1961.
After this film, the breed saw an enormous surge in popularity. Suddenly, everyone wanted a Pongo and Perdita for themselves.
Their origin dates back to the border-patrol dogs in the 18th century and the coastal region of Dalmatia, Croatia, hence the name Dalmatians.
A lot of people spell the breed’s name with an “o” – “Dalmation”, probably out of confusion. However, the correct spelling is considered to be with an “a”, as it is spelled in the name of the movie.
The same goes for Dalmatian mixes. In this case, it is the Pitmatian and not the Pitmation.
Although these dogs are the most known for their black and white spotted coat, they are much more than just a unique coat pattern. In 1888, the American Kennel Club officially recognized the breed.
Dalmatians are dignified, strong, and athletic dogs that have a lot of energy and love to go on long walks, hikes, and running. With their loving, friendly, and outgoing nature, it is obvious why a lot of people adore them.
Dalmatian Breed Characteristics
Temperament: energetic, friendly, loving, dignified, loyal
Lifespan: 11 to 13 years
Height: 19 to 24 inches
Weight: 45 to 70 pounds
Coat: short, fine, smooth coat (longhaired Dalmatian possible also)
Coat colors & Patterns: black and white; white and lemon; white and orange; white and brown, white, black, and tan; white, liver, and tan
What Are The Main Differences Between A Pitbull And A Dalmatian?
Let’s recap what we have learned about these two purebred dogs and see what some of the main differences between them are.
As we have already mentioned above, Dalmatians are originally from Croatia, whereas American Pit Bull Terriers are, of course, from the United States.
The most obvious differences are naturally in their appearance. They are both medium-sized dogs; Dalmatians have a slightly leaner look than Pitbulls.
Furthermore, Dalmatians usually have a white coat with black spots, while Pitbulls have a patched coat in different colors (black, tan, fawn, white, etc.)
Are Pitmatians Rare?
Pitmatians are indeed a rare mixed dog breed. Like most mixed breeds, they don’t have a long history, and not many people actually know they even exist.
Since there are less people looking for them, there are not many breeders actively trying to breed them, making them quite a rare dog breed.
Although they are rare dogs, there is still a chance that you will find them near you or perhaps in the local animal shelter.
If you decide to get this (or any other puppy, as a matter of fact), please ensure you have researched the breed and know what you are dealing with.
The Pitbull Dalmatian Mix – Breed Overview
Photo from: @whitneyirene
The Pitmatian is a very interesting mix of two different purebred dogs. Let’s see together what their most important traits are…
The Origin Of The Breed
Mixed dog breeds usually don’t have a long history, and the same goes for the Pitbull Dalmatian mix. There is not much information on who came up with the idea to mix these two purebreds and when.
It is believed that they originated in the early 2000s when many breeders started breeding different kinds of purebreds together to achieve mixed dog breeds with the best characteristics of the two.
Since there is not much information available about the mixes, the best way to get an idea of what they will look like is to look at the parent breeds.
The Dalmatian Pitbull Mix Temperament
If trained properly, Pitmatians can be loving, gentle, and loyal dogs. Since the two parent breeds make great family pets, their wonderful offspring also has a high possibility of being a loving family dog.
They will bond with the adults and kids in the family; however, when it comes to other children, they might be a bit aggressive.
This is why it is extremely important to socialize the puppies as much as possible from a young age.
Due to their watchdog instincts, they will probably be aloof and reserved with strangers, but this can again be solved with proper training. If you have other pets at home, you must be wondering if they are also good with small animals and pets.
The Pitmatian may inherit animal aggression from the Pitbull side that comes from their fighting history. Fortunately, it is possible to train your Pitmatian puppy to be good around cats and other animals.
However, even if they are well-trained and behave properly, they still shouldn’t be left alone with cats for too long without supervision.
All in all, these pups have great potential to be loving family members that adore being with their owners.
Since the Pitmatian is a designer dog, their appearance generally depends on which genes are more dominant. Usually they are large, muscular dogs with straight legs and powerful paws.
If they take after the Pitbull parent, they will have a stockier build. However, if the Dalmatian parent is more dominant, they will have a lean body structure.
They have a triangle-shaped, floppy ears, a broad forehead, and a muzzle like in Pitbulls.
Size And Weight
Previously, we have seen how big Pitbulls and Dalmatians get, but what about the Pitbull Dalmatian mix?
They are usually well-built and big dogs that take after their parents. They reach their adult size around 18 months of age, or even a little bit sooner.
They usually weigh around 55 pounds and stand at 20.5 inches tall at the withers. However, this measurement is more of an average estimation, as it can be a little bit hard to determine exactly how big your mixed-breed dog will get.
Usually, male Pitmatians are slightly bigger than females, which is the case with most breeds.
So, if your pup is not exactly within this size and weight range, you shouldn’t be too worried, but it is best to take your pup to be checked by a veterinarian to see if everything is alright.
RECOMMENDED: How To Tell How Big A Mixed Puppy Will Get
Coat Type And Colors
Since both Dalmatians and Pitbulls have a short and smooth coat, the Pitbull Dalmatian mix also inherits the same short, smooth and dense coat.
Usually, they inherit the white base of the Dalmatian parent and either black or liver-colored spots. Rarely do they inherit some other colors of the Pitbull parent, such as red, tan, fawn, or brown.
With its short and silky coat, the grooming of your Pitmatian should be easy. However, they are moderate to heavy shedders, especially if they take after their Dalmatian parent, who is known for being a heavy shedder.
The shedding is more prominent during the shedding season, in Spring and Autumn. So, your Pitbull Dalmatian mix should be brushed regularly, at least once a week.
During the shedding season – if your pup takes after Dalmatians – you should brush them more often since there is a lot of hair.
When it comes to bathing, it is recommended to bathe your dog when they get dirty or smell bad. Make sure to use gentle and safe dog shampoo without harsh chemicals that will strip your dog’s coat of the natural oils that keep them healthy.
Since these dogs have floppy ears and sensitive skin, they are more prone to infections, so it is essential to check your dog’s ears regularly for wax and infections, as well as their skin.
Dental care is also very important for dogs. Try brushing your dog’s teeth as much as possible and at least once a week to prevent dental problems.
Additionally, you will need to cut your dog’s nails regularly since they can become painful and cause problems when walking. If you are doing it at home, make sure not to cut too deep into the quick.
If it does happen, you will need to be careful when walking your dog after cutting the quick as it can be very painful to them.
Photo from: @eye.spot.squeaky
The Pitbull Dalmatian mix is known for being an extremely intelligent and easy-to-train dog. Both parent breeds are also intelligent dogs, so it is reasonable that their offspring will be the same.
However, like every other dog breed and especially large dogs, they need some house, crate, and obedience training from a young age. If you start early, you will get better results, and it will be easier to train them.
The best approach to training is positive reinforcement, which means using a lot of praise words and delicious treats that will keep your pup interested and motivated.
Don’t use harsh words and punishments as your main approach as it will not give you good results at all.
Try to keep it as positive as possible. Additionally, try to also be firm and confident because if your dog senses that you are not 100% sure about your training technique, they may not actually listen to you or learn any commands.
Pitbulls have strong jaws and a bit of a negative reputation, so it is essential to train your Pitmatian not to bite. This can prevent accidental bites and injuries from happening or causing unwanted situations.
Proper socialization at an early age is very important in training your pooch. No matter how good the dogs are, they still need some training to develop into well-behaved dogs and great family pets.
You can start socializing your puppy as soon as you bring them home. Try to expose them to as many different situations, noises, people, children, other dogs, and animals as possible.
These dogs can sometimes be aloof with strangers and other dogs due to their watchdog instincts, but if you properly socialize them, they will not have problems in the future.
Regular visits to a dog park are a great way to do this since they will be exposed to people and different dogs all the time while also having fun!
A large dog with high-energy levels like the Pitbull Dalmatian mix requires a proper diet in order to stay healthy.
A high-calorie diet consisting of high-quality dog food is something that would suit your pup the best and provide them with enough energy for all their daily activities.
You can choose either dry or wet dog food or try to prepare some homemade options. See what is the best for your doggo and what is more convenient for you.
If you are not sure which one would be the best, you can speak to your vet and get them to recommend the healthiest diet for your pup.
When it comes to the actual feeding regime, Pitbull Dalmatian puppies should be fed four times a day with two to three cups of dog food equally divided.
On the other hand, adult dogs should be fed two times a day with two and a half to three cups, also equally divided.
Be careful how much you feed your pup because they are prone to obesity. So, if you are feeding them a high-calorie diet and they don’t get enough exercise, they may become overweight pretty quickly.
Since these are very energetic dogs (both Pitbulls and Dalmatians are also very active and energetic working dogs), they require a lot of exercise to stay happy and healthy.
If your dog does not receive enough exercise, they may become bored and frustrated, which can also lead to unwanted behavioral issues such as chewing, barking, making a mess, and being disobedient.
If you want to avoid this, make sure that you provide your doggy with enough physical and mental stimulation to meet their needs.
The Pitmatian, like many other large, active dogs, needs around two hours of different kinds of activities every day. You need to choose intense and challenging activities that will burn off their pent-up energy.
Walking, running, playing fetch, rope pulling, tugging, or some other kinds of interactive activities are great options to keep them well-exercised and happy.
Pitmatians have proved to be great running companions, so if you enjoy going for a run, this can be a great opportunity for them to get their exercise and for you two to bond by doing something together.
Don’t forget about mental stimulation; it is equally important as physical exercise. There are different kinds of interactive dog toys that will keep your dog mentally stimulated.
Lifespan And Health
Photo from: @pitmatiannation
Both parent breeds are generally healthy, so the Pitbull Dalmatian mix is also considered to be a healthy dog. Pitmatians can be even healthier than their parents due to the combined genetic variety.
These pups have a lifespan of twelve to fifteen years, which means that if everything is alright, they should be able to live a generally long life, and you should be able to enjoy the presence of your favorite pet for more than a decade.
However, as with any other dog, they are not completely immune to health issues. Some of the health problems can be inherited from the parent breeds.
Both Dalmatians and Pitbulls have many health issues that are very common with the breeds and, unfortunately, their mixes can also inherit them.
There is no way to know exactly which issue your Dalmatian Pitbull mix puppy may inherit, so a good idea is to get familiar with the most common health problems that the parent breeds might suffer from.
This way, you will be prepared and know what to expect if your pup has some issues. If you are purchasing the puppy from a breeder, make sure that you choose one that uses only health-screened dogs in the breeding process.
Don’t be afraid to check and verify all the health clearances they claim to have. That being said, let’s see what some of the common Pitmatian health issues that you should be aware of are:
Canine Congenital Sensorineural Deafness (CCSD)
Canine Congenital Sensorineural Deafness is the most common health problem in Dalmatian parents and one that most Pitbull Dalmatian mixes will, unfortunately, inherit.
It is believed that 15–30% of all Dalmatians are affected by this disease, and nearly 5% are completely deaf in both ears. This is a life-long condition for which there is no treatment or cure.
Dogs are usually born with normal hearing and then become deaf after a couple of weeks. The deafness can affect only one ear or both ears.
Dogs that are deaf in one ear can lead a fairly normal life, whereas dogs that are completely deaf in both ears cannot and are considered disabled. They are at higher risk of trauma, getting injured, or being attacked by other dogs and animals.
There is no evidence as to what exactly causes Congenital Deafness, but it is believed to be linked to the pigment of the iris of the eyes (blue eye color) and the hairs of the skin (coat patches).
Melanocytes (cells that produce and contain the pigment) are also vital in the normal functioning of the ears, so most scientists believe that there is usually a link between the two.
This condition is carried by the recessive gene, which means that even completely healthy dogs can have offspring that are going to be deaf.
Don’t be discouraged though, these dogs can also be wonderful family dogs with a little bit of patience and specialized training.
Hip Dysplasia is one of the most common orthopedic conditions that affects a lot of dog breeds.
Large dog breeds are usually more prone to this disease than smaller ones, and some breeds like German Shepherds, Labrador Retrievers, or Great Danes are just more likely to have this issue.
However, there is still a significant number of Dalmatian and Pitbull dogs that also suffer from this condition, which means that Pitmatians also inherit it.
Canine Hip Dysplasia is a complex hereditary condition that is characterized by joint laxity and osteoarthritis (OA). The puppies are not born with this condition but rather start to develop it later on in life.
It is seen as a developmental issue because it affects their normal growth and development. It is caused by an abnormal hip socket that prevents smooth motion, and in the most severe cases, can lead to complete immobility.
Treatment in the form of surgery, physical therapy, and supplements is possible to control the symptoms, ease the pain, and prevent the disease from developing further.
However, it is always very important for breeders and new owners to actually test dogs for this condition and do a full background check.
All Dalmatian mixes, including the Pitmatian, are at higher risk of suffering from Urinary (Kidney) Stones. They are more common in female dogs than in males.
Metabolic kidney stones are stones formed due to an imbalance in the dog’s blood or urine, but it is also believed that a gene called SLC2A9 causes high uric acid, which leads to the formation of stones.
Cerebellar Abiotrophy (Ataxia)
Cerebellar Abiotrophy is a very common health issue in Pitbulls and Pitbull mixes. It is an inherited degenerative disease that attacks the part of the brain in charge of movement and motor functions.
The most common symptoms are lack of balance, body tremors, loss of coordination, lack of reflexes, stiff gait, hyperactivity, and jerky head bob.
The Pitbull Dalmatian mix is prone to various heart diseases. Unfortunately, your puppy may start showing signs of health issues such as Mitral Valve Disease (a heart murmur) around four to six years of age.
Iris Sphincter Dysplasia (ISD)
Iris Sphincter Dysplasia is a congenital disorder resulting from poorly-developed iris sphincter muscles in Dalmatians and a lot of Dalmatian mixes.
The most common symptoms include abnormally dilated pupils, squinting when exposed to bright light, partial or total blindness, difficulty seeing at night, or oddly shaped irises.
Hypothyroidism is an abnormality of the thyroid gland which can lead to unexplained weight gain, lethargy and no desire to exercise, skin and coat issues with excessive shedding, and behavioral changes.
Dalmatians are known for their tendency to develop topical allergies, so this is something that your Pitbull Dalmatian mix can also inherit. Itchy skin, flaking, bumps, and redness are just some of the common symptoms.
Obesity is a serious health issue that a lot of dogs in America suffer from. It is said that almost 50% of the dog population suffers from this disease.
Other than severe weight gain, obesity usually leads to many other serious health issues, which is why this should be treated immediately in order to achieve a healthy dog weight and prevent other diseases from happening.
The Pitmatians are not exactly a breed you will see every day. However, even though they are considered a rare mix, the price of a Pitbull Dalmatian mix puppy is not as expensive as some other rare dog breeds.
You can expect to pay around $500 to $1000, depending on the location, reputable breeder, and health conditions.
It may be possible to find one at a shelter for a much-reduced price, where you only need to pay an adoption fee, but since this is a mixed breed and quite rare, there aren’t high chances of actually finding one.
If you plan on getting a puppy, you need to take into consideration the cost of owning a dog, which can be around $100 to $300 per month on average for food, vet visits, grooming, and other different supplies.
Yearly expenses can add up to approximately $3500, for which you need to be prepared if you want to provide your pup with a happy and healthy life.
The Pros And Cons Of The Pitbull Dalmatian Mix
Photo from: @musubimoose
Every dog has its advantages and disadvantages, and not every pup is the right dog for everyone. After reading this article, you should already have a pretty good picture of what these dogs are like and what their main qualities are.
Nonetheless, let’s recap the main pros and cons that might help you in deciding if this pup is the right one for you and your family.
The Pitbull Dalmatian Mix Pros
• They are energetic dogs that will be great for people that love activities and outdoor life
• They are loving and loyal animals that can make great family pets
• Their unique look will attract attention wherever they go
• They can be a lot healthier than their purebred parents due to combined genetic variety
The Pitbull Dalmatian Mix Cons
• If they take after their Dalmatian parent, they can be excessive shedders
• They might be banned in some countries
• Because these are mixed-breed dogs, you can never be 100% sure of what they will look like and what their behavior and temperament will be.
In the end, all that we can say is that the Pitbull Dalmatian mix is a very unique dog with a great predisposition toward being a loving family member.
If you love Dalmatians and Pitbulls separately, there is no chance of not being completely smitten with this mixed dog breed.
Mixed breeds are a perfect chance to get the best of both worlds, especially if you can’t decide which one exactly to get.
If you decide on purchasing this wonderful mix, we sincerely hope that this extensive guide through the breed characteristics was helpful to you and you were able to see what they look like, how they behave, and what their feeding, training, and exercise needs are.
If you take proper care of them and shower them with love and affection, they will do the same, and you’ll be able to see why so many people simply adore these doggies. Let us know what you think about this beautiful mix.