The Dogs of Dubai and the EmiratesLiz Mallia
Dubai, the top business hub of the Middle East, is famous for its grandeur and luxury. Oil and global trade made the city rich, and brought people all over the world to live there. Although dogs are sometimes rejected in Middle Eastern culture for being “unclean” animals (with the exception of the Saluki), the cosmopolitan nature of the city has made pet dogs popular. Although small dogs are popular, as apartments are often small, dogs of all sizes are welcome in the City of Gold.
Affectionate yet agile, the Havanese is a versatile dog breed, which may explain its popularity. Originating from Cuba, these little dogs have silky coats that help shield them from the sun, which makes them ideal dogs for the Middle East. They adapt easily to apartment life due to their small size. They are affectionate, though they may suffer from separation anxiety. Don’t mistake the Havanese for a mere lapdog – they are very agile and intelligent, and excel in many canine sports and careers, such as assisting the handicapped.
Tiny but full of personality, these dogs are popular world over. They are affectionate family dogs that are happy to play and run around with children, or cuddle up with family members. Originating from rainy Yorkshire in England, these dogs do surprisingly well in warmer climates, perhaps due to their silky fur. Their small size also makes them great apartment dogs, though they can be difficult to housetrain and their yappy nature may annoy your neighbours – take time to train your dog from an early stage to avoid these problems.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Small, sweet-tempered and sporty, the Cavalier is one of the most popular dogs in the world. These beautiful, energetic and gentle dogs are ideal for families, and are very trainable. Cavaliers sometimes suffer from separation anxiety, so shouldn’t be left alone for long time periods. They also need daily exercise to keep them fit and prevent them from becoming bored, as a bored Cavalier may be destructive. Make sure not to take them out during the hottest hours of the day, as Cavaliers don’t always do well in hot climates.
The German Shepherd is a popular pet in Dubai, though they are also used as guard dogs. Shepherds are large, intelligent dogs and are easily trained. They are also very versatile and have been used for herding, agility, police work, guide dog work, and many other disciplines. Although they often have reserved characters, they are very loyal dogs and make good family pets. German Shepherds needs to be socialised and trained from an early age to make sure they grow up to be well behaved dogs. Due to their large size, they may not be the best apartment dogs. They also need regular daily exercise: both physical and mental.
Also called the Italian Mastiff, these dogs are often used as guard dogs due to their powerful and muscular build. They are also loyal family dogs, though often uninterested or suspicious of strangers. The Corso hails from Italy, so they cope well with the Dubai heat. The Corso gets bored very easily. A bored Corso will probably dig holes and chew the furniture if given nothing to do, so find an activity for him to do, such as agility or obedience classes. An active Cane Corso is a happy Corso.
Developed as a guard dog in 19th century Germany, this intelligent and spirited dog is great for sports such as Schutzhund and agility. Although they have a bad reputation, Dobermans have an affectionate nature and make good pets. However they are large dogs, they do surprisingly well in apartments, provided they are exercised daily and are well trained. They also tolerate heat well, and will be quite happy in Dubai’s hot climate.
The Retriever is perhaps the quintessential family dog. Cheerful, trustworthy, and playful, this dog is universally beloved. They are great with children and other pets, intelligent and eager to please, and ideal for first-time dog owners. Retrievers are large dogs and prone to shedding, so they will be happier in a house than an apartment. Be sure to find a reputable Breeder, as Golden Retrievers are prone to health problems such as hip dysplasia.
Dubai is the city of superlatives: the richest, the hottest, the biggest. The Great Dane certainly fits into that last category, and often appeals to those who wish to impress. The Great Dane is a typical gentle giant: their size belies their friendly nature. Great Danes aren’t particularly active and are surprisingly comfortable in apartments, although they may accidentally knock things over due to their size.
From the largest dogs to one of the smallest, here’s the Pomeranian. Don’t tell the Pomeranian what he can and can’t do, because these little dogs are very determined and are often on par with bigger dogs in disciplines such as agility, search and rescue, and obedience training. These little dogs will be happy to live in an apartment but don’t enjoy the heat of Dubai due to their fluffy coats; luckily air conditioning helps to keep them comfortable.
A short-furred breed with large soulful eyes, Beagles are playful and friendly, and popular all over the world. They make fantastic pets, especially for families with children, and are very intelligent, if a bit stubborn. Beagles have a few quirky behaviours, such as the baying sounds they make when they are lonely or smell something interesting, which is important to keep in mind if you lived in an apartment.