The Maltese is simultaneously both one and two breeds of dog. They are the ancient dogs of Malta who date back to 500 BC where evidence of their esteem was painted on amphorae. The Maltese is also a modern breed closely related to the Bichon, Havanese, and Bolognese breeds. When shown, the modern Maltese has a long flat white coat, but many owners who keep Maltese as pets cut them short for easier grooming.
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