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Highland Maltie (Westie & Maltese Mix): Pictures, Care Guide, Temperament & Traits

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By Nicole Cosgrove

highland maltie

In the realm of mixed breeds, the Highland Maltie stands as a charming and popular combination of the West Highland White Terrier and the Maltese. These charming creatures are a fantastic choice for active families or individuals looking for a low-shedding dog.

Breed Overview

Height: 10–11 inches
Weight: 10–15 pounds
Lifespan: 12–14 years
Colors: White
Suitable for: Families with small children, seniors, homes with other pets
Temperament: Active, loving, fearless, feisty

The Highland Maltie is an intelligent, friendly, and easy-to-train mix that is renowned for getting along well with other pets. It’s sure to make a versatile addition to any pet-loving household.

Highland Maltie Characteristics


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Highland Maltie Puppies

Highland Maltie puppies, like most puppies, are irresistibly cute bundles of joy, boundless energy, and infinite curiosity. These adorable creatures capture hearts from the moment they arrive into the world, bringing a special kind of magic to each day with their playful antics.

Because they’re a unique mix of West Highland White Terrier and Maltese, Highland Maltie pups inherit various characteristics from their parent breeds. You might notice their Westie parent’s feisty, independent streak or their Maltese parent’s friendly, social nature. These traits often blend seamlessly, resulting in a wonderfully balanced, lively pup that’s just full of surprises.

Finding Highland Maltie puppies may require some research, as it’s essential to connect with a reputable breeder who specializes in this specific breed mix. The breeder should prioritize the health, temperament, and overall well-being of their dogs, producing quality rather than quantity. A responsible breeder will provide health clearances for the puppy’s parents, ensuring they are free from specific conditions that might be passed on to the puppies.

Parent Breeds of the Highland Maltie
Image Credit: (L) Jumpstory | (R) Tali Despins, Unsplash

Temperament & Intelligence of the Highland Maltie

Highland Malties are gifted with a temperament that is as endearing as it is interesting. These dogs are loyal, loving, and intelligent, making them great companions for any home. They inherit the Maltese’s affable nature and the Westie’s alertness, which combine to form a wonderfully engaging personality.

Their intelligence is particularly noteworthy, as it makes training a relatively straightforward process. These dogs are quick to pick up commands and are eager to please their owners.

They are receptive to positive reinforcement and tend to thrive in environments where their minds are consistently stimulated. This intelligence also leads to a deep understanding and responsiveness to their owner’s emotions, further strengthening the bond between pet and owner.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

When it comes to families, the Highland Maltie is an exceptional choice. They are friendly and sociable, which, combined with their gentle nature, makes them great with children of all ages. Their love for play and activity can match the energy levels of young ones, providing endless fun and entertainment.

Moreover, their intelligence and trainability also mean that they can understand boundaries, making them safe around children. Of course, it’s always important to supervise interactions between younger children and any dog to ensure safety for all.

Does This Breed Get Along With Other Pets?

Yes, the Highland Maltie is a sociable breed that generally gets along well with other pets. They can coexist peacefully with other dogs, cats, and even smaller pets with proper introduction and supervision.

However, their sociability doesn’t mean you should skip early socialization. It’s beneficial to expose your Highland Maltie to different pets, environments, and experiences early in their life. This exposure helps them grow into well-rounded dogs, comfortable and well-behaved in various situations.

Remember, every dog is an individual, and while breed tendencies can predict some behaviors, there can always be variations. Patience, understanding, and a commitment to positive reinforcement will go a long way in ensuring harmony in a multi-pet household.

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Things to Know When Owning a Highland Maltie:

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

A well-balanced diet is an essential aspect of maintaining the health and vitality of your Highland Maltie. Typically, these dogs thrive on high-quality, premium dry dog food, which provides all the essential nutrients. When choosing a diet, consider their size, age, activity level, and overall health.

Puppy Highland Malties have different nutritional needs than adults, so a diet formulated for small- to medium-breed puppies would be ideal initially. As your pet matures, transitioning to adult dog food will provide the necessary nutrients for its adult phase. It’s also crucial to monitor their food intake to prevent obesity, a condition that could lead to numerous health issues.

While dry dog food can provide balanced nutrition, incorporating some wet food or safe, vet-approved human food can add variety. Remember, any dietary changes should be made gradually to avoid upsetting your dog’s stomach. Regular vet check-ups will also help monitor your dog’s weight and overall health, allowing for dietary adjustments as needed.

Exercise 🐕

Highland Malties are an energetic and lively breed that requires daily exercise to remain fit, mentally stimulated, and content. A routine involving walks around the neighborhood, games of fetch, and interactive playtime with toys can contribute significantly to their physical and mental health.

Providing an array of activities will not only keep them physically fit but also challenge their intelligence and satisfy their curiosity. Mental stimulation is just as important as physical exercise. Consider interactive games, puzzle toys, and obedience training.

Remember, a well-exercised dog is a happy dog, and incorporating exercise into your daily routine will help prevent behavioral issues such as excessive barking, digging, or chewing.

Training 🎾

Highland Malties are known for their intelligence and high trainability. They respond well to training sessions that are fun, positive, and rewarding. Positive reinforcement techniques, like treats and praises, work well with this breed.

Training should start from puppyhood, focusing on basic commands like “sit”, “stay”, and “come”, and gradually move to more advanced commands as your pet matures. Consistency is key in training, and short, regular training sessions tend to be more effective than infrequent, prolonged ones.

This breed’s intelligent and eager-to-please nature can make them a joy to train. However, keep in mind that patience is essential during training. Some days will be more successful than others, and that’s okay!

Grooming ✂️

Highland Malties have a beautiful, fluffy coat that requires regular care to keep it healthy and looking its best. Depending on how much they take after their Westie or Maltese parent, their coat may range from wavy to straight, with a medium to long length.

Regular brushing, about three to four times a week, is recommended to prevent matting and tangling. During grooming sessions, check for any signs of skin irritations, parasites, or unusual lumps.

Bathing should be done once every month or so or whenever your dog gets particularly dirty. Make sure to use a gentle dog-approved shampoo to maintain the natural oils in their skin and coat.

In addition to coat care, pay attention to their dental hygiene. Regular teeth brushing can prevent dental disease, a common issue in small dog breeds. Nail trimming, ear cleaning, and eye cleaning should also be part of your regular grooming routine to keep your Highland Maltie clean and healthy.

Remember, regular grooming sessions not only contribute to the physical health of your dog but also provide an excellent opportunity for bonding and building trust between you and your furry friend.

Health and Conditions 🏥

Minor Conditions
  • Eye infections
  • Ear infections
Serious Conditions
  • Legg-Calve Perthes disease
  • Patellar luxation
  • Cataracts

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Male vs Female

There are slight differences in size between male and female Highland Malties, with males being slightly larger on average. However, both males and females share a similar temperament and disposition.

3 Little-Known Facts About the Highland Maltie

1. Westie Heritage

The West Highland White Terrier parent breed was initially bred for hunting small critters in Scotland, which contributes to the Highland Maltie’s alert and active nature.

2. Royal Connection

The Maltese breed has a royal connection and was adored by the aristocracy for centuries, making the Highland Maltie a mix of a true royal breed.

3. Low Shedding

Despite their fluffy appearance, Highland Malties are known to be low shedders, making them an excellent choice for those with allergies or those who prefer a cleaner home environment.

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Final Thoughts

The Highland Maltie is a fantastic combination of two popular breeds, merging the best qualities of both. With their loyal, loving, and intelligent nature, they are a fantastic choice for active families or individuals looking for a friendly, low-shedding pet.

Their sociability and ease of training also add to their appeal. If you are considering a Highland Maltie, you are indeed embarking on a delightful journey filled with affection, energy, and companionship.

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