Hawaiian Poi Dog vs Coton De Tulear - Breed Comparison

Hawaiian Poi Dog is originated from Indonesia but Coton De Tulear is originated from Madagascar. Hawaiian Poi Dog may grow 8 cm / 4 inches higher than Coton De Tulear. Hawaiian Poi Dog may weigh 9 kg / 20 pounds more than Coton De Tulear. Hawaiian Poi Dog may live 8 years less than Coton De Tulear. Both Hawaiian Poi Dog and Coton De Tulear has almost same litter size. Both Hawaiian Poi Dog and Coton De Tulear requires Low maintenance.

Basic Information

Group:
Companion dog
Companion dog
Origin:
Indonesia
Madagascar
Height Male:
36 - 38 cm
14 - 15 inches
25 - 30 cm
9 - 12 inches
Height Female:
34 - 36 cm
13 - 15 inches
25 - 30 cm
9 - 12 inches
Weight Male:
7 - 15 kg
15 - 34 pounds
3 - 6 kg
6 - 14 pounds
Weight Female:
6 - 13 kg
13 - 29 pounds
3 - 6 kg
6 - 14 pounds
Life Span:
5 - 8 Years
14 - 16 Years
Litter Size:
3 - 5
4 - 6
Size:
Small dog
Small dog
Other Names:
Native Hawaiian Dog, and Hawaiian Islanders’ Dog., Poi Dog, Ilio, Hawaiian Dog
Cotie, Coton
Colors Available:
any color with white markings, brown mostly
fawn, black and white, apricot, White
Coat:
short and fine
Medium to long - can be straight , wavy or curly
Shedding:
Minimal
Minimal
Temperament:
Affectionate, Playful, Stubborn
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Gentle, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Sweet
Grooming:
Low maintenance
Low maintenance
Trainability:
Hard
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
Yes
Yes

History

The Hawaiian Poi Dog was a descendent of the dogs brought to the Islands by the Polynesian. These Polynesian dogs were themselves descendants of the kuri dog of New Zealand. These kuri dogs were originally from Indonesia. The Hawaiian Poi dog is now extinct but at one time was considered the spiritual protector of Hawaiian children and also used as food by hungry Native Hawaiians.

The dog was called poi which was the word for a food staple mad from the root of Taro and used to put weight on the dogs before they were eaten. Meat was not fed to the dogs because it was too scarce. There was no large mammals to hunt and so the breed was never given a standard. The Poi dog seen by European explorers were short legged, pot bellied canines that lived with the hogs in the towns. Because of what they ate, the dogs were not highly intelligent but were stubborn and hard to train. Because the dogs were not suited for much beyond food and a spiritual charm, they became extinct when the traditional religion was no longer practiced and eating dogs was no longer acceptable. The breed pretty much disappeared by the early 20th century. Very few images of the dogs remain except for ancient petroglyphs.

There was an attempt by the Honolulu Zoo in the late 1960’s to redevelop the breed using local dogs to determine a standard. Then the local dogs were bred as close to the standard as possible. In the third generation one dog was born with the traits of a Poi dog. There was not much more success with this and then the Polynesian ship travel between Tahiti and Hawaii was recreated and a dog taken along.

Today’s mixed breed dogs in Hawaii are called Poi dogs but also have the stubbornness, unique appearance and ability to eat anything it is given like the original Poi. The dogs are small, and should not be confused with the original Poi dogs.

coton de tulearThese cute little Coton de Tulear dogs originate from Madagascar and have in fact been named the ‘official dog of Madagascar’.

The Coton de Tulear actually takes his name from the seaport city of Tulear. In the 1970s a Frenchman brought a puppy to France, with the idea of establishing them as a breed. It was also at this time that the dogs were brought to North America.

This small fluffy white dog was also found on the island of Malta, becoming known as the Maltese. They were mated with other dogs such as the Barbet, a curly haired dog and other coat colors exist such as apricot, black and white and fawn. Other breedings led to the Barbichon family of dogs which includes the Bichon Bolognese and the Bichon Teneriffe. The modern day breeds are the Maltese and the Coton de Tulear.

As with many dog breeds, there are different tales about the origin of the dogs and one version is that the white cotton-ball type of dog survived a shipwreck off the Madagascar coast.

Description

As previously mentioned the Poi dog is somewhat unusual in size and shape due to what they ate. They looked somewhat like the native dogs of Polynesia and New Zealand. They have short legs, long bodies, somewhat obese and a very flat head. He had a short smooth coat, in any color or any pattern. They were however mostly brown and they might or might not have white markings.

coton de tulear puppyThese little dogs make perfect companions. They stand about 25–30cm with the female sometimes being slightly smaller. They weigh anything between 3 – 6kg. They’re robust little canines and can live up to 19 years or so when looked after well.

If you want puppies, you can expect yours to deliver between 4 – 6 puppies.

The Coton de Tulear is easily recognized because of his soft, fluffy coat. Many people take their dogs to the dog salon to have him washed and his hair trimmed. His legs are short and straight as well as being muscled under the hair. The ears are floppy and the tail of the Coton de Tulear is carried straight or slightly curved.

Temperament:

The Coton de Tulear is a friendly, affectionate dog who has a gentle, cuddly side to him. They are social dogs and get on well with their human family and with the children in the home, loving the games they provide.

He will also get on well with other pets in the home and becomes amicable, relaxed and obedient with socialization and training. Small though he is, he makes a great watchdog too and is full of tricks, making him an entertaining pet to have around.

Health Problems

Probably due to its diet, the Poi dog had several problems to their health. Their poor diet led to a sluggishness both in movement and intelligence. Its development was hampered by a lack of protein. Malnutrition and serious over inbreeding caused a weakness and poor oral hygiene. Due to this lack of teeth and chewing the bones in the dogs heads became flat. The Poi had breathing issues and overall lethargy.

coton de tulear dogWith proper care, your Coton can reach a ripe old age of 15 – 20 years of age. However, even this robust little dog will need to be watched, as he can fell prey to some common dog ailments -

Dental Disease:

Bad Breath with your pet can be a sign of dental decay. Dental plaque for instance, caused by bacteria, can give your pet a terrible breath. It is important to brush your pet’s teeth 2 or 3x a week. Your vet can provide tips on how to brush your pet’s teeth with a special canine toothbrush and toothpaste.

Other things to look out for are hip dysplasia and chronic allergies. Allergies can cause itchy and dry skin as well as ear infections because of so much hair being in the ear canal. Speak to your vet about how to clean your pet's ears to avoid ear infection.

Caring The Pet

Feeding the puppy

With meat being rare in Hawaii, none was available for the dogs. They were fed Poi – from the Taro plant roots. Puppies were fed 2-3 times a day.

Feeding the adult

The adult dog was fed once or twice a day the same as Poi puppies were fed.

Points for Good Health

The Hawaiian Poi dog basically has not good health points.

Games and Exercises

The Poi dog did not need and did not get much exercise, leading to its demise.

Exercise:

coton de tulear puppiesCoton de Tulears will need some exercise if you want him to remain lean and fit. It is important to provide exercise and games for your dog to prevent boredom. Activity levels for any dog, including the Coton, will depend on his age and health.

A walk every day and some ball games will keep your pet happy and prevent him from resorting to destructive behavior from sheer boredom and frustration.

Grooming

The long coat will require some careful grooming and you will need to be on the lookout for excess hair around the paws and in the ears.

He is not a great shedder and brushing twice a week will remove loose hairs and provides the perfect opportunity to check for fleas and ticks.

Just like any other dog, your Coton de Tulear will need a warm, dry place to sleep. If you haven’t already invested in a doggy basket or dog bed, you can use a cardboard box for now, before making up your mind what you want for your pet.

Training:

A well behaved, obedient dog is a pleasure for everyone, and training and socialization is important, even for a small dog. Your dog will understand simple commands such as ‘sit’, ‘down’ and ‘come’ and also know how to walk well on a leash.

Characteristics

Children friendliness

The Hawaiian Poi dog was very friendly and good with children

Special talents

The Poi was considered a good luck charm and a spiritual protector of children

Adaptability

Given what they faced in life, the Poi dog was very adaptable, living anywhere on the islands and eating anything it could find.

Learning ability

Due to their poor diet, the Hawaiian Poi dog was seriously lacking in intelligence and learning ability.

coton de tulear dogsThe Coton de Tulear just wants to please his human family and spend unforgettable moments with them, hating to be separated from them. He is such an adaptable little dog and will fit well into city- as well as country life.

He is smart, comical, playful, independent and fun to have around as he is known for his clownish personality. Treat him well and he’ll repay you with plenty of love and loyalty.

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