General Information

Dog NameCoton de Tulear
Other NamesCotie
Scientific NameCanis lupus familiaris
Breed TypeLapdog
GroupNon-sporting, Companion
Breed ForCompanion Dog
Country of OriginMadagascar

Physical And Size

Min Life Span15
Max Life Span19
Min Ideal Weight for male4
Max Ideal Weight for male5
Min Ideal Weight for female3
Max Ideal Weight for male5


Intelligent Rank
Affection Level
Social Needs
Watchdog Ability


TemperamentHappy, Smart, Charming
Prey DriveYes
Fighting DogNo


Stranger FriendlyHigh
Child FriendlyHigh
Cat FriendlyHigh
Dog FriendlyMedium
Office FriendlyHigh
Apartment FriendlyHigh
Senior Citizens FriendlyHigh
Service DogHigh
Search and Rescue DogHigh
Biting PotentialLow
Country of OriginMadagascar
Nicknames and Other NamesCotie, Coton
Scientific NameCanis lupus familiaris
Breed TypePurebred
GroupNon-sporting Group,
Companion Group
Bred ForCompanion dogs
Recognized ByAKC, UKC, CKC, KC, FCI
Life Span15-19 years
Ideal WeightMale: 9-15 pounds
Female: 8-13 pounds
Ideal HeightMale: 10-11 inches
Female: 9-10 inches
Fur TypeDense, soft like cotton
Common ColorsWhite
MarkingsYellow markings
Gray markings
AvailabilityCommonly available
Suitable for ApartmentsYes
Used in World WarNo
Most Similar ToMaltese

The Coton de Tulear is a bright cuddly breed of dogs that has a clownish personality and is always ready for a fun time. It was originated in Madagascar and is also known as the “Royal Dog of Madagascar“.

The small-sized Coton de Tulear is sturdy despite its small size. It is affectionate, playful and always eager to please humans around him.

Origin & History

The Coton de Tulear originated or is believed to have come in the Madagascar several years ago relating to the Bichon breed.

The Coton de Tulear survived in packs in the wild, later to become a companion dog of the native Malagasy and Merina, the tribal nobles of Madagascar.

There are stories and tales that white dogs swam ashore for safety and formed a feral pack. Then they mated with little white dogs which resulted in the Coton de Tulear.

A Coton de Tulear dog with his owner.

People believe that the little white dogs either accompanied ladies on long sea rides or used as ratters on the ships. They were also beached on Madagascar after being the sole survivors of a shipwreck.

Some of those dogs became pets in the royal court and wealthy Madagascar households, while others were street dogs.

Is Coton de Tulear child-friendly?

Yes, Coton de Tulear is very much child-friendly. The breed is very affectionate and kind with kids of all ages. If you are willing to bring a new mate for your kids, then the Madagascar’s royal dog is perfect for you.

Coton de Tulear are very child-friendly dogs. Image Source: YouTube

Behavior, Temperament and Personality

The Coton de Tulear has a very playful, affectionate and intelligent temperament. He’ll form strong bonds with people he loves and trusts. It is a very happy and boisterous dog breed. He behaves very kindly and is always eager to please the people he is around with.

Coton de Tulear is a very intelligent breed. Source: Instagram@angiehallulmann

The Coton de Tulear has a small-sized but interesting personality. He loves lounging around here and there pleasing and cuddling his owner.


The Coton de Tulear is a very smart breed that learns things very quickly and accurately. However, he may become destructive if not properly trained. So, training should begin at an early stage.

As a owner, you can start training him from your home itself. You shouldn’t miss to train him with obedience training. Also, socialization with other dogs and human at early age is equally important.

Coton de Tulear dogs being trained.

Facts about the Coton de Tulear breed

Here are some facts about the Coton de Tulear breed that you would want to know as an owner:

  • The Coton de Tulear breed originated in Madagascar and are also called the “Royal Dog of Madagascar”.
  • It is related to the Bichon Frise and Maltese breed.
  • It is smart and hence takes well to training.
  • It enjoys playing and going for walks.
  • It loves being with people and dislikes being separated from them.

Some Common Health Issues of the Coton de Tulear

General HealthHealthy
Common Health IssuesHip Dysplasia, Patellar Luxation,
Progressive Retinal Atrophy,
Ear Infections, Eye Problems
Vaccination RequiredRabies, Kennel Cough, Leptospirosis
Canine Coronavirus, Canine Distemper,
Canine Parvovirus, Canine Parainfluenza
SheddingLow Shedder
DroolingLow Drooler
GroomingAdvance Grooming Required
Weight Gain PotentialAverage
Separation AnxietyModerate Chance
AllergiesSkin Allergy
Diets and SupplementsProtein: 22%
Fat: 8%
Fish Oil

The Coton de Tulear has an average life between 14 to 16 years and during his lifetime, he suffers through various health problems. According to Petful, here are some of the commonly seen diseases seen in the Coton de Tulear:

Hip Dysplasia

Hip Dysplasia refers to the hereditary disease seen in the dogs caused by the malformation of the hip joint.

Luxating Patellas

Luxating patella is just a minor inconvenience which causes pain severe enough to stop the dogs from running and jumping.

A Coton de Tulear being treated. Image Source: The Best of TCPALM

Skin Allergies

The Coton suffer through various skin allergies due to its unhygienic behaviors. They are likely to get rashes and other minor skin infections.

Ear Infections

Coton dogs suffer from various ear infections. Otitis media is a very major ear infection that these dogs often suffer from.


The Coton de Tulear dogs are found in six different colors. They are as follows:

  • Gray & White
  • Lemon & White
  • Tri-color
  • Black & White
  • White
  • Black


If you are willing to own a Coton puppy, it is very important to keep your house and surroundings puppy-proofed. Electric wires and cables should be properly managed. Vaccination should also be given timely.

Cute little Coton de Tulear puppies. Image Source: Simplycoton

Be sure to train your puppy from the time you bring him home. Obedience Training, Potty Training and Socializing are very important aspects for training your puppy.

Cost of a Coton de Tulear puppy

If you are willing to buy a Coton puppy, you’ll have to pay $2000 to $3000 depending on the breed’s quality. Some high quality breeds even costs $3000 to $4000.

Which dogs are they similar to?

Some breeds that are similar to the Coton de Tulear are as follows:

Visit Doglime for more dog breeds information and their behavior.