Characteristics of the Bolognese include: playful, easygoing, earnest, willing, intelligent and loyal. They are very calm and generally not very high energy. They can be somewhat reserved and shy, but warm to strangers quickly if they have been properly socialized.
Bolognese love people. They have been selected for centuries in the direction of love and companionship towards humans. Bolognese suffer greatly if they are left alone for a long time. This breed is not suitable for individuals or families whose schedules demand that the Bolognese would be by itself for long periods of time, such as an “8 to 5” work schedule every day.
Bolognese can be prone to small dog syndrome, which is a human induced behavior where the dog believes he is Pack Leader to humans. This can cause behavior problems, including separation anxiety and timidity. There are a number of good books available on the subject of understanding the dynamics of the Pack Order. “Leader of the Pack” by Nancy Baer and Steve Duno; and “Cesar’s Way” by Cesar Milan, both offer excellent insight on this subject.
The Bolognese gets along well with most other pets, and small children. Bolognese need to be protected, to some extent, from the outbursts of love and affection of younger children who do not understand that the small bones of the Bolognese cannot withstand the “bear hugs” of an enthusiastic child. Likewise, it is not recommended that Bolos be placed in a home where there are larger dogs unless there is constant supervision to insure the safety of the smaller dog.
Bolognese make excellent companions for seniors, and are a calm traveling companion for retirees. Bolognese enjoy apartment life, as long as some moderate exercise plan is provided.
Bolognese are very vigilant, and are true watchdogs. They are not incessant barkers but, take notice of anything unusual and faithfully notify their owners.
The Bolognese coat is all white, soft and slightly “tufted” with a wonderful cotton texture. The coat is “non-shedding” so should not affect low to mild allergy suffers. Bolognese coats are unshaped and untrimmed except for around eyes and for sanitary reasons. Regular grooming is needed if the Bolognese is kept in its full coat, however many families have found that they are very satisfied with keeping their Bolo in a shorter coat of about one inch for convenient maintenance, leaving the untrimmed “mop head” around the face to exemplify the Bolognese personality.
The Bolognese are generally a very healthy breed. The ABC is cooperating with breeders throughout the USA, and also abroad, to preserve the health of this breed for the future. We encourage those who are interested in a Bolognese puppy, to buy only from those breeders who are health testing. ( more details can be found under our Buyer Beware tab)
So, is owning an Italian Bolognese right for your family?
Owning a puppy is a dedicated task, they are completely dependent upon you for their mental and physical wellbeing.
Ask yourself, are you the right person for a dog?
Is your lifestyle the right one at this point? Have you the time and commitment to dedicate to this dog? It takes both time and commitment to raise a dog correctly, as well as patience.
Can you afford to pay vet bills, feed good nutritious food, and give hours of love to a Bolo who will adore you and depend on you completely?