The Telomian, strange and fascinating, has retained the allure of his wild and primitive ancestors. His appearance has remained primitive, but his temperament adapts very well to living with humans. Families appreciate him because he protects them by warning them of danger or chasing away dangerous animals that could cause harm. This fascinating dog is a family member in his own right, making him an extraordinary companion for everyone, especially young children, with whom he gets along wonderfully. The Telomian is a special and fascinating dog, but remains rather rare outside Malaysia and Western United States.

Height 38 to 48 cm
Weight 10 to 14 kg
Life expectancy 10 to 12 years
Home country Malaysia

Quick Overview of the Telomian


  • Intelligent and lively
  • Alert and obedient
  • Likes to play with his family


  • Pure lineage of primitive dog
  • Harmonious silhouette
  • Short coat


  • Robust and wild
  • No disease linked to the breed

Temperament of the Telomian

Intelligent, lively, alert and obedient, the Telomian is particularly alert when hunting, and loves to search for objects and play with family members.

His socialization must be undertaken at an early age, as his education.

Because he has retained his primitive instincts, the Telomian loves to play, run and catch just about anything; game, toads, balls, toys, etc.

Breed Appearance


Very close to the wild dog, the Telomian has kept the pure lineage of the primitive dog.

His medium-size body offers a pure, harmonious silhouette that is reminiscent of his presumed ancestor, the Dingo.


Between 41 and 48 cm (16.14 to 18.90 inches) for the male
Between 38 and 46 cm (14.96 to 18.11 inches) for the female


Between 11 and 14 kg (24.25 to 30.86 pounds) for the male
Between 10 and 12 kg (22.05 to 26.46 pounds) for the female


The color of his coat can vary between black and white, beige and white or black and tan.

Specimens with large color patches are widely preferred.


His hair is short.


His head is well proportioned with his body, and very reminiscent of the Dingo's head.

His eyes are dark. His ears are medium size and carried erect.

His nose matches his coat. His tail is medium length and carried straight.

According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group , section and is #

Tips About this breed

He adapts very easily to all situations, and makes an excellent dog for children, loving to participate in their games and never tiring.

The Telomian has the special ability to use his paws to hold objects or open doors, much like humans do.

This way of holding things and his extraordinary ability to climb ladders very easily make him a unique dog.

When he climbs, he makes a funny sound very similar to the one produced by his canine counterpart, the Basenji from New Guinea, which could very likely be part of his lineage.

Telomian females only have one heat period per year.

The Telomian is also a real alarm system, which can warn of the presence of dangerous animals, such as snakes, or the presence of toxic natural elements, such as a poisonous plant for example.

This particular trait probably comes from his past in the Malaysian jungle.

Socialization is very important for this dog. His wild and primitive temperament makes it difficult for him to change his habits once adult.

In order to get him to adjust to different situations as he gets older, the puppy must be socialized at a very early age.

Socialization must begin at the age of 4 or 5 weeks, in order to allow the dog to become a true companion, able to adapt to all possible situations.

Health of the Telomian

Robust and wild, no diseases associated with the breed are listed, due to the lack of official information about the Telomian.


He is relatively easy to maintain. A brushing from time to time is enough to maintain his pretty dress in good health. No other particular maintenance is thus necessary.

History of this breed

Literature on the Telomian is quite rare. Even if the breed is not very widespread, he is the most renowned Malaysian dog outside his country.

It is most likely a breed related to the wild dog, the Dingo.

The Telomian breed was originally created by the Orang Asli, an indigenous culture of the country, who sought to get rid of pests by creating a dog that could hunt rodents and dangerous vermin.

In Malaysia at nightfall, snakes, poisonous insects, scorpions, hungry mammals and armies of ants all come out at the same time, so homes are never built on the ground.

To better protect themselves against these harmful and dangerous invaders, Malaysians build their homes on stilts.

The residents are regular climbers who have to do this exercise every time they enter or leave their homes.

As a result, even the Telomian, living alongside the locals in their respective homes, developed an incredible ability and facility for climbing.

Totally unusual, this way of doing things has become a characteristic trait of the breed in Malaysia. His ability to climb is quite unique and special.

Some cynophiles claim that the Telomian is the missing link between the Dingo and the Basenji.

Even though Malaysians kept dogs to hunt vermin, the Telomian, like all dogs among the indigenous Malaysians, was considered a sign of bad luck, bringing misfortune and even death to the dog's master.

For the natives, seeing a wild dog was twice unfortunate, as the wild dog was considered an evil spirit. In spite of this, the Telomian is part of the family.

The breed was discovered in 1963 by anthropologist Dr. Orville Elliot. After finding canine specimens near the Telom River, Dr. Elliot decided to name the breed "Telomian".

A couple of dogs were brought back to the United States, where a Telomian Club was established in the 1970s. In 1973, a second couple made the trip to America.

It is popular belief that all Telomians in Western United States today are descended from these first two couple of dogs, which were brought back from Malaysia in the 1970s. However, there is no official documentation on the subject.

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