Being a small dog in the toy group, the Coton de Tulear weighs between 12 to 15 pounds and stands at 25 to 30 centimetres. Its distinct long and cotton-like fluffy coat is the obvious reason for its French name, Coton. The Coton de Tulear has soft hair (not fur) comparable to a cotton ball, distinguished black nose, large and round expressive eyes, and a short face. It closely resembles the Bichon Frise and Maltese.
To further emphasise its distinguishing feature, the Coton de Tulear has a coat that is thick and soft and described to be of fluffy and cottony texture. The coat comes in three accepted colours such as white, black and white, and tricolour. Coats may have a few shadings from light grey to red-roan on the ears. Cotons shed minimally and are highly recommended for people with allergies as its soft and cotton-like fur is hypoallergenic. Make sure to remove matted hair through daily brushing and combing. The challenge in grooming a Coton de Tulear comes with its its doggie smell, which can be removed with a proper bath and grooming. You may bathe a Coton weekly or every two weeks, depending on how dirty and smelly it gets.
Aside from keeping its coat's pristine look, do not forget other aspects of grooming. Brush the teeth of a Coton at least twice or thrice a week to remove tartar and build-up of bacteria. Of course, nothing beats daily brushing if manageable. Its nails must also be trimmed at least twice a month. Ears must be cleaned to avoid infection, which is characterised by redness and tenderness. If you notice any certain abnormalities, don't hesitate to consult your veterinarian.