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In the 16th century, European sailors carried with them a small Bichon from the Canary Island of Tenerife, to Reunion Island which is in the Indian Ocean. The Bichon interbred with the long cottony-coated local dog called the Coton de Reunion.

This breed was again taken by trade ship, and maybe even pirate ship, to the port city of Tulear on the island of Madagascar. In Madagascar the dog became a favorite of the French aristocrats living on the island, who did not allow common folk to own them. They are now a very popular breed in France. It was not until the 1970’s that the first Coton de Tulear were brought to the United States.
Located 300 miles off the coast of Africa, the nation of Madagascar is the fourth-largest island on the planet. Population exceeds 15 million people. The capital city is Antananarivo, the currency is the Malagasy Franc and the official languages are French and Malagasy.

The climate is tropical, with cooler conditions inland. Notable landscape features include heavy forests, and a midland plateau - with some peaks exceeding 6,000 feet.

The country is the world's largest exporter of vanilla. Today, tourism is on the increase, with beaches, rare flowers and unique animals the main attractions.

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