What is the trimming protocol on Maltese?
If you will not be showing your Maltese, it would be far easier to keep it cut off the ground. Much more sanitary too.
Finally, what food do you recommend for an eight week-old puppy, who has
just been weaned from its mother?
I would recommend Science Diet puppy food. Forget any Purina food.(look at the ingredients). According to your pups DOB he will only be 6 weeks on Xmas eve!! At such a young age to be leaving the mother, I would keep an eye on his blood sugar. If he starts acting sleepy and listless, give him a little honey. You should see a noticable difference almost immediately if this was the problem. Good luck.
Please keep in mind that the puppy is very young at 6 weeks. Watch him closely and please do all your Vet check-ups regularly. Good luck with your new addition! I know your wife will love him! Merry Christmas!