In this series we will profile breeds registered with the American Kennel Club to give dog owners some ideas of what to expect of their dog. At Denver Dog Works we work with a network of breeders and with 20 years experience and training thousands of dogs we can help the new dog owner choose a breed that is right for you, your family and lifestyle.
Trainers Note: We have trained several Belgian Malinois’ over the years and most recently one stayed with us for the better part of the summer while his owner was serving in Afghanistan. Linux was an exceptional dog. Malinois can do just about anything. They are used for many jobs throughout the world in the areas of police work, search and rescue, tracking and protection training. These dogs are highly intelligent and have the drive to go with it. These dogs will need a lot of exercise and training and a “job to do.”
One of the four types of Belgian sheepherding dogs, the Belgian Malinois is an alert, high-energy breed, popular as both a police and military working dog. Although sometimes mistaken for the German Shepherd Dog, the Malinois is more elegant in build and lighter-boned, but does not lack for strength, agility or herding ability. Active participants in conformation, obedience, schutzhund, herding, sledding, and tracking, the breed ranges in color from rich fawn to mahogany, with black tips on the hairs and a black mask and ears.
A Look Back
Developed in the city of Malines, where it got its name, the Malinois shares a common foundation with the Belgian Sheepdog and the Belgian Tervuren. In fact, the Belgian dogs share a breed standard in all countries except the United States. The original breeders prized the Malinois’ working character, and historically, the breed has been the favorite type of Belgian Shepherd in its native country.
Right Breed for You?
Intelligent and trainable, the Belgian Malinois possesses a strong desire to work and is happiest with regular activity and a job to do. A relatively easy keeper due to their medium size and short coat, this confident breed loves their families, but may be somewhat reserved with strangers. They are naturally protective of their owners without being overly aggressive.
- Herding Group; AKC recognized in 1959.
- Ranging in size from 22 to 26 inches tall at the shoulder.
- Sheep herder.
© The American Kennel Club, Inc. http://www.akc.org
Dr. Robert Forto the owner of Denver Dog Works and Alaska Dog Works, is a musher training for his first Iditarod under the Team Ineka banner and the host of the popular radio shows, Mush! You Huskies and Dog Works Radio Shows