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Belgian Malinois

Quick facts

Belgian Malenois AKC Group: Herding
Height: Male: 24-26 Inches, Female: 22-24 Inches
Weight: 60-65 pounds
Colors: rich fawn to mahogany, with black tips on the hairs; mask and ears are black
AKC recognized in: 1959

The Belgian Malinois has always been a favorite Belgian shepherd dog because of its hardworking and energetic nature. One of the four varieties of Belgian shepherd dogs, this particular breed was first developed in the city of Malines as herding dogs, and they are now popular as watch dogs and guard dogs for the military and police in mostly Europe and also in the United States. In fact, they make excellent guard dogs due to their very alert and intelligent nature. They are similar to but smaller than a French Beauceron, and they can sometimes be mistaken for the looks of a German Shepherd. However, the Belgian Malinois is a distinct breed all its own.

This square and solid breed of medium-sized herding dogs is also quite good at sledding and tracking. They are quick and agile because of their muscular form which shows no signs of heaviness. They are beautiful dogs with a proud carriage and a well-proportioned body of a standard coat color ranging from fawn to red or mahogany.


Belgian Malinois Summary
Affection one paw
Cold Tolerance three paws
Ease of Training five paws
Energy level four paws
Exercise Requirements five paws
Friendliness : Children two paws
Friendliness: Other Animals three paws
Friendliness: Other Pets three paws
Grooming Requirements one paw
Heat Tolerance three paws
Playfulness four paws
Protection Ability five paws
Watchdog Ability five paws

Malinois dogs are larger and heavier than their bitches, but both are squarely built for strength and action. Both are light, agile, and confident in their movements. They are boundless in energy and happiest when engaged in regular activity like strenuous work and playful exercise. They exhibit a strong desire to perform without being aggressive unless provoked or threatened.

Belgian Malinois are fiercely protective and loving of their family, and they are usually reserved with strangers. Obedience training has to start early, and you cannot be harsh or overbearing with them while doing so. Otherwise, they will only turn stubborn and uncooperative. You should address them with firm authority, because they are basically smart and obedient creatures. They enjoy new and challenging tasks as natural working dogs, and they are intelligent enough to figure out if you are being consistent with the rules or changing them without any notice.

They thrive much on daily exercise and a lot of personal attention and companionship. You cannot keep them locked up in a kennel or have them left behind for long periods of time, because they need to bond with the people they are with.

Health and Exercise

At an average lifespan of 10 to 12 years, a Belgian Malinois' health can be considered robust, except for some health problems they may eventually encounter as they grow older such as:

  • hip dysplasia
  • Progressive retinal atrophy
  • Pannus or corneal inflammation
  • Cataract or clouding of the lens
  • Thyroid problems
  • Epilepsy

Because of their short coats, the Malinois only need occasional grooming as they tend to shed moderately. Thus, simple grooming in the form of brushing is recommended during the period of shedding.

There is nothing like play and exercise to keep a Belgian Malinois happy. Young Malinois are especially known to be playful and energetic. As adults, they love long walks on a regular basis, and they need the wide, open spaces in order to be satisfied.

Visitor Comments

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