Belgian Malinois pros and cons
Owning a Belgian Malinois comes with a set of advantages and disadvantages. The pros of owning a Malinois include the strong working drive of the dog. Highly active, intelligent and eager to work, Belgian Malinois is a special breed that is not for everyone. An ideal owner for Belgian Malinois should have a good understanding of what it takes to train this dog, the amount of daily time that is required to keep this working breed busy and in great mental and physical shape. Extremely energetic Belgian Malionois have high exercise requirements. Potential owners need to be ready to dedicate a large part of their daily time to spending it with the dog, specifically exercising and training a Malinois. Belgial Malinois owners spend from three to six hours every day staying active, walking, running and exercising this dog, full of endless energy. Malinois require a patient and experienced leader in the owner, who can bring the best of this active dog with an exceptionally high working drive. Keeping a Malinois busy can be a full time job, which can be a positive for someone who is interested in dedicating plenty of time to their dog every day. Other pros of owning a Belgian Malinois is that this dog is eager to please the owner and can be trained to a high standard. Belgian Malinois are very intelligent and quickly learn new commands with the right motivation. Other pros associated with Belgian Malinois breed is the high potential as a guard dog. Malinois are alert and make excellent personal protection dogs with the proper training.
Cons associated with owning a Beligan Malinois breed include the extremely high energy that can be difficult to manage for owners who are not as energetic. Belgian Malinois are demanding in terms of time and owners need to spend a large part of the day just exercising with this active dog. Not everyone has the energy that it takes to own a Belgian Malinois breed. Belgian Malinois dogs are not best fit for apartment living. When inactive and bored, Belgian Malinois dogs can quickly become destructive, which can be a disadvantage to owning this breed.
Belgian Malinois shedding
Belgian Malinois grooming requirements are minimal but keep in mind that Belgian Malinois do shed. Belgian Malinois dogs have a double coat that requires more attention during the shedding period to keep the coat neat and to minimize the amount of dog hair in your home. Malinois dogs shed twice a year. To manage Malinois shedding, use a bristle brush and a large pin brush. Two in one bristle and pin dog brushes are also available.
Furminator deshedding tool for Malinois breed shedding management is recommended. Brushing the dog outdoors helps to make the clean up much easier as there will be a lot of hair flying around as you are deshedding the Malinois.
Ensuring that the dog always has fresh drinking water available is important because excessive shedding may be caused by dehydration among other causes. Malinois dogs have a beautiful coat and nutritious diet can help to keep the dog's coat and skin healthy.
Always use a mild dog shampoo when you are bathing your Malinois. A breed specific Malinois shampoo is designed to keep the dog's coat in best condition.
A dog shower attachment may be handy as you are washing Belgian Malinois.
Belgian Malinois size
Belgian Malinois weight
Belgian Malinois male weight: 29 to 34 kg (63 to 74 lb)
Belgian Malinois female weight: 25 to 30 kg (55 to 66 lb)
Belgian Malinois size
Belgian Malinois male height: 61 to 66 cm (24 to 25 in)
Belgian Malinois female height: 56 to 61 cm (22 to 24 in)
Belgian Malinois coat: double coat, short
Belgian Malinois colors: fawn to mahogany with black markings
How many puppies do Belgian Malinois dogs have on average?
Belgian Malinois litter size: 6 to 10 puppies
How long do Belgian Malinois dogs live?
Belgian Malinois life span: 10 to 13 years
How much does a Belgian Malinois cost?
Belgian Malinois price starts at $1,500 and up per puppy depending on many factors
Belgian Malinois temperament
Belgian Malinois have a high drive for work. These sheepherding dogs are best known for their work as police and military dogs. The Belgian Malinois often runs in large circles. This behavior comes from the breed's herding instinct. Malinois is considered by many to be a variety of Belgian Shepherd rather than a separate breed. There are currently four recognized Belgian Shepherd types (sometimes referred to as Belgian Sheepdogs): Groenendael, Lakenua, Tervueren and Malinois. Groenendael features long hair and has completely black coat color. Lakenua features curled coat. Tervueren is a name for all other long-haired dogs. The dog with short hair is called Malinois. This herding breed is intelligent, athletic, alert and has a stubborn and very active temperament. Malinois enjoy challenges and solving problems. Dog behavior specialists agree that there's nothing that the Belgian Shepherd Malinois can't do. This is the super dog in the dog world. Law enforcement and the military find this breed very valuable due to the intense work ethic.
The Belgian Maliois is happiest in a house with a yard where the dog can stretch his feet. Be prepared to spend from 4 to 5 hours playing, training and exercising your active Malinois every single day. Most Malinois dogs enjoy retrieving. This dog is not a good fit for a couch potato owner. The Belgian dog needs plenty of attention from the owner, plenty of exercise, patience and consistency in training and in handling the dog in general, a purpose in life and socialization. There is a reason why dog rescue centers and dog shelters are overpopulated with dogs of this breed - many owners did not realize how active Malinois is. Many owners simply can not handle the high energy of this dog and that is the reason why many of these dogs end up in dog shelters. Malinois are known to get destructive when bored. Belgian Maliois do best with an experienced owner who has the time and energy to put into such an intense dog. Belgian Maliois temperament stays very high energy well into maturity. Even a five year old Malinois may exhibit the same youthful playfulness and high energy as a puppy. Due to high prey drive owners need to be cautious about other family pets. Socialize your Malinois from a young age to raise a confident dog.
Are Malinois dogs good with kids? Most owners agree that this large, high energy dog is not ideal for families with toddlers or young kids. Families with small children may not have the time that owning a Malinois dog breed requires. The high energy Belgian Malinois needs four to six hours of physical activity during the day, long walk and a lifelong training that comes with owning a large and high liability breed such as the Malinois. Only physically fit people with plenty of time to dedicate to this intelligent and very active breed may provide the dog with the energy outlet and keep the dog busy both mentally and physically every single day can consider Belgian Malinois as a pet. Having a large fenced yard is a must with this breed.
As a working dog, Belgian Malinois excel as personal protection dogs. Malinois personality can be described as distrustful towards strangers and the dog takes time to warm up to unfamiliar people. They also do detection, police work, search and rescue, and sport work like Schutzhund. Did we mention the the Belgian dog breed is very high energy? Take a look at the video below where a Malinois owner is sharing a few minutes out of her day with the Malinois dog that she owns.
As you are selecting a Malinois puppy, it is a good idea to meet the parents of the puppy. Pay close attention to the way the parents behave and look because if you select one of their puppies, chances are you will end up with a dog that closely resembles the character and physical traits of the parents. Stable, solid temperaments in parents of the puppy is a good sign. Find out all you can about the health history of the parents and the puppy. Malinois is a generally healthy breed but as with most purebred dogs there are some genetic predispositions for certain conditions and in Malinois hip and elbow dysplasia as well as bloat can present an issue.
How to care for Belgian Malinois
Malinois care includes brushing the dog's teeth. Accustom your Malinois to having his teeth brushed from a young age. Never use human toothpaste for dogs. Enzyme-based canine toothpaste will help to remove plaque that can turn into a yellow crust if not removed. The yellow crust on dog's teeth is called tartar and it is much more difficult to remove. Tartar contains harmful bacteria that doesn't just cause bad breath, but also can cause dental issues and other health issues. Healthy teeth are very important for overall dog's health.
Keep the ears clean to prevent ear infections. Dry the ears with a soft, clean towel after bathing. Ear wipes can help to keep your Dog's ears clean.
Trim the dog's nails when every 6 weeks or whenever you can hear nails clicking when the dog is walking on a hard floor.
Belgian Malinois training
From eight weeks to six months is a crucial time for Malinois puppies to start basic obedience training but even an adult dog can be trained. Eager to please Malinois responds well to training. Most Malinois are easily motivated by toys.
Inexperienced owners may find training Malinois challenging as the dog may be so full of life and energy that it is difficult to get the animal to focus. If that is the case, then it is best to get a professional trainer to help you with the training.
A large and strong Malinois needs to be well controlled by the owner to avoid any dangerous situations. Early socialization is important to raise a stable and confident Belgian Malinois. The dog enjoys mental and physical exercises every day. Be prepared to dedicate a lot of your time to playing, exercising and training your Malinois for the next fourteen to sixteen years. If you live to train your dog and plan to spend hours every day keeping your dog mentally and physically stimulated, then this breed is for you.
See video below that shows a dog trainer training a Malinois puppy various commands.
Protection dog training for Belgian Malinois
Malinois is among the best breeds for personal protection. Fast, eager to please Malinois is very alert and will protect you and your family. Personal protection training is time consuming and will require around a year for the initial training and refresher training will need to be taken periodically after that. Do a thorough research before you enroll your dog in personal protection course. Be sure to get several references from owners whose dogs completed the course. The trainer needs to be able to answer any questions that you may have and you should be allowed to be in every class. Make sure that you are comfortable with the way the trainer is handling your dog. You deserve to understand every part of the process. The dog should not be punished or handled in a cruel manner at any point. The wrong trainer can do irreversible damage to the dog's psyche and that is why it is extremely important to get all the info that you can about the personal protection trainer and feel comfortable about enrolling your dog.
Keep in mind that personal protection training can be very expensive. See video below to see amazing personal protection work by Belgian Malinois.
Belgian Malinois health issues
Hip and Elbow Dysplasia that usually results in arthritis is a common condition for the large dog breed such as Belgian Malinois. Take your dog to the veterinarian if you are noticing any signs of joint pain in your pet and use a comfortable dog bed designed to alleviate the pain associated with arthritis. Ortho dog beds with a washable cover are easy to keep clean and fresh.
Other medical issues associated with Malinois breed include cataracts, epilepsy, thyroid disease, progressive retinal atrophy, and pannus.
Feed your Belgian Malinois with a high quality age-appropriate dog food for large breeds.
Because Malinois is a large deep-chested breed there's a risk of developing a bloat. To minimize the risk of bloat feed your dog two times a day with reasonable portions and be sure to feed your dog when the dog is in calm state of mind. A very excited dog may gulp more air with food and that can increase the risk of bloat. Bloat is a common health issue that affects deep chested large dog breeds, including Belgian Malinois. Do not overfeed your Malinois and remember that feeding your dog twice a day with reasonably sized portions is safer than one large meal a day to help prevent bloat.
Belgian Malinois origin
The name of the breed is easy to explain - Belgian Malinois origins can be traced back to the Belgian city of Malines. The breed was and still is used as a herding dog for the sheep. The Belgian Malinois was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1959.
In 2011, a Belgian Malinois dog named Cairo was part of United States Navy SEAL Team Six. He helped the SEALs find Osama Bin Laden.