The Belgian Malinois is a wonderful breed known for their hard work, eager to please attitude, family ties, loving heart, and so much more! Belgian Malinois are very playful, and love attention. They are very obediant, and easy to train. Over the passed years they have moved up to rank 52 for the title of most popular breed in the United States, and are currently competing with the German Shepherd to take over the K-9 police force.
The Belgian Malinois is considered to be in the Herding Group. AKC added the Mal into their dog breed directory in 1911. At first the Belgian breed was put in the miscellaneous class , and then in the working group. Finally in 1983, they were placed in the herding group where they reside today. Malinois are trained to herd sheep, work under extreme pressure, and consume enormous amounts of training every day. If you want a hard working, intelligent, easy-to-train dog, this dog is for you.
Belgian Malinois can range from a rich fawn to mahogany. Rarely, they fur can be all black, or all white. Their fur length can range from long and a little curly to short and straight with a double coat. Most are a golden tan, with areas of black and white. Their face is sharp, and they have a long snout. Usually they will have a curled, long tail with black at the tip. If in good shape, Mals will weigh between 40 and 80 lbs. Their height ranges between 1 foot and 10 inches to 2 feet (2 inches at the shoulders).
You can distinguish a male Mal from a female Mal in many ways. One of the most distinctive way is by the way the male is built. A male Malinois weighs, on average, between 55- 75 lbs, and is 24 to 26 inches tall at the withers. They will most likely grow more at a time than the female Mals, and gain muscle faster. Although the male Malinois is more likely to have a shorter lifespan than a female ( 10-12 years).
A female Malinois is usually lighter, and shorter than a male Malinois. Female Mals also are more commonly known for elegant dog shows, and obstacle course races than the male. Their weight ranges from 40- 60 lbs, and they are 22- 24 inches at the withers. Female Belgian Mals also beat out the males in her lifespan rate. She will usually live 12-14 years while a male will live 10-12 years. The litter size of a Malinois, on average, ranges from 6-10 pups per litter.
Belgians were bred to herd, protect farms, and families. The name Malinois was derived from around the City of Malines where the breed was first bred. In 1891 Adolph Reul, a Belgian veterinarian, gathered over 100 Belgian Shepard and their owners to establish a standard for a Belgian breed. This is when the Belgian Malinois was born. Over the next decade, the Malinois was close to extinction, a war hero, and finally in 1911 they were they gained recognition into AKC. Most recently, the Belgian Malinois played a critical role in the 2011 raid that took down the infamous Osama Bin Ladin.
- Belgian Malinois have participated and been part of numerous military operations. I think the most impressive of them all is that the Mal can skydive. The Mal is light- boned and can be trained to jump on their own (which is significant in skydiving).
- The Malinois is, in some cases, preferred over the German Shepard in the military.
- Cairo, a Belgian Malinois, in 2011 helped SEAL Team 6 take down notorious Osama Bin Laden. Cairo was given special body armor, and even night vision goggles to complete the tasks given to him.
- One of the most famous Belgian Malinois breeder and competitor is Ivan Balabanov. His Mals are known worldwide for being tough, harsh competitors in many dog racing competitions.
- Quail Creek Services in Robinson, trains, kennels, and raises Belgian Malinois.
Overall the Belgian Malinois is an AWESOME breed. They require a lot of attention, love, and exercise, but in the long run they are very affectionate and sweet. Mals look tough and rough on the outside, but they are great family dogs that deeply care about their owner. If you are thinking about getting a dog, Belgian Malinois are the way to go!