The Belgian Malinois is a medium/large size dog that weighs between 40-80 lbs and is between 22″ to 26″ in height. Their name is pronounced MAL-in-wah. They are one of four Belgian Sheepdogs and are very work oriented and are protective of home, family and livestock.
The AKC recognizes the Belgian Malinois in the colors of fawn to mahogany to red with a black mask, ears and tips. Minimal white on the chest and feet is permitted. The short, smooth, straight and hard outer coat and dense undercoat require minimal grooming and are very easy to care for. Regular washing is not recommended as their coat has water proofing.
This intelligent, energetic, protective breed is still more of a working dog than companion. They have a strong drive to work. The Belgian Malinois makes an excellent farm dog, watchdog, police dog and herding dog because of their instinct to protect their family, home or whatever else they are trained to protect. They can make a great family pet as well. Early socialization is a must for children, other dogs and pets. In fact, they do best if they are socialized from the time they are born. They can be dominant towards other dogs. Early, consistent, firm but not harsh training is important. They are harder for a novice to train than someone who is more experienced. The Belgian Malinois has a lot of energy and loves to be on the go. They require a yard and plenty of room to run and play. They are not meant to be indoors all day. They enjoy being with their family and are not meant to be left alone for long periods of time as they will get bored and find some way to fill their time.
Originating in Belgium, the Belgian Malinois is one of four Belgian Sheepdogs. Their name comes from the Belgian city of Malines. It is recognize as its own breed by the AKC however, in some countries, all four Belgian Sheepdogs are considered to be one breed. The Belgian Malinois is popular in Belgium and is used for herding, police work and as a search and rescue dog.
A breed with such a strong work drive, protective instinct and high energy makes an excellent watchdog and farm dog. They do best with families that are active and will meet their work and exercise needs. An active, busy Belgian Malinois is a happy Belgian Malinois.