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Basics of Dog Breed : Belgian Malinois

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Posted on September 24 2018

Breed Information:

Other names: Malinois
Origin:  Belgium
FCI Group: Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs (except Swiss Cattle Dogs)
FCI number: 15
Hair type: Short
Shape of the head: Long

Race history

The Belgian Shepherd Malinois is one of four varieties of Belgian sheepdog, with the Groenendaels, Tervuerens and Laekenois, which is distinguished by its short hair and tawny-charbonned robe. He comes down from the " shepherds dogs of the country " of the 19th century in Belgium in the Mechelen region.

The Belgian Shepherd Dog Club was founded in September 1891 with the launch of the first selections. The variety of the Belgian Shepherd Malinois is officially recognized as such in 1909. The current standard of the breed was established in 2001.

Physical characteristics

The Belgian Shepherd Malinois  is a medium to large dog (some males can reach 30 kg). Harmoniously proportioned, powerful, flexible and with a dry musculature, it combines strength, power and elegance. The Belgian Shepherd Malinois is particularly recognizable by his mask extending from the lips to the eyelids. 

His hair: runs over the entire body, more on the head, the "back" of the ears and the lower parts of the legs. The neck, the back of the thighs and the tail are more provided. 
Its color: charcoal fawn (hair fawn color but whose end is black), shading the base color. The mask is well pronounced.
His head:  straight, dry. The muzzle is only slightly longer than the skull. The forehead is rather flattened, the stop moderate and the cheeks dry, muscular and flat. 
Its ears: triangular and relatively small. Attached and worn high and straight when the dog is awake. 
His eyes are almond-shaped, medium-sized, oblique, brownish to dark. Display a waking and intelligent expression. 
His body:  powerful, harmonious, with a line of the back and right kidney. The tourniquet is accentuated, the kidney solid, broad and muscular. The rump, muscular, bows only very moderately. The chest is well down and the belly is slightly raised. 
Its tail : thick at the base, of medium length (beyond the hock), hanging at rest and moderately raised in action, without exceeding the horizontal.

Weight and size

Weight Cut
Female Between 20 kg and 25 kg Between 56 cm and 62 cm
Male Between 28 kg and 30 kg Between 60 cm and 66 cm

A dog breed Belgian Shepherd Malinois is classified in the category of dogs of average size .

Behavior and character

The Belgian Shepherd Malinois is a smart dog, alert and of great vitality. Affectionate and protective, he is a great companion for the whole family, coupled with a first class watchdog. He will defend his master without hesitation and with all his determination and explosive power. With children, he knows how to be cheerful and always ready to play.

All these qualities are worth to be used by the forces of the order and the armies of the whole world. In addition to his sheep dog breeds, the Malinois is also a very good service and performance dog (agility).

Education ...
The intelligence, attentiveness and exceptional learning abilities of the Belgian Shepherd Malinois facilitate his education. This one must be at the same time fair, based on the game and firm, because this dog also has a quite affirmed personality. The quality of its socialization is also very important.


The Belgian Shepherd Malinois is a robust and rustic dog. There is no race-specific affection, but the possibility of dealing with hip dysplasia can never be totally ruled out, although the Belgian Shepherd Malinois is relatively less concerned than other breed dogs. large or medium size.

Overall, it does not have much to worry about health as long as it is handled properly. Its standard also specifies that it is " used to living outdoors and built to withstand the frequent atmospheric variations of the Belgian climate ".

Maintenance & Hygiene


The Belgian Shepherd Malinois  remains subject to a spring moult and another in autumn. It is nevertheless easy to maintain because its hair is short. The latter must be regularly examined and cleaned in order to preserve its protective capacity.

Outings ...
The Belgian Shepherd Malinois needs to stay active. Long daily trips should be offered, as well as games and ideally obstacles to cross (forest walks and agility course, for example).

Hygiene ...
It is recommended to brush the dog once a week. During molting, it is advisable to use a curry comb before brushing, in order to ensure the cleanliness of the undercoat. The cleaning of the eyes is done using gauze and saline, and the ears with ear drops.

Living conditions

The Belgian Shepherd Malinois is essentially a working dog and activity. He will prefer life in the countryside or in a large house with a garden, but will be able to adapt to apartment living if he is frequently out.

Price and budget

Minimum Maximum
Buying price 500 € 1000 €

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