Belgian Malinois - Dog Breed Info, Temperament & Facts


The Belgian Malinois, originally bred for herding livestock in the Belgian town of Malines, now serves various roles in security, law enforcement, drug detection, aid, and herding competitions. This breed is medium-sized with short hair, appearing square in shape with similar height and length. Known for their strength, high energy levels, and protective nature, they still carry traits inherited from their hardworking sheepdog ancestors.

For individuals who enjoy outdoor activities like jogging, biking, or hiking, the Belgian Malinois is an excellent choice. They require regular exercise and thrive in an active environment. While they love being with their family, it is important to allow them indoors and provide access to a yard where they can run freely and release their energy. These dogs are intelligent, motivated, and quick learners, making them ideal candidates for early socialization and training. Each dog has a unique temperament, ranging from reserved to outgoing.

Overall, the Belgian Malinois is a versatile breed that excels in various roles. They are well-suited for active individuals who can provide them with the physical and mental stimulation they need.

Ahead, we look at Belgian Malinois dog breed, its history, personality, pros and cons of owning an Belgian Malinois, characteristics, and must-know facts. We will also examine how to care for this breed and a lot more. Prepare for a tail-wagging adventure into the world of Belgian Malinoiss!

Dog Breed Belgian Malinois
Size Large
Weight 40-65 lbs (average)
Height 22-24″ (average)
Location Belgium
Ancestry Shepherd Dog
Date of Origin 1800s
Group Stock Herding
Life Expectancy 12-14 years
Price $1200 – $1400
Family Canidae
Scientific Name Canis Lupus Familiaris

📖 Breed History

The history of the Belgian Malinois is not widely known before the late 1800s. However, it is believed that these dogs have been assisting shepherds in caring for their flocks for many centuries. In the 1890s, a professor named Adolphe Reul noticed similarities among several emerging dog breeds in Belgium. He grouped these similar dogs together and called them Belgian Shepherds. Among these shepherds, there was a particular variation that was believed to have originated from Malines, and this variation came to be known as the Belgian Malinois.

According to historical records, one of the first registered dogs of this breed was a dog named Charlot, born in 1891. The American Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1911, but they referred to them as Belgian Sheepdogs without distinguishing the different varieties. It was not until 1959 that the Belgian Shepherd varieties were officially separated, with the Belgian Malinois being placed in the Miscellaneous Class. Finally, in 1965, the breed was fully recognized by the American Kennel Club. Over time, the Belgian Malinois gained popularity as a herding dog and their exceptional skills were also utilized in police and military work. However, compared to other Belgian breeds, the Belgian Malinois has not gained as much popularity as a competitive show dog outside of Belgium.

🐕 Belgian Malinois Appearance

The Belgian Malinois breed may weigh up to 65 pounds for females and 80 pounds for men, giving the dog the appearance of being square-shaped rather frequently. Dogs of this breed have powerful hindquarters and front legs that are straight and athletic. This powerful and competent dog has tall, trapezoidal ears and an upright-held head. The mouth features strong jaws and a level, scissors-bite-shaped intersection of teeth. This active dog has a long tail that curls upward and is usually held horizontally or downward. They have a short, dark brown or lighter tan coat with black ends that is often longer around the dog’s neck and rear.

👀 Eye Color Brown
🐽 Nose Color Black
🐕 Coat Color Brown, Fawn, Sable

Fun Fact: Belgian Malinois dogs are a social breed. They enjoy being around people or other animals. This breed doesn’t tolerate being left alone.

🐶 Traits & Temperament of Belgian Malinois

In addition to being an excellent working dog, the Belgian Malinois is also vivacious and fun-loving. They may be a joyful and devoted friend that will play with and look out for the children. They may naturally follow youngsters who are running since they are herding dogs, which is something you should prevent as you work to teach them. When reared around cats and other dogs, your puppy can get along with them well, although they may come out as a bit pushy. Some dogs may not be safe among cats owing to their high prey drive depending on the specific breed. The Belgian Malinois has to be kept active in order to be worn out and to prevent destructive behavior since they may cause a lot of harm when bored. This kind of dog enjoys spending time indoors with the family since they want to be a part of it. This friendly dog will get along well with kids if introduced to them when they are still very small. They will become more confident when socialized effectively. They may be extroverted or reserved when meeting individuals outside the family, but they won’t be timid or hostile. Even at the age of eight weeks, training may begin the day they are brought home by you.

🤝 Are Belgian Malinoiss Friendly or Aggressive?

Belgian Malinois dogs tend to get along well with other pets, but they are not the most welcoming towards strangers. However, they are known to be friendly and good with children, making them a suitable choice for families with kids. When it comes to cats and other dogs, Belgian Malinois dogs have an average level of friendliness. While they can coexist with them, it’s important to introduce them properly and monitor their interactions. While not specifically recommended for elderly people, Belgian Malinois dogs can still be a suitable choice for them depending on their preferences and abilities to handle an active and energetic dog breed.

This breed is known for being:

  • Active
  • Stubborn
  • Protective
  • Alert
  • Confident
  • Friendly
  • Watchful
  • Hard working

🐩 Belgian Malinois Care & Maintenance

The short, straight coat of the Belgian Malinois sheds often, with at least two seasons of higher shedding each year. This breed’s canines benefit from weekly brushing to eliminate dead hair and disperse skin oils. To keep loose hair off of your floor, furniture, and clothing, brush your hair more frequently. Only give your dog a wash when absolutely necessary to preserve the waterproofing that is already there in their coat, unless they have a tendency to roll around in unfavorable places. Other basic care that is necessary includes trimming the nails as needed (typically every few weeks) as well as frequent teeth brushing for overall good dental health and fresh breath. In order to prevent infections, your dog’s ears should be kept dry and clean. Due to their high level of activity, Belgian Malinois benefit from having a fenced-in yard where they may play and run around. This lively, curious dog needs daily activity, whether it is yard games or lengthy walks, runs, or hikes, for both their physical and mental well-being. The Belgian Malinois frequently develops cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy. To prevent exorbitant veterinarian care costs, get pet health insurance right now. Presented to you by Wag Pet Insurance! Pet owners may compare insurance packages from top providers like Figo and Spot using Wellness. With only a few clicks, find your pet’s “pawfect” plan!

Belgian Malinois dogs have a moderate amount of shedding. This is a normal part of their hair growth cycle. Regularly brushing their fur can help minimize the amount of hair that is shed. The amount of shedding can vary depending on the dog’s overall health and the specific breed. In terms of bathing, it is generally recommended to bathe Belgian Malinois dogs every 8-12 weeks.

🍖 Food: We recommend 3 cups daily, costing you about $1.50 – $1.90 daily, or roughly $39.00 – $52.00 a month.

🐾 Exercise: Belgian Malinois dogs need a lot of exercises. Long walks should be on a daily schedule. If you live an active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.

This dog breed requires to be walked for roughly 12 miles per week, which equates to about 60 minutes of physical activity daily. This consistent moderate exercise regimen will help maintain their physical wellness and significantly contribute to their mental stimulation. Consciously setting aside this time for your furry friend can dramatically enhance their life quality, helping them stay energetic, healthy, and mentally alert.

Did you know: Belgian Malinois dogs are high-energy dogs. An active lifestyle makes them happy.

❤️‍🩹 Belgian Malinois Health & Issues

Some of the major concerns for Belgian Malinois Dog Breed can be:

  • Usually A Very Healthy Breed

While minor concerns include:

  • Epilepsy
  • Pannus
  • Skin Allergies

🤧 Important: Is Belgian Malinois hypoallergenic? No.

Bonus: Check out cool, creative, and funny names for Belgian Malinois.

⚡ Belgian Malinois Dog Breed Facts

What makes the Belgian Malinois a great choice for families with young children?
The Belgian Malinois is a great choice for families with young children because they are happy and affectionate companions who enjoy playing with and protecting kids. However, it is important to train them not to chase children who are running.

Is the Belgian Malinois breed considered a suitable breed for apartment living?
The Belgian Malinois breed is not considered suitable for apartment living due to their high energy levels and need for outdoor space to run and expend energy.

How much exercise does a Belgian Malinois require compared to other breeds?
The Belgian Malinois requires a significant amount of exercise compared to many other breeds. They are active dogs and need daily activities such as running, bicycling, hiking, or other vigorous exercises to keep them busy and prevent destructive behavior.

Is the Belgian Malinois breed known for being good with other pets?
While Belgian Malinois can get along with cats and other dogs when raised alongside them, they can be bossy towards them. Some individuals may not be safe around cats due to their high prey drive.

What are other low-maintenance dog breeds similar to the Belgian Malinois?
Some low-maintenance dog breeds similar to the Belgian Malinois include the Boxer, Doberman Pinscher, and Labrador Retriever. These breeds also have short coats and are known for their intelligence and easygoing personalities.

What are the common health issues that Belgian Malinoiss are prone to?
Belgian Malinois are generally a healthy breed, but they are prone to certain health issues such as hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, and progressive retinal atrophy. Regular vet check-ups and responsible breeding practices can help minimize these risks.

Are Belgian Malinoiss known to be easy to train compared to other breeds?
Belgian Malinois are known to be highly intelligent and driven, making them relatively easy to train compared to some other breeds. They respond well to early socialization and training, and their eagerness to learn makes them quick learners.

Are Belgian Malinoiss more prone to separation anxiety compared to other breeds?
Belgian Malinois can be prone to separation anxiety if not properly trained and provided with mental and physical stimulation. However, with proper training and exercise, this breed can adapt well to being alone for reasonable periods of time.

Are there any dog breeds similar to the Belgian Malinois that are suitable for people with allergies?
There are no dog breeds that are exactly similar to the Belgian Malinois and suitable for people with allergies. However, some hypoallergenic breeds like the Poodle or Bichon Frise may be suitable for individuals with allergies.

What sizes of dogs similar to the Belgian Malinois are best for individuals or families with limited space?
For individuals or families with limited space, smaller-sized dogs similar to the Belgian Malinois, such as the Australian Cattle Dog or Border Collie, can be more suitable. These breeds are also intelligent and active, but their smaller size makes them more manageable in limited spaces.

Is the Belgian Malinois breed known to be good with children with special needs?
The Belgian Malinois breed can be good with children with special needs, especially when well-socialized from a young age. However, it is essential to supervise interactions and ensure proper training and gentle handling to avoid any potential issues.

How does the grooming and shedding needs of the Belgian Malinois?
The grooming needs of the Belgian Malinois are relatively low compared to some other breeds. They have short hair that requires minimal brushing and occasional bathing. However, they do shed moderately, so regular brushing can help minimize loose hair around the house.

We use reliable and publicly available data and resources such as AKC and American Canine Registry to ensure that Belgian Malinois dog breed information is accurate and up to date. If you spot an error, please don’t hesitate to bring it to our attention.

Max Kozinskiy
Max Kozinskiy
Max Kozinskiy is a seasoned writer and an enthusiast of dog breed expertise. Having dedicated over 5 years to studying the intricacies of different dog breeds and their unique characteristics. His profound insights and love for our four-legged friends have made him an invaluable part of our team.


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