in

The Belgian Shepherd Malinois is All You Need to Know.

Often used as a police dog due to its strong working attitude, the Belgian Shepherd Malinois is particularly energetic and active.

Are Belgian Malinois safe pets?

Breed Belgian shepherd Malinois. For this particular breed, we asked one of our dog expert friends, Luca, who talks today about the Belgian Malinois shepherd, explaining its characteristics and peculiarities.

Luca says: “In my experience as a dog lover, I have worked with many shepherds and molossus breeds favoured by many owners. However, the Belgian shepherd Malinois has remained in my heart. Of this splendid dog, I will explain my reasons for yes and no.

In the summer of 2019, I retrieved a beautiful three-year-old male Malinois. I had known him when he was a puppy. Unfortunately, his first few years of life had been hard; in the last period, he was left in an isolated cage of an uninhabited cottage without company or attention. His free outings were infrequent and brief; despite reports from residents, the dog was still there.

Most of the world’s police and rescue services extensively use the Belgian Malinois shepherd.

Although I had a lively Gordon setter in my garden, I thought the Malinois deserved to find a new and permanent family. So, I managed to get him into my care and began my beautiful adventure with this wonderful breed.

It is no coincidence that the world’s police and rescue services have widely adopted the Malinois: its strength and endurance are incredible, as are its agility and intelligence. However, those who want to own a specimen of this breed must first come to terms with time. This shepherd must be with his master as much as possible and follow him wherever he goes. Immediately from the first days, the dog was always at my side and became a perfect guardian of the house; the neighbours, whose tails he wagged in my presence, were banned from approaching the house net in my absence.

To fully know a breed of dog, you have to own it. It is a captious-sounding phrase, but it still hides the truth.

Luca J.

Whoever adopts this type of dog must undertake ongoing training, which is necessary to release the shepherd’s (many) energies while making the most of his qualities. They are exceptional animals for agility and can perform challenging jumps; they are also speedy and responsive to any stimulus. In addition, search and rescue is part of the man’s world: thanks to their slender body and small size, they know how to move safely through rubble and enter the minor tunnels.

It was precisely this environment that I could find for my shepherd, entrusting him to a family that now happily engages him in rescue.

Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed. General description

Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed. General description.
It is no coincidence that the world’s police and rescue services have widely adopted the Malinois.

The four Belgian Shepherd varieties differ in small details. Still, all share the great need for open spaces, the relatively continuous presence of the owner and the need for well-developed daily physical activity.

The differences lie in their approach to environments and conditions and their emotional response to a particular type of ‘dialogue’ with their owner. For example, the Belgian shepherd dog is an intelligent ‘working’ animal that loves to move and would never stop eating. Keep a Belgian Shepherd healthy, primarily through exercise, and you will have a happy Belgian Shepherd.

Appearance and Attributes of the Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed

The KC breed standard indicates that the Belgian shepherd is a large dog. However, despite everything, it is a perfect candidate for happy cohabitation in an urban environment and does not particularly suffer from sharing even small spaces.

Specifically, regarding the Belgian shepherd dog, it can be said that in terms of size, it is within the square and possesses a relatively robust body, which is not characterised by particular heaviness. Like the body, the legs also share this characteristic, although they appear to have accentuated muscularity.

In contrast to the Laekenois, Malinois and Tervueren, all of which have tawny, carbonated tawny and carbonated grey variants, the Groenendael is only permitted with a black backpack coat.

Physical characteristics permitted by the Standard:

  • Height: 56 to 66 cm
  • Weight: 25 to 30 kg
  • Longevity: 10 to 14 years
  • Colours: rich mahogany, fawn
  • Fur: short and waterproof
  • Coat: Typically fawn to mahogany with a black mask on the face, black ears and black tips on the hair.

Price Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed

The price is average; a Belgian Malinois puppy can range from £900 to £2,000 in the UK, depending on the seller. Regimes as far as the maintenance of the Belgian shepherd dog is concerned. An animal consumes a fair amount of food if the owner does not choose a balanced approach to its nutrition.

In this respect, all four variants are somewhat attracted to any food at any time of day. One must, therefore, keep an eye on this voracity of the animal and try as much as possible to concentrate on two daily meals.

Otherwise, we are perfectly average, even as far as the coat is concerned. But, of course, an animal that does a particular outdoor activity will be dirtier than the Belgian shepherd that runs around the yard for an hour or so a day.

Pros and cons of the Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed

Top 5 characteristics:

  • Absolute child friendliness
  • Develops a relationship of unconditional love towards the family
  • Almost no hair loss
  • Very friendly with other dogs, depending on training
  • Great intelligence to show in training

The five most problematic characteristics:

  • The absolute need for daily exercise
  • Needs continuous training
  • His obsessive, defensive nature towards his master.
  • He likes to bite things.
  • A strong distrust of strangers.

The character of the Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed

Dog lovers who spend much time away from home engaged in their work know they cannot afford to bring a Belgian Shepherd into the house. This dog can suffer from the absence of a person with whom to interact and deal daily and, therefore, come to develop alternative activities that are difficult to control to vent its need for action and release its high energy levels. The Belgian Shepherd is an animal that must be held on certain occasions, so it shouldn’t spend too much time in solitude.

The Belgian shepherd, as far as its character is concerned, is a relatively ‘dual’ animal. The Malinois variety, for example, can develop a discrete level of participation in different contexts and with different interacting subjects, just as it is capable, on the other hand, of developing rather shy and exaggeratedly submissive behaviour in some instances. This a type of behaviour that can be difficult to interpret and even more complicated to correct, mainly if it develops at a too-adult age—another note for the owner who requires developing appropriate training for this dog.

Affection for one’s family is one of the Belgian shepherd’s strengths. This animal develops a loving relationship with its family members in every context. Both when it is inside the home, and thus finds itself sharing the most relaxing areas of the house with its family members, and when it is outdoors. In this context, we see some of the Belgian Shepherd’s most essential qualities, such as his unequalled sense of protection towards family members and members of the family circle. Therefore, he can safely be considered among the family-loving dogs.

The origins of the Belgian shepherd characterise it as an animal useful for guarding other animals in isolated situations. Its ability to sense the presence of unfamiliar animals in the vicinity of the flock provides a relatively detailed response concerning tolerance towards strangers. In this sense, getting the animal used to living with other people in contexts outside the home or the backyard is essential. A type of socialisation that must be fostered right from puppyhood.

Training is crucial for the Belgian shepherd.

Training is a crucial point for the Belgian shepherd.
We recommend getting help from a breed expert to educate and train a Belgian Shepherd in Malinois. In addition, we recommend that you start educating these dogs from puppyhood.

As with other people, when it comes to socialising with other dogs, in the case of the Belgian shepherd, a great deal of attention must be paid to how the owner manages to modify possible discomfort in this respect in training. This is a crucial point for the Belgian shepherd. Coexistence with other dogs can be easy if the habit of this is developed from the first few months; after all, this is an animal that manages to create outstanding teamwork when it is, for example, to contain and monitor the constant movements of the flock. Its history, even recent history in this respect, does not lie.

The speed and tendency of this animal to develop a high degree of physical activity make it one of the perfect candidates for allowing its owner to establish a focus on this aspect. The Belgian shepherd dog, in all its varieties, is an animal that is practically attracted to everything in motion. Careless training on this aspect could develop undesirable characteristics, especially in the Groenendael variety. It creates a visceral relationship with its owner, who can guide it. It is very loyal and not very prone to running away.

A particular aspect of the Malinois variety is the ability of this animal to combine significant reactivity in interaction with impeccable self-control. As a result, exchange for the Belgian shepherd dog usually develops on relatively quiet tracks concerning the danger of its bite. The animal’s intelligence, in this respect, is more developed than in other dogs and allows for pleasant contact even with sensitive parts of the human body such as legs or arms, being able to fully appreciate the Belgian Shepherd Dog’s ability to control itself in this respect.

In addition to the enormous potential of the Belgian Shepherd Dog, some aspects must be adjusted appropriately during training. The tendency of an animal to chase or try to catch prey, perhaps much more minor than itself, is quite well-known in almost every dog breed. The Belgian shepherd, emphasising the Laekenois variety, tends to chase prey. A type of activity that can be included in all those restorative practices that the animal shares to vent accumulated stress. In this sense, it will be up to the owner to have an eye on the interests of their Belgian shepherd.

The four varieties of Belgian shepherds

The four varieties of Belgian shepherds, Laekenois, Groenendael, Tervueren and Malinois, all share this tendency to call their owner’s attention by barking or howling whenever necessary. This combines perfectly with the working attitude of this particular dog breed. This characteristic implies evaluation concerning taking out insurance for this breed. In this sense, the Groenendael variety develops a rather varied ‘dialogue’ with its owner. This attitude, however, also combines well with a balanced life with proper training. Therefore, he usually tends to bark or howl only when necessary.

The owner of a Belgian shepherd will appreciate the significant amount of energy this animal has. Its great reactivity is precisely justified by the point it can develop during outdoor interactions with its owner. Attention must be paid to this aspect, and a Belgian shepherd must not be allowed to accumulate a high amount of energy without being able to release it. This is converted into excessive stress, and excess pressure can be vented in the wrong places and at bad times. Remember your dog’s need for daily activity.

This dog is bursting with energy and needs to let off steam by running, playing and taking long walks.

As far as the vigour of the Belgian shepherd dog is concerned, this is also linked to the environment in which it interacts. A Tervueren or a Groenendael have a rather sizeable physical structure. Still, their particular characteristic is that they have a relatively agile bone structure that allows for rather light movements. It is not an absolute, this relative lightness of bone structure, but it does point to an unsuspected delicacy in this respect. The size of the Belgian shepherd remains essential, and this animal can develop a considerable vigour, for example, when on a leash. Depending on the situation.

The owner of a Belgian Shepherd looks at daily activity and interaction with his dog as an activity with a double benefit for the health and well-being of this animal. Very often, the two things, exercise and playful activity, coincide in the case of the Belgian Shepherd dog, which in all its variants has a natural inclination to develop this type of activity and read it as a constructive activity, never an end in itself and valuable for further developing the animal’s incredible intelligence. To the great satisfaction of its owner, of course.

Intelligence and Trainability of Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed

An animal like the Belgian shepherd dog has uncommon quickness and intuition. Being a highly reactive animal, this is the case with the Belgian shepherd dog in the Malinois variety. Always quick to develop constructive interaction, it is endowed with above-average intelligence. It must be appropriately stimulated during training and varied and fairly consistent to ensure the animal’s adequate training in different situations and environments.

Children and more

The Belgian shepherd manages to be infinitely friendly with children. It envelops them with a sense of protection towards the family and makes them feel loved. However, it must be pointed out that the remarkable dynamism of the Belgian shepherd can be a problem in the presence of children who are too young.

It is a dog suitable for the whole family. Easily disposed to play, it is a good companion for those with children, with an eye on small children; if stimulated by too much shouting, it may act predatory, frightening the children and, of course, the parents!

This animal may come to misinterpret a call or the presence of a child outside the family members too strongly. In this respect, appropriate training and socialisation are urgently needed, especially for Belgian Shepherd puppies.

Do you want to train your dog? Then, why not try this online course on developing your dog’s “Hidden Intelligence.”

His shepherd genetics is an excellent deterrent for thieves because he is a great guardian, extremely intelligent and very loyal.

It is a dog that needs to follow its master as much as possible; do not take a Malinois if you leave in the morning and return in the evening because you will soon find your garden destroyed, and you will feed a lot of frustration in the animal.

Fieldwork is mandatory for the well-being of this breed, which needs to work mentally; doing an exercise on the search will tire him out far more than a half-hour walk.

Caring For The Belgian Shepherd Dog

In many dogs, copious salivation is a symptom of excessive hunger or thirst; in others, it is a sign that fatigue is beginning to set in. The Belgian Shepherd’s salivation and drooling fall within the average range of a dog that is used to developing great physical activity even when relatively high temperatures and low humidity characterise the environment.

These conditions impose the maintenance of attention on the part of their owner. We are, however, at medium levels in this respect, with no particular difficulties in the containment of drooling as far as the Belgian shepherd is concerned.

Breed health of Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed.

Breed health of Belgian Shepherd Malinois Breed.
Mental qualities and abilities have taken second place to physical appearance, so breeding has been aimed at obtaining a good working dog rather than a physically beautiful dog. For this very reason, it enjoys better health and hereditary diseases are rare for this breed.

The Belgian shepherd’s ability to carry out even quite strenuous outdoor activities in different environmental contexts has forged him as one of the best animals in terms of endurance, even at relatively high temperatures. In this sense, it must always be borne in mind that a healthy dog is a dog that is put in a position to be able to feed itself whenever it feels the need to do so. Therefore, the owner of a Belgian shepherd will have to be quite careful in ensuring that it has access to water and food, especially when the weather is sweltering.

The Belgian shepherd is an animal of good general health that can develop classic problems in a dog, such as defects related to dysplasia or eye diseases. However, it is a relatively hardy animal in terms of physical characteristics. It is somewhat accustomed to withstanding particular physical stress, even if it must be considered among dogs with certain defects. This condition must be perpetuated by the attention of its owner, who periodically undertakes to keep the animal under proper control.

Given the Belgian shepherd dog’s habit of taking advantage of everyday moments outdoors to develop intense physical activity, one can refer to a dog that is quite adept at maintaining a discrete line throughout its life span. The Belgian Shepherd that is not stimulated to physical activity is an animal that may present some relative overweight problems, but this is a remote condition, as it is challenging to find a Belgian Shepherd that is not inclined to daily physical activity. This inclination is evident, for example, in the Tervueren variety.

Belgian Shepherd grooming

The Belgian shepherd is genetically strong with ‘iron dog’ physical characteristics. We are talking about a true athlete capable of guaranteeing a not-inconsiderable physical endurance. This characteristic also impacts the particularities of its coat, which appears somewhat resistant and with relatively little shedding. Barely noticeable. This characteristic is, however, quite relative to a dog. A dog with a relatively low hair loss is, first of all, a dog that is well cared for periodically.

As a dog that loves to interact outdoors, even in areas with mud or excessive dirt, it should always be checked periodically and with attention. The Belgian Shepherd can also develop a high level of dirtiness due to a relatively long coat but maintains an unsuspected “dignity” concerning this due to the dark shades that do not facilitate the visibility of dirt. In this respect, a separate discourse must be made for the Malinois variety, with a relatively short coat but a light tone. The weight of this breed can affect the price of grooming.

Another point in its favour is its coat: endowed with a thick undercoat, the Malinois is very resistant to the cold and is genetically clean by nature; you will hardly smell an unpleasant odour from its coat.

Exercise Belgian Shepherd Malinois.

A real ‘must’ for the Belgian shepherd is exercise. Without exercise, the Belgian shepherd is an animal that lacks an outlet for innate hyperactivity. It is a condition that governs the existence of all four varieties of this magnificent animal and cannot be ‘adapted’ to the daily routine of an absent owner.

At least one hour of daily physical activity, preferably divided into two sessions of half an hour each, is necessary for an adequate psychophysical balance for this dog.

Advice on buying a Belgian shepherd Malinois

Bringing a Belgian shepherd into your home means getting a potential danger in some instances into your flat, which may be small and full of delicate objects. The Belgian shepherd is not an animal capable of living in an environment that is too small or too long. This type of living could lead him to develop destructive behaviour and, above all, relatively high levels of anxiety that are difficult to control. The Belgian shepherd is an animal that needs space to vent the accumulated daily stress.

The tremendous interactive capacity of the Belgian shepherd makes it unsuitable as a choice for a first-time dog owner. A dog requires rather intense training to limit its instinctive behaviour. Especially in open spaces, it is an animal that loves to chase people, animals or moving objects, so it must be effectively controlled to prevent this behaviour from causing problems for the animal and its owner. Therefore, giving Belgian Shepherd puppies as gifts without careful thought may be ill-advised.

Said Luca: “If you want to own one, I can only advise you to turn to a trusted breeder who will ensure the dog’s pedigree is excellent. It is a dog that will become a profound part of your life and your only point of reference; the rest will be for you to discover.

Thank you for reading the article to the end. Your reading contribution was significant to us.

Affiliate Disclosure: The Frenchie Breed website may receive a small commission from the proceeds of any product(s) sold through affiliate and direct partner links at no cost to you.

Follow Frenchie Breed on Google News

+ posts

The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

What do you think?

201 Points
Upvote Downvote

Written by Frenchie Breed

The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

Why Do Dogs Bark In Their Sleep? A Must-Read.

Why Do Dogs Bark In Their Sleep? Causes and Solutions

How can I improve my dogs dental hygiene?

Dog Oral Hygiene. A Guarantee Of Health And Well-Being.