Belgian Malinois Dog Breed Information and Picture

Belgian Malinois dog is an intelligent breed that belongs to the group of herding dogs. This breed is immensely popular in the United States of America and Europe. They come in medium to large size with a squarely built body covered by short and straight water-resistant coat. The coat's color can range from rich fawn to mahogany.

The Belgian Malinois dog has a strong flat-topped head and a sharply pointed muzzle with a black nose. The ears are triangular in shape and erect. Its expressive dark brown eyes give it a cute and alert look. They mainly engaged as police dogs and helps in detecting odors of explosives, accelerants, narcotics, and tracking down criminals. The dogs are incredibly helpful in search and rescue work. These dogs are extremely loyal to their master and make a great family companion.

Belgian Malinois Pictures



The Belgian Malinois dog is considered to be a descendant of sheep herding or pastoral group dog. This dog was devoloped in the late 1800s by a group of Belgian breeders to create a perfect shepherd dog. It is among the four varieties of Belgian Sheepdogs, namely Groenendael, Malinois, Tervuren, and Laekenois. All the breeds have gained recognition of American Kennel Club except the Laekenois.

The Belgian Sheepdogs have been used as a guard dog for a long time. They were the first dogs used by Belgian police. The military used the Belgian Malinois during World War I for various purposes like messenger dogs, Red Cross dogs, ambulance cart dogs and light machine gun cart dogs. Belgian Sheepdogs excelled and won many competitions in a number of International Police Dog Trials before World War II. In the 1920s, several  Belgian Malinois kennels started breeding of these dogs. The dogs were exported to countries like France, Switzerland, Netherlands, Canada and the United States in the 1930s.

In the past few decades, the dog has gained popularity for its work in the armed forces, bomb, and drug detection, search and rescue jobs. It ranks on the 90th position among the 155 breeds and varieties recognized by AKC.

Belgian Malinois Dog Shedding

Shedding of the Belgian Malinois is mild to average. It does shed heavily two times in a year.

Quick Information

Other Names Belgian Shepherd DogMalinois
Coat Fine; wire
Color Black and tan, black, gray
Breed Type Purebred
Group  Herding
Lifespan 11 to 13 years
Weight 65 to 75 pounds
Height (size) Large,  24 to 26 inches
Shedding Seasonal
Temperament Responsive, loyal, intelligent, alert
Good with Child No
Litters 6-10 puppies
Hypoallergenic No
Common Nickname Pastor Belga Malinois
Competitive Registration NKC, NZKC, CKC, FCI, AKC, UKC, KCGB, CKC,  ACR, DRA, NAPR, ANKC, APRI


These dogs are highly intelligent with an eagerness to work. These dogs are extremely confident in nature and have a strong protective and territorial instinct in them. They are obedient, committed and watchful dogs. They love the owners who are not harsh on them. Rude behavior might create a cooperation issue between the master and the dog. Keeping their protective instinct in mind, start their socialization right from their puppy age. This will help in controlling their shy, sensitive or aggressive behavior towards other pets and people. Early socialization will help in making them behave well with children too.  You may often see the herding behavior in these dogs like circling, chasing, roaming aimlessly and biting at people’s heels.

Leaving the dog alone for a long time might make it prone to anxiety issues. These dogs are not suitable for those owners who stay away from home for a long duration. They are incredibly affectionate breed which makes them an excellent family pet. The master of these dog has to give ample amount of time to play, train and communicate with them.



The Belgian Malinois is a working dog breed, and naturally, it needs ample amount of exercise, mainly outdoor activities.  You need to take these dogs out for daily long walks and jogging. Try to play with them in open grounds by unleashing them. It will make them mentally happy and physically healthy. Activities like tracking, agility, and herding will do great for this dog. This dog can live in apartments, provided you give its fair share of outdoor exercise.


The grooming of the Belgian Malinois is quite hassle-free. You can brush its short, smooth coat regularly by using a firm bristle brush. The dog does not need regular bathing. Bathe it only getting dirty, or it will affect the natural waterproofing of the dog’s coat. Check its dental regularly to see their no build up of tartar or plaque in their teeth. Clip the nails regularly as they tend to grow up rapidly. Clean the ear by using ear wipes to avoid any ear infections or wax buildup. See for any signs of rashes or redness in the skin, mainly between the paws and the ears.

Health issues

These dogs are majorly healthy dogs and suffer from some minor physical and mental problems. The physical issues include hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, eye problems, and skin allergies. The psychological problems consist of excessive aggressiveness, and shyness. This breed is a bit sensitive towards anesthesia.


Proper training is vital for this breed. Training needs to be consistent, and you have to set the boundaries of discipline for the dog. The trainer needs to have a sharp presence of mind for training the Belgian Malinois dog. Socialization must start early as they are a bit territorial and fearful of strangers. The training these dogs receive at puppyhood will determine their temperament in adulthood.  First-time owners can seek the help of an experienced trainer for imparting training in these dogs. Obedience training is essential for these dogs, or they might become uncooperative after growing up.


The Belgian Malinois dog is a highly active dog and requires nutritious food. This dog is a meat lover, and you can give them a rib bone or an oxtail per day. You can give them eggs and one tablespoon of yogurt one time in a week. To keep it hydrated, add electrolytes to its drinking water. You can serve them fruit or vegetable juice three to four times in a week. Feeding the dog food with  28% to 32% protein in their diet reduces their risk of injuries.  The average fat content that should be in the dog's food must remain around 25% and 32%. Divide the dog's meal into small meals per day. You can feed the dog 2 to 3 cups of high-quality dry dog food divided into two courses of meals.

Interesting Facts

An American TV series "Person of Interest" has a Belgian Malinois dog as a regular cast member.

This dog was the main protagonist in the Hollywood feature film "MAX."

Belgian Malinois vs. German Shepherd vs. Dutch Shepherd


Belgian Malinois

German Shepherd

Dutch Shepherd

Height; Weight 24-26 inches; 65-75 pounds 26-26 inches; 85-100 pounds 22-25 inches; 50-70 pounds
Coat Fine, wire Medium Long, flat, harsh
Shedding Seasonal Constant Seasonal
Hypoallergenic Breed No No No
Group Herding Working and Herding Herding
Good with Child No No Yes

1.    Loyal

2.    Alert

3.    Responsive

4.    Intelligent

5.    Independent


Yes Yes Yes
Yes Yes Yes
Yes No Yes
Yes Yes Yes
Yes No Yes
Litter Size 6 to 10 puppies 5 to 10 puppies 8 to 2 puppies
Lifespan 11 to 13 years 9 to 13 years 12 to 15 years

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