Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd

Meet Two Similar Yet Different Breeds: German Shepherd Dog & Belgian Malinois

Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd, have many things in common: Both breeds are bred to herd sheep and other animals which is used for police and military duties and are both active, extremely trainable dogs that do best when they have well-trained dog owners. What are the distinctions?

belgian malinois vs german shepherd
belgian malinois vs german shepherd

A Shared Herding Heritage of Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd

Both Malinois as well as the German Shepherd are members of the Herding Group and can be traced back to cattle herding dogs. The names of both breeds suggest that their breeds are related to livestock herding. Belgian Malinois was created in Belgium as well as German Shepherds were developed in Germany. German Shepherd in Germany.

The Malinois was one of four breeds of Belgian Shepherd Dog in use at the end of the 1800s. It was first identified by professor Adolphe Reul. He described the breed as a medium-sized square dog, with three-dimensional ears and dark brown eyes. The four different types of Belgian Shepherd Dog were named after the region close to Brussels in which it was created, and with the Malinois originating within the Malines area.

“As the agricultural lifestyle declined, the Belgian Shepherd Dog became favored in the development of police dog training,” according to Ann MacKay, who has owned Belgian Malinois for the past 32 years and had them bred for 26 years.

In fact, 1908 in 1908, The AKC Gazette mentioned that two Belgian Sheepdogs were brought to the United States to work as police dogs in New York City. In 1911, more were imported and included two that were specifically named in the AKC Studbook as Malinois. In 1959, the Belgian Malinois was granted full AKC recognition as an individual breed distinct from different Belgian Shepherd Dog varieties.

As well, it dates back to the 1800s also dating back to the late 1800s, the German Shepherd was created by Captain Max Von Stephanitz. He was determined to create the ideal dog breed. Von Stephanitz was impressed by the diversity of herding dogs that he observed across Germany. Looking for his ideal medium-to-large-sized dog with an independent, persistent, and obedient personality, he found and purchased a dog at a show in 1899. The dog was the first official German Shepherd Dog in von Stephanitz’s newly formed German Shepherd Dog Club and the first dog to be bred in the breed.

“Although the primary and original purpose of the German Shepherd was herding sheep (in what we refer to as a tending fashion), the breed soon became popular with the police and as military dogs,” According to Julie Degen, a German Shepherd lover for more than 30 years, and a breeder for over 25 years. “The game in Schutzhund is created as a way to determine suitable breeds to breed in the absence of a way to assess the dogs based on their work habits. Within a short time, the German Shepherd became one of the most well-known and most loved breeds around the world.”

Different Physical Qualities of Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd

belgian malinois vs german shepherd
belgian malinois vs german shepherd

Both breeds have similar heights. Males are 24 to 26 inches tall at their withers, while females are 22-24 inches. However, most Malinois are much lighter than German Shepherds. Male Malinois weighs between 60 and 80 pounds, while females weigh between 40 and 60 pounds. On the other hand, the male German Shepherd can weigh up to 90 pounds, while females can weigh up to 70 pounds.

MacKay the former vice-president and a member for more than 25 years of the American Belgian Malinois Club MacKay, explains that the Malinois ears are more like an arc than the German Shepherd’s ears. Additionally, the Malinois is a square-shaped breed. Also looking from the side of your topline, the front legs, and back legs ought to closely match the shape of a square.

However there is a breed norm for”the” German Shepherd describes a dog that is “longer than tall, deep-bodied, and presents an outline of smooth curves rather than angles.”

Degen who was an active participant in the German Shepherd Dog Club of America for the past 26 years and served as the herding chair as well as a performance chair, is amazed by the dog’s movements. The breed is described by Degen as having a distinct, highly efficient, and easy walk. They are able to cover the greatest amount of ground in the shortest amount of effort.

Common Personality Traits of Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd

belgian malinois vs german shepherd
belgian malinois vs german shepherd

According to MacKay MacKay, the Malinois is lively, smart, and curious. They are lively and lively, which is evident in their proud carriage and sparkling, alert eyes. They have a strong determination to work and this desire is often directed toward the dog’s owner.

“The Belgian Malinois is an exceptional watchdog,” she says. “Vigilant yet responsive, they balance all the qualities needed in a stock dog, protector, and sensible working partner.”

The German Shepherd has a cherished personality and is a smart active, protective, and energetic personality. It is not a breed that likes to lounge about, these dogs require lots of exercises. Doggy sports can be a great method to give their bodies and their brains an exercise. Degen describes German Shepherds as tough and confident, as well as independent and generally serious. She also thinks that German Shepherds are versatile.

“Besides being shown in conformation, German Shepherds compete in herding, obedience, agility, tracking, dock diving, disc dog, barn hunt, and more,” she claims. “It’s been stated that the German Shepherd may not be the most skilled in any discipline. However, they’re the second-best in all of them.”

Naturally, the herding history of both breeds has resulted in certain common traits in their personalities. For instance, the two breeds are both very confident. They’ll have faced an entire flock of sheep. They are both committed to their families, however, they can be aloof towards strangers. These traits would also be beneficial to protect animals.

They are also attentive and ready to listen when their owners call them. It’s not surprising that the two breeds have been loved as loved pets and appreciated as working dogs.

German Shepherd Vs. Belgian Malinois: What’s the difference?

belgian malinois vs german shepherd
belgian malinois vs german shepherd

Everyone is familiar with people who know about the German Shepherd Dog. In fact, they’ve been the second most loved breed for a long time. But not everyone is as familiar with their Belgian Malinois. Their similar color and history as herding breeds can cause some to believe that the Belgian Malinois is that of the German Shepherd. There are however some key differences between these two breeds and some interesting similarities.

If you’re trying to decide between one German shepherd or a Belgian Malinois or you’re curious about the similar breeds this article will guide you through what these two dogs share in common.

Origins of breeds

In the latter part of the 19th century, in the late 19th century, a German Cavalry soldier, Captain Max von Stephanitz worked to integrate the many herding dog breeds into one uniform breed, forming the foundation for the German shepherd that we recognize as it in the present.

The intelligent, versatile dog gained popularity with fanciers all over the world and was introduced to the United States in the early period in the early 20th century. The popularity of the breed waned little in World War I, as it was closely associated with the enemies. The breed was then renamed being referred to as Alsatians. The name Alsatians are still widely utilized throughout Great Britain.

It is believed that the Belgian Malinois was also developed to help herd sheep. They belong to the breed of dogs in Belgium called the Belgian shepherds, which includes the Belgian Tervuren as well as the Belgian sheepdog and the Laekenois. The breeds were developed in the late 1800s, derived from the herding dogs utilized for centuries.

Malinois: Malinois is the sole short-coated dog out of four. their herding skills were first harnessed to assist in military and police work.

Color and size

A Belgian Malinois appears like a smaller, more blonde German shepherd. It is often thought of as a German shepherd. Malinois have short-haired breeds, colored fawns, with an overlay of black, as well as an ear mask in black and a black mask. Females weigh between 40 and 60 pounds, while males weigh around 60-80 pounds.

While they’re smaller, and less finely in bone in comparison to German shepherds, they have a stylish “no-frills” sort of elegant appearance, they’re sturdy and robust dogs that can be indefatigable.

German shepherds are 10 percent bigger than the Belgian Malinois females that weigh between 50 and 70 pounds, and males weighing between 65 to 90 pounds. In addition to their slightly bigger size, their coats are longer and also have a less fluffy undercoat and fluff than Belgian Malinois. In fact, there’s the long-coated German shepherd breed.

They’re famous for their traditional coloring — black and tan, or silver and black along with black saddles on top of the body. However, solid black and sable breeds generally with dark faces, are also prevalent in the breed. Sable or more precisely agouti is the color banding in each individual hair, which results in various shades and shades that vary from sable to.

It is said that the famous Rin Tin Tin The first canine film star was a dog with a sable German shepherd.


Both German shepherds, as well as Belgian Malinois, are bred for work. Like many herding breeds they’re intelligent, helpful companions who love working with their humans. Both breeds are ideal for dog owners who have experience, as their high energy levels and intellect make them harder to manage.

While they love their friends, however, if they’re assigned a task or regularly exercised and are not careful, they may end up in trouble.

The high level of work-related drive and versatility makes both breeds popular with K9 units from the military and police. They are wired to be active and, as herders, are vigilant and observant of their surroundings.

This is a fantastic team in every endeavor, but particularly in high-risk scenarios like military or police work which is where dogs can be a huge help to their handlers and unit.

In light of this and the fact that they’re dogs, it’s not surprising these dogs aren’t doing well when they’re left for long periods in the backyard. Even an everyday walk doesn’t do much to scratch the grass to meet their fitness demands. They love having jobs, and engaging in activities such as nose work, obedience, agility tracking, and of course herding are all excellent methods to keep them engaged both physically and mentally.

The sport of Schutzhund–tracking, obedience, and protection competition–is something many German shepherds and Belgian Malinois owners enjoy.

They are also excellent dog rescue and search dogs and Malinois specifically, makes an excellent jogging or biking companion.

Activity levels

Of two breeds, the Belgian Malinois is generally considered to be the more active and challenging However, both breeds require regular tasks to complete.

Do not be content to sleep all day long and snooze, they’ll come up with activities to engage in even if they’re not being stimulated regularly. This could include decorating your house by tearing a hole through the plasterboard or digging trenches in your backyard. They possess a high prey drive. Although this is great for a working dog, however, certain Malinois does not seem to be “cat-safe.”

While not a slouch but the typical German shepherd isn’t equally active and active than those of the Belgian malinois. He’s not content to lay around all day but thrives on interactions with his family.

From guarding as guide dogs blind persons (the first designated guide dog for blind people was a German shepherd named Buddy), German shepherds are able to do almost everything humans would ask to do. They are also excellent family dogs, and they’re great with children. They’re famous for their bravery as well as their versatility and fearlessness.


Recent film and TV appearances as well as the popularity of social media The Belgian Malinois breed has become more sought-after than ever in recent times, with AKC registrations now placing them in one of the 43rd most well-known AKC breeds and which is up from 76th place just a few years ago.

The American Belgian Malinois Club “is delighted at the interest in our breed sparked by videos and television shows that show off the intelligence, physical capabilities, and beauty of these animals.”

However, they warn “however that the exercises and behavior that are taught as easy for dogs is the outcome of long continuous, intensive and intense training. Malinois are bred and created to accomplish almost any task but they’re not designed to be couch potatoes.”

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