This is the official American Belgian Malinois Club Home Page.
The Belgian Malinois (pronounced MAL-in-wah) is one of the varieties of the Belgian Shepherd Dog. In the United States, they are registered by the American Kennel Club as a separate breed.
The Belgian Malinois is a medium size dog of exceptional beauty and working ability used for many purposes, including herding, tracking, agility, obedience, and police work. To the inexperienced eye, they may seem to resemble the German Shepherd Dog, but upon closer inspection, many differences may be seen including size, bone structure, color, and head and ear shape.
The Belgian is generally a lighter, quicker, more agile dog. They are also generally a more “high energy” dog.
Here you can learn basic facts about the breed, read the breed standard, get information about the American Belgian Malinois Club, becoming a member, find out how to contact Malinois breeders, and learn about dogs currently available for adoption.
In addition, we will post timely information about significant Malinois events, such as the Malinois National Speciality.
Belgian Malinois in the Media
This is NOT Your Typical Pet Dog
The Belgian Malinois is a marvelous companion and lifelong partner. Partnership implies an ongoing commitment to active interaction, and the Belgian Malinois demands and needs that commitment. But, the Malinois is NOT for everyone.
Highly intelligent, elegant, athletic and muscular, this breed excels at agility, herding, tracking, obedience and all protection sports. Malinois demand to be actively engaged with their owner/handler, both mentally and physically. Also, all the qualities that make it an ideal dog for military and police purposes are what make it imperative that its owner be committed to working actively with it on a virtually daily basis. Without intensive and long-term training, Malinois will create their own activities – and those activities can be destructive. However, in return for active engagement, the owner/handler receives the unconditional love and affection — and loyalty — that a Malinois reserves for the “person” in its life.
If you are someone who is looking for an active participant in your active life, and who is excited about and committed to training your dog to share that lifestyle, you would need to look awfully hard to find a better dog than the Belgian Malinois. Or, for that matter, a better dog to live with you and your family. BUT if you are looking for a beautiful animal to just sit at home with you, or to be left to its own designs, do NOT choose a Malinois. These dogs are bred to be taught and assigned tasks, and then to perform them at the highest levels of their mental and physical capabilities. An underutilized dog is a frustrated dog. And a frustrated dog is not a good housemate.
As “custodians” of our breed, 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, the activities and behaviors that are presented, and that look so easy for the dog, are the result of lengthy, intense and constant training. Malinois are bred and born to perform most any task; they are not bred to be a couch potato.
We urge anyone interested in the Belgian Malinois to do as much research as you can and to look for, contact and talk with a reputable breeder. The American Belgian Malinois Club maintains a current breeder list on our website; all of these breeders have signed our Breeder Code of Ethics.