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Alaskan Malamute Dog Breed

Alaskan Malamute
This magnificent dog worked with the Mahlemuit Inuit in Alyeska long before Russia sold the land to the U.S. government.

Other Names: The Mal. The Malamute. 'Lord of the Snow'

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Origin: Alaska

Breed Purpose: Sled Dog

Kennel Club Dog Group: Working

Height: Bitch, 56-61cm. Dog, 61-66cm.

Weight: Bitch, 32-38kg. Dog, 36-43kg.

Lifespan: 12-15 years

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Exercise Needs: To develop this dog's natural instincts it needs pulling exercise. There are many clubs and outlets around the country that owners can join so their Malamute can appreciate being functional. In snowy regions the dog can pull sleds and in other climates the dogs are harnessed to carts on wheels and race through forests. The Malamute needs plenty of intense exercise. To deprive the dog of this will have a harmful effect on its physical and mental well-being.

Diet & Feeding Needs: Never feed this dog any sugary foods. Some owners believe that by feeding sugar it gives the dog more energy. Sugar does not bring any muscular boost to any sporting activity. The only thing that sugar will do to the dog is cause it to become obese! The Malamute is endowed with a special metabolism that has the capacity to store maximum energy from its food intake. This enables the dog to tolerate the freezing temperatures of its homeland. They do sometimes need a zinc supplement. Seek advice from the breeder or a veterinarian as to dietary supplements. The Malamute thrives on a natural home prepared diet. Raise food and water bowls as the Malamute is susceptible to GDV, (bloat).

Health Problems : In general the Malamute is a healthy breed with few health issues. They are prone to bloat and Chondrodysplasia, (dwarfisim) and are heat sensitive. Choose dogs from reputable breeders as poor quality dogs do suffer with temperament and health problems.

Physical Description: The overall appearance of the Alaskan Malamute is one of an extremely powerful dog with wolf-like looks. They have a broad head with almond shaped eyes and small ears that are well set back on the skull. They have a large muzzle and strong jaws. The neck is muscular and moderately arched going down to a strong body with a deep chest and a straight back. The loins are very muscular and powerful. The front legs are strongly-boned and straight and the hind legs are muscular with moderately bent stifles. The tail is bushy and is carried over the back in a wavy plume. The coat is thick and rough with a soft dense undercoat that gives perfect protection against the cold. The coat colours are brown, light grey, black, gold shades/liver shades with a white underbelly and white markings on the face, top of head or as a white blaze on the fore face.

Alaskan Malamute Dog Breed Summary:

This dog can withstand extreme cold temperatures and would work with the Mahlemute tribesmen, towing their boats over the ice flows or hauling sledges.

With its wolf-like appearance the Malamute sometimes scares people and has a reputation of being difficult. This is unjustified as the dog is affectionate and loyal and in general has a stable temperament.

They are true pack animals and still have a strong sense of hierarchy within their human family. The owner of this dog must be able to establish themselves as a firm but fair leader and needs someone with an in depth knowledge of the breed's requirements and be well versed in Alaskan Malamute training methods.

This dog is not for the novice dog owner. The Malamute is generally good with children but have to be trained to accept other pets.

They are very self assured and will often try to dominate other dogs.

Because of its need for space, the Malamute is not suited to appartment life.

All in all this superb dog needs a family that enjoys new challenges and can give this dog the life it needs.

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