Back to top

Belgian Malinois

Belgian Malinois Dog Breed

Aliases: Malinois, Chien de Berger Belge, Belgian Shepherd Malinois

Life Span: 12-14 years
Litter Size: 6 to 10 puppies
Group: Herding and AKC Herding and part of the Sheepdog family
Color: The most basic color of the Belgian Malinois is a rich fawn color to mahogany with black tips on the hair. Most dogs with the fawn to mahogany color also have white spots or patches on the paws and chest.
Hair Length: Short
Size: Large
Shedding: Moderate Shed
Male Height: 24-26 inches (61-66 cm)
Male Weight: 65-75 pounds (29-34 kg)
Female Height: 22-24 (56-61)
Female Weight: 55-65 pounds (25-30 kg)
 General info courtesy of Additional information about this breed can be found on their website.

Thyroid Disease - Medium Risk

The Belgian Malinois ranks #45 among all breeds for autoimmune thyroiditis prevalence. While this is not a high risk breed, there is still a good chance of disease transmission through breeding. Therefore, all dogs intended for breeding should be tested first. 

 Rank Among Breeds  Number of Dogs Tested  Percent of Dogs With Disease
 #45  178  8.4%

You can download the full report (on all breeds) by the Michigan State University Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health. Here

Other Health Problems

The Belgian Malinois is basically a pretty healthy dog. They are occasionally prone to hip Dysplasia, which is a crippling genetic problem. When purchasing a Belgian Malinois puppy, make sure that both the parents have had their hip x-rayed and are OFA certified as good or excellent. Elbow Dysplasia is also a problem with the Malinois, though not as much as with the hips.

Other health concerns that sometimes occur are skin allergies, eye problems Progressive Retinal Atrophy and occasional epilepsy. Most of these problems are rare and luckily, the dog is a healthy dog that will live a long life if properly cared for. Gastric Torsion bloat is also a life-threatening condition that affects some Belgian Malinois. Some Belgian Malinois are prone to certain types of cancer.