Alaskan Malamute

Other names/Nicknames:

  • Malamute

Country/Date of Origin

  • United States
  • 3000 BC

Height:

  • 23 to 28 inches

Weight:

  • 75 to 125 pounds

Personality:

  • Quarrelsome with other dogs.
  • Friendly by nature towards humans but really stubborn.
  • Prefers to be outdoors.
  • Not easily trained.
  • Big, strong and bold, this is not a breed for the first-time dog owner.

History:

This is the sled dog of stamina and strength rather than speed.  It gets its name from the Malamute tribe, an Inuit people of northwestern Alaska.  These nomadic Eskimos used the dogs to haul their possessions between camps.  The breed type was stabilized in the 1920’s and accepted for showing in the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1935.  After that, it gained immense recognition because of its use as a war dog.

Body Type:

  • A sled dog of the Spitz family.
  • Compact and muscular with a wolf-like expression.
  • The tail is large, plumed and carried over the back.  It is never altered.
  • The ears are erect and not altered.  The ears are small and heavily furred.

Coat:

  • Thick, double coat of short to medium length.
  • The outer coat is coarse and the undercoat is oily and woolly.
  • Permissible colors are various shades of gray to black, with a white under body and white marking on legs, feet and face.
  • Sheds heavily in the spring.  At other times, grooming is moderate.

Health and Wellness:

  • Hip dysplasia.
  • Chondrodysplasia.
  • Gastric dilatation and volvulus syndrome (GDV, also commonly called bloat).
  • Follicular dysplasia.
  • Hemophilia.
  • Metabolic bone disease.
  • Glanzmann’s thrombasthenia.
  • Zinc-responsive dermatosis.
  • Demodicosis.
  • Cushing’s syndrome (AT).

What you should know:

  • Admiral Byrd used Alaskan Malamutes on his polar expeditions.
  • The legendary Balto, who carried the diphtheria serum to the stranded children of Nome, was an Alaskan Malamute.
  • Endurance is legendary, as is strength.
  • An Alaskan Malamute can carry a pack that weighs 50 pounds, 20 miles or more a day for extended periods.
  • Reverts to pack instincts when in the company of other dogs.