NOT A DOG FOR EVERYONE
PLEASE BE PATIENT WITH ME, GOD IS NOT FINISHED WITH ME YET!" Not a dog for just anyone... Malamutes rarely bark, but do make a series of noises. (check below for more info) Alaskan Malamutes are large and powerful working dogs. They have a friendly personality and an independent mind. Mals are NOT good guard or watch dogs.
They are still used today for work and sport in many countries across the world as well as obedience, agility and rally. Malamutes are highly food motivated with excellent "mooching" and food stealing techniques. Many are expert diggers who can make a yard look like a cratered "moonscape". Mals are curious about their surroundings, love to explore, and can be expert escape artists. Malamutes are highly pack oriented and most possess a strong prey-drive. Many mals will howl or sing, and most are quite good talkers!
Because of these natural instincts, owners may need to deal with dog dominance problems, or their dogs chasing or hunting whatever moves - including the neighbors cats! Due to the Malamute's size, intelligence, and independent nature they can be difficult to handle if not properly trained.
The Alaskan Malamute is a highly active breed and they need both a physical & mental workout on a daily basis. They can be very dog aggressive and extremely predatory but are very friendly. They are a very pack-oriented breed and therefore try to establish and test the pack order on a seemingly constant basis. Virtually always extend a tail-wagging, face-licking welcome to strangers. They are typically not a one person dog and will readily bond with new adoptive owners when the need arises .
Alaskan Malamutes are rather quiet dogs. They generally do not bark at all. They do tend to "talk," however. It is sort of a soft "woo woo woo" sound. Malamutes can howl the roof right off of your house, however. Owners of multiple Malamutes have noticed that when their dogs howl, they will all stop simultaneously. Again, this behavior is due to the fact that they are a very pack-oriented breed.
Malamutes are terrific dogs, but they have special needs when it comes to training. You can meet these needs very easily and humanely at an early age, or you can choose to neglect them and end up with an unmanageable, potentially aggressive dog, who nobody will want to live with.
Obedience training this breed can be very interesting and extremely challenging. Many owners will complain that their dogs act perfectly in class, but will not obey at home. This breed is intelligent enough to differentiate situations very well, and will apply different rules of behavior for different situations. You must stay on top of the dog and maintain control, which is easier to do while the dog is of manageable size than with a stubborn adult that has been allowed to get away with undesirable behaviors for a long time. And because nobody will want the dog, he or she will stand an excellent chance of being euthanized. In order to train a Mal successfully, you must understand what makes these magnificent animals tick. Along with being affectionate, playful companions, malamutes are intelligent, independent, stubborn, energetic and dominant creatures with a very highly developed sense of pack hierarchy. These traits were essential for survival in the harsh and unforgiving environment which Mal's first inhabited, and they continue to be the essence of malamute temperament. If you cherish and respect these characteristics, and are able to work with them in training your pet, you will end up with a malamute who is a pleasure to live with. If, however, you ignore your Mal's special training needs, or have expectations which are simply not within a mal's capabilities, you and your pet will face failure.
Establish rules of the house early, and make sure that the puppy knows that you are in charge. For example, if you do not want the dog on the bed as an adult, do not allow it as a puppy. The rule of thumb is that if you train a dog to do something, expect him to do it. Therefore, if the puppy learns that certain things are allowed, it will be difficult to train them not to do them as adults. Since the dog is pack-oriented, it is important to establish yourself as the head of the pack, or alpha, very early. Once you do this, the dog will respect you and training will be much easier. It is best to enroll in a puppy training class (or puppy kindergarten training as they are commonly known) soon after your dog is home and has all of its vaccinations. This training is good for the dog and for you as the owner, as it will help you understand your new puppy and establish you as alpha very early in the puppy's life, which is extremely important with this breed.
It is very important to remember that Alaskan Malamutes are a working breed. They need something to do. Putting them in the backyard and tossing them a bone and expecting them to be happy is a very bad idea. They need a lot of exercise and interaction to be happy. The exercise can come in the form of mushing, which is of course best, or can easily be in the form of frequent walks, hikes, and playing. The dog makes a wonderful hiking companion, and with a dog pack, can carry food and water.
Some stuff my dogs have found to chew
up.. I just want to show the world what
mals are really capable of doing
a hole the mals dug in the yard