Belgian Malinois vs Husky – A Detailed Comparison

Often, the intimidating appearance hides the breeds that make great family dogs, and, that’s exactly the case with Belgian Malinois and Huskies.

Behind their rugged presence, they are smart, friendly, and extremely loyal.

These traits, along with their high energy, have made them one of the top choices for people looking for an active companion or an intelligent working dog.

Still, although they were both developed as working dogs, they come from vastly different backgrounds and were bred for different types of tasks.

This results in some significant differences which you should be aware of if you’re planning on owning either one of these breeds.

Without prior research, you may end up owning a dog you can’t handle or that doesn’t suit your lifestyle or family and living situation.

I’ll compare Belgian Malinois vs Husky to see how they measure up physically and how much their temperament and personality differ.

So let’s dive in!

AttributesBelgian MalinoisHusky
Good For First Time OwnersNoNo
Good Guard DogYesNo
Apartment FriendlyPossible With Enough ExerciseWith Enough Exercise
Good Family DogWith TrainingYes
SheddingModerate To HighModerate To High
Barking And HowlingModerate To HighLess Barking, Lots Of Howling
Height22-26 inches (56-66 cm)20-24 inches (51-61 cm)
Average Life Expectancy12-14 Years12-14 Years


Belgian Malinois – Dog Breed Information

Originally developed in Belgium for the purpose of sheep herding, Belgian Malinois is now one of the most appreciated working dogs, with a huge role in police and military.

They are known as smart, hard-working, and highly trainable dogs.


People often confuse them with German Shepherd as they share similar physical build.

However, the Belgians are somewhat smaller and lighter but have a similar muscular body of a working dog.

Malinois also features a more square body profile, compared to longer German shepherds.

The body is covered with a double coat, protecting Malinois from the harsh weather.

The topcoat is short and hard, while the undercoat is thick and dense.

The hair is longer on the neck, tail, and back legs. The most common colors are fawn, red, and brown.

Black-masked face, dark, chocolate eyes, and upright ears are other similarities with the German Shepherd.

Still, the head is more chiseled and refined, while the ears are a bit smaller.

Males grow up to 24-26 inches (61-66 cm) and weigh 65-80 pounds (29-36 kg).

Fully grown females are 22-24 inches (56-60 cm) high and weigh 60-70 pounds (27-32 kg).


Belgian Malinois is a fantastic working dog, always confident and protective of its owners.

They’ve kept their strong working instinct and are extremely active and energetic.

They enjoy performing tasks given to them and will easily get bored if they have nothing to do.

If you’re a couch-potato kind of owner, perhaps you should look into other breeds as Malinois requires plenty of engagement and exercise.

This breed loves to be around humans and is very affectionate and protective of family members.

Nevertheless, they are rather reserved towards strangers, which, along with their alertness, makes them great watchdogs.

Malinoises are highly trainable due to their high intelligence and focus.

They can be trained to perform all kinds of complex tasks and are often used in military and law enforcement.

However, without proper and early training, they can easily become difficult to deal with.

Husky – Dog Breed Information

Huskies are a breed that’s growing in popularity, mainly thanks to their beautiful and formidable appearance and strong work ethic.

Hailing from Siberia, they have a centuries-long history of serving people, mainly as sled dogs and fearless protectors.


Huskies are a medium-sized breed, slightly more long than tall. Their power and athleticism are obvious even at a first glance.

With their roots in Siberia, Huskies are more than equipped to handle extremely cold weather.

Their thick double coat protects them even from the freezing temperature.

The topcoat is longer, plush, and water-resistant, with straight hairs. The undercoat is short and dense.

They come in a variety of colors varieties.

The most common is black and white, but they can feature copper-red, grey, and white combinations.

Sometimes they have white markings on chests and legs.

Husky’s ears are erect, eyes are almond-shaped and commonly blue, while the tail is thick and bushy.

Males reach 21-24 inches (53-61 cm) in height and 45-60 pounds (20-27 kg) in weight.

Fully grown females can grow 20-22 inches (51-56 cm) and weigh 20-22 inches (51-56 cm).


When it comes to personality, Huskies are typical Northern dogs. They’re intelligent, energetic, and hard-working.

Still, they have a bit independent streak going and can be somewhat stubborn at times.

As a working breed, they love to be active and engaged.

Huskies have plenty of stamina, so if you plan on getting one, be sure to be able to keep up with it.

Huskies excel as household dogs, as they are not tied to just one person. They used to live in packs and that instinct is still very much alive today.

These dogs see family as their pack and are ready to do whatever it takes to protect them.

In addition, they are very playful by nature and love spending time with kids, although you’ll have to be careful as they can forget themselves and be kind of rough.

Belgian Malinois vs Husky – What are the Differences?

Belgian Malinois Husky

The first thing that catches the eye when comparing Belgian Malinois vs Husky is the difference in appearance.

Malinois are larger, heavier, and generally feature darker colors.

To the untrained eye, a Husky may seem as big as Malinois but that is because of their long and lush coat.

Their coat also makes them more requiring of the two when it comes to grooming. They shed a lot and will need a lot of work on cleaning behind them.

Neither of these breeds is particularly convenient for living in an apartment, but the Belgians can live inside if you take them out a couple of times a day.

Both breeds are pretty protective, but the Malinoises have much stronger guard dog instinct.

They’re very territorial and vary of strangers. Huskies, on the other hand, can be too friendly towards strangers.

Nevertheless, this friendliness and tolerance make them much more kid-friendly.


Thanks to their intelligence, even temperament, and high energy, both Belgian Malinois and Huskies make wonderful pets.

However, if you’re looking for a working dog, Malinois should be your choice.

They’re a bit smarter, more trainable, and are capable of fulfilling a wide range of work roles.

Huskies are more stubborn and can be a bit more difficult to train, but when properly socialized and trained, they are just fantastic as family dogs.

They will always enjoy your company, join you for any activity you have in mind, and spend countless hours of fun with kids.

Where you live also should factor in your decision, as Huskies are better suited for life in colder areas.

Authored By

Madeline Wright

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