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Belgian Malinois Characteristics
Often mistaken for the German Shepherd, the confident and versatile Belgian Malinois is a top-notch worker who is quick to form a tight bond with the humans in its life. Whether herding or assisting those in the police and armed forces, the Belgian Malinois craves purpose and direction but is also capable of being a loving member of the family.
Standing at a moderate 22-26 inches to the shoulder and weighing anywhere between 40-80 lbs, the Belgian Mal is one of the larger herding dogs. These dogs are commonly found in blue, black, and white coats. Often mistaken for the German Shepherd, the Belgian Malinois is smaller and stands with a slightly different profile. Those who work with the dogs often claim the Belgian Malinois is more responsive than the German Shepherd, which may make them easier for newer dog owners.
Because they're herding dogs, Belgian Malinois are a perfect match for active families or individuals. They have a joyful abundance of energy and a longing for purpose. Their families should be aware that if the Belgian Malinois is kept inside all day with no opportunity to spend their energy, they will often act out and become destructive. However, those who are able to accommodate the breed's active tendencies will find a responsive and loving companion.
The Malinois is a breed developed to protect the herd. They’ll be extremely dedicated, loyal companions. If you want them to be friendly with other dogs, make sure you focus on proper socialization and early obedience training. These dogs are considered to be good with children, but if their herding instincts are not addressed early on, they may have a tendency to nip at the children's heels and attempt to herd them while playing. But when trained properly, they’re loving, affectionate, and protective in the right ways.
How dog-friendly is Maine?
The short answer is: Extremely dog-friendly! Maine consistently ranks in the top 10 for dog-friendly states, across several different studies. The top two studies come from ranking sites Pawsafe and Safewise.
Pawsafe’s study ranks all 50 states according to their overall safety and friendliness for pets. They rank the states according to factors like animal cruelty laws, pet-friendly accommodations, and the number of dog parks and hiking trails.
In Pawsafe study, Maine ranks as the 2nd most pet-friendly state! The state also scored well for its animal welfare laws related to abuse, neglect, fighting, or pet care standards.
Safewise ran a similar study that ranks Maine as the 10th most pet-friendly state. Averaging these two studies together puts Maine close to the very front of the pack of pet-friendly states.
A few more facts for dog-lovers in Maine
BringFido lists Maine as a pet-friendly travel destination with over 2800 verified pet-friendly hotels and motels. The site also lists Acadia National Park and Willard Beach as popular dog-friendly attractions.
Thirty-six percent of Maine residents own a dog. This is below the national dog ownership rate of 40%.
According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), the most popular dogs in Maine are Labradors, Beagles, and German Shepherds. Other popular breeds include Collies, Boxers, and Chihuahuas.
Animal welfare & dog shelters in Maine
Maine saved 16,389 dogs and cats during 2020. Approximately 199 animals were killed over this same period.
Twenty-six out of 30 of the animal shelters within Maine are no-kill shelters. The percentage of no-kill shelters is high, and the state has an above-average save rate of 92%. This is above the 90% mark needed to be considered a no-kill state. Great work, Maine!
Belgian Malinois Everywhere in Maine
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