So you want an Alaskan Malamute.....?

Great! You've seen them on TV, in the movies, or you've been to a dog show or two.
Maybe you just met a pair in the park or a cute happy puppy and said to yourself...

"I want a Malamute!"

Now that you know what you like, you need to ask yourself the question:

"WHY?" ...and please, be honest!

Why do I want an Alaskan Malamute?

Do you just like a pretty dog? Do you want a big dog to impress the neighbors, scare the crooks, or looks like a wolf? The kids talk you into it? Is that puppy in the window simply the cutest ball of fluff? Is it somebody's birthday or a gift-giving holiday?

If you just said yes.... then do yourself a big favor now: run to the nearest toy store and buy yourself a stuffed toy. The Alaskan Malamute is not the right dog breed for you!

But, if you actually took the time to ask yourself "WHY" you are interested in Malamutes and "WHAT" attracted you to this breed, you are off to a good start! It can be difficult to say what first attracts a person to a Malamute, but if you are unwilling to ask yourself these questions - you are probably not interested to learn much about this breed of dog. And believe me, you'll have a lot to learn with this breed to have a happy long-term relationship!

What do I know about Alaskan Malamutes?

There is a lot of history surrounding the Alaskan Malamute. To understand their history is a good start at understanding the breed itself and how to live with a Mal.

Malamutes were used by native Alaskans to pull heavy loads in harsh arctic conditions and to hunt food. The arctic demands a "survival of the fittest" attitude, so Malamutes retain much of the pack order instinct. They needed intelligence and problem solving abilities to make independent decisions about trail hazards, even to the point of disobeying orders from their human companions. Arctic food is scarce. It was highly important to eat whenever the opportunity arose and to get the most energy possible from any food eaten. Mals supplemented their diet with prey caught in the wild. Simply put, they have been physically and mentally molded for centuries and by their original arctic environment . (More history...)

Ok, so what does all that have to do with Alaskan Malamutes and you in these modern times? PLENTY! Malamutes have not changed their behavior to suit suburbia or anything else, only modified it somewhat...

What other Malamute information should I know?

Now that you know a little more about the Alaskan Malamute, you will be better able to decide if a malamute is a breed you can live with. There is still much more to learn about the Alaskan Malamute and it is in your best interest to learn all you can before bringing a Malamute into your home.

Remember that this is a large and physically powerful breed, with a strong will and an independent nature. This is not a breed that you can truly own in the normal sense. This is a breed that you can form a lasting relationship with.. provided you are willing to adapt & compromise, be creative, learn as much as possible, and work hard at that mutual bond.

Before you make that final decision to bring an Alaskan Malamute into your family, here are a few more topics that you should be interested in...
 

Alaskan Malamute health issues.

Puppymills, petshops and backyard breeders.

Should I choose a breeder or breed rescue?

Picking a puppy you can live with.

How to evaluate a breeder.

Motivational and clicker training techniques.

Dog, wolf and pack behavior.

See the reading list for more information.

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© Texalmal 2001.  Last update on 12 January 2005.  Obligatory Disclaimers: The Site Page!
No dogs were used/harmed/bathed/whatever & etc during the creation of this website.