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? asked in PetsDogs · 1 decade ago

Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd?

How are these breeds alike and how do these breeds differ? I would really appreciate answers from people who have experience with both breeds, for example, Dutch. I don't have him as one of my contacts, but if anyone does, I would appreciate it if they would bring this question to his attention. Thanks.

22 Answers

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    Apples and Oranges. They are alike in the fact that they are Shepherd dogs and operate with a high amount of drive. Malinois with far greater drive (in general). Malinois are very hyper, drivey, reactive dogs. For a regular person they are a NIGHTMARE...for a trainer, they are EXCELLENT. This is the type of dog who learns fast, when trained correctly LOVES working and has a real "Don't stop" attitude. For a pet owner it's a burdensome dog that has to be watched like a hawk 24/7 or it'll destroy something, bite something, kill something, hurt itself ect.

    German Shepherds from working lines (only going to mention working line GSDs because comparing any other lines of GSD against a Malinois is like comparing a blind, 3 legged kitten with no teeth to a Siberian Tiger) are much calmer dogs. Not as reactive. They're still a trainers dream, just a different type of trainer. I've heard a saying that goes "A German Shepherd does what you tell it to, a Malinois does it before you tell it, a Dutch Shepherd does it before you think it"...I find it to be backwards. When stimuli is introduced the Mal has to be reeled in, I can rely without so much as glancing at a good GSD to hold position (of course with lots of good training you can do the same with most mals as well).

    The MAIN difference is the drives they work out of. Working dog guys want a hard dog, a dog that can be corrected, HARD, and not lose too much drive and keep working. These dogs achieve this in 2 very different ways. Belgian Malinois take HARD corrections out of prey drive (again, a generalization). "I will take whatever is dished out at me, pressure or corrections or even pain so that I can get my REWARD" is a Mal's mindset. German Shepherds take pressure and pain out of hardness of character "I will take pressure, pain, and corrections because I'm not bothered by them, I want to DOMINATE the bad guy". This is why I personally prefer GSDs. Their livable drive in day to day life is wonderful, it means they can be house dogs quite easily (in general, again). But the main thing I want in a Police or Military Working Dog is an animal who bites out of anger....hatred even. I want a dog who can get MAD and forges on with the will to cause pain to what causes him pain. These dogs have true aggression, social and fight drive. They bite you because they don't like you and want to hurt you. They bite because they want to win, dominate, and own you. Malinois bite because...they like to bite! To a lot of them it's a game, to a minority of them it's serious business, and to a greater minority still, work (bite work) is viewed the same way a hard GSD views it. I like those Malinois, sadly they are a huge minority. These types of dogs can only be found in the top few percent of NVBK and especially KNPV dogs (KNPV Mals are often mixtures in varying degrees of GSD hence their size and hardness...again, in general).

    Both can do the same jobs to varying degrees. If like some people, a lot of people, you don't care WHY a dog bites as long as he bites then the Malinois is the bitingest, driviest, workaholic there is. If you want a old school, rough and tumble and ready to rumble simply for the chance to kick some butt...then go with the GSD...the GSD is the combat Marine of the dog world...they dig in and they hit hard and will die on the beach to get some. Malinois are more like a tactical unit, light and fast, they don't dig in with a fight or die mentality, they want to hit their objective, do damage and call it a day (in the Mal's case the objective is drive satisfaction)...I always did like the Marines mentality over all other fighting men though :)

    -edit- Marna O and Greek...you're encompassing the GSD knockoffs. Show Line Shepherds are NOT GSDs, please don't compare them or even call them GSDs when we're talking about work. That said when we're talking strictly working line dogs, we have about 75% that'll work...if you take away the BUMS who have dollar signs for pupils aka people selling pups for 5 grand and adult elite super dee duper "pertektion" dogs for $50,000 then that number shoots up to 90% as well. There are kennels where I simply can not think of one bad dog they've produced (Peko Haus, Bungalow, Busecker Schloss, Antverpa dogs, Karthago dogs). When done correctly breeding good hard working GSDs is simple...it just ain't easy. Not many people in this country do the research. Most people in Germany are breeding for sport. I'm inclined to say there are now 4 types, the newest edition being the German Sporting Lines. If we pull those dogs out of the picture and stick with the REAL working dogs the GSD is doing just fine, he's alive and well.

    Hard to find? Hardly! Call Jiri (either one) and know what you need and get a dog, call Josef and get a dog, heck call Chico and get a dog. In all the time I've known Chico I have yet to see him produce a dud (he only breeds a litter or 2 a year though so...but still, great accomplishment). When the motives for breeding are examined and broken down it's easy to see...the Working Line GSD is here to stay and a d*** fine working dog. He did a d*** fine job before anybody outside of Belgium and Holland had ever seen or heard of a Malinois.

    Btw A'Tim is a good dog, that performance wasn't his best, but it shows at least a Mal with controllable drive (he didn't like giving up those fetched items tho' aye?). A'Tim was probably a dog who could do anything well...whether or not he was a serious dog (a civil dog) is up for speculation, from what I've seen from him he wants a suit, not to dominate a man. Again, A'Tim is a A/B dog, I like B dogs. Dogs like Endor...now THAT is a working dog, I'd take him over A'Tim or any other Malinois I've ever seen other than a young Turcodos ^.~

  • 4 years ago

    Belgian Malinois Vs German Shepherd

  • erke
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    German Malinois

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    This Site Might Help You.


    Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd?

    How are these breeds alike and how do these breeds differ? I would really appreciate answers from people who have experience with both breeds, for example, Dutch. I don't have him as one of my contacts, but if anyone does, I would appreciate it if they would bring this question to his...

    Source(s): belgian malinois german shepherd: https://shortly.im/GQwtl
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  • 6 years ago

    My dog is a German Shepard Belgian malinois mix

  • Anonymous
    6 years ago

    Many people often get confused with the two. The biggest difference is the drive. The Malinois is a smaller dog, full of life, alert, confident, intelligent, athletic, and bursting wih energy with an endless amount of endurance and working ability. They are often called 'the German shepherd on crack' because they're so intense, driven, but very focused into what they're doing. The Malinois is fearless, won't ever back down and will keep going, not to mention they're faster and are very strong. Hands down, no question about it, the Belgian Malinois is much more preferred for work like police k9 and military dog, and can excel in almost any other job like tracking, bomb/drug/narcotics sniffing, search & rescue, guard dog, herding dog, guide dog, and alert dogs for people with disabilities. Mallinois are also very popular in sports like schutzhund, ringsport, knpv, ipo, obedience, agility, frisbee, dock jumpers, and flyball. However the Malinois requores more experience, exercise, and training. These dogs are VERY high energy and NEED to be worked. After you have the training done, you get a much better deal with a Malinois. You iust need the time and patience for such a more advanced dog.

    The German shepherd is a step below the Malinois, although it's bigger, stronger, and more intelligent, it's better suited foe beong a family dog and is calmer and more laid back. They require less exercise and training, but they still need something to do.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Personally, malinois remind me of anorexic, neurotic, cracked out german shepherds. *shudder* NO THANK YOU. Have at it greek, LOL

    EDIT: Oh Greek, I KNOW that they are amazing dogs! I've never denied it, I never will. HOWEVER... most of them are way too "crazy" for me. They're twitchy, hyper, crazy. Have to be going non stop.

    In training, there were a few malinois. It's time to stop with a GSD, you place them on their bed or whatever in a stay, and they settle right in, calm down, ok it's time to zonk for a while and pass out. However, the malinois were always twitching, fidgeting, practically prancing in place. Kinda creeped me out.... O.O LOL

    I'm not saying anything is wrong with that, and I'm not saying EVERY malinois is like that (the one in you video, BTW, is probably the "calmest" I've ever really seen in my limited experience), but a lot I've seen are. I prefer a dog with an OFF "switch", and I don't think those come installed in the malinois model, LOL.

    I think malinois are great working dogs, and I think GSDs are great working dogs. Which one is better? I don't have the experience to say, and I can't rightly say. However, I believe to certain individuals, either one can be the best. For myself, the GSD is the best. I view through the eyes of a prejudiced GSD owner because I AM a prejudiced GSD owner! I have the breed I have because the breed I have is perfect for me.

    You are right, finding a decent malinois is easy as can be, and finding a decent GSD is dam near impossible. BUT IMHO that search is worth it. I don't think the breed should be thrown away because 80% of them are crap, and I don't WANT the breed I love to be thrown away because 80% of them are crap. So I'll ignore the hock banging, banana back, ring prancing frogs as long as I can focus on those 10-20% that are AMAZING, prime examples of real dogs. As long as there are men and women out there who believe in the breed and the work that they can do, then in my mind there is no reason to turn to another dog. To each their own, but I'll always keep praying that those who feel the GSDs are the best continue to do so, if it simply means at least a small portion of the breed I love can continue to exist as it should.

  • 7 years ago

    So, I have never owned a GSD before but I recently got a Mal. My first one. So, when he was about 10 weeks old we were driving by county fairgrounds and I saw this group of german shepherd and a couple of other breeds thrown in there and I stopped to check out the trainer and see if he had available time for private puppy training. I waited for the class to be over and while I waited I talked to the some of the people from the advanced class that was before the one currently taking place. One guy, who owned a really beautiful long haired shepherd, was talking to me about how mals don't have and off switch and that they are german shepherds on crack. And I just smiled and nodded and changed the subject. After the class the dogs line up and their handlers say car in English german or czech. So, I walk over with my puppy, who is ten weeks old, to the trainer(who while talking about the difference between the breed says that mals are GSDs on crack) and while I am talking to him these two dogs who were in the same trunk started a little fight. My mal is sitting by my side watching. We are still talking and a pit bull jumps from the trunk and runs towards my puppy(the dogs are supposed to stay in the car for a little before the door is closed so that's what happened). Not aggressively, but barking and excited, and I crouch put my dog between my legs and keep the pit bull away. My mal is slightly taken aback now but when the pit was gone I got up dogs still barking and Lenny sitting at my side watching. So, next the trainer has me drop my leash(he wants to see lenny's attachment to me) and I walk off. For a few seconds he is distracted by dogs but once he notices I am walking away he comes running after me. I take a few turns as the trainer directs and Len is close behind. This was not a one time thing either. Yeah he gets antsy if I haven't gone for a walk or played fetch with him, but never acts like he is on crack. He is a show line mal, but training with him I have seen he is a quality working dog. I don't plan on doing serious competition with him but I don't need to he is completely satisfied with sports and walking and fetch.

  • 5 years ago

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  • 5 years ago

    Every dog needs some type of training. The first class I ever took a dog to was https://tr.im/QQTDF

    It's a very basic kind of class. They will help you with your dog, and show you how to work with your dog at home.

    They'll also answer any questions you have about your dog's particular problems and how to handle them. The most important thing in dog training is to be consistent and work with your dog at home on the lessons. The PetSmart class teaches sit, down, come, and the very basics every dog needs to know. They will also help socialize your dog. You are unhappy with an untrained dog, and believe it or not, the dog is actually unhappy to. You need to take your dog now, as the older he gets, the harder it will be to correct your dog's bad habits. Plus the classes are fun for you and your dog. My dog went from that first PetSmart class on to advanced obedience classes. You might also contact your local humane society. The one in my area offers obedience classes with a very good trainer at a reduced price.

  • 7 years ago

    Pay no attention to the idiots on these comments. Belgians, whether the Malanios, Tervuren, or Gruenendael are great dogs, easy to train, fun companions, great with people, dogs, and kids when well socialized. They are active and need exercise and companionship every day, they can be destructive as puppies as in chewing up (killing?) pillows and things that you handle (such as TV remotes, etc.). However, again, with proper training and activity they are great dogs and not at all as many commentors have described...

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