Alaskan Malamute: from sledge dog to family dog

Alaskan Malamute in de sneeuw

The Alaskan Malamute comes from Alaska and was used there in the past to pull heavy loads on the sled. This impressive dog looks powerful and muscular. Besides its imposing appearance, the Alaskan Malamute has a fine character that makes it suitable as a family dog. They are friendly, social and obedient.

Towards their owner they are devoted and affectionate. This dog breed is energetic and loves to exercise. They can play independently, but also like to do activities with their owner. Are you curious about the Alaskan Malamute and would you like to learn more about this dog breed? Then read this article!


The history: the official state dog of Alaska

The Alaskan Malamute is native to the Arctic and is one of the oldest sled dog breeds. It is thought to be the descendants of wolf dogs that lived some four thousand years ago. Since 2010, the Alaskan Malamute has been the official state dog of Alaska. The name is derived from the people who lived in northwest Alaska, namely the Mahlemiut. They developed the Alaskan Malamute, and these dogs were initially used for pulling sleds.

They also had other duties such as carrying heavy backpacks, locating breathing holes in the ice for seals, and distracting bears while hunting. The difference from a Siberian Husky is that the Alaskan Malamute has been compared to a cargo ship. They pull large loads on the sled and have a low speed. A Siberian Husky has a higher speed, but can carry a lighter load.


The character: affectionate, playful and loyal

The Alaskan Malamute is playful, affectionate and devoted. They are friendly dogs that are loyal to their owner. It is a strong dog breed and can have a mind of its own. Because of their friendly nature, an Alaskan Malamute is not suitable as a watchdog.

By nature they have a strong instinct, so it is important to keep an eye on these dogs around small animals. The dogs should be well socialized as a puppy and have good experiences with other (domestic) animals, people and children. It is very important to help the dog with this, then they generally become social dogs who like to work for their owners.

They are energetic dogs and it is important that they get enough exercise. They prefer to play outside all day. In warm weather you must be careful that they do not get too hot because of their thick coat.