The Belgian Malinois and German Shepherd could easily be mistaken at first glance. They both share a long lupine face, along with tan and black markings. However, the German Shepherd can be distinguished from the Belgian Malinois by a slightly longer, bristly coat and the trademark black saddle on their back. The Belgian Malinois has a shorter coat, with mostly tan fur and black markings around the face.
Table of Contents
What is a Belgian Malinois?
The Belgian Malinois is a medium-sized herding dog breed. They are confident, smart, and world-class workers. Their body is strong and elegant that gives them the look of alert herders.
What is a German Shepherd?
Often used as working dogs, German Shepherds are courageous, keen, alert and fearless. Cheerful, obedient and eager to learn. Tranquil, confident, serious and clever. GSDs are extremely faithful, and brave. They will not think twice about giving their lives for their human pack. They have a high learning ability. German Shepherds love to be close to their families, but can be wary of strangers. This breed needs his people and should not be left isolated for long periods of time. They only bark when they feel it is necessary. Often used as police dogs, the German Shepherd has a very strong protective instinct, and is extremely loyal to its handler. Socialize this breed well starting at puppyhood. Aggression and attacks on people are due to poor handling and training. Problems arise when an owner allows the dog to believe he is pack leader over humans and/or does not give the dog the mental and physical daily exercise it needs to be stable. This breed needs owners who are naturally authoritative over the dog in a calm, but firm, confident and consistent way. A stable, well-adjusted, and trained dog is for the most part generally good with other pets and excellent with children in the family. They must be firmly trained in obedience from an early age. German Shepherds with passive owners and/or whose instincts are not being met can become timid, skittish and may be prone to fear biting and develop a guarding issue. They should be trained and socialized from an early age. German Shepherds will not listen if they sense that they are stronger minded than their owner, however they will also not respond well to harsh discipline. Owners need to have an air of natural authority to their demeanor. Do not treat this dog as if he were human. Learn canine instincts and treat the dog accordingly. German Shepherds are one of the smartest and most trainable breeds. With this highly skilled working dog comes a drive to have a job and a task in life and a consistent pack leader to show them guidance. They need somewhere to channel their mental and physical energy. This is not a breed that will be happy simply lying around your living room or locked out in the backyard. The breed is so intelligent and learns so readily that it has been used as a sheepdog, guard dog, in police work, as a guide for the blind, in search and rescue service, and in the military. The German Shepherd also excels in many other dog activities including Schutzhund, tracking, obedience, agility, flyball and ring sport. His fine nose can sniff out drugs and intruders, and can alert handlers to the presence of underground mines in time to avoid detonation, or gas leaks in a pipe buried 15 feet underground. The German Shepherd is also a popular show and family companion.
Where do Belgian Malinoises come from?
The Belgian Shepherd Dog Malinois was developed in Malines, Belgium in the Middle Ages as a herding and working dog. Its direct ancestors were thought to be local shepherd dogs. The breed is sometimes classified as a variety of the Belgian Shepherd rather than as a separate breed unto itself. In the United States, the breed is recognized under the name Belgian Malinois. Imported Belgian Malinois usually originate from Belgium, France or Switzerland. Adolphe Reul, a Professor in the Belgian School of Veterinary Sciences, was instrumental in the establishment of the official breed standard. The Malinois was imported into the United States during two specific time periods. The first time was in 1911 and the second was between the years 1963 and 1965. During the second period, the population of the Malinois grew significantly. The breed was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1959 under the name Belgian Malinois.
Where do German Shepherds come from?
White-coloured German Shepherds were once banned from registration in their native Germany, but in the United States and Canada the colouration gained a following and a breed club was formed specifically for white-coloured German Shepherds, calling their variety the White Shepherd.  The first stud dog of what became the White Swiss Shepherd Dog was an American dog born in 1966 that was imported to Switzerland.  The variety was provisionally accepted as a breed by the FCI in 2002, and received full acceptance in 2011.  The Kennel Club of the United Kingdom officially recognized it in 2017.
Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd: Size
The Belgian Malinois is a somewhat smaller dog than the German Shepherd and has a lighter structure. Their height is generally between 24-26 inches and their weight range is between 60-65 lbs. Their coats are most commonly fawn, red or brown. They also have a short, dense coat and they shed more than the German Shepherd.
Belgian Malinois Size
The Belgian Malinois come from the Belgian City of Malines. Malinois differ in size and weight. They have shorter and harder fur on body. This breed is developed in 1800. Now a days, very few people know the Belgian Malinois. Some people become confused in GSD and Belgian Malinois. Malinois is smaller in size than German shepherd. These dog are very active. the colors of Malinois coats are often red, brown and fawn. The internal coat of GSD keep him dog warm, especially in the cold weather. He is 24-26 inches tall than GSD. The Balgian Malinois weight is lower than German shepherd.
German Shepherd Size
The size of a full-grown German Shepherd is between 75 and 95 pounds, ranging from 22 to 26 inches in height at the shoulders. Their muscular bodies are lean and agile. An extended muzzle and tall, erect ears are two iconic German Shepherd traits that make these dogs easily recognizable.
Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd: Appearance
There are two big dog breeds that are often confused with each other. These are the Belgian Malinois and the German Shepherd. Indeed, they can have a similar appearance when it comes to their size, coat color and shape. They have also been used as working dogs in the same ways, such as for herding and police work. But there are also many differences between these two wonderful breeds.
Belgian Malinois Appearance
There are three critical components when we’re talking about the physical appearance of a dog: the size, weight, and coat color.
German Shepherd Appearance
There are three critical components when we’re talking about the physical appearance of a dog: the size, weight, and coat color.
Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd: Temperament
The Malinois X, a fairly new hybrid mix of the Belgian Malinois and the German Shepherd Dog, combines the dog breed characteristics of the parent breeds resulting in a canine which is an intelligent, good-natured, level-headed, energetic protector of its beloved human family. There isn’t much information available on this sturdy hybrid itself but plenty exists on the parent breeds who were developed to be working dogs in the 1800’s. Though the place and date of origin of the hybrid is unknown, the parent breeds excelled in working as shepherding dogs in the past and continue to be utilized in police and military areas. Their low maintenance and good-natured temperament make them excellent family dogs as well.
Belgian Malinois Temperament
Originating in Belgium in the town of Malines as stock herders, the Belgian Malinois now works in security, policing, detection of contraband, and in assistance, and participates in herding trials. With a height and length that are nearly equivalent, this medium-sized, short-haired breed has been described as appearing square. Strong and muscular, their origins as a hard working sheepdog continue to be evident in the breed, with high energy levels and a protective personality. This breed is an excellent choice for an active outdoorsy person that spends time running, bicycling or hiking on a daily basis and can keep the dog busy. The Belgian Malinois enjoys spending time with their family and should be allowed indoors to do so, while also having access to an outdoor space where they can run around and expend energy. Dogs of this breed are intelligent, driven and learn quickly, responding well to early socialization and training. Each dog will be different, with a temperament ranging from aloof to outgoing.
German Shepherd Temperament
German Shepherd and Belgain Malinois are recognized as the best military or police breeds. They are often kept at houses for guarding purposes; their attitude towards the new owners or children is extremely well. As per the American Kennel Club (AKC) German Shephered is the 2nd most popular dog breed, whereas Belgian Malinois ranks 52 on the list. Belgian Malinois is nothing short of German Shephered when it is about the race of best military dogs, but its usage for domestic purpose is quite low. German Shepherd, abbreviated as GSD is the dog of German origin whereas the Belgian Mailinois tossed the name as it was bred around the Belgian city of Malines. The Belgian Malinois males are about 61–66 cm (24–26 in), while females are about 56–61 cm (22–24 in), whereas German Shephered males are about 60–65 cm (24–26 in), while female are about 55–60 cm (22–24 in). German Shepherds are stouter than Malinois and they seem to have more weight. On the other hand, Malinois are more aggressive and are fast at attacking as compare to the GSD.
Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd: Exercise
The amount of exercise these working dogs require is very similar. Although, the Belgian Malinois is arguably a bit more energetic than the German Shepherd. Just walking them every day will not be enough. These dogs require active play sessions, training, and socialization to truly be happy. Even with all that done, it might seem like the dog still has energy for a few more rounds. They are incredibly energetic and active.
Belgian Malinois Exercise
To care for a Belgian Malinois, exercise it every day by doing something like running, biking, or playing fetch, since these are active dogs with high energy levels. Additionally, feed your Belgian Malinois healthy, nutritious dog food that contains 25-30% protein. In order to keep its fur clean and free of mats, make sure to brush your dog regularly. You should also take it to the vet once a year for routine vaccinations and protection against fleas, ticks, and heartworm.
German Shepherd Exercise
German Shepherds are confident, courageous dogs with a keen sense of smell and notable intelligence. These are active working dogs who excel at many canine sports and tasks — they are true utility dogs! Their versatility combined with their loyal companionship has them consistently listed as one of the most popular breeds in the United States.
Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd: Hypoallergenic
Belgian Malinois Hypoallergenic
Even though they share some characteristics with German Shepherds, such as their brave demeanor and well-muscled body, Belgian Malinois have the opposite characteristic when it comes to shedding: they shed less than German Shepherds. They have a short and straight hypoallergenic coat, which reduces shedding to an absolute bare minimum.
German Shepherd Hypoallergenic
German Shepherds have a double coat. The outer layer of their fur is coarse and wiry, while the interior undercoat is softer. This type of coat is generally low-maintenance except during heavy shedding seasons in the spring and fall. Believe us when we say you’ll know when shedding season starts, especially if you have any white carpets or furniture. Unfortunately, German Shepherds are not hypoallergenic in the least.
Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd: Shedding
Belgian Malinois shedding is a concern for anyone that has had German Shepherds in the past.
Belgian Malinois Shedding
The Belgian Malinois, with a short, straight coat, sheds regularly, with a minimum of two periods of heavier shedding during the year. It is helpful to brush dogs of this breed on a weekly basis in order to remove dead hair and distribute skin oils. More frequent brushing will be helpful to keep loose hair off of your floor, furniture and clothing. Unless your dog has been adventurous and keen on rolling in an undesirable area, they should only be bathed as needed to avoid removing the waterproof properties present on the coat. Other basic care that is necessary includes trimming the nails as needed (typically every few weeks) as well as frequent teeth brushing for overall good dental health and fresh breath. Your dog’s ears should be kept clean and dry in order to avoid the development of infections. The Belgian Malinois is very energetic; a fenced in yard is helpful so that the dog can run and play to release energy. Daily exercise, whether playtime in a yard or through long walks, runs or hikes, is imperative for the physical and emotional well-being of this active, inquisitive dog.
German Shepherd Shedding
The German Shepherd originated from Germany in 1899 as a herding dog. This loyal and determined canine would work on farms tending to the livestock and assisting with herding sheep. Since then, they have branched out to become the leading police and military working breed. With a noble look, they stand strong and mighty and have a dark, gazing stare. The German Shepherd is considered a large breed with a medium-length double coat that is traditionally brown and black. Their ears are erect and sit high on the head. Known to be fearless, they are motivated to complete their mission of serving others. They remain a favorite breed among people in the United States. This attractive canine is loved due to their intelligence and obedient nature. They are always eager to serve you as a companion or to assist you with jobs, such as working as a guide or as a search-and-rescue breed. This canine requires some grooming maintenance due to their shedding coat and should be brushed weekly to eliminate dead hair. This clever dog is happy as long as they are provided with enough activity to motivate them.
Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd: Grooming
When comparing a Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd both have similar grooming and feeding requirements, their comparable qualities realistically end there.
Belgian Malinois Grooming
Whether you have a show dog or a companion dog, the same basic care is given regarding nutrition, socialization, and hygiene. The difference is the grooming maintenance and conditioning for the show ring. It is always helpful if your breeder is willing to help mentor you to lead you in the right direction upon entering the wonderful world of show dogs. A great place to start is with the national breed club like the American Belgian Malinois Club, www. malinoisclub. com.
German Shepherd Grooming
German Shepherds need the same kind of care as most canines, such as proper nutrition and regular veterinary visits. Still, they can also benefit from special attention in areas like grooming and socialization.
Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd: Price
The average price of a Belgian Malinois is $600, which is much cheaper when compared to the German Shepherd at $1000.
Belgian Malinois Price
Before you go any further, you need to know Belgian Malinois puppies do not come with your run of the mill adoption price tag.
German Shepherd Price
The price of buying a German Shepherd from a breeder depends on what role the puppy has been bred to fill. German Shepherds bred to be pets cost toward the lower boundary of $300, while Shepherds bred as workers or show dogs cost closer to the upper limit of $900.
As you look at the Belgian Malinois vs German Shepherd sizes, you will notice that both dogs are large animals.