Breed Type: Working
Weight: 85 lbs for Males, 75 lbs for Females
Height: 25 inches for Males, 23 inches for Females
Coat type: Thick and coarse outer coat and greasy and wooly undercoat.
The Alaskan Malamute is a generally large breed of domestic dog which were originally bred to use as an Alaskan sled dog. It is sometimes mistaken for a Siberian Husky, but is quite different from it in many ways. This breed comes under the working breed type and is very useful for human beings as it helps them in several ways, such as, pulling heavy weight. Alaskan Malamute is most famous for their hunting skills.
The Malamute is a descendant of dogs of the Mahlemuts, the tribe which was found in upper western Alaska. These dogs helped their human companions in several ways and were mainly used for hunting. The recent DNA analysis shows that Malamutes are one of the oldest breeds of dog which are genetically distinct from other dog breeds. Few Malamutes are still used as sled dogs for personal travel, hauling freight, or are helped in moving heavy objects. Today, most Malamutes are used as family pets or show dogs.
Alaskan Malamute was earlier used for pulling heavy freighting, hundreds and maybe thousands of pounds of supplies to villages and camps in groups of around 4 dogs for heavy loads. Even then, it never got a status of racing sled dog. The Alaskan Malamute is said to be a member of the Spitz group of dogs, traced back to the Mahlemuits tribe of Alaska that were found 2,000 to 3,000 years ago. A bill to name the malamute, the official state dog of Alaska, is underway in the Alaska House.
According to the American Kennel Club (AKC) breeds standard, the normal sized Alaskan Malamute weighs around 75 to 85 pounds and are usually 23 to 26 inches tall. This breed is found in a variety of colors, such as, white, light gray, black, sable or red with shading. They can also be seen in the combination of various shades of gray and white, sable and white, black and white or red and white. White shading and a white mask or cap is also one of the common patterns found in Alaskan Malamute.
Eyes of Alaskan Malamute are almond-shaped and are generally found in various shades of brown. Alaskan Malamute with blue eyes disqualifies the dog in shows. The Malamute looks compact with its heavy bone, in most cases. The tail of this breed is well furred and looks like a "plume". Ears of Alaskan Malamute are generally straight, but in some dogs the tip folds forward which appears very attractive.
Alaskan Malamutes are very friendly, affectionate, and loyal in temperament. But don't expect this dog to be a blind follower. They are even friendly with children. This friendly trait of its personality reduces its chance to become a preferred watchdog. Malamutes love to be in human company, and therefore are seen as the family dogs. Alaskan Malamutes loves to enjoy snow and therefore prefer to be outdoors in winter. This breed is found to be quite comfortable among other pets but some times can get irritated in their company.
The most commonly reported health problems of Alaskan Malamutes, according to the 2004 UK Kennel Club survey, were musculoskeletal that is a kind of hip dysplasia, and another is hereditary cataracts. Other health issues which are commonly seen in Malamutes are inherited polyneuropathy, chondrodysplasia, and eye problems, particularly cataract and progressive retinal atrophy.
To keep Alaskan Malamutes in good shape is not a hard job. Only needed is, a little grooming from time to time. Make sure to brush the hair of the dog with a coarse comb as the shedding of this breed is good enough. One hour of hard exercise daily is a must for Alaskan Malamutes to keep them fit.