Commonly Asked Questions
Are Alaskan Malamutes part wolf?
NO! The Alaskan Malamute as we know it today is not part wolf. At no time are wolves used in breeding purebred Alaskan Malamutes.
Is an Alaskan Malamute a "Husky"?
No. "Husky" is a slang term. It is not a recognized purebred breed. However, there is a "Siberian Husky". The Siberian Husky was bred more for racing or hauling lighter loads while the Alaskan Malamute was specifically bred to haul heavy freight. Although similar in appearances, generally the Alaskan Malamute is 20%-25% larger than the Siberian Husky with a bulkier build. Temperament wise, the Alaskan Malamute tends to be more docile and calm than the Siberian Husky.
Do Alaskan Malamutes have blue eyes?
No. A purebred Alaskan Malamute cannot have blue eyes. This is the only disqualification in the American Kennel Club (AKC) breed standard. An Alaskan Malamute with blue eyes would be immediately disqualified from the show ring. The Siberian Husky may have blue eyes.
Do Alaskan Malamutes come in different colors?
Yes. Although the most common colors seen range from light gray to dark gray to black, the Alaskan Malamute may also be light sable to dark sable to red. The only solid color is white. They may also have color combinations in undercoats, points and trimmings. However, white is always the predominant color on underbody, parts of legs, feet and part of face markings. Face markings may include a "mask" appearance, a dark "bar" down the nose or a combination of the two. They may also have a white blaze on their forehead.
Do Alaskan Malamutes require a fenced yard?
Definitely yes! In fact, if you do not have a fenced yard or kennel area, you should probably not even consider owning an Alaskan Malamute as they are notorious for wandering and roaming. The Alaskan Malamute is not a one-person or one-family dog and would most likely be content with anyone who would feed them.
Do Alaskan Malamutes make good watchdogs?
While their size and appearance may be effective deterrents to strangers, the Alaskan Malamute is usually too friendly to be an effective watchdog. Generally, Alaskan Malamutes make very little noise.
Do Alaskan Malamutes make good family dogs?
Yes. As the Alaskan Malamute is not a one-person dog, they make wonderful family dogs. The Alaskan Malamute is willing to love anyone (big or small) who is willing to love him in return. However, children should receive immediate instruction on what is and is not proper treatment of their new pet. If abused, even this gentle breed will defend itself.
Do Alaskan Malamutes require regular exercise?
Yes. The Alaskan Malamute was bred to work and, therefore, it is very important to keep him active. The Alaskan Malamute should have ample room to run about and makes a wonderful companion on those early morning jogs and evening strolls. They also enjoy hiking, running along side a bicyle, skijouring or any other activity you want to include them in.
Do Alaskan Malamutes shed a lot?
Being a "double-coated" (short undercoat and long outercoat) breed, the Alaskan Malamute will "blow" coat once or twice a year. At this time, vigourous grooming is necessary to remove the old, dead coat so the new coat can grow in. On a day-to-day basis, though, the Alaskan Malamute does not shed.
Do Alaskan Malamutes require special grooming?
The Alaskan Malamute is normally a very clean dog with minimal grooming requirements. Routine bathing is not necessary for this breed unless you are showing your dog. Brushing at least once or twice a week to remove any dead hair and stimulate oil glands will help keep the coat shiny. Nail-trimming should also be done weekly to keep their feet in good condition.
Can the Alaskan Malamute be left outdoors all the time?
As long as the Alaskan Malamute has adequate protection from the weather, such as a good dog house in the winter and plenty of shade and fresh water in the summer, they are quite content as an outside dog. On the other hand many Alaskan Malamutes are well adjusted to being an inside dog.