Monday, May 2, 2011
Breed of the Day: Alaskan Malamute
Country of Origin: USA/Alaska
Group:Working; recognized by the AKC in 1935
Purpose: Heavy freighting
Average Life-Span: 10 to 14 years
Color: Ranges through light gray to intermediate shades of black, sable, shades of sable to red with white always being the predominant color on the under body, parts of the legs and feet and part of the face.
Grooming: Brush weekly
Height/Weight: Males: 24 to 26 inches tall; 75 to 105 pounds. Females: 22 to 24 inches tall; 65 to 90 pounds
The largest and oldest of the Arctic sled dogs, the Alaskan Malamute possesses great strength and endurance. He is not designed to race, but rather to carry large loads over long distances. Today, the majority of Malamutes are family pets, but they are still highly athletic and enjoy sledding, weight-pulling, back packing, jogging and swimming with their owners. The Malamute's coat is thick and coarse, with it's plumed tail carried over the back. The coat usually ranges in color from light gray to black or from sable to red. Facial markings, including a cap on the head and a bar (mask) on the face are often distinguishing features. An all American breed, the Alaskan Malamute was named after the native Inuit tribe called the Mahlemuts, who settled in Alaska. They have always been used as sled dogs for heavy freighting in the Arctic. This breed is a cousin to many other Arctic Spitz breeds, such as the Samoyed, Siberian Husky and the American Eskimo Dog. Majestic and dignified, the Malamute is an affectionate and friendly dog. He is highly intelligent and learns very quickly, but can also be strong-willed, so early obedience training is a must. As an athletic breed, and daily exercise for at least an hour a day is a necessity. The Malamute's coat requires regular brushing and occasional bathing.