Belgian Malinois Breed Magazine - Showsight

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Official Standard of the Belgian Malinois General Appearance: The Belgian Malinois is a well-balanced square dog, elegant in appearance with an exceedingly proud carriage of head and neck. The dog is strong, agile, well- muscled, alert and full of life. He is hardy and built to withstand the rugged Belgian climate. He stands squarely on all fours. The whole conformation gives the impression of depth and solidity without bulkiness. His elegance and expression denote great strength of character, reflecting his heritage as a herding breed. The male should appear unquestionably masculine; the female should have a distinctly feminine look and be judged equally with the male. Size, Proportion, Substance: Males are 24 to 26 inches in height; females are 22 to 24 inches; measurement to be taken at the withers. Males under 23 inches or over 27 inches and females under 21 inches or over 25 inches are to be disqualified. The length, measured from the point of the breastbone to the point of the rump, should equal the height. Bone structure is moderate in proportion to height so that the dog is well balanced throughout and neither spindly or leggy, nor cumbersome and bulky. When viewing the silhouette, the topline, front legs and back legs should closely approximate a square. Head: The head is carried high. It is long without exaggeration, rectilinear, well-chiseled and dry. The eyes radiate attentiveness and readiness for action. The eyes are of medium size, neither protruding nor sunken, slightly almond shaped, and obliquely set. They are brown, preferably dark brown, with black rimmed upper and lower eyelids. Light eyes are a fault. The ears are rather small, set high and distinctly triangular with a well-cupped outer ear and pointed tips. They should be stiff and carried upright and vertical when the dog is alert. Ears hanging as on a hound, or semi-prick ears are disqualifications. Skull and muzzle are roughly equal in length, with at the most a very slight bias in favor of the muzzle. The top skull is of medium width, in proportion with the length of the head, with a forehead flat rather than round, frontal groove not very pronounced; in profile, the head planes are parallel; occipital crest, brow ridges and zygomatic arches not prominent. The stop is moderate. The nose is black. The muzzle is of medium length and well chiseled under the eyes, narrowing gradually toward the nose like an elongated wedge. The mouth is well split, which means that when the mouth is open the commissures of the lips are pulled right back, the jaws being well apart. The lips are thin, tight and strongly pigmented black. The Belgian Malinois has a full complement of strong white teeth that are evenly set and meet in a scissors or level bite . Overshot and undershot bites are a fault. An undershot bite in which two or more of the upper incisors lose contact with two or more of the lower incisors is a disqualification. Complete dentition is preferred. Missing teeth should be faulted. Neck, Topline, Body: The neck is slightly elongated, well-muscled, broadening gradually towards the shoulders, without dewlap, slightly arched, permitting the proud carriage of the head. The withers are pronounced, and the back is firm. The loin is solid, short and sufficiently well- muscled. The croup is very slightly sloped. The underline rises gently in a harmonious curve toward the abdomen, which is neither tucked-up nor paunchy. The chest is neither broad nor narrow, but well let down, with the lowest part reaching the elbow. The body should give the impression of power without bulkiness in proportion to the overall dog. The tail is strong at the base, reaching to the hock, and carried down at rest. It is curved, raised when moving, but not passing the horizontal or forming a hook or deviation. A cropped or stumped tail is a disqualification.

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