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  #51  
Old 12-27-2012, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Red Chrome View Post
I have met a few nice Mals that run agility. Very stable socially acceptable dogs.
I have also met very nice stable Malinois from show lines. But also some from working lines. I've seen the opposite also. The non-show line people often don't care as long as they "work", which to me means "bite". My Malinois is from working lines. Her father is from the Banc des Hermelles kennel in France. http://www.chiens-de-france.com/site...&ID_SITE=20421

She is a handful! ...and the reason I don't recommend Malinois to people who don't know what they are getting into. That said, there are some really nice Mals in ABMC Rescue, and there is always a need for foster homes.
http://www.malinoisrescue.org/foster/

In my area, Ohio/Kentucky, there are a lot of the long hair Belgian breeders, so I have the opportunity to see a LOT of those.
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  #52  
Old 12-27-2012, 07:55 AM
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  #53  
Old 12-27-2012, 08:01 AM
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  #54  
Old 12-27-2012, 08:51 AM
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I think any time you put two dogs together that have some "guts" or a bit of fire in them, the DA part, when present is a lot more noticeable. My first Bitch hated dogs, all dogs, male or female. Unless you were a part of our little circle of friends, then you were the best thing ever as far as she was concerned.

At least with me, before me she fought with the two other females, a corgi and a mal all the time in her house. Legs were broken from bites, faces scarred, and punctures.

She lived most of her life with at least one female in our house and a 2nd one later in her life with no issues with either of them.

I had to work a lot on dogs outside the "pack" so to speak and eventually she was ok with them as well, at least not reactive or aggressive, but I kept it all very controlled. If it wasn't, it was on.

My two females I have now, dogs they don't live with? who cares. no aggression, they don't really pay much attention to them at all. They notice them, but there is no desire to interact positively or negatively with other dogs. One is generally a bit snarky with others that get in her face, basically, just telling them she's not interested, but no real aggression, just a voice of displeasure. This female played like crazy with my other female, constantly, but since she's passed, nothing and it's been over 2 years.

She will play with some dogs, but it's not a regular thing, she just doesn't seem to care one way or the other.

The other female, Yoli, doesn't care about others much either, but if they're up for play, she's more than willing. Males or females.

These two together though wasn't always good. Took a bit of work and today, I can keep them out together inside or outside and they can exist together, but it is under constant supervision and management. One wrong step between the two and it is go time and it is ****ing nasty. I hate dealing with it, but I love my dogs so I do it.

The two males I've had here Bo and Paco, never any issues, male or female, pack or non pack dogs.

I think there is a lot behind DA, SSA or any aggression issues. Too many variables to make a blanket statement. It's not a deal breaker for me. I'd rather not deal with it, but can if I have to.

As for Mal's, definitely find they type you like and get one from there I've worked with a lot of them over the years. Some are very nervy, snipy driven messes. Make the handlers happy on the field but IMO sucke everywhere else. But that's me. There are a lot out there like this, just because it has some titles doesn't mean it will be a dog you are happy with.

I've also worked with a lot that are very driven, very stable and very social and everything and I do mean everything in between. One that I work with a lot is great. He'll bite the **** out of me and then 30 seconds later we can be hanging out, he'll jump in my lap and eat pizza with me. He can pace for hours on end or he can just lay and chill, I swear he looks stoned sometimes, for quite a while as well. A very balanced and driven dog, but he's kind of weird I think

His daddy on the other hand, not nervy and driven, but he is NOT social by any means. and if you displease him, he'll let you know. He's fine in his "pack" but if you're not in it, good luck. his mother is a sweet heart. I'd take her home today if I could. I'd take his daddy too if I knew I could feed him without being lunch myself .

They have 4 mals, 2 males/2 females and they live in the house together and are fine, Plus an offbreed. One was a national champ ring dog and the one up and coming, no doubt will be on some podiums as well when his training is complete. So she's a pretty savy dog person. A person without a clue would be in a house of chaos and there probably would have been some accidents in that situation.

There's just such a wide variety in all the breeds that you really need to get out, see the dogs, find some that you like and find out where they got them from. See them with your own eyes and interact with them in your own way for a bit if you can. That's how you'll find a dog you like.

Writing about and reading about is great, fills in the gaps until you can actually observe and feel in person. Thats' when the real and meaningful evaluations can take place.
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  #55  
Old 12-27-2012, 08:57 AM
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I don't agree you don't know what you are getting when you get a Mal. I think knowing the lines are about more than saying there was a SchH titled dog here and there. I also think from my experience a dog is ultimately a product of its genetics and genetics are there from day one. There are lots of nervous high drive Mals out there which isn't a good combination and IMO not what the breed should be like. High drive is useless combined with weak nerves. I agree they really wouldn't make good pets for most people - but a good Mal is an exceptional dog IMO!

ETA: I think all dogs require management to some degree but obviously when living with a high drive WL dog appropriate management is so important. It's something you are either happy to live with or you aren't.
I don't think anyone is disagreeing their fondness of the breed, we will always own malinois. A good malinois, even a bad one, is a stellar dog in the right home. I also believe though that nerves are very complicated in high drive dogs, my aforementioned male for one example.

That said there is still a fair amount of variety in each litter and while that is true in every breed it can feel much more drastic in this breed, due to their propensity for intensity, edge, and energy.

I believe strongly that for the sake of the breed, and in an effort to combat the ever climbing rescue numbers, it is essential for those seeking dogs to be careful in their research and be both prepared for the best and the worst(which is debatable, due to desires and lifestyles) of the breed.
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  #56  
Old 12-27-2012, 09:06 AM
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For what it's worth even though Backup is a moron with other dogs I believe within the mals I've owned, borrowed, trained, and befriended very few would be unable to learn to live with companions of either sex. I could be skewed from owning pit bulls for years before malinois but their dog issues don't seem prominent enough to concern me. We've had a few friends ask who'd win a fight between of our malinois or insert other dog here (for example when a mastiff charged us out hiking) and Denis simply laughs, Great at hurting people, not so dangerous with dogs (with little dog turned prey animal as an exception).

Ps, also sorry for the malinois focus, I don't know nearly enough about GSDs or Aussies or ACDs to contribute elsewise.
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  #57  
Old 12-27-2012, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by smeagle View Post
I don't agree you don't know what you are getting when you get a Mal. I think knowing the lines are about more than saying there was a SchH titled dog here and there. I also think from my experience a dog is ultimately a product of its genetics and genetics are there from day one. There are lots of nervous high drive Mals out there which isn't a good combination and IMO not what the breed should be like. High drive is useless combined with weak nerves. I agree they really wouldn't make good pets for most people - but a good Mal is an exceptional dog IMO!
This is true to a degree. You can't really assume anything based on titles or even that the dogs being bred are "real working dogs". DA issues aside, I think it's probably easier to find a good (driven, intense, sound, stable, safe) working bred GSD than a good working bred Mal because IME there are just more working bred GSD people want the whole package. So many working Mal breeder only seem to care about the biting and how intense and awesome their dogs look while biting. Interestingly, it really seems many traits sport Mal people like are prety superficial in that, they like it because it looks cool and not because it's truly important for the work. It's like that in other breeds too, where they are being heavily selected for a sport. Field trial Brittanys are selected for them things that are not really what a normal person looking for a hunting dog would want. But their stylized way of working looks impressive in field trials.

However, there are certainly good Mals out there from both working/sport and show/performance/herding breeders. One thing I always tell people to look for is that the breeder has similar ideas about what makes a good dog as you do. If it's important to you that the dog be able to be a good companion, look for a breeder who feels the same way. I know the breeder Roust's sire came from fully expects his Mals to be good family dogs, house dogs and be very sound. Roust and his sisters are all good companion dogs and not especially difficult to live with. Roust is not at all a pacey, unable to settle down dog. However, Roust is not a dog strangers can touch. He is super happy, dorky, lovey with his family and friends (and he never forgets his friends) but he doesn't want strangers to touch him. His dam was pretty much from the opposite sort of breeder as his sire and she is extremely nervy and IMO a pretty unsound dog. Roust is the least social in the litter, from the ones I know (there's two still at the breeder's and one still in a home the breeder sold to).

All of that said, the fact is that anti-social tendencies, sharpness, reactivity, etc exist in the Belgian breeds/varieties. I believe these traits were probably there from early on and will still pop up, even in carefully planned for litters and breeders who don't find such traits acceptable. IME if anything, with Belgians if you aren't selecting for social, stable dogs you will get more and more nervy, reactive, sharp ones. That seems to be what the breed pulls towards naturally. IMO this is because they are a more primitive, less developed breed compared to say a GSD.

So the Belgians are just...complicated. You can do everything right and still end up with puppies who are not really ideal temperament wise. However, that doesn't mean you should use that as an excuse to breed unstable dogs either. Instead, that should be kept in mind when making breeding choices to try to weigh the odds in your favor for getting a stable, safe dog. These dogs are also very sensitive to environment and training. Without proper socialization and training from an early age, even a very promising puppy can end up...weird. OTOH I have seen weird puppies really come around with a determined and devoted owner. These are supposed to be versatile dogs, able to do just about anything you want them to do. And they are supposed to be devoted companions of their people. For me, it's just not acceptable to breed generations of dogs who live their lives out in kennel runs because people can't stand to interact with them outside of work/sport and justify it by saying "they're bred for work and not pets".
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  #58  
Old 12-27-2012, 11:16 AM
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So the Belgians are just...complicated.
Good post, I especially agree with this bolded part. LOL
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  #59  
Old 12-27-2012, 11:39 AM
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That said there is still a fair amount of variety in each litter and while that is true in every breed it can feel much more drastic in this breed, due to their propensity for intensity, edge, and energy.
This x a million!

As mentioned, Pan and Aeri are from the same litter and they are both drastically different in a LOT of ways. I've also met two of her other siblings.

Where Pan is not social, Aeri really is as long as I'm around. Tied out without me, she completely ignores people. Completely - she looked straight through 3 men during her BH even when they were trying to get her to interact. If someone else tries to get her out of a crate or hold her on leash, other than my husband or I, she will act fearful and strains to get away, but never acts aggressively.

Aeri's brothers, Tiny and Trouble, are generally very fearful of other dogs and neither is as social with people as Aeri, though they were more social than Pan has been described (Tiny just ignored me after a few barks, Trouble was quite avoidant but settled a bit after a few minutes). With dogs, Aeri is unsure about them but not overly afraid generally - she likes to play appeasing but annoying puppy with new dogs.

From everything I know of the sire and dam of the litter, both are generally stable dogs, both are nicely titled. The dam is known for throwing "easier" mals as well.

Genetics can do some really weird things!
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  #60  
Old 12-27-2012, 12:16 PM
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There are lots of nervous high drive Mals out there which isn't a good combination and IMO not what the breed should be like.
Your opinion of what the breed should be does not change the reality of what the breed is, and what a potential puppy buyer might end up dealing with.

Thank you again, Aleron, Adrianne, and stardogs for elaborating on what I'm trying to say in a much more eloquent manner.

As for DA, while Pan hates strange people, she absolutely loooooves most other dogs and usually tries her best to sweetly make friends.
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