The best, most genetically sound Giant Alaskan Malamutes are descendants of the M’loot Malamute of the ancient Inuits of the high Arctic centuries ago.
The pulling dogs of the indigenous people grew to a size of an average 35” at the shoulder and sometimes weighing in at as much as 190 pounds. These native Malamutes were known as the largest and strongest of the pulling and pack dogs around. These were working dogs of the highest order, but – be that as it may – their sweet and loving temperament was never compromised one bit and they were still viewed as members of the tribe. They loved their humans and were fiercely protective of them. In addition, they would haul the burdensome sleds of their nomadic owners literally thousands of miles in way below zero storms. They were also utilized as “Nanny Dogs”, staying in the igloos with small children to care for. These dogs were all about versatility and were an intrinsic part of the Inuit family unit.
As with just about every other dog breed on the planet, there are giant Alaskan Malamute breeders who are ethical and reputable. It is these breeders who have saved this breed from those not-so-reputable breeders who develop breeding practices based in ignorance or caprice. Or worse, greed.
We have seen many dog breeds shrink to unacceptable size, inferior genetic quality and bad tempered or bad thinking, to boot. In the case of the Alaskan Malamute, we see puny and bad tempered dogs being sold as allegedly the quintessential of the breed standard. The Malamute has always been held to the ideal of the largest of the working sled dogs and what has been exacted on the breed by breeders of ill-repute is nothing short of criminal!
When the Americas were settled, massive horses – draft horses around 1,000 pounds heavier than an average riding horse – were used to pull the wagons and plow the fields for the pioneers. When considering the abundant amount of work required of them in helping the pioneers not only settle the lands, but to survive as well.
Why should it be any different with working dogs? If you have dogs that need to pull the heaviest loads over great distances, would it not be better to have one dog, capable of doing the work of three or four smaller, lesser dogs. It was this goal that guided the Inuits to developing the best breeding practices for their dogs. They did not have the option of puppy mortality; they needed all of the dogs to survive. These dogs needed to be sound of bone and leg, with dense, thick coats, strong feet, reasoning and problem solving ability and the most excellent of temperaments. Without these things, these dogs would never survive their environments. It is unconscionable that breeders are changing the breeding practices to down-size these dogs from what they were always meant to be.
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