Protective, strong, and territorial, the Belgian Malinois makes an excellent protection dog. This breed is alert, loyal, yet very loving. You wouldn’t normally think that these traits would go together, but the Belgian Malinois not only makes a great guard dog but a loving family companion.
If you’ve been interested in learning more about the breed or want to invest in a protection dog for your safety, this is the article for you.
What You Need to Know Before Buying
The Belgian Malinois looks a lot like the German Shepherd, and if you didn’t know what you were looking for, you might mistake the one for the other. These dashing dogs come in a variety of colors, including red, fawn, or grey with a black overtone.
While a puppy is quite small, a full-grown male Belgian Malinois stands between 24-26 inches tall. Full-grown females will grow to 22-24 inches tall. Adult males can weigh anywhere from 50-80 pounds, and females weigh in up to 60 pounds.
Belgian Malinois are working dogs, originally bred to protect livestock on farms and ranches. They love to be active and thrive when given jobs to do. Play is their favorite word, and they enjoy working off their boundless energy.
Belgian Malinois are incredibly intelligent dogs that respond well to training and can learn nearly any task, role, or trick. It’s their high intelligence and high willingness to please, paired with their extreme sense of loyalty and work ethic, that makes these dogs especially favored among the police and military forces.
How Much Will a Belgian Malinois Puppy Cost?
Before you go any further, you need to know how much you’re looking at if seriously considering one of these incredible animals. With these dogs, you aren’t going to be looking at your run of the mill price tag.
If you’re looking to purchase a puppy, there are many factors to consider, including:
- Breeder’s Location
- Breeder’s Reputation
- Litter Size
- Breed Popularity
Depending on your chosen breeder’s location, you’ll need to factor extensive travel into the cost of your puppy.
If the breeder is located several states, or even a country, away, will you fly the dog to you, or will you fly to pick up the dog? This automatically adds hundreds to thousands of dollars onto the price tag for your puppy.
The better a breeder’s reputation, the higher the price they can ask. These dogs are highly sought after, and the best breeders will only have so many dogs per season to sell.
Puppies are often spoken for before they’re weaned when sold by highly reputable breeders. If a breeder has a small litter, there will also be greater demand for the puppies they have available.
The better lineage (and proof of it) that a Belgian Malinois has, expect to pay a premium. If your dog is also trained for personal protection by the time you get it, or even if it has a minimum of training and socialization, you’ll need to factor in a higher cost for your new family member.
What Can You Expect to Pay for a Puppy?
With papers, but no breeding rights or show quality: an average of $1,067.50.
With papers, superior lineage, and breeding rights or show quality: average from $3,400 to $9,000.
Without papers or lineage: much less, but do not do it! Many backyard breeders do not ethically breed, and you can acquire puppies with hip dysplasia among many other health problems.
How Much Does a Belgian Malinois Cost?
In general, an adult Belgian Malinois will cost between $45,000 and $65,000.
It may sound like a lot, but your dog has been trained to do far more than just fetch. A fully trained personal protection dog will respond to given commands immediately, will protect you even if harm comes to themselves, and will know how to neutralize intruders until authorities can arrive on the scene. These dogs are fiercely loyal and will stand by your side and defend you at all costs – it’s their job.
The price tag of your Belgian Malinois will depend largely on both lineage and training. The better the trainer, the higher the cost. While you may be tempted to purchase a Belgian Malinois from a backyard breeder, we highly advise against it.
A lower price will only mean one thing – lower quality of protection dog.
If you’re purchasing this animal to be your or your family’s line of defense against attackers, you want to be sure the dog you buy is healthy and has adequate training. Backyard breeders often lack skills and understanding to train these animals and overbreed them, causing significant health problems later in the dog’s life.
Keep in mind: Protection dogs are far more than pets.
These animals have been trained to face stressful situations, keep hostile
people at bay, alert owners to threats, display threatening aggressiveness, and simultaneously love your family, be gentle around children, and be warm and loyal family dogs.
They will need constant exercise, jobs to perform, and stimulation for their keen intellect. Belgian Malinois are very obedient animals, but they should never be kept locked up in a home all day with nothing to do.
Just like any dog, boredom will drive a Belgian Malinois crazy, and your furniture may suffer as a result.
Annual Expenses for a Belgian Malinois Protection Dog
The amount of money you spend on a dog per year depends on many factors:
- Type of dog food
- Veterinarian fees
- The city you live in
- Insurance you choose
The following prices are averages. Protection dog costs can get pretty high but the expense is ultimately up to you.
According to CostHelper.com, the average amount people spend on kibble is around $200 to $400 a year for one dog. Canned food or raw food can drive that cost up to $1,000 a year.
Annual veterinarian bills for a healthy pup add up to about $235. This includes the initial exam and any vaccinations. Some vaccines need to be given annually, while others, such as the Rabies vaccination can be given every three years.
A dog license for your city depends on where you live but isn’t usually expensive. Most places charge about $15 for the year.
Health insurance for a healthy canine is about $200 a year. Many pet owners invest in this coverage because if there is ever an accident or illness, insurance kicks in and the expenses overall are greatly diminished.
Miscellaneous costs such as dog grooming, toys, treats, etc. vary greatly and depend on the owner’s budget. Most people spend about $100 a year on these items. However, for dogs that shed a lot or those who need to be comfortable during the summer months, grooming costs could be more.
Using these numbers, we see that the low end of the annual cost of owning a Malinois is about $750, while the high end could be as much as $2,000.
We urge those who are interested in owning Belgian Malinois protection dogs to not only think of the cost each year but also for the next 15+ years. Unexpected financial hardships happen all the time to people, but in normal circumstances, it’s important to ensure that your financial life can afford this wonderful breed.
So, if you can afford about $1,000 a year in anticipated expenses, you are more than able to care for one of our pups.
Is a Belgian Malinois Right for You?
The Belgian Malinois is a highly intelligent dog with excellent breeding history and is happiest when it’s at work, which is why they make fantastic protection dogs. They are loyal, obedient, playful, and love a challenge. They need lots of time to run around to work off their boundless energy. These dogs are gentle around children and will defend your family, considering itself as part of your “pack.”
These dogs are all around wonderful animals for personal protection. If you ever considered learning more about protection dogs, we hope this article has pushed you one step further.