Belgian Malinois and History of the Breed


At the end of the last century there were Shepherd dogs of different sizes and colors in the Belgium. The history of modern Belgian Shepherd begins with 1891, when Belgian Shepherd Club was created in Brussels. then it was decided to divided all dogs admitted to the Brussels Veterinary Institute into three groups: long-haired black, short-haired pale yellow with a black mask and dark gray wirehaired. Since then, there were additions, and exclusions of these three types of Belgian Sheepdogs, but finally there were set four types: Groenendael (longhaired black), Tervuren (long haired coat color but black), Malinois (short-haired fawn and fawn) and Laekenois (haired). All four types of Belgian Shepherd visibly differ only in constitution, length of coat and color.

In those days they had not yet been distinguished by uniformity, but long-term selection has allowed to consolidate these types. Once again in the beginning we talked not about four breeds but about four species.

Phillippe de Wylie and Andre Varlet in the article "Belgian Shepherd" give the following description of the origin: " Shorthair female dog Diana was mated with shorthair motley color male dog Samlah, which belonged to Mr. Bernard de Bruxelles. This dog of unknown origin became worthy prototype of the breed. Due to this union famous short-haired dog Tom was born, who can be regarded as an ancestor of the breed, because mentioning of his descendants are found in all pedigree records. Best kennels of Shorthair Belgian Shepherds were located near Malin. Hence the name of the breed - Malinois.

Between the two world wars, the Belgian Shepherd kennels suffered considerable damage. Only a few Groenendael and Malinois were left. It was then when the popularity of German Shepherds started off.