Malamutes for Adoption

Information about Alaskan Malamutes, Malamute rescue, adoption and
a list of Malamutes in Australia needing new homes.
Malamutes for Adoption is a service run by Windchill Dog Gear


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In Memory...

8 years ago we lost our friends...

Rob & Tash,
Jorja & Alexis Davey and their Malamutes Neo & Mishk

Sadly lost to us in the Black Saturday fires of
7 February 2009

It may have been 8 years ago that we lost you, but you are still sadly missed,
iving on in our memories...



Caring for the Alaskan Malamute: 

Click on image for enlargement

Due to its Arctic origins, the Malamute is a breed that has evolved to live and work on very little food. For this reason the Malamute metabolism is extremely efficient and most Malamutes are easily overfed and are prone to obesity. The Malamute has evolved to be lean, and the body structure is not designed to carry excess weight - the Malamute should be an athlete.

A Malamute is overweight if you can't feel the ribs distinctly under a very thin layer of flesh - if you can feel a layer of flesh between your fingers and the ribs then your dog is getting too much food.  If you are not sure if your Malamute is overweight, or don't know what to feed or how to get the weight off, have a look at our article on Obesity in the Alaskan Malamute.

The survival instinct of the Alaskan Malamute dictates that any meal could be its last for quite some time, and feeding times are anticipated with much relish - whatever you put in the bowl will never be enough in the eyes of the Malamute. However, Malamute owners must resist the temptation to give in to the hungry look of the Malamute, or they'll end up with a very overweight and unhealthy dog, not to mention a huge food bill.  This is not a breed that you can afford to give all it wants.

The importance of food to the Malamute also dictates that other dogs (and cats) should be kept at a safe distance during feeding time. Another animal wandering over to look in the Malamute's bowl (even if it is empty) can result in the Malamute warning off the offender in whatever way it thinks best, and expensive vet bills could result. 

It should be quite acceptable to the Malamute, however, if any human wishes to handle or remove the food while he or she is eating. This should be reinforced with your puppy as soon as you get it home, but make sure that the Malamute is not teased with food as this could lead to food-related aggression later on.

Unfortunately the Malamute's survival instinct leads it to eat anything that it may consider vaguely nutritious. Any animal products such as fur or leather can fall victim to the Malamute - so watch out for those shoes, fur coats and leather lounge suites! A few of our Malamutes like to have a "dirt" dessert, and quickly rush off to the tastiest dirt patch in our yards to top-up after a meal.

Even worse is the tendency for many Malamutes to indulge in "copraphagia" - the fancy name that means eating their own droppings. This is a natural tendency for the breed as their strong survival instinct dictates that they should eat anything containing even the smallest amount of nutrition since it might be their last meal for a while!  This habit should be restricted as best you can as it results in the recycling of parasites such as intestinal worms, and doesn't make it particularly enjoyable when your poop-eating Malamute comes up to give you a big lick in the face!

Think about what you are giving your dog to eat.  Resist the temptation to feed table scraps if they really would be better off in the rubbish bin.  Foods that are salty or spicy might upset the Malamute's digestive system and should not be fed, onions are toxic to dogs and non-digestible leftovers like corn-cobs can block the stomach or intestines resulting in suffering and, if not treated, death.  Very sugary foods are of course not suitable for a dog - these often have no nutritional value and will only lead to obesity and decayed teeth.

The Malamute has a very basic digestive system that cannot cope well with highly processed foods, such as canned dog foods.  These processed foods often give rise to diarrhoea and gas which is both very uncomfortable for the dog and most unpleasant for your family!  Foods should be fed in their most basic form where possible and must always be fed raw.  Cooking and processing destroys valuable nutrients and cooked bones can splinter in the intestines and cause a perforated bowel.  So do not think you are doing your dog a favour by feeding unsuitable "human treats" or by cooking the food, and do not kill your dog with kindness by overfeeding.

If you want to give your dog a treat, the Malamute is probably going to be just as happy with a bone to chew on or a piece of raw vegetable.  Make sure the whole family is aware of what is and is not suitable to give the dog, and make sure that the dog is not being fed bits and pieces by everyone at different times!

Back to "Understanding the Malamute"

Written by Sandy Koch for Malamutes 4 Adoption - not to be reproduced without acknowledgement


This site was last updated 29/01/17

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