Alaskan Malamutes: Can Malamutes Live With Other Dogs?

can malamutes live with other dogs
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Alaskan Malamutes are known for their loyalty and outgoing personality. While they get on well with humans, they aren’t so quick to get on with other dogs. If this is the case then, can malamutes live with other dogs? The answer to that isn’t so straight forward as you might think. Your malamute will require a large amount of strict obedience training and socialization to ensure they know how to interact with other dogs and get along with them. This could be a lot harder if you’re trying to train an older malamute. 

Due to their high prey drive and even with early socialization, Alaskan Malamutes aren’t likely to get one with small dogs. They’ll be much happier and more likely to tolerate a dog of a similar size and one that is after the same goal as them. For the best chances of your malamute living with and getting along with another dog, training them and socializing them from puppies will be more beneficial and will bring a higher probability that they will live happily ever after. 

Our article takes you through the step-by-step process of introducing your malamute to another dog, their temperament, which breeds they will get along with, and why getting a dog of the opposite sex is better.

Malamute Temperament

Malamute sitting
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Alaskan Malamutes are friendly, loving, loyal, and intelligent. These traits are often why people fall in love with them. They adore humans and like to please their owners however, their independence and natural instinct to explore can prove to be a challenge for some.

While they are affectionate, without strict training in obedience you’ll find your malamute will become a handful and will believe they rule the roost. Alaskan Malamutes are not for the faint-hearted. They require a lot of exercise, so make sure you take this into consideration when choosing a companion for them. You’ll find they’ll be much more likely to respond positively with a breed that has a similar personality to them such as a husky, or another malamute.

How To Introduce Your Malamute To Other Dogs?

Malamute jumping over tree trunk
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Alaskan Malamutes are very sociable dogs when it comes to other humans, but not so much with other dogs. Their position in the hierarchy of the family is very important to them and their tendency to be dominant can lead to aggression towards other dogs. However, there are many success stories of Malamutes getting along and living with other dogs, so there is still hope. Whether your Malamute can get on and live with another dog is partly down to early socialization and partly down to you being firm with them. 

While training on introducing your malamute to another dog can be time-consuming and requires a lot of patience, it will be worth the effort. Here are some tips to help you get your Malamute comfortable with another dog, once you have assessed that they are suitable.

Walk the dogs near each other on the leash – Whenever you are introducing two dogs to each other you’ll want to walk them near each other on the leash. It’s always recommended that this happens outside, away from the homes of their dog, especially as Alaskan Malamutes are known to be very dominant over their territory. Meeting in a neutral location such as a park or field removes this tension and any territorial aggression. 

Allow the dogs to sniff each other while on the leash – Once your dogs have become aware of each other, it’s time for them to meet face to face. It’s important that you keep both dogs on the leash during this step so that you have full control over the situation. Slowly walk the dogs towards each other so that you can get a sense of their attitudes. Once you’ve allowed them to see each other from a distance, bring them together, let them sniff each other, and then praise them constantly, keeping the atmosphere calm. 

Walk them on the leash together – Once your Malamute has had the chance to meet the other dog properly, and has responded positively, it’s time to walk them together on the leash. Keeping them both on the leash will prevent the situation from becoming out of control as their emotions can sometimes get the better of them. Keep praising both dogs throughout the walk, and don’t try to stop them sniffing each other. 

Two Malamutes in snow
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Allow the dogs to meet with leashes dragging – Once they have responded positively to the above steps, even if it’s taken several meetings, it’s time they met without being restricted by a leash. Keeping the leash attached to their collar but dragging behind them allows you to quickly intervene if the situation turns sour. Avoid small spaces that could make your Malamute or the other dog feel confined. If they make a move to be playful with each other, let them. 

Meeting inside the home – Only when you are confident that your Malamute and the other dog can play with each other without you needing to control the situation, should you move onto this step. For the first meeting, it’s advised to do this in your yard and repeat the first few steps. Only once they are comfortable meeting in the yard, can you start to introduce the second dog into your home. This step can be a long process with small positive meetings to build your Malamute’s confidence with another dog in its home. Remember to praise each dog at each step. 

Once your second dog has finally moved in, you’ll want to make sure that they are kept separate when unsupervised as this is when the territorial issues can arise. When you’re around you can maintain training and authority over their actions making sure they are responding nicely towards each other. You must always remember that your Malamute is highly territorial. 

Which dog breeds do Malamutes get on with?

White Malamute and small brown and white puppy
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Alaskan Malamutes can get along with other dogs as long as they have been socialized from an early age. There are several breeds of dogs that Malamutes will get along with and although getting another Malamute would be the obvious choice, you may want to consider a different breed, one that will balance out your family nicely. Here’s a list of five other breeds that would make a good friend for your Malamute.

Beagles – These even-tempered dogs make perfect companions for your Malamute. They are neither too timid nor too aggressive and just like the Alaskan Malamute they work in a pack. If you train them both together, they’ll be an inseparable pair.

Border Collies – Like the Malamute, Border Collies are working dogs. They are also highly athletic and love having something to do. You’ll find that your malamute and collie will love to participate in agility. Border Collies are also very obedient dogs that know how to behave around other dogs. 

Whippets – These athletic dogs will keep your Malamute entertained and chasing each other will be a norm around your yard. As Whippets rarely bark you’ll be able to keep a relatively quiet home, at least when you’re Malamute isn’t ‘talking’ to you. 

Labrador Retriever – This hunting dog is friendly, loving, and smart, which is why they make great family pets. They get along with everyone, including other dogs. Labrador Retriever’s love to play fetch and chase games just like your malamute does. 

Bernese Mountain Dogs – Another great breed for your malamute is the Bernese Mountain Dog. Their calm, delicate nature makes them perfect family pets, and they get on with everyone – strangers and other animals included. These dogs are capable of both draft and droving work similar to that of your Malamute, and they work well in a pack.

Can Two Male Malamutes Get Along?

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Something you may not consider when looking for a companion for your malamute is the sex of your dog. If you have a male malamute already bringing another one into the mix could spell disaster. Male Malamutes like to be the leader of the pack, with two in the mix, there will be high levels of testosterone provoking competition for dominance. With this going on the two can exhibit serious behavioral concerns. If you want to bring two males together, do so as young as possible and be sure to keep strict obedience for both dogs and have them neutered. 

To avoid any issues with your male Malamutes becoming territorial with each other, make sure to provide them each with a space they can call their own and toys they can share. This could mean you provide them with their own bedding but working or exercising happens in the same space. Another problem that could arise with having two males in the same house, is their destructive tendencies may be amplified as they compete for dominance. Resulting in furniture being ruined or other belongings being torn up.

Can Two Female Malamutes Get Along?

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Just like two male Malamutes, two female malamutes do not tend to get along with each other. For similar reasons as two males, two females will also compete for dominance and territory. If you do want to bring two females into the home make sure you do so as young as possible and that you spay both of them. As you would with two males, make sure you provide each female Malamute with a space they can call their own and have a joint space where they can work or exercise together. 

Two dogs of the opposite sex tend to get along better, with fewer behavioral concerns and dominance issues. If you are worried about the possibility of unexpected puppies though from having a male and female together, make sure to spay the female and neuter the male. You’ll find that a male and female Malamute will compliment each other nicely and you’ll have a much happier home when they are both getting on with each other.