The ages-old Alaskan sled dog called Malamute has earned its keep for centuries working the snow-covered lands of the Arctic. Probably domesticated by the tribe of Mahlemuts, after which the breed is named, the Alaskan Malamute is a powerful, well-constructed canine that stands about 23 to 25 inches at the shoulder and weighs 75 to 85 pounds. The coat is thick and double, ranging in color from light gray through intermediate shadings to black, always with white markings.
Because of its long heritage as a working dog, the Malamute requires a considerable amount of exercise. Malamutes still make excellent sled dogs, and many owners and dogs compete each year in sled trials around the world. Owners must protect their dogs from complications caused by excessive heat. An Arctic dog, the Malamute fares best in cooler climates.