Alaskan Malamutes are GORGEOUS.. One of my very first dogs (over 35 years ago!) was a mal.. his name was Rebel and he was phenomenal! Now while they are gorgeous, they are not without their trouble spots.. they are a thinking breed that is very stubborn and need to know who is boss, and for they record, they always think THEY are! So you have to nip that behavior in the bud if you want to have a well behaved malamute. They also have issues with dogs of the same sex and often times even with dogs of the opposite sex, this is why they don't really make good Iditarod dogs. (Huskies are much friendlier and tolerant of other dogs!) In any event, they also have a very high prey drive and will chase anything that moves. You definitely want to make sure you get your girl some extended training, they MUST listen because they are born runners and if you don't have her impeccably trained, you are in for a world of heartache with this particular breed (and with any other breed really, but because this breed is a born runner and can be aggressive they really need a dominant owner!)
Please, I am begging you, read up on this breed and find someone to teach both you and your boyfriend how to properly train her. They are highly intelligent but VERY stubborn .. they know what you are asking of them yet, they tend to do what they want, when they want and how they want!
Some things you should know about an Alaskan Malamute:
1. Alaskan Malamutes MUST have regular opportunities to vent their energy. Otherwise they will become rambunctious and bored -- which they usually express by howling and destructive chewing. Bored Alaskan Malamutes are famous for chewing through drywall, ripping the stuffing out of sofas, and turning your yard into a moonscape of giant craters.
2. Unless you specifically want a large dog for sledding, carting, weight-pulling, or other outdoor-related activities, preferably in a cold climate, I do not recommend this breed. Alaskan Malamutes were never intended to be simply pets. Trying to suppress their "hardwired" drive to work, without providing alternate outlets for their energy, can be difficult
3. Young Alaskan Malamutes (up to about two years old) can be bulls in a china shop. When they romp and jump, they do so with great vigor, and things can go flying, including people
4. If you have small children, or if you or anyone who lives with you is elderly or infirm, I do not recommend Alaskan Malamute puppies. The temptation to play roughly is too strong in many young Alaskan Malamutes
5. Most Alaskan Malamutes will not tolerate another dog of the same sex, and some won't tolerate the opposite sex either. Most Alaskan Malamutes have strong instincts to chase and seize cats and other fleeing creatures, including deer and livestock. If anything goes wrong in the breeding, socializing, training, handling, or management of this breed, it is capable of seriously injuring or killing other animals
6. To keep your Alaskan Malamute in, and to keep other animals out, fences should be high, with wire sunk into the ground along the fence line to thwart digging. Gates should have the highest quality locks. Many Alaskan Malamutes are clever escape artists who will go over, under, or through fences in search of adventure
7. Alaskan Malamutes are not Golden Retrievers. They have an independent mind of their own and are not pushovers to raise and train. They can be manipulative, and many are willful, obstinate, and dominant (they want to be the boss) and will make you prove that you can make them do things. You must show them, through absolute consistency, that you mean what you say.
8. To teach your Malamute to listen to you, "Respect Training" is mandatory
9. Alaskan Malamutes shed a LOT. You'll find hair and fur all over your clothing, upholstery, carpeting, under your furniture, on your countertops -- even in your food. Frequent vacuuming will become a way of life. Make sure you're REALLY up for this.
10. Unless you live way out in the boondocks and have no neighbors, Alaskan Malamutes should never be left outside in your yard, unsupervised. Their deep voice carries a LONG way and the mournful howling will have your neighbors calling the cops to report the nuisance -- or quietly letting your Alaskan Malamute out of his yard so he'll wander away.
11. Frankly, most Alaskan Malamutes are "too much dog" for the average household. This is a serious working dog with tremendous strength. Very few people really have the knowledge, facilities, or skills necessary to manage this breed, or to provide the types of activities that keep him satisfied.
12. There are energetic Malamutes, and placid Malamutes.
Hard-headed Malamutes, and sweet-natured Malamutes.
Serious Malamutes, and good-natured goofballs.
Introverted Malamutes, and Malamutes who love every
13. If you acquire an Alaskan Malamute puppy, you can't know for sure what he or she will grow up to be like. Because a good number