The Alaskan Malamute is a large breed of domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris) originally bred for use as an Alaskan sled dog and is often mistaken for a Siberian Husky.
The American kennel Club (AKC) breed standard calls for a natural range of size, with a desired freighting weight of 75 to 85 pounds (34–39 kg) and a height of 23 to 26 inches (58–64 cm).Some Malamutes have been known to reach 32 inches (810 mm), and to weigh more than 160 lb (73 kg). Heavier individuals (90lbs) and dogs smaller than 75 pounds are common. There is often a marked size difference between males and females.
The primary criterion for judging the Malamute in a show is its function to pull heavy freight as a sled dog; everything else is secondary. As many an owner has found out, the pulling power of a Malamute is tremendous.The Malamute’s tail is well furred and hangs just over the back like a “plume”.
While a few Malamutes are still in use as sled dogs for personal travel, hauling freight, or helping move heavy objects, some are used for the recreational pursuit of sledding also known as mushing, also skijoring , bikejoring, and canicross. However, most Malamutes today are kept as family pets or show dogs. The Malamute is generally slower in long-distance dogsled racing against smaller and faster breeds and their working usefulness is limited to freighting or traveling over long distances at a far slower rate than that required for racing. They can also help move heavy objects over shorter distances.