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Malamute vs. Husky: Differences Explained

Most times, Huskies sport a stripe on their foreheads, while bulkier malamutes come with curlier tails.

Malamute vs Husky

It is sometimes a difficult task to compare the Siberian Husky vs. Alaskan Malamute against a snowy landscape.

However, this can be done. In this guide, we will be looking into Malamute vs. Husky, and the differences between the two wolf-like breeds of dogs will be explained.

Malamutes are actually bigger and sport curlier tails, whereas Huskies come with their trademark striped forehead and pointy, upright ears.

They are both working breeds and are amazingly energetic, although Huskies possess a bit more stamina.

Normally, they have the tendency to live longer than malamutes, but in general, malamutes are a bit more focused on their people.

That being said, both Arctic breeds get into naughty antics and share some ancestry, so it is quite a challenge to tell them apart.

Now, let’s get into the differences between malamute and husky:

What Is An Alaskan Malamute?

The Alaskan Malamute is a devoted, fun-filled, and adorable dog breed that makes great sled dogs.

What Is A Siberian Husky?

Also, the Siberian Husky is a member of the working group, just like the Alaskan Malamute. 

These sled dogs are a loyal, friendly, and naughty breed.

Are Alaskan Malamutes and Siberian Huskies The Same?

Well, the short answer to the above question is no; Alaskan Malamutes and Siberian Huskies are not the same.

Malamute vs Husky

Alaskan Malamutes and Siberian Huskies are different breeds that have been bred over the past century or so.

Even though both breeds are members of the working group and can thrive as sled dogs, Alaskan Malamutes and Siberian Huskies are not the same.

Malamute vs. Husky Differences


  • Both come with a double coat.
  • They are both very friendly with people.
  • They both require a strong owner who they see and respect as the pack leader.
  • They both shed fur twice per year (fall and spring).
  • The two breeds are both high-energy dogs that require daily exercise.
  • They both have high prey drives and can’t be kept with other types of pets.


  • Malamutes have a short life expectancy and are very likely to have more health issues.
  • Huskies are well-known for being loyal to their pack, and on the other hand, malamutes are known to be loyal to their owner.
  • Compared to the Malamute dog breed, the Siberian Husky is extremely smart and cunning.
  • The husky breed is known to live longer and have fewer health problems.
  • The malamute loves and enjoys spending time with humans, while the Husky is much more independent and detached.
  • Malamutes are bigger and sturdier dogs; on the other hand, Huskies are lighter yet faster dogs.
  • Huskies prefer to live with other dogs, while malamutes prefer living with humans.

Malamute vs. Husky: Eye Color

Their eye color is one of the easiest ways to tell Huskies and Malamutes apart.

Malamute vs Husky

Just about always, purebred malamutes come with brown eyes, given that they do not carry the gene for blue eyes.

Whereas, Huskies come with blue eyes, or heterochromia, which means two different colored eyes.

Malamute vs Husky: Relation to the Wolf

You can say that the malamute gets its good looks from the wolf, which is true.

This dog breed was bred almost 3,000 years ago, and its size is much closer to that of a wolf.

The Inuits that bred them would leave their dogs tied to a tree in the forest in the hopes that a wolf would mate with them to boost their strength. Note that this is according to legend.

On the other hand, the Huskies do not have close to the same genetics as the wolf.

Rather, this dog breed is much closer to the Spitz dog family, which also includes other dogs such as Akitas and Pomeranians.

Malamute vs Husky: Taking Care of Grooming

In the case of these dog breeds, grooming is definitely crucial.

The Siberian Husky breed needs quite less work to maintain its coat. 

This breed only requires a brushing per week and a bath a few times each year.

Whereas, malamutes are extremely high maintenance and also require daily brushing and a bath every 6 to 8 weeks, as this helps keep shedding and mats to a minimum.

Malamute vs Husky: Exercise Needs

I think it is quite known that both Huskies and Malamutes need to be outdoors and get moving.

Malamute vs Husky

However, the way that they get the most out of exercise differs so much.

Huskies bloom on speed-based exercise, and that has to do with running around in a large backyard and even in a large living room to get their energy out.

Whereas, the malamute prefers to get a little work in, and they can do that by carrying along whatever might be required for the journey.

They actually like a little extra work in their movement, even if they are just in charge of a small backpack with their water dish.

Are Alaskan Malamutes Bigger Than Siberian Huskies?

The average size of the Alaskan Malamute is around 23 to 25 inches (58cm to 64cm) and will weigh around 75 to 85 pounds (34kg to 39kg).

However, on the other hand, the Siberian Huskies are around 20 to 23.5 inches (51cm to 60cm) tall and weigh between 35 and 60 pounds (16kg and 27kg).

As you can see, the Alaskan Malamute is stout and much sturdier compared to the brisk Siberian Husky.

Compared to their well-built cousin, the Alaskan Malamute, the Siberian Huskies are noticeably smaller and lighter.

Malamute vs Husky: Price

The average price range of the Alaskan Malamute is around $500 to $2,500. 

This is actually based on the breeder, the coat color, and the parents.

Whereas, the Siberian Husky has a similar price range of about $500 to $3,000, and this is based on eye color and coat color.

Malamute vs Husky: Life Expectancy

The average life expectancy of the Malamutes is around 10 to 14 years, whereas that of the Huskies is normally about 12 to 14 years.

The Verdict

As you know, there are plenty of similarities between these two dog breeds. 

Malamute vs Husky

Both dogs were developed to pull sleds and are active.

They both require a lot of exercise throughout the day to help keep them out of trouble.

They also come with dense, double coats of fluff and a stubborn will.

Regardless of these similarities, there are also differences between the Alaskan Malamute vs Siberian Husky.

When you bring a Malamute into a home with children or other dogs, it is very likely to act aggressively.

Furthermore, when you bring a Husky into a home, you might discover that they have a powerful drive to escape.

Malamute owners are required to spend more time grooming, and Husky owners are required to spend more time training out excessive vocalization.

Or else, your Husky will fill your home with constant noise.

You will definitely gain a loyal, active new canine friend, whatever dog breed you decide to bring into your home.

That being said, this concludes this guide, as you now have the best comparison between Malamute vs Husky.

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