The Belgian shepherd Malinois dogs have a body that is often described as square, as that is the shape they have in appearance when the legs and topline are viewed from the side. The chest is deep. The topline is level sloping slightly at the withers. The overall size of the head is in proportion to the body. The skull is flat with the width and length being of the same distance. It is less impressive as that one of the German shepherd. The muzzle is somewhat pointed and equal in length to the top of the skull with a moderate stop. The nose is black and so are the tight lips.
The teeth meet in a scissors or level bite. The medium sized, almond-shaped eyes are brown. The erect ears are triangle in shape. The tail is strong at the base with the bone reaching to the hock. The feet are cat-like in shape. Dewclaws may be removed. The weather resistant, double-coat is short and straight. The coat color comes in rich fawn to red to mahogany to black, with black tips on the hairs. The mask and ears are black. Underneath the body, the tail and back end are a lighter fawn. The hair around the neck looks like a collar as it is slightly longer. Originally this was his protection against wolfs while working in the field in the old days.
This hardy, healthy breed has no major health concerns. Some minor concerns that have been seen are skin allergies, eye problems, excessive shyness, excessive aggressiveness and occasionally seen hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia.