Belgian Ringsport is a dog sport that the Belgian people have been practising for over a century. Following the introduction of the Belgian Malinois into urban society as a working police dog, breeders began to take interest in displaying the capabilities of their dogs. One breeder in particular known as Edmond Moecheron is often credited as being the father of Belgian Ringsport. The display of skill and obedience put on by three of his Belgian Shepherds became a growing attraction that spread throughout Belgium, Holland, Germany and France. The exercises his dogs performed became the basis of the sport, and in 1908, the first Belgian Ringsport competition with clearly defined exercises and rules took place.
Today, the exercises still consist of tests of obedience, agility and bite-work, but the sport and competitions themselves are now organized and regulated by several different organizations. The oldest organization, and the first host a national ringsport championship, is the Kennel Club Belge, or KCB. Another organization known as the Koninklijke Maatschappij St-Hubertus, or KMSH, started another Belgian Ringsport competition known as the Grand Prix of Belgium in 1926. Finally, due to disputes regarding interpretation of the rules of the sport, several clubs from the KMSH split off to form their own organization known as the Nationaal Verbond van Belgische Kynologen, or NVBK, in 1963.
While competitions by the KCB and KMSH have been won on several occasions by Belgian Shepherd breeds such as the Groenendael, or Tervuren, NVBK titles have been won exclusively by Belgian Malinois since the start of the organization in the 60s. Of the three Belgian Shepherd breeds, the Belgian Malinois has proven itself to be the most capable. It is for this reason that the Belgian Malinois has become one of the most popular working breeds for use a guard dog, police dog, or personal protection dog. However, it is important to remember that the Belgian Malinois that participate in NVBK Belgian Ringsport competitions are being trained and bred for sport. Regardless of the breed, sporting dogs are unsuitable for work as a true protection dog. Only a Belgian Malinois that has been bred and trained for true protection in real situations will make a good personal protection dog.