Update, the pup crossed the property line to come out and see my two older dogs, Lab and Chessie. He was cute, friendly, comfortably playful and was immediately taken under the wing of my chessie, (Scout has always liked pups). The only down side is that the owner could not get him to come back. I had my two sit by my side while the pups owner called and called while pup continued to bounce around and lick the big dogs in the face. So, there does not appear to be any fearfulness or meanness in him, he gets along well with other dogs, but he has ZERO OB yet. Up close I can tell he is not pure Mal, he has a little more softness in his contours and seems a little shorter bodied with a soft coat. But he is still one of the loveliest dogs I have seen. I have to find a way to offer to help with OB without insinuating criticism. I DO like this pup, and his owners too. Just want to be sure we can keep it that way! Thanks for the replies from you that know the breed.