I just got a Belgian Malinois female dog (she is 4 months now) and I've been wondering some things. I also have an 12 years old female German Shepherd, they get along, even though sometimes the Belgian puppy gets on her nerves they are alright.

The thing is that my German Shepherd is very aggresive to strangers and defensive, she's only very friendly with my family, and I never took her outside beacuse she always lived on my yard.

The thing is that I want something different with this Belgian Malinois, and I've been wondering if it's alright to take her outside for walks, but also have her aggresive with strangers when she's on my yard ( I live in a pretty bad neighbourhood and things happens around here, so I also want her for guarding, my German Shepherd showed her respect and people usually avoid my house hahah)

She is very active and very different to my German Shepherd and I have a lot of activities with her on my yard but I don't want her to be sad or something for staying only here.

I just want to know if it's possible to walk her outside (at least once or twice per week), without attacking any stranger unless she's on my yard, or do I need a professional trainer for this?

What I'm trying to say is that I want to walk my Malinois outside and teach her to not attack anyone, but I also want her to protect my yard and jump on anyone who tries to get in and it's not family. She knows everyone who needs to know.

  • 1
    Many dogs will be naturally territorial. We had a rottweiler, well socialised, often go for walks, but heaven help anyone if they tried to jump the fence. They just wouldn't. I'll try and write a proper answer over the next day if no one else does. I believe socialising dogs is important
    – user6796
    Commented Dec 21, 2018 at 11:32

1 Answer 1


This is actually rather simple in the grand scheme of things.

What you have are two working dogs, which inherently have a strong guarding instinct (particularly your shepherd), malinois tend to be more prey drive based but will guard if trained.

Malinois and Shepherds can be very high energy breeds that need exercise once or twice a day, not just once or twice a week. If not they do tend to be very hyperactive, tense, have a lot of excess energy and drive which can be channelled in many ways, including destructiveness.

Walking a dog is incredibly important from an environmental perspective. A dog learns the differences between normal and abnormal behaviour in their surroundings. They learn to deal with loud noises and stresses that can’t be found in the home. This builds the foundation of a protection and guard dog. This will allow a dog to recognise in the future the difference between a threat and something that is not.

I can’t stress this enough: you need to walk those dogs more than once or twice a week that is simply not enough for those breeds.

You need to build dogs to do both. Generally if you keep these dogs in a yard it will either be incredibly territorial or incredibly nervous and the majority of dogs (irrespective of breed) without the due training and groundwork put in place, will more often choose to flee than fight when forced into that scenario.

A dog needs to emotionally mature before learning to guard/protect. This is usually around 12-14 months. I personally would be engaging a trainer to help with mainly scenario based training when the dog is strong enough mentally (if you have chosen a puppy that has a suitable attitude for this work).

Until this point I would be walking the puppy regularly (but careful not to do more than 5 minutes per month of age) until the dog is 10-12 months as this can be physically damaging. I’d be focusing on obedience for control work, and bite development with an appropriate trainer to help lay the groundwork when the dog is emotionally ready to be pushed into scenario training.

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