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View Full Version : Schnauzer owners - miniature & standard breeds



Bushranger
04-18-2009, 04:54 AM
I've been thinking of a dog for years now. What do Schnauzer masters have to say about this breed? OIC homefront would prefer a female....believe males can be over-'amorous' at times. What issues/problems should I be looking for? Thanks.

SRock
04-18-2009, 05:15 AM
I've never owned a Schnauzer, but nearly everyone I ever knew who owned one had a hand full with the cantankerous little buggers. BTW, they were all miniatures.

Skygod
04-18-2009, 08:39 AM
I used to own a male schnauzer, my friend currently has a female. I found both dogs to be intelligent and alert, both responded well to training and enjoyed the stimulus.

If they get bored they quickly become mischievous, my dog would bury me ex's keys and shoes regularly.

You will need to find a dog groomer who has experience with schnauzers, not all do.

Bluestaco
04-18-2009, 08:48 AM
Everyone in my family except me has miniature schnauzers. (Actually, my dad lost his yesterday,* so that's not true anymore.)

They don't shed, which is good, but you have to take them to a groomer often, which is a pain.
They bark. At ANYTHING. They like to.
Being terriers, they dig.
They LOVE to play and will chase a pack of kids all day long.
They like to be with you, but not on you (they aren't especially cuddly).
They can gain weight easily (throw that tennis ball!)
They are susceptible to urolithiasis (bladder stones), especially the females.
They grow stuff (lumps here and there) that you (and the groomer) have to watch.
*They tend to live long, youthful lives. (Dad's was 14, my brother's is 16, and my sisters' are 9 and 6.)

They're a lot of company and a lot of fun. Not the personality I like (I like a more "clingy," dependent, talkative dog), but I have really enjoyed my family's miniature schnauzers.

waterbear
04-18-2009, 02:09 PM
I currently have a miniature schanuzer, a yorkie, and a longhaired miniature dachshund. My schanuzer is a well behaved young lady BUT:
She is a terrier--this is a separate animal from a dog so if you are looking for a dog you will be disappointed!
Schanuzers are VERY vocal. Not only do they bark at everyone and everything, they make a lot of other sounds ranging from growls to yodels. If you want a quite dog keep looking.
They are extremely intelligent and almost as sneaky as Yorkies!
They LOVE to play so you must have the time to play with them take them on long walks.
They are fiercely protective of their owners and families. This can become aggression if not properly channeled.

They do not shed but do require grooming ($$$) to keep them looking good. Not all groomers can do a proper Schanuzer cut (this from experience!)



All that being said, schanzuzers are loving, loyal, friends. Treat them as such!
Mine is the only one (Human, canine, or feline) in my family who greets me at the top of the stairs when I come home from work every day waiting to give me a kiss and ready to listen about how my day went, no matter how late I get home from work!

King of Kailua
04-18-2009, 02:34 PM
"...tall in the saddle
but they're herdin' cows as small as shnauzers"

Can't get that ad song out me hed :biggrin:

Bushranger
04-18-2009, 11:06 PM
Thanks! So far we have;
1. a handful. cantankerous little buggers
2. extremely intelligent & alert, respond well & enjoy training. quickly bored & mischievous/sneaky. noisy rather than quiet. like digging, LOVE to play lots of stamina, need exercise. like kids. friendly but not clingy.

3. do not shed, but need experienced & regular grooming. susceptible to bladder stones. grow lumps that need to be watched by owner/groomer. live long, youthful lives. a lot of company and a lot of fun.

4. a terrier is a separate animal from a dog so if you are looking for a dog you will be disappointed! Schanuzers are VERY vocal ranging from barking at everyone & everything, and all sounds from growls to yodels. Fiercely protective which can be aggression if not properly channeled. Schnauzers are loving, loyal, friends. Treat them as such!

"Not the personality I like (I like a more "clingy," dependent, talkative dog), but I have really enjoyed my family's miniature schnauzers."
What breeds are these?


can they be trained to be quiet, are some natural quieter? the dog's (not breed's) individual personality.
can they keep themselves entertained without destroying things for any amount of time? i.e. a day trip or day-night-morning away?
any idea if they 'upset' the neighbours when owners not home?
are they good inside the house? I have heard they are very clean breeds.
must they be kept outside only?
How regular do they need grooming (haircuts)
do they cope well as an only pet/only dog? would it be okay with a burmese cat, it's a 'doglike-cat'

I've heard the Schnauzer is a much toned down quieter version of a West Highland terrier and better with kids. I know THEY (westies) are full of beans and right terriers.

Thanks for the feedback. There is a schnauzer picnic early May along with a schnauzer show. Will have to go solo as wife away. Let me know if there is any other points I need to know here, or at those meets I hope to attend.

Skygod
04-19-2009, 08:15 AM
My friends bitch went through a stage when younger of resenting being left alone and became the terror of the toilet roll. She would drag the end up the hallway to the front door then chew her way back to the roll. She seems to have grown out of that unfortunately, it never failed to make me laugh.

My friend took her to a local market where there happened to be a country music singer, the dog sat beside the singer and proceeded to howl along with him. She has good taste in music :)

northpaw
04-19-2009, 09:17 AM
Growing up, the family across the street had a standard Schnauzer, so I can offer a general neighbor's perspective (at least for that particular dog). "Bear" was loud, very energetic, liked to roam, and was somewhat confrontational even when straying from his own turf. It's hard to imagine this dog as a "toned down" version of anything.

On the upside, he never caused any serious grief for the owners as far as I know, and he did seem to be fairly intelligent. That said, we did live out in the sticks where a dog couldn't get into too much trouble easily.

In my opinion, I wouldn't recommend a dog like Bear unless someone had a generous amount of running space, patience, and time to spend with the dog. Someone looking for a calm, "background" pet should look elsewhere.

40_Caliber
04-19-2009, 10:39 AM
Oliver the Schnauzer comes very close to talking to us. Reasonably clear Mom and Dad can be heard regularly. Other "talk" isn't intelligible but he will answer questions. Oliver. What did the bad cat do? grr yowl, ruff whine grr is the response.

Of the three dogs we have had him the longest. He is definitely a loner and doesn't like to be picked up. He will jump in your lap if invited and if he wants attention.

He really hates the groomers. He bites them and has to be restrained. It's such a traumatic experience that we just let him look like a mut most of the time.

.40

Bushranger
04-21-2009, 08:04 AM
just wondered if anyone had anything more to add, particularly questions posed? thanks a bunch

waterbear
04-21-2009, 08:47 AM
can they be trained to be quiet, are some natural quieter? the dog's (not breed's) individual personality.
There are always variations in breeds between individual dogs but Schanuzers are not one of the 'quieter' dogs.

can they keep themselves entertained without destroying things for any amount of time? i.e. a day trip or day-night-morning away?
ROFLMAF! They are terriers! They can certainly keep themselves entertained but remember that these dogs were bred to hunt small prey! I have come home to a houseful of shredded newspapers, chewed up shoes, and other disarray on more than one occasion It was all done in the name of fun, however! However, they travel well. Mine has been going camping since she was a puppy and is a well traveled young lady!

any idea if they 'upset' the neighbours when owners not home?
They bark. Whether this will 'upset' the neighbors depends a lot on your neighbors. Schanuzers are natural watchdogs.

are they good inside the house? I have heard they are very clean breeds.
must they be kept outside only?
Mine lives in the house. Her idea of going outside (other than going for a walk) is to lounge on one of the loungechairs by the pool (screened in pool enclosure). IF it's really hot she prefers to stay inside in the AC. Can anyone say "princess"?:biggrin: She is housebroken (something I cannot say of my Yorkie...but that is a breed thing!) She prefers to sleep in her own bed instead of mine (something I cannot say of my daschund--but that is a breed thing). She loves getting a regular bath and loves getting brushed. However, given the opportunity she will roll in the nastiest smelling stuff she can find -- like a dead decaying animal that we come across on a walk. This, however, is a general canine trait to cover up their smell to confuse prey and not necessarily a schnauzer only trait. She eats poop. To her it's like cavier, expecially if it is from the lltter pan. Once again, this is not a schanuzer trait but a natural instinct that many dogs have and one that is next to impossible to break! Mother dogs do this to clean up after their puppies to keep the nest clean so it is something that is 'hardwired' that dogs do.

How regular do they need grooming (haircuts)
Depends on whether you want to keep the coat short or longer, how good you want them to look (I am a Barber and I have had clients that came in weekly to remain well groomed and others that came in only when their hair was so out of shape that it looked like a fright wig. I imagine that their dogs might be much the same!) I like to keep mine clipped short in a schanuzer cut. Since I don't show her I don't have her stripped (the dead hair pulled out to make the coat more wirey. It is a true art that most groomers cannot do and it's expensive to have done because it is time consuming.) Mine really needs grooming about every 6 weeks to 2 months to keep her looking really good and to keep her nails trimmed. She seems to like it also because she struts around the house and tells everyone she meets about how good she looks after coming home from the groomer!

do they cope well as an only pet/only dog? would it be okay with a burmese cat, it's a 'doglike-cat'
Hard to say, Once again it depends on the individual dog. Remember that dogs are pack animals so they are always going to be happier if there is more than one, especially if the 'human pack' is not around much of the time.
As far as cats go, once again it depends on the individual dog. I adopted a kitten (bobtail) when my Schanuzer was about 3 years old. She decided that she was going to adopt him and become his mama and to this day the two of them share a special bond that he does not have with my other two dogs. He will put up with 'dog injustices' from her that he will not tolerate from the other two.

I've heard the Schnauzer is a much toned down quieter version of a West Highland terrier and better with kids. I know THEY (westies) are full of beans and right terriers.

Thanks for the feedback. There is a schnauzer picnic early May along with a schnauzer show. Will have to go solo as wife away. Let me know if there is any other points I need to know here, or at those meets I hope to attend.
Bottom line is this. They are terriers and have the typical terrier traits. (IMHO, terriers are more catlike in temperament...more independent and less clingy than most other dogs and they have a VERY high energy level.) The training you give them will have a lot of influence on how they grow up (all mine have gone through obedience training. The Schanuzer was the easiest, the Daschund the hardest...but this was expected because of breed traits.)
However, they are great terriers and can be your best friend and a great addition to the family. IMHO, that is the key...they are family members and not 'just the dog'. If you are looking for 'just a dog' then look into a lab or a bassett hound because most schanuzers won't stand for tha!:wink:

Pureslab
04-21-2009, 09:26 AM
The full schnauzer is a very impressive looking dog !

Bushranger
04-21-2009, 10:45 PM
Waterbear...great feedback. Greatly appreciated. I love quiet dogs like the lab/retriever, but I very much enjoy the 'antics and personality' of smaller breeds. A schnauzer could work.

Pureslab. Thanks, however the full (giant?) schnauzer is too big, as are retriever size dogs.

That's why I'm looking closely at the miniature and standard. I wonder is there's much between them. Aside from hearing back here, I'll find out more at that picinic (hope to make it).

Cheers again for all the great posts.

stobes21
04-22-2009, 05:30 PM
Waterbear...great feedback. Greatly appreciated. I love quiet dogs like the lab/retriever, but I very much enjoy the 'antics and personality' of smaller breeds. A schnauzer could work.

Pureslab. Thanks, however the full (giant?) schnauzer is too big, as are retriever size dogs.

That's why I'm looking closely at the miniature and standard. I wonder is there's much between them. Aside from hearing back here, I'll find out more at that picinic (hope to make it).

Cheers again for all the great posts.

Schnauzers have a rather distinct personality that some love and some cannot stand. For sure they are smart, but they are high energy and need a level of training beyond many other breeds (and beyond what many people are willing to do). If you want a smallish, quieter dog with plenty of personality and that are easier to train go with a corgi. They are known for having a big, happy, silly dog personality in a much smaller package.

I would never recommend a person unfamiliar with schnauzers simply get one out of the blue. Get to know one and spend time with it before you decide whether the personality and temperament is right for you.

waterbear
04-23-2009, 12:19 AM
If you want a smallish, quieter dog with plenty of personality and that are easier to train go with a corgi. They are known for having a big, happy, silly dog personality in a much smaller package.

I would never recommend a person unfamiliar with schnauzers simply get one out of the blue. Get to know one and spend time with it before you decide whether the personality and temperament is right for you.

Exactly! Like I said before, schnauzers are terriers and terriers are a different animal than dogs!:wink:

flyfishinzs
04-23-2009, 12:25 AM
I have had a couple, they do tend to get cancer and diabetes more than most dogs, but they are the best companions I have ever had. Got my first when I was 6 years old, have had one ever since.

marv0723
04-23-2009, 12:38 AM
All breeds are have different characteristics. However, they are all dogs. That means, despite breed patterns, you have to educate yourself on the three main canine drives you will have to manipulate to obtain desired behaviors: prey, civil and pack.

One of the first things you need to realize is that you won't learn how to handle dogs by watching videos, TV shows or reading books. It comes from handling dogs. The aforementioned can be helpful if applied correctly.

Regardless of breed, barking is an obedience issue dealt with in pack drive. If you like the dog breed, become educated on how to manipulate this drive. Dogs will bark in any number of drives, usually demonstrating excitement to other pack members. This can be corrected. The question is how much time and effort are you willing to put towards it.

Most problems are owner induced or owner ignored. Be patient, diligent and responsible.

Dogs operate on genetic, inherent instincts. You have a lot to overcome. Just realize this.

I've rambled on longer than I intended. i could do a three week course on this. Good luck with your choice.

p.s. In my opinion, American breeding programs propagate a lot of problems, genetically and behaviorally. American dogs are mainly bred for conformation and not temperment. Realize that getting a dog purer in temperment may present more of a challenge, but they can be a lot steadier.

TimmyBoston
04-23-2009, 12:45 AM
My brother has one. It barks non-stop, but I think that has more to do with his horrible children than with the dog.

I feel any dog that is treated well will be a good dog. Take good care of the little guy!