Any Miniature Shnauzer owners...pros/cons?

(20 Posts)
muffinchops Thu 27-Mar-14 11:33:51

I posted a little while ago trying to settle on a breed for our first family dog which we aim to get next year. I had got down to lab, whippet and cockapoo and then, lo and behold the miniature schnauzer comes into my radar to complicate matters! Sigh....

Can any mini schnauzer owners give me some input on the good, the bad and the ugly? We have 3 kids ( will be 11, 8 and 5 by the time we get a dog). I am a sahm and we are an active, sociable family ( lots of visitors etc). How bad is the barking I keep reading about? Would you recommend a mini schnauzer over the others? Can anyone recommend any good breeders as I know how utterly critical that is.

DH says 'just get a goddamn dog; it doesn't matter as we will all love it and adore it whatever it is' ( he is tiring of my agonising and obsession), but it has to be right for us and we have to be right for it!

diplodocus Thu 27-Mar-14 11:37:48

My friend has a nice one but the noise is, um, unusual. It's more like a high pitched screaming that has my dog running from the room with a "but I didn't do anything" look on her face - it sounds like she's being murdered.

calmtulip Thu 27-Mar-14 11:57:04

It depends on the dog. They vary a lot and unfortunately you don't know how barky they will be until they're about 6 months old. Ours is Incredibly barky and highly strung. She's very hard work and I think would be a lot happier with an older couple and a quieter house. From my personal experience I definitely wouldn't recommend one for a family, sorry.

Floralnomad Thu 27-Mar-14 12:24:18

I agree with your husband ,no particular breed will be perfect as they are all individuals so as long as you go for something in the rough size you want that's all that matters . When we were looking at getting a dog my DH wanted a Westie ,and I had breeders lined up to look at pups ,however we went to Battersea and bought home a black Patterdale x pup and he has turned out to be the perfect dog for our family . On paper I wouldn't have touched a Patterdale with a barge pole . That said lots of families around here have mini schnauzers and they all seem happy with them .

VivaLeBeaver Thu 27-Mar-14 12:32:24

A friend of mine breeds them. She has about six of her own. They're lovely. When I go round her house they do go a bit crazy and noisy when I first go in but soon settle. My friend says they only make a noise if someone comes to the house, the rest of the time they're snoozing.

The one I know is lovely. They do bark, though.

basildonbond Thu 27-Mar-14 19:49:13

one of the dogwalkers who's usually out at the same time as me has three of them - vicious little sods who go for my pup every time they see him (and every other pup on the common) so I'm afraid my view of them is rather tarnished

Of the dogs on your list, I'd go for a lab if you want a great family dog (or a Toller, especially if you want a smaller breed - perfect family dogs smile )

EvenBetter Sat 29-Mar-14 14:08:14

I'm not an owner of one, so do feel free to completely ignore this!
But every single one of one dogs I have ever encountered has been a snarling, rearing up, lunging, barking vicious fucker. I would be really shocked if I saw one that was just acting like a normal, pleasant dog and would definitely have noticed and remembered.
It's only been out on walks, so they may well be lovely indoors still ugly though but really, what a pain in the hole having 12-15 years of torturous walks.
(I'm really sorry if I've offended any mini schn owners, that's just the only experience I've had of them. Possibly about 40 of them in total over the years, all being dicks)

deepest Sat 29-Mar-14 15:13:57

We have a mini schnauz...first ever family dog -- she is wonderful, really playful and a great character....really fun, well behaved off lead and submissive and sociable with other dogs. Barking is a pita -they are originally guard dogs - so for us its when someone comes to the house or passes the garden....that she barks....looking at getting a citronella collar....yes she snoozes all day but is energetic on walks....best thing we have ever done - cant wait to get another one.

Snugglepiggy Sat 29-Mar-14 17:45:26

Have known and looked after 2 -as clients dogs - and one was a yappy and had terrible recall and quite frankly I was glad when they moved away and I no longer walked him.The other was a delightful ,well behaved and quiet little boy ,and although a mini schnauzer would never be my choice of dogs he was a lovely little chap.But he had been to classes,well trained and loved but not spoilt.Unlike dog no 1.

howtodecide Sun 30-Mar-14 19:30:23

we got our mini in January when she was 6 months old. She is fantastic..... really keen to learn new things. Likes playing, likes a cuddle but is not at all in your face. She is great with the kids (ages 4 and 7). Ocassionally she has got a little over excited with them so I will put her in her crate but that is partly about the children learning to read signs too. She loves a walk and a run and has good recall. She will bark when someone knocks on the door or if she hears a strange noise in the garden but she soon quietens down and is very friendly when we've had workmen in or the postman has delivered a parcel. As long as she knows I am comfortable she is fine. She is playful with other dogs and not at all snarly. I wouldn't change her for the world! For us it was a choice between a border terrier and a schnauzer and I don't regret for a second our decision. You do need to find a good breeder though - there are a lot of bad ones out there.

Booboostoo Sun 30-Mar-14 19:52:09

This is a generalisation but as a breed they tend to be highly strung, streaky and may suffer from separation anxiety.

Cosmothedog Sun 30-Mar-14 20:00:55

We have one. He is the best dog and we all love him to bits.

We got him as a pup and we haven't had a bit of bother with him.

He is incredibly laid back; non shedding, non scrounging, really sweet with other dogs - just perfect.

He barks at sirens, that's all.

billybobbatman Mon 31-Mar-14 11:53:31

I have got one and he is a fantastic little dog.
No aggression in him whatsoever... he loves all other dogs and people, especially children.
We were quite strict with his training in the early days which has really paid off as he is such a sweetie and very chilled out (although can be cheeky at times).
He is not a barker - will bark at the door bell but this is just because he is excited as he thinks everyone that comes round has come to visit him.

angelinterceptor Tue 01-Apr-14 09:21:44

We have one - we bought her last year when she was 12 weeks old. She is now just over one year old.
She is fairly chilled actually. This is our first family dog, and we don't have any problems with her.
I am lucky I can bring her to work with me, so she gets to meet loads of people, but actually most of the day she snoozes beside my desk.

We walk her most days 30-60 mins, and we are just learning to trust her off the lead in the past few weeks which she loves.

Grooming wise, you do need to keep on top of it, as it can easily get matted, specially in the winter months. We have her cut quite short at the moment, as it got so hard to keep her clean over the winter. You probably have to factor in grooming visits every 6-8 weeks, unless you can do it yourself.

We don't have a problem with barking, or general bad behaviour - but we do want to get proper training, as i don't really know how to train her properly for walking on the lead etc.

if you have any questions, just ask

permaquandry Wed 02-Apr-14 20:59:39

Erm, this is a tough one. I researched all the family-friendly breeds over and over and settled on a mini schnauzer. We have the same family situation as you.

I love my dog to pieces but she has been a huge pain. The barking is the worst thing, she talks to everybody, at everybody, pigeons, planes, her tail, it's dreadful.

We are working on that.

She is hilarious, very cute and is not aggressive at all. I've met tens of minis over the last 2 years and some standards and I have NEVER come across a snappy or snarly one. I've also never met one as troublesome as mine, either!

I wouldn't be without her and if I didn't have already have her I would still get a mini based on the ones I've met, however, if they'd been like her I would have probably avoided (though saying that, most people love her, even though she is a pest).

One thing that's important is to find the right breeder and follow all the rules for buying a pup. Also, all dogs are different, mine is a Friday job quite different to other schnauzers.

Good luck!

muffinchops Wed 02-Apr-14 21:18:31

Thanks so much for everyone's honest input. Just reading everyone's views, they do seem to prompt some divisive opinions, more than some breeds it seems. Mmmmmmm.... tricky...confused

We had one when I was young. She was gorgeous - really laid back, friendly and playful. She barked when men came to the house or when the doorbell rang, but not aggressively or for too long if the visitor was staying. She did bark when she was alone at night a bit, but it turned out that we had mice that were tormenting her. We hadn't had a dog before and she was a perfect family dog.

If I ever get a dog, it will be a mini schnauzer, but sadly DH is allergic to everything.

kerstina Fri 11-Apr-14 12:44:17

Hi OP did you get your dog yet?!
We have a mini schnauzer who is very highly strong. They say this breed is the most like children and I can see why! Ours is'' naughty'' and follows us everywhere. She is 8 months now seems to be obsessed with getting hold of things she shouldn't like the insole of my boots or the toilet roll. I chase her round and she will only let go if i get a treat! She is very stubborn.
Extremely yappy she barked and barked when my friends came round. Seem to have cracked it by shutting her in kitchen she whinges for ten mins then let her back in and she shuts up grin
The thing I hate most is if she barks at strangers in the street as I would not like it myself . She only does it sometimes though so I am not quite sure why. Have I put you off yet?!

kerstina Fri 11-Apr-14 12:44:51

Strung!

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