As terriers, Miniature Schnauzers make excellent watchdogs – they do not hesitate to put their sharp voices to good work! But, do all Miniature Schnauzers bark a lot?
Miniature Schnauzers are notorious for territorial barking. Miniature Schnauzers have alert and vocal natures. As a result, they bark when frightened, bored, playful, hungry, and to exert their dominance. Fortunately, you can train a Miniature Schnauzer to bark less through training.
Let’s dig a bit deeper to understand a Miniature Schnauzer’s disposition, why they bark so much, and most importantly, if we can do something about it!
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Miniature Schnauzer Disposition
According to the AKC standard, Miniature Schnauzers are tough, fearless pups without being overly aggressive.
In addition, Miniature Schnauzers have friendly dispositions; they are high in spirit but eager to please, making them excellent training companions!
These spunky little guys are incredibly affectionate, energetic, and enjoy vigorous play; fortunately, they get along well with kids and other pets.
However, note that Miniature Schnauzers are terriers and natural vermin-hunters. So, be extra cautious if you have a pet hamster, gerbil, rat, etc.
In addition, Miniature Schnauzers have alert and vocal natures, making them perfect watchdogs. They delight in chasing and barking at small prey like birds and vermin.
Due to their infamous territorial barking, it’s important to socialize and train these pups at an early age, including “bark control.”
Thankfully, Miniature Schnauzers are quite intelligent, loyal, and quick learners. As a result, many owners have excelled in teaching Miniature Schnauzers to compete in obedience trials and agility competitions.
Do All Miniature Schnauzers Bark A Lot?
Not all Miniature Schnauzers are highly vocal, but their barking natures are a part of their characteristics.
In fact, according to ACK.org, Miniature Schnauzers score a 5/5 rating for barking frequently.
In addition, you need to acknowledge that Miniature Schnauzers are watchdogs, and their barking natures are instinctive.
Miniature Schnauzers are highly alert and bark at anything unfamiliar or signs of potential danger. Mini Schnauzers have high-pitched and shrill barks, sometimes even yaps or howls.
If you live in an apartment and need to cull your Miniature Schnauzer’s excessive barking, it’s best to start training the pup as young as possible.
It is impossible to train any dog to stop barking altogether (there will always be triggers alerting these watchdogs).
Still, you can curb their barking sessions by teaching the Miniature Schnauzer to respond to a command to stop barking.
Six Main Reasons Miniature Schnauzers Bark
Miniature Schnauzers are generally masters at fitting into a versatile lifestyle, from apartments to high-acreage farms and from lap dogs to competing as show dogs.
However, one trait we can’t seem to master is to get Miniature Schnauzers to stop barking.
Well, like all other dogs, barking is deeply ingrained into all dogs, including Miniature Schnauzers – barking is a dog’s way of communicating.
Here are the 6 most prevalent reasons your Miniature Schnauzer barks:
1) Miniature Schnauzers Bark When Territorial
When an unfamiliar (sometimes familiar) person or animal enters your yard, your Miniature Schnauzer will want to protect its territory (your yard).
As a result, this will trigger alertness, a guarding instinct, and, therefore, excessive barking. Your Miniature Schnauzer might even appear aggressive and yappy at the stranger’s heels.
This type of barking will generally continue until you welcome the visitor and prove that the stranger is safe.
2) Miniature Schnauzers Bark When Alarmed
Miniature Schnauzers will bark at any unfamiliar noise or object that startles them, whether at home or somewhere else.
You’ll notice that your Miniature Schnauzer will tuck its tail between its legs while profusely barking at the noise or object that it’s afraid of or finds startling.
3) Miniature Schnauzers Bark To Greet Or Play
Miniature Schnauzers are friendly and affectionate pups that are eager to greet you when you come home. They will enthusiastically bark and wag their tails to welcome you.
The exact playful nature is prevalent in Miniature Schnauzers during playtime.
4) Miniature Schnauzers Bark When Lonely
Miniature Schnauzers love company and loads of attention, so they tend to bark excessively when left alone for long periods.
These pups can even exhibit other symptoms like depression, destructiveness, and pacing up and down.
5) Miniature Schnauzers Bark When Bored
Miniature Schnauzers are active pups that need a lot of socialization, playtime, and certainly exercise to stay happy and healthy. Therefore, your Miniature Schnauzers may bark when feeling bored to get your attention.
Miniature Schnauzers tend to continue barking until you give them the attention they desire.
6) Miniature Schnauzers Bark When They See Prey
Miniature Schnauzers are terriers, and therefore, have an instinctive drive to catch prey.
So, if they see any potential game like birds, rats, bunnies, etc., they will bark profusely (sometimes even though they catch the prey too).
If you have kids that run in the house, your Schnauzer’s hunting instincts may take over and lead to a fun chase (if your kid isn’t scared of the dog that is).
How To Get A Miniature Schnauzer To Bark Less?
Fortunately, Miniature Schnauzers are eager to please and have a high level of trainability.
However, due to the Miniature Schnauzer’s high intelligence, training needs to stay fun and enjoyable as they quickly become bored with repetitive tasks.
Here are five ways to reduce a Miniature Schnauzer’s barking:
- Remove triggers: Observe your Miniature Schnauzer’s barking habits to get an idea of what its most common triggers are. Then, try to remove as many of the stimuli as possible.
For example, a Miniature Schnauzer will bark when they see or hear someone outside. So, consider closing the blinds to block your dog’s view.
2. Desensitize the dog: You can desensitize your Mini Schnauzer towards strangers by giving your dog a treat when it’s in the presence of a visitor.
3. Increase activity and playtime: Miniature Schnauzers bark a lot when bored and frustrated from too little exercise.
So, try to go on daily walks and increase your playtime with your Miniature Schnauzer to release pent-up energy and naturally decrease barking.
4. Reward positive behavior: When your Miniature Schnauzer starts to bark, try to ignore it completely. Then, once the dog stops barking, praise it with a treat.
This type of training will decrease the Miniature Schnauzer’s overall compulsive barking.
5. Verbal command: try to trigger your Miniature Schnauzer’s barking by asking a family member to ring the doorbell.
Calmly say “quiet” once the dog starts to bark. Then, patiently wait for your dog to stop barking, immediately giving it a treat once he does stop.
This type of training generally requires daily repetition to teach your dog to stop barking.
Tip: Never yell at your Miniature Schnauzer while training it. Yelling will only make the dog more fearful and, in turn, increase barking. (This was a mistake I made way too much growing up with Schnauzers!)
One final note: as your Mini Schnauzer ages past 10 years old, their hearing and eyesight will naturally decline, which will incidentally cut down on the stimuli that causes them to want to bark in the first place.
To sum it up, Miniature Schnauzers are friendly, active, and intelligent pups notorious for their constant barking.
Like any other dog, Miniature Schnauzers bark to communicate. They bark when alarmed, territorial, bored, lonely, or playful.
So, although you’ll never be able to get a Miniature Schnauzer to stop barking completely, there are effective ways to decrease their barking through proper training.
We hope this article helps!