Derived from the standard schnauzer, whose origins date as far back as the 15th century in Germany, the miniature schnauzer breed is the smallest of the three schnauzer sizes. These little, muscular dogs have a happy temperament and make good guard dogs because of their propensity to bark at strangers, according to the American Kennel Club. To control your dog's barking, train them to stay quiet on command.
Determine the trigger for your dog's barking and remove it or desensitize them to it. Miniature schnauzers typically bark when a stranger is at the door because of their guarding instinct to protect their family members. As part of this territorial barking, a miniature schnauzer may bark when they hear or see another dog or person outside. Close the drapes or blinds to block your dog's view of the outside to help stop this type of barking. You can also desensitize your dog to strangers or other dogs by giving your dog treats and praise while you are both in the presence of strangers and other dogs or while your dog sees them through a window. When your dog views strangers and other dogs as something good, they won't continue to bark at them.
Rewarding Desired Behavior
Miniature schnauzers are intelligent dogs that are easily trained using positive, consistent methods. When your miniature schnauzer begins to bark, ignore the bark completely; acknowledging the barking ends up encouraging it further. Once your dog stops barking, praise your dog and give your dog some favorite treats. This could take anywhere from a few minutes to over an hour for some dogs. If the dog begins barking again, immediately ignore your dog. Your dog will soon realize that barking results in something unpleasant while staying quiet results in a reward. This type of training decreases barking overall, especially compulsive barking.
Train your dog to stop barking on your verbal cue by teaching them the "Quiet" command. Trigger your dog to bark by having a friend or family member ring the doorbell or play a recording of other dogs barking. Once your dog begins to bark a few times in a row, calmly say "Quiet" and wait for a pause in the barking. Immediately click a dog training device and give your dog a treat. You can also give your dog a series of treats to stop your dog's barking after giving your dog the "Quiet" command. This type of training requires repetition for 10 to 15 minutes each day to teach your dog what is expected of them.
Never yell at your miniature schnauzer during training to keep your dog quiet. Not only will this make the dog fearful of you, it will also encourage your dog to continue barking. Training may take several weeks or months, although this breed learns more quickly than others, according to the American Miniature Schnauzer club. These eager-to-please little dogs respond well to positive training but bore easily, so keep the sessions short and vary them with play each day. If you notice that your dog seems to bark for no reason, bring your dog to a veterinarian to check for any health issues that could be the cause of this behavior. Exercise your miniature schnauzer daily to help release pent-up energy and reduce your dog's propensity to bark.
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