Suggestions for behavior??

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Postby Jenn » March 17th, 2006, 11:41 am

Sorry this is about the little guy (mini Schnauz.) but thought someone with some better insight here on dog behavior might could still assist me. :|

A little background, and to first say that I know nothing about the personlities or behavior of the breed. He goes to work with me daily, and spend the majority of his time running the roads with me and learning the ropes. I've always been fourtunate enough to bring my dogs with me to work and even the cat when vet care or etc. was needed. Ben and Maddie both went daily with me as pups in order for me to properly potty train them and socialize them with people and teach them manners. It's always worked great, and they are both well socialized, and have wonderful manners. Now comes the little man...
He does wonderfully at learning new things, and is socialized daily as well with the people at work. He does growl sometimes and has snapped quite a few instances but has gotten so much better with that, and is learned that it is unacceptable. I was very proud of the turn around he'd been having till Tuesday.
He needed his shots again, and to have another fecal done. I had a Dr.'s appointment so the vet said it would be fine to drop him off in his crate, they would do what needed to be done and when I returned he would be ready to go. Things didn't work out that way... When I had returned from the Dr. an hour 1/2 later he was still in his crate and they called me to the back. :o
He was in there growling, snapping, snarling and going to town no one could get him out, and he had already bit twice. He was completely in the back of his crate and just absolutely refused to come out, or be brought out. I had never seen a dog act this way, especially such a young puppy. I asked them to move and told him to "come".. He came right on out and sat on the table and just looked at me, perfectly fine. I then stepped out of the way and told them to try and go ahead. I never petted him or praised him since he was acting a fool just 30 seconds prior? Was that appropriate? They however picked him up and tried as they said to "make friends" and then poke him with the needle and prod his butt, lol. He was fine at first, though did not willingly allow the fecal and bit the lady that was holding him when all was done and overwith. I took him told him "no bite" then put him back in his crate, and apologized again. I could not understand why he was acting the way he was acting. I understand that he was probably scared, though did not reassure him in his behavior. :|
A lady that works for the vet came in to "instruct" me on his behavior. She was at the crate, opened the door, got his toy and while he was growling at her she was saying "oh now don't be that way" blah blah baby voices and annoying the hell out of me. She then told me that his behavior was my fault, that she seen him as unproperly socialized, I needed to get him out of the house more, and that he needed a bigger crate. She claimed that the crate fit him as it should, and that I've allowed that to become his territory and his safe haven.. (Isn't that what a crate should be for?) That I'd better get a bigger crate pronto, and not allow him to go in there unless I'm wanting him in there? I just told her that I would seek help elsewhere and the last time I knew of a dog whisperer ~ that he should have been out of his crate with no problems. I'm still amazed that they simply didn't just snap the top off and get him out??

I don't baby him, carry him around, nor treat him any different that he will be 10 lbs. versus 60.. I hate those little ankle biters that run the household and have done everything so far to raise him correctly. I have no issues with him acting this way previously. Yesterday, he went to the groomer. I warned her of his behavior at the vets office and told her that I wasn't sure how he would act. She introduced herself, and then allowed him to run around with a lhapsa (sp) and a small poodle. When I returned to pick him up she said he was a perfect angel for the most part. He was rough with the dogs, and growled at her once but she got onto him and then he was fine. He was sleeping in a pink foo foo bed when I arrived in the sun by the window, perfectly content.. :|

I'm worried about his previous behavior, how I handled the situation, and if I've created his behavior. The last thing I want is for him to have to be muzzled at the vet's office, or to be muzzled at a groomer.
Sorry so long, anyone have any suggestions on what I need to be doing different or change immediately?
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Postby pLaurent » March 17th, 2006, 11:30 pm

Most of his behavior sounds typical of Schauzers, at least the ones I"ve known. They are bright, energetic and bold little dogs but they can be very dominant, bossy and aggressive and WILL take over if allowed to. It's a shock to anyone used to pushover pit bulls! :D

They need a firm hand and a confident handler/leader who will not show fear. Obedience lessons and lots of exercise are good. My sister in law had a Schnauzer who had bitten everyone in the house and drawn blood more than once. My SIL knew it was her fault for allowing this to go on and giving him the superior position in the household. He felt in the position to discipline people for doing anything he didn't like.

It's amazing to me that no one at the vet could do anything with a 10 lb dog. Why couldn't they just overturn the crate to get him out?

Have they not heard of muzzles? Lots of dogs become very defensive when crated and you would think someone at the vet would have a clue.

The last thing I want is for him to have to be muzzled at the vet's office, or to be muzzled at a groomer


Why not? It makes it quick and easy for everyone. No fighting or anyone being bitten.
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Postby Jenn » March 18th, 2006, 12:17 am

I am determined that he will not be the leader here, but I will! I was shocked as well that the vets hadn't been able to do more with him... Like I said, why not just pop the handles on the side and take the top off of the crate? He's not even barely 3 pounds, he's nothing more than a tiny puppy with a major attitude problem. I appreciate your reply, thanks.

Why not? It makes it quick and easy for everyone. No fighting or anyone being bitten.

I understand that, and it's not a problem if that's the case, but would much rather have him not HAVE to be muzzled.. Know what I mean? I'd rather him know that his behavior will not be acceptable at the vet's office as well as at home. ;)
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Postby pLaurent » March 18th, 2006, 12:27 am

3 lbs? Gee, those vets wouldn't want to deal with any of my feral cats. :o

I'd rather him know that his behavior will not be acceptable at the vet's office as well as at home


Well, here's what I did to get a foster dog used to going to the vet. I would take her in when she didn't need to go, stay a few minutes, have the receptionist or tech toss her a treat or two, then leave on a high note.

The next time, I sat a few minutes in the waiting area, treats, and go!

Try and do that a few times a week, so your dog will think it's a pretty cool place to visit, get over his fear, and not have just bad associations with it. :)
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Postby Hoyden » March 18th, 2006, 12:47 am

pLaurent wrote:Most of his behavior sounds typical of Schauzers, at least the ones I"ve known. They are bright, energetic and bold little dogs but they can be very dominant, bossy and aggressive and WILL take over if allowed to. It's a shock to anyone used to pushover pit bulls! :D

They need a firm hand and a confident handler/leader who will not show fear. Obedience lessons and lots of exercise are good.


I agree with pLaurent - schnauzers really need a firm hand

My husband could give you some pointers - he had a mini schnauzer as a kid and the family got a standard schnauzer when he was in his teens.

I met the standard schnauzer, Watson, and he was smart, dominent and very aggressive. He had bitten several family members and even when after my daughter - who was 10 years old at the time. He had to be muzzled when she was around. There was no doubt that he ruled that house.

He did not respect me or listen to me until I cuffed him with a leather sandle across the muzzle one day. I was pregnant and he lunged at me after I told him to stay because I had just washed the floor and didn't want muddy dog prints on it. I had the sandle in my hand and just reacted when he narrowly missed my stomache.

After that - he listened to me and did not challenge me. I was the only person besides my husband who he would move out of a chair or off the couch for.

My pitbull Petey was afraid of Watson & would hide behind my husband. Watson also did several hundred dollars of damage to the Rottie next door.

I would suggest starting obedience classes as soon as possible.
Moral courage is the most valuable and usually the most absent characteristic in men ~ General George S. Patton, Jr.

She taking all the stars down from her sky to hang them up someplace new, where there's better weather and the sky's a different blue. ~ Autumn Fields
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Postby Jenn » March 18th, 2006, 11:23 am

Thanks, for the replies! I had a clue already about their attitude problems and his will definitely be in check. He's only about 3 months old or so, we'll have time to get things straight. Right now he knows the "come" command and comes running full speed when he hears it, sits when told, and doesn't walk out of doors unless he's invited. We do have a hard time on occasion with the door one when he has to go really bad. ;) I wake him when he's sleeping just to irk him (that used to make him growl and try to bite me, but has stopped) other than the vet's he's doing really well. I'll try the vet trick at lunch every now and then that might help him. As far as obedience classes ~ I'm trying to not to have to drive 2 hours... The inquiries I've received for my ad were others that wanted to tag along, or learn what I'd found out for thier own use. I'm not giving up though. :)
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Postby pLaurent » March 18th, 2006, 11:42 am

I was the only person besides my husband who he would move out of a chair or off the couch for


That's the kind of thing I'm talking about! This dog was the boss of the house, and the underlings (people) should go sit elsewhere.

Not the dog's fault of course, but this should never be allowed.

I am not advocating any kind of harshness with a 12 week old puppy. He just needs to know the rules, that they WILL be enforced and you can never let up. You can do this with no physical punishment or hitting of any kind.
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Postby DemoDick » March 18th, 2006, 1:00 pm

I am not advocating any kind of harshness with a 12 week old puppy. He just needs to know the rules, that they WILL be enforced and you can never let up. You can do this with no physical punishment or hitting of any kind.


I disagree. Natures method of teaching pack order and discipline works very well, especially for young puppies. If a puppy gets nasty there is nothing wrong with grabbing him by the scruff and giving him a firm shake accompanied by a loud verbal "NO!". Then hold him the same way until he submits by calming down. Then walk away from him. This is the same thing his mother would do.

Just make sure you don't overcorrect and make him afraid of you. He needs to know that when the correction is over, it's over. No grudges or harsh feelings, but cross the line again and the same thing will happen.

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Postby chance's mom » March 18th, 2006, 1:18 pm

i couldnt agree more with DemoDick on that! the best results i have had with chance was when he was a puppy correcting him as his mother would. besides it doesnt hurt them when you pick them up by the scruff, it is exactly what a mother would do.
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Postby cheekymunkee » March 18th, 2006, 1:54 pm

It does help & did with Munkee. He was a rowdy little snot and has slept with me since day one. One night he decided it wsa play time & woke me up. I was in NO mood ( as I rarely am when I first wake up) so I grabbed him by the scruff of the neck,gave him a shake & grumbled "go to sleep you little shit". He settled right down. I did it a few more times to make him settle down when he got a bit too wound up. Now my daughter accusses me of giving him shaken puppy syndrome. :rolleyes2:
There's a fine line between genius and insanity. I have erased this line.

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Postby Hoyden » March 18th, 2006, 2:37 pm

I just read this entire post to my husband as he's cleaning some engine part.

Mark said that he agrees with Demo about "scruffing" when needed. He also said that the pup needs to know his boundries now and that you need to establish that you are the boss immediately or you will have a tiny holy terror running your house.

He said to never ever let the dog challenge human authority or he will listen to you and your household members, but will treat everyone else as if they are beneath them in the pack. (Hense the problem with Watson deciding who he would get off the couch for.)

Don't be surprised if he challenges your pitbulls and doesn't back down.

He said that schnauzers are also very determined and very very smart and that channeling that energy into something constructive will save you headaches.

Misty (the mini) & Watson (the standard) were extremely territorial as well and it needed to be curbed with a muzzle their entire lives because his mother didn't address it. So address it now while he is young and never let him get away with being territorial or you will have a huge problem later.

He also so said good luck - pitbulls are no challenge compared to a schnauzer.

Okay - I am done taking dictation - but PM me if you want to talk to Mark - he said he would call you if you wanted to talk to him or ask questions.
Moral courage is the most valuable and usually the most absent characteristic in men ~ General George S. Patton, Jr.

She taking all the stars down from her sky to hang them up someplace new, where there's better weather and the sky's a different blue. ~ Autumn Fields
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Postby Jenn » March 18th, 2006, 3:11 pm

Thanks everyone for the assistance, and for letting me know he's well "normal" ... For the most part he's under control at home/work and is getting better about not having any issues at all. Most of the time when he still needs a correction is when company is over, and with my daughter. I ride him for the most part, she says I'm "mean" to him, but I feel it's necessary. I tried the "fish hook" on the lower jaw for the biting and letting him know it's not acceptable that worked. At first when I would let go he'd bite the crap out of me, but after a few weeks he seldom has to be reminded. He's not allowed on the furniture and I am careful about letting him have the "typical" little dog syndrome. I don't agree with it and it honestly it disgusts me.
I was mainly concerned with his reactions at the vet, and how to curb the behavior especially that it happened while I wasn't around? The behavior he exhibited was out of control, I've never seen a little dog act so vicious. Guess I wasn't sure if I'd handled it correctly or if there was really anything at all I could do/ or should have done differently. In hindsight I would have halted their baby talk and caudling immediately, but I can't change it now.

He also so said good luck - pitbulls are no challenge compared to a schnauzer.

Funny, lol that thought has already crossed my mind more than once!!
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