No snoozing with this Schnauzer

IMG_4477Porter, our lovable mini Schnauzer, is a small puppy with a giant personality.

The Schnauzer breed originated in Southern Germany in the 14th or 15th century. Farmers and tradesmen needed a versatile dog that could fit in their carts, guard their goods at markets and keep rodents away. This medium-sized dog is closest to today’s Standard Schnauzer. This dog was probably crossed with other breeds to create the Miniature and the Giant Schnauzers.

His biggest issue was barking at visitors and passersby when at home. BUT hang on, Schnauzers are supposed to bark when “strangers” visit. Remember, he was bred to do just that – guard his property!

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Friends come over to help with the barking

There’s no way we can get him to stop barking when people come over (it’s genetic!), but we can certainly control it. That’s where training comes in. We can reduce his barking from several minutes to a few woofs. And no, it’s not by being dominant. Its by 1) ignoring bad behaviour, 2) teaching him the ‘quiet’ command, 3) rewarding calm/quiet behaviours, and 4) creating a positive association with visitors at home.

Given his high energy and short attention span, we focused on getting 4 basic obedience commands right first: “Porter”, “Sit”, “Come” and, to really test him, the “Stay”. He’s been such a quick learner and I cannot be more proud!! We have now started inviting friends home to practice the previously mentioned 4 force-free methods of training. Look out for updates on our FB page!

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