|Barked: Sun Jun 8, '08 7:36pm PST |
|I'm not an expert by any stretch of the term, but I have had experience with my own two Schnauzers and will say that they're good enough dogs.
-Are they fine with just a few walks a day?
It depends on the dog, Princess was fine with a few walks, Uschi demands at least three with length less important than the chance to run.
-Or do they prefer running around the yard?
Princess would only play in the yard if we were there, Uschi will wander off and do her own thing for as long as we let her (our yard is fenced in, otherwise she'd wander off).
-How often should they be groomed?
It depends on how you want them groomed/what you mean by grooming. Princess we would clip her fur and she was fine for a year since we let her fur grow long for the winter, the only problem was we needed to brush her at least once a week and keep a look out for mats which we had to cut out. Uschi we're letting go 'natural' so she looks like a scruffy little thing, but we only need to comb her face, chest/stomach and legs once a week. The problem with that is the rest of her has to be stripped which took me about two weeks and since I'm not a professional she looks a little off. Since she's not anything other than a pet we touch up around her neck (where her soft and rough fur meet) and under her tail with the scissors, we also cut her eyebrows rather short (being careful not to get her eyelashes which are very long). We're hoping that we can just get the old fur out come fall and leave it scruffy over winter this year before doing another all out, two week marathon stripping session next spring. For us it's going to trial and error. I will say though that if your dog is going to be mostly an indoor dog/is good about being clipped do shave it, Uschi panics when she hears the clippers so stripping is less stressful for her.
-Do they play well with cats?
We've never had cats, but Princess was trained to chase them (Sounds mean I know, but one of her jobs was to protect our chickens and keep any predators out of the yard)
-Do they often play well with dogs?
Princess was fairly good when she was younger, as she got older she got a bit more 'no nonsense', but had no problem if visitors brought their dogs into our house/if we ended up needing do babysit for another older, relatively well behaved dog (basically if they showed no interest in her she would watch them/do her guard dog routine, but never made any move against them). Mind you, when I say older, I mean more than eight or so years old.
Uschi has yet to meet a dog that she hasn't instantly loved. One of her favorite things to do is visit my aunt's dog and play with her and my aunt's dog is a sixty-eight pound, vaguely pitbull type dog. She's also good with dogs closer to her size such as the beagle down the street and a very silly Chesapeake Bay Retriever puppy we've met a few times.
-How hyper/not hyper are they?
It depends on the dog. Princess was very calm except when she was of the mindset that she was acting as a watchdog (she had different barks for different things though and once we told her to be quiet she would). Uschi is the total opposite, she rarely barks, but she has a whole range of sounds she makes and is full of energy. She is a little prone to being mouthy when we play, but my family knows her well enough to recognize when she's getting too into it and once we tell her to stop with the biting she does. Uschi will try to run you to exhaustion though, she needs a lot of exercise or else she's bouncing off the walls.
-Can they tolerate an overly hyper dog? (i know my friends shnauzers can- but, I'm referring to the breed overall)
Princess, when older would have acted to put a hyper dog in its place, Uschi would probably think it wonderful to meet an equally crazy animal.
-What kind of setting do they fair better in? (i.e. an apartment, a house, a trailer, etc.)
As long as you can give them an outlet for however much energy they have I think anywhere would be fine. I mean Princess was good for trips where she would be in the car all day for several days, only getting out for walks and to be smuggled into whatever hotel we were staying at and Uschi when inside pretty much stays in whatever room the person she wants to be with is in.
-Are they one person dogs? Or do they love people?
Princess liked people very much, Uschi loves everyone. They each picked a favorite, but the only thing that changed was who they would go to first when entering a room and how well they responded to orders. In terms of affection they had no favorites.
-And, lastly, what is their temperment/personality overall?
It varies from dog to dog as with all breeds, but I will say there is some importance in letting them who is boss when it becomes necessary. They will test you and some of the tests may be so subtle that you might miss them. The good thing is that they are so very smart that they only need to be told once and they remember forever. Princess was a totally different creature compared to the way Uschi is and we ended up needing to be a little more strict with her. Princess would pick up tricks easily enough, but she always look to see what she could get away with until we let her know that we were the ones in charge. After that she was so well behaved it was hard to believe she'd ever tired to misbehave.
If you get the chance to pick the puppy yourself or have a person you trust/a really good breeder do it for you you have nothing to worry about, it'll be the same as getting any other puppy. If you've worked with dogs before though there's nothing to worry about at all.
Hopefully I've helped you and not babbled for too long.
Edited by author Sun Jun 8, '08 7:41pm PST
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