Growls and snaps at anyone

by Michael

My mini schnauzer is 6 1/2 years old. We own a small business and have had her since 6 wks old. She has never been without human contact. Never been left alone. Comes to work with us every day and has met a lot of customers. We sometimes put her on top of our counter to greet people.

Recently we've noticed a change in her behavior. People are still friendly to her but she now growls and snaps at them. She hasn't bitten anyone yet but that day may come. She especially dislikes children.

What has got in to her? We scold her when this happens but she keeps doing it even to the people she knows and occasionally. She has never bitten me but has snapped at my wife.

Comments for Growls and snaps at anyone

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Underlying Health may influence behaviors
by: Anonymous

I agree with those above who have recommended that you try to get a second opinion. From my experience, when a new behavior arises or personal changes…. Often times our vets have found underlying health conditions. Schnauzers have significant teeth issues, sometimes a toothache can make a dog aggressive and just plain old grumpy and withdrawn. We now get our dogs teeth cleaned and inspected yearly.

schnauzers are the BEST
by: Anonymous

I believe she is a badass and please put no effort into changing her- I bet she is out of this world sweet to you, right? Minis are loyal to ONE family,that is all. So, beyond you and your zone she will flip out every single time. Even if your friends think they are ok and they walk kinda fast...she'll attack.. sad truth. territorial loyal indestructible creatures

A Tip
by: Anonymous

Look her in the eyes and tell her no,just keep out of her face.

Dog trainer
by: Jennifer

It's hard to know what's going on without seeing the dog's reaction in person. Dog's can have the slightest adjustments in body language that unless you're experienced in training dog's you don't notice. The good news is the dog is choosing to growl mostly, so she's sending you a clear message that she feels uncomfortable, and you should never force your dog into a situation that makes them uncomfortable. So either leave the dog at home while at work, or set her up in a corner, where people can't bother her, so she feels secure. Also, I strongly advise you to get a professional dog trainer or animal behavioralist, to evaluate her, because they'll probably be able to pick up on things that as owners, we usually don't. Just make sure you get a trainer that knows animal behavior and not just obedience training. And make sure they only use positive reinforcement techniques. In the meantime you can work with her teaching her obedience commands such as sit/stay, down/stay, come, etc. this will help build her confidence in you as leaders, and also put you and her in the same wavelength, so you'll notice when she gets uncomfortable, and respond.

second opinion
by: Griffin's owner Ruth

I would recommend a second opinion and make sure that the vet does rule out health issues. Then see a dog trainer...your business would really suffer if a customer got bitten! Good luck!

If not physical then behavior issue...
by: Phyllis

I am reading a great book called "The Other End of the Leash" by Patricia McDonnell. If the Vet finds nothing wrong physically then it could be a behavior issue. Perhaps customers are unwittingly communicating with body language something that triggers her instincts to defend the counter or her owners. Maybe she has developed a fear of the height. Maybe a good long walk to get rid of pent up energy will help. You might speak to a dog behaviorist expert; not just a dog trainer.

health issue
by: Griffin's owner Ruth

I agree with the comment above. My friend went through this with her dog. Turned out he had an impacted bowel. Heck, that would make ME snappy too! Hope you get your dog looked at and the issue is resolved.

Growls and snaps at anyone
by: Michael

My vet say's it's just her disposition and not much can be done.

Have her checked
by: Cheryl

Poor puppy! Have you had her checked by a vet? Perhaps she's not feeling well and it's affecting her disposition. My last and current mini's were rescues and not knowing their background couldn't be sure why they weren't fond of children. Six is certainly not old for a mini so age wouldn't seem a factor. I hope you can find an answer!

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