You are now the proud owner of a very special Miniature Schnauzer puppy. Just like a new baby, there is work to be done so your lifestyle isn't totally upset. You must remember this is just a baby, who is going to be full-grown in just a few months, so you only have weeks to establish your ground rules. If you don't work daily with your new puppy, you will have an ill-mannered spoiled brat by the time he/she is six months old. You are the adult - puppy is the child - You are the boss!
There are as many ways to housebreak a puppy, as there are books on the subject. However, in my opinion, your success depends solely on your ability to predict the call of nature. and to be consistent. Watch your pup. He will tell you when it's time. After playtime, when he awakens, and after mealtime, take him outside. The more times he eliminates outside, the fewer accidents you will have in the house and the quicker he/she will be housebroken.
While you are at home take your pup out every hour on the hour. Don't talk to it until it has gone to the bathroom. Then love it, play with it, pet it, and tell it how good it is. Also take puppy out the minute it wakes up day or night (if you are at home and it's not 3 in the morning!), after every meal, as soon as you get up in the morning, and just before you go to bed at night. If pup doesn't go, take him back in the house, put it back in the playpen, and resume your normal activities. Wait about 15 min and then pick the pup up and take it back outside. Again, no talking until puppy does what it's supposed to do. Remember to pick puppy up when you are going outside. The call of nature comes very quickly and there is nothing sadder than the look on a pups face as it looks in your face as it has to squat.
Watch your puppy! Most accidents in the house are people accidents, not puppy accidents. When a puppy goes to the door, whimpers to go out, and you say "In a minute." and take him out 5 minutes later, you will have to clean your accident up off the floor. If your puppy does have an "accident" pick up your accident and tell yourself the in a minute means NOW!
To be a good canine citizen and an ideal pet, your puppy needs to meet new people, dogs, and other animals and things. This gives him self-confidence. Puppy kindergarten is wonderful. I recommend socializing him in earnest after his last puppy shots and Rabies shot at about 16 weeks old. New experiences are stimulating to your new puppy and can be quite educational for you. It's a great way to get to know your pup and of course lets every one see what a bright happy pup you have!
Socializing also means new sights and sounds. Try and introduce something new every day: Go to a new area for your walks, Sit out front and watch cars and trucks go by, Get in the car and go bye bye, even if you only ride around the block, it lets pup know that going in a car does not always mean getting a shot or going to the beauty parlor. Go to the supermarket and park close to the door (do not, I repeat! DO NOT go grocery shopping.) Here the pup can see and hear cars, trucks, shopping carts, wheelchairs (you may even want to go up to a person in a wheelchair and ask permission to introduce your pup to it.)
Day and Night Training is Playpen and Crate Training
DAYTIME - a playpen is a must. Don't lock your puppy up in a kitchen, bathroom or utility room. (This only gives them permission to have an accident on the floor) Keep him /her in the room you're most often in so he can watch what you are doing and not get into trouble behind your back. When you let your puppy out of the playpen this is his/her time to be with you and your family. This is the time to play and interact and to learn the boundaries of your home. This is not the time for him to go exploring on his own. Paper, books, Kleenex, toilet paper and all reading material can become confetti in less than five minutes.
NIGHTTIME - an enclosed carrier, not a wire cage is used to sleep in at night. A puppy can get its teeth caught in wire, can chew up a wooden cage (possibly resulting in surgery) or get its paw caught in the wire and break a toe or foot.
Cover the bottom of the crate with newspaper, place a small towel or rug on top of paper towards the back, add a toy, and perhaps a cookie to the crate, then place puppy in the crate. If he begins to cry, go over to the cage, clap your hands and firmly say NO! If he continues to cry, place a towel over the front of the crate so he can no longer see you, clap your hands and firmly say NO! If he still insists on crying, then take a heavy object (a hammer, club, baseball bat, combat boot or my personal favorite a cast iron skillet) and slam the top of the cage with it and firmly say NO! This loud noise and vibration will instill the word "NO" into your puppy's memory. Usually this only has to be done a couple of times for the first few days, then when you clap your hands and firmly say NO, he will settle right down. Remember the crate is bedtime, do not give water or food unless you are prepared to get up and take pup out at 3 in the morning.
Use a flyswatter (provided) instead of a rolled newspaper to swat the playpen, floor, or puppy's rear if you need to stop fighting, bad behavior, if he is running towards the street, or if you catch him in the act having an accident in the house. This tool is used with the NO! command, enough command and off command. It is not to be used to tease. Your pup knows exactly what it is and it has been raised with it.
But always give lots of love and praise. Your puppy really wants to please you and make you proud of him/her. A little love goes a long way.
Your Miniature Schnauzer should be brushed and combed out at least every 2 days to keep clean and mat free. This should be done on a high place. You can put a rubber backed bath mat or welcome mat on your washer or dryer or kitchen counter. This is done from day 2 in your home. This is the time to get down to business. It is not playtime. It is a necessity and again you are the boss. Pup needs to know that on a "grooming table" standing is preferred and the less he fusses the faster this will be. This is the time to "go over" your dog. The more familiar your hands become with the dog the faster you will be able to recognize any changes.
I bathe mine every 2 to 3 weeks or sooner if pup has rolled in dead catfish or cow doo-doo! Do not use human shampoo. I like the Natra products, or if you have a favorite, use that. Add your creme rinse to the shampoo when you bathe your puppy. I also add eucalyptus oil or pennyroyal oil and Vet-a-Derm oil to my shampoo mixture. I leave it on the dogs for 20 minutes, rinse it off, then dry the dog with a blow dryer. They come out soft and smell sweet. When you bathe your puppy, make sure to clean his ears, remove the hair from his ear canals and clip his toenails if necessary. Toenails are to be done at least once a month. If you hear ticky ticky ticky on the kitchen floor, they are too long!
Your Miniature Schnauzer arrived groomed! Yes you have a non-shedding dog, however, hair does die. You have a double coated dog, that means hair will fall out. They are NOT a "furry dog" and should be stripped or clippered or rolled (goes with stripping) every 6-8 weeks by a groomer who is knowledgeable with the proper grooming of the Miniature Schnauzer.
They should not come out looking like a Scottie, Westie Cairn or a Cocker Spaniel. If you have any doubts…. take a picture in with you and show the groomer the way you want it to look.
Your pup is now eating dry puppy food. We are using Purina One Puppy and Eukanuba Puppy, which we have sent home with you. For a treat you can moisten with water and add a couple of teaspoons of canned food to make gravy. Feed 2 times daily until puppy lets you know it wants to be fed only 1time a day. By six months, puppy only eats once a day. Do not leave food down longer than 30 minutes. If your dog hasn't finished, just pick up the bowl until the next meal. Never leave food and water down all day for your puppy. You'll never be able to housebreak it and you'll have an overweight picky eater. No one needs to be eating all day long.
At six months you can change over to a premium adult dog food as most of your puppy's growth is now reached. Please read the ingredients on the back of the bag of dog food. You do NOT WANT, CORN, WHEAT OR SOY in the first 3 ingredients of your dog food. Many terriers have a tendency to get allergies and this is one of the allergy areas that you can help avoid. There are many good premium brands of dog food available at your vet, the local feed store or one of the Super Pet Centers. While you think you are paying more for the food, in fact, the dog eats less of this good food and one vet bill for an allergy shot will be more than the additional cost of the food for a year. You can also check your ingredients on your Cookies, again the farther away you stay from CORN, WHEAT and SOY the happier your dog will be.
Puppies can eat all they want at their mealtimes. Adult dogs only eat up to 3/4th cup of a high quality food per day. Do not feed a soft food or only canned food. If you do, you will have a dog with bad teeth, bad gums, and bad breath.
Please, no water after 6 PM. You will discover the seventh wonder of the world; give them an ounce and they'll give you a quart. This means NO food or water after you have fed your puppy in the evening. (Not in the carrier either!)
Love Love Love
Can't say it enough. Give lots of love and praise. Your puppy really wants to please you and make you proud of him/her. A little love goes a long way.