The Standard Schnauzer dates back to the middle ages and has since been bred into both Giant and Miniature versions. Originally, they were bred to control vermin and serve as guard dogs; jobs they no longer typically pursue. These working dogs have since become companion dogs over the years, though they have kept some of their original traits, such as strutting around in self-importance. But what are they like around children? Has their heritage and lineage impacted their temperament? Let’s find out!
So, are Schnauzers good with kids? Schnauzers are great with kids; generally being very patient, gentle, and keen to play with them. However, they have been known to chase and herd smaller children. Obedience training and socialization from a young age are advised to prevent such behaviors and lead to a better behaved, more well-rounded dog.
While all three versions of the Schnauzer are loving and deeply devoted to their family, the Giant Schnauzer can possibly cause injuries to small children just due to their size.
While it does not happen often, there is the possibility even if it is entirely unintentional.
The Standard and Miniature Schnauzers don’t really have that issue, but of course, any dog can be problematic around babies.
Thankfully this breed is known for its obedience, intelligence, and friendly nature, making them great dogs for a younger family.
Let us now take a closer look at the most common questions about this breed and keeping them with and around children.
We will even be covering some training best practices and tips to ensure that if you did decide to adopt a Schnauzer, everyone in the family will remain safe.
So be sure to keep on reading!
Are Schnauzer Kid Friendly?
Schnauzers make excellent family companions who are highly intelligent and extremely devoted to their families. This includes the children in the household, with who they love to play and who seem to even understand they need to be gentler with the younger ones.
Not only will your Schnauzer tolerate your children, but they will want to get right in there with them and run and play with them, joining in all the fun and games.
While Schnauzers are relatively kid-friendly it’s still important to teach your children how to act around them, and other dogs.
Teaching Your Children How To Act Around A Schnauzer
Children don’t come with the natural knowledge of how to act around dogs and can end up getting hurt in the process.
While Schnauzers aren’t very big and are not an aggressive breed, it’s still important to teach children the importance of proper behavior around dogs.
Kids can be rowdy and rough when they’re running around and excitedly playing.
Schnauzers like to get right in with the kids, run around with them, and are patient, but it’s important that your children understand they need to be gentle with dogs.
Teach your children that they should not just go up to somebody else’s dog and start interacting with them.
Just because their Schnauzer may be gentle and nice doesn’t mean that all dogs will be that way, even other Schnauzers.
Keep in mind that there’s a good chance that kids won’t remember right away how to interact, and behave, around dogs so you may need to remind them from time to time.
It’s important to have them understand the reasons behind it as well and how it’s for their safety.
Some specific points that you may want to talk with your children about are:
- Don’t run-up to a dog and start interacting with them, even dogs you may know
- Always ensure there is an adult around and get their permission before interacting with the dog
- Leave a dog alone while they are eating, sleeping, or fully focused on a particular toy or treat as they can show aggression with these activities
- Learn how to read a dog and take visual and audio clues from them as to how they are feeling in any particular moment
When raised in a caring home, Schnauzers are full of energy but gentle and won’t be an issue with your children.
Are Schnauzer Dangerous To Kids?
Standard Schnauzers aren’t particularly dangerous to kids, especially when raised in a loving home and have received proper training and socialization.
They have a lot of patience and will be gentle with smaller kids.
The Schnauzer is not an aggressive breed, nor are they known to snap like some other breeds of dogs.
That being said, they are a dog, and all dogs may display acts of aggression or respond defensively if the situation were to arise where they felt threatened, in fear or provoked.
But for the most part, incidents and reports from Schnauzer owners are infrequent and rare.
Giant Schnauzers can inadvertently be dangerous just due to their size and energy levels.
If you have a Giant Schnauzer you should keep an eye on your smaller children as they can easily get knocked down by your dog when they are running around and playing.
Your Giant Schnauzer is not outwardly dangerous to your children as they are calm and loving towards their family, however, being 80 pounds and standing 27 inches, they are on the large size and can knock people over easily.
Miniature Schnauzers are not dangerous to kids and you don’t need to worry about their size, unless you have an infant around them.
Actually, the opposite can be an issue when it comes to Miniature Schnauzers, you will need to let your children know that they are smaller dogs, and therefore more susceptible to getting hurt during play.
Even though Schnauzers are not dangerous to kids, you should never leave younger children alone with any dog.
Not only can large dogs cause issues and injuries to your children, but as already mentioned dogs of any breed and any size can cause injuries, whether intentional or not.
Training Your Schnauzer For Kids
It is important that all dogs receive training and socialization from a young age, no matter their breed. Even though Schnauzers are non-aggressive by nature, they still have behaviors to lean.
Schnauzers are rather intelligent and independent; however, they are easy to train and while they may bark a little more than some breeds, they do want to please you.
This helps immensely when it comes to training as they will generally catch on much quicker.
Even still, it’s important to be patient when training your dog.
Just because Schnauzers are easy to train each dog is different and your Schnauzer might need a little more time to catch on.
Either way, be prepared to put in some time with training, as it doesn’t just happen overnight.
Training should be done at home, using treats and the use of positive reinforcement.
Teaching a dog commands can be a very effective and useful way to get your dog to stop doing something, or to better control a situation.
You may also want to consider taking your Schnauzer to a class, or group training session.
For some dogs, even Schnauzers, you may need to consider an animal behavioral specialist or more specialized trainer.
All dogs do have their own personalities and some dogs may require additional work. Adopting older dogs from a shelter is one such example where this may be required.
Your Schnauzer may need to be taught not to be overly protective of you and your children, especially when you have friends over.
You may also need to let them know that they can’t always run around with the kids when they are playing. There are times to play and times to be settled.
Also, be prepared to receive training yourself. Oftentimes people don’t know how to be proper dog owners and to be the type of owner that their dog needs.
Training with your dog will make life at home much better for the entire family, furry members included.
The following books are excellent places to start if you do decide to get a Schnauzer:
Things to Consider When Owning a Schnauzer and Having Kids
The number one priority when owning a Schnauzer (or any dog breed while having kids) and especially smaller ones, is to never leave them alone together.
Generally, children 12 and older are okay to be alone with dogs, but only if well behaved and can acknowledge a dog’s thoughts and feelings.
This will be especially important if you have a Giant Schnauzer.
Schnauzers come with a lot of energy and so do kids so be prepared for some chaos in the household.
Your Schnauzer will be right in the middle of things if your kids are running around and playing, whether inside or outside.
Again, this will be more of a problem with a Giant Schnauzer than it will be with a Miniature Schnauzer.
The Schnauzer still has some basic instincts from when it was originally bred and can sometimes feel the need to chase your small children and to possibly herd them.
At the same time, they are completely devoted and protective so you can feel safe knowing that you will be notified if any strangers appear.
Even though it generally comes naturally with Schnauzers, if you want your dog and kids to have a stronger bond, have one of their chores be to brush the dog every day.
Even when a dog doesn’t need daily brushing, when done right, it’s not going to hurt them.
The act of brushing a dog almost always deepens the bond between dog and brusher.
Schnauzers are a distinctive-looking breed of Terrier who are affectionate towards their family and generally friendly towards everyone else.
They are dogs who can get bored with repetitive routines and thrive on a varied schedule.
Anyone who has kids can attest that even the best-laid plans don’t always go off without a hitch, so there is plenty of unpredictability in the household, which is great for your Schnauzer.
Schnauzers were initially bred to be guard dogs and to control vermin, these basic instincts still come to play at times with Schnauzers chasing and trying to herd small kids.
Their guarding instincts come through too and they are very protective of the family.
There are three versions of the Schnauzer: Standard, Miniature, and Giant Schnauzers. All three are gentle by nature and make great family companions.
Due to their size, the Giant Schnauzer can cause injury to smaller kids by running into them and knocking them down during playtime.
On the flip side, the Miniature Schnauzer is the one who has the possibility of being injured during playtime.
Kids and Schnauzers can live harmoniously together with no issues at all. Even still, it’s important that your Schnauzer receive training and socialization.
In addition, it’s important that kids know how to behave around dogs, and that you know how to be an effective dog owner.
Most Schnauzers typically do well with cats, especially those that have been socialized with them from a young age. However, it does depend on the personality of your Schnauzer/Cat. While most learn to live with each other in harmony, there is the possibility that they will not get along. Puppy Schnauzers, with their abundance of energy and playful energy, should be monitored around cats at all times.
Schnauzers are typically considered to be easy to train due to their obedient nature and intelligence. However, they are also quite stubborn and can be distracted in busy environments so training strategy, patience, and consistency are going to be required.
Wondering what other dog breeds are good with kids? Check out my guides below:
- Are Shih Tzus Good With Kids?
- Are Basset Hounds Good With Kids?
- Are Akitas Good With Kids?
- Are Chow Chows Good With Kids?
- Are Great Pyrenees Good With Kids?
- Are Greyhounds Good With Kids?
- Are Pitbulls Good With Kids?
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.