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Miniature Schnauzer

Information and Pictures

Front view - A Miniature Schnauzer is sitting in dirt with a little bit of grass and weeds around it looking forward.

Max the Miniature Schnauzer

Other Names

Dwarf Schnauzer

Mini Schnauzer

Zwergschnauzer

Pronunciation

MIN-ee-uh-cher SHNOU-zur

Description

The Miniature Schnauzer is a small, sturdily built dog. The body is square and in proportion. The strong head is rectangular in shape. The width of the head gets slightly smaller from the ears to the eyes. The muzzle is strong and ends rather bluntly. The nose is black. The bite is scissors. The deep-set, small eyes are dark brown in color. Ears set high on the head are often cropped to a point. When the ears are left natural they are small and V-shaped, folding close to the head. The front legs are straight. The docked tail is set high and carried erect. The tail is cropped just long enough so that it can be seen over the backline of the dog. Note: it is illegal to crop or dock a dog’s ears or tail in most parts of Europe. The Mini Schnauzer has a double coat. The outer coat is wiry and the undercoat is soft. The coat is clipped so it has a bushy beard, mustache and eyebrows. Coat colors include black, white, salt and pepper, and black and silver.

Temperament

The Miniature Schnauzer is an intelligent, loving, happy dog. It is energetic, playful, gets along well with children and likes to be with its people. Affectionate, keen, devoted and docile. With proper leadership it can get along with other dogs. Socialize this breed well. It makes a good companion and family pet. The Mini Schnauzer will not listen if it senses it is stronger minded than its owner. Owners need to be calm, but firm, possessing a natural air of authority. These dogs do not have a yappy bark, but rather they make sounds like a low, carried-out howl of a voice. This breed makes a good watchdog and vermin hunter. An easy dog to travel with. Some can be reserved with strangers if the humans do not provide stability in their lives, but most love everyone. Do not allow this little dog to develop Small Dog Syndrome, human induced behaviors where the dog runs the home. This can cause a varying degree of behavior problems, including, but not limited to separation anxiety, being willful, nervous, barky, guarding, bold, sometimes temperamental, and not hesitating to attack much bigger dogs. A well-balanced dog that gets enough mental and physical exercise will have a totally different personality. These are not Miniature Schnauzer traits, but rather behaviors brought on by the way the dog is treated by the people around them. It is all up to the humans. As soon as the humans start being true pack leaders, the dog’s behavior will change for the better.

Height, Weight

Height: 12 - 14 inches (30 - 36 cm)
Weight: 10 - 15 pounds (5 - 7 kg)

Health Problems

Prone to liver disease, kidney stones, diabetes, skin disorders, von Willebrand's disease and cysts. Also hereditary eye problems. Gains weight easily, do not over feed.

Living Conditions

The Miniature Schnauzer is a good dog for apartment life and will be calm indoors so long as it gets enough exercise.

Exercise

These energetic little dogs need daily, long, brisk, walks or jogs, and love play sessions off the leash. While out on the walk the dog must be made to heel beside or behind the person holding the lead, as in a dog's mind the leader leads the way, and that leader needs to be the human. Dogs that do not get to go on daily walks are more likely to display behavior problems. Teach them to enter and exit door and gateways after the humans.

Life Expectancy

About 15 years. It shows no signs of age until quite late in life.

Litter Size

About 3 to 6 puppies

Grooming

The wiry coat is not hard to groom, although it does need attention. Comb and brush daily with a short wire brush to prevent matting. If any mats appear they should be cut out. They should be clipped all over to an even length twice a year, in spring and fall. Trim around the eyes and ears with blunt-nosed scissors and clean the whiskers after meals. On pet dogs the coat is usually clipped short on the upper body and left somewhat longer on the under-parts, legs and head. Show dogs need to be hand stripped and trimmed instead of clipping. This breed sheds little to no hair and is a good dog for allergy sufferers.

Origin

The Miniature Schnauzer is a German breed. During the years around the turn of the century, both smooth German Pinscher and coarse-haired Schnauzer pups appeared in the same litters. The German Pinscher Schnauzer Club initiated a policy requiring proof of three generations of pure coarse-haired Schnauzer coats for registration. This quickly helped set type and made them a distinct breed from the German Pinscher. These Schnauzers were given the name Standard Schnauzer. Miniature Schnauzers were developed by crossing small Standard Schnauzers with the Affenpinscher and possibly the Poodle. The Schnauzer name derived from the German word "Schnauze," which means "muzzle." It was used as a ratter and still retains the ability, but is mostly a companion dog today. Some of the Schnauzer's talents include: hunting, tracking, ratter, watchdog, competitive obedience and performing tricks.

Group

Terrier, AKC Terrier

Recognition

ACA = American Canine Association Inc.

ACR = American Canine Registry

AKC = American Kennel Club

ANKC = Australian National Kennel Club

APRI = American Pet Registry, Inc.

CKC = Canadian Kennel Club

CKC = Continental Kennel Club

DRA = Dog Registry of America, Inc.

FCI = Fédération Cynologique Internationale

KCGB = Kennel Club of Great Britain

NAPR = North American Purebred Registry, Inc.

NKC = National Kennel Club

NZKC = New Zealand Kennel Club

UKC = United Kennel Club

A grey with white Miniature Schnauzer is sitting on a hay bale with another bale behind it. It is wearing pink sunglasses, a shirt and a Boston Bruins bandana. There are apples and a pumpkin in the background.

Bella the Miniature Schnauzer at 4 years old—"Bella is a great fan of the Pittsburg Steelers football team. Bella and my husband watch each game with their Steelers jersey on. She is mischievous and adorable. Everybody thinks she's a boy dog because of her scruffy looks. There is nothing fancy about her, put a puddle in the backyard and she will be playing in it. She loves all the attention she can get and runs the house with those adorable faces she makes when she wants something."

A black with gray Miniature Schnauzer is sitting on a tan couch with its head slightly tilted to the right.

Dobby the Miniature Schnauzer at 7 years old sitting on the sofa

A black with white Miniature Schnauzer and a white Schnauzer are sitting side by side in a house in front of a fireplace.

Buba and Boomer the Mini Schnauzers

A black and tan with white Miniature Schnauzer is sitting in front of a white window next to a red poinsettia plant in a tan wicker basket.

This is Buba (pronounced "Bubba"), a six-month-old Miniature Schnauzer from Oklahoma.

A brown Miniature Schnauzer is laying on its left side on a white human's bed with its eyes open.

Karter the liver Miniature Schnauzer at one year old

A brown Miniature Schnauzer dog is sitting on a human's bed and it has a white cone around its neck and a yellow bandage on its front paw. It is looking down.

"Karter the liver Miniature Schnauzer at one year old—in this pic Karter, who is extremely sneaky and always getting into something, ate a bowl of potpourri while I wasn't looking. He had to be put on an IV because he wasn't eating or drinking because of his bad tummy ache from the potpourri. He's now back to normal running around the house and barking at anything that moves."

A black, gray and tan Miniature Schnauzer is sitting on top of a wooden table outside at a wooded park. Its mouth is slightly open and it is looking forward.

Pepper the Miniature Schnauzer at 2 years old

A black, gray and tan Miniature Schnauzer is sitting on top of a wooden table outside at a wooded park looking to the left with its tongue slightly out.

Pepper the Miniature Schnauzer at 2 years old

A black, gray and tan Miniature Schnauzer is sitting on top of a wooden table outside at a wooded park looking to the right with its tongue slightly out.

Pepper the Miniature Schnauzer at 2 years old

View from the top looking down - A black Miniature Schnauzer puppy is sitting in grass with fallen leaves all around it looking up. It is wearing a colorful sweater.

Buttons the Miniature Schnauzer at 5 months old— "Buttons is a very small 5-month-old Miniature Schnauzer puppy. She is housetrained, crate trained, and knows verbal commands so she will not attempt to run away. She is walked twice a day with a soft harness and leash and remains calm indoors as do all Schnauzers when given proper exercise. She loves people and is constantly being socialized. Also, her ears are naturally lopsided. This breed is great for people who are active but also wants a small inside dog."

A shaved black Miniature Schnauzer puppy is sitting on a wooden rocking porch chair wearing a hot pink shirt and it is looking behind itself.

Buttons the Miniature Schnauzer puppy at 5 months old wearing a hot pink shirt