Miniature Schnauzer Information

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(Zwergschnauzer, Mini Schnauzer) The Miniature Schnauzer is a hardy, robust, terrier-type dog with an alert, lively disposition. They are sturdy and robust, and their build is nearly square in proportion. Their body is well-boned, short, and deep, with the brisket extending to the level of the elbows. They have a strong, well-arched neck that blends well into the shoulders, and the skin around the throat is tightly fitting. The breed’s ribs are well-sprung and deep, and they extend well back into their short loin. Their forelegs are parallel and straight, and their pasterns are strong and well-boned. Their elbows lie close to their body and their shoulders are sloping, flat, and clean. Tails of this breed are high-set and carried erect. Their feet are short, round, and flat, and they have black pads and a set of arched, compact toes. They have strong, slanting thighs and hocks that extend beyond the tail. The head of the Miniature Schnauzer is strong and rectangular, and it tapers gradually from the ears to the eyes. Their topskull is flat and comparatively long, and their muzzle is strong and bluntly extended. Teeth of this breed close in a scissors bite and ears are well in proportion to the dog’s body. They have small, deep-set, dark brown eyes. The double coat of the Miniature Schnauzer consists of a wiry, hard outer coat and a close-fitting undercoat. Recognized coat colors for this breed are salt and pepper, black and silver, and solid black.

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The word "Schauzen" means to snap vocally or to give lip or talk back. In Germany, it has been traditionally recognized that a White version exists but it is not recognized for registration. In the USA, white and several levels of Salt and Pepper,from Pale Platinum to darkest almost Black and Silver, exist. In addition, the AKC now recognizes many new colors, including Chocolates and colors marked with White. An all white Schnauzer can be registered when the forms are properly filled out and a picture of the dog is sent with forms to the AKC.

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The Miniature Schnauzer is alert, energetic, and intelligent. They are good-natured, affectionate, and obedient, and they get along well with children. This breed will demand a substantial amount of time and companionship from its owner. They can be somewhat aggressive towards other dogs, and they enjoy putting on a show for an audience. They should be properly trained and socialized from an early age to ensure a stable temperament. They tend to bark a lot and they make good watch dogs. They can sometimes be reserved in the company of strangers.

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12 – 14 inches
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10 – 15 pounds
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General Health

The Miniature Schnauzer is a comparatively healthy breed. Some lines are prone to kidney stones, liver disease and ailments, diabetes, and cysts. Hereditary eye problems and skin disorders are also occasionally seen. Because of their propensity to put on weight, the Miniature Schnauzer should not be overfed. This breed typically lives for about 15 years.

Miniature Schnauzers are prone to painful bouts of pancreatitis. Early detection and treatment will help keep the dog relatively pain free during it's life. Rapid changes in diet or fatty table foods seem to increase the onset of attacks.

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It is believed that the Miniature Schnauzer is the product of crosses between the Standard Schnauzer, the Affenpinscher, and possibly the Poodle. They are originally a German breed, and their name comes from the German word “Schnauze”, or “muzzle”. These dogs excel at hunting rats, but today they are predominately used as a companion. They have a number of natural talents including hunting, tracking, watching, competitive obedience, and trick performing.

The Miniature Schnauzer first came into the U.S. in 1920. Their beard acted as a shield from biting rats when they were hunting the pest.

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The wiry coat of the Miniature Schnauzer is comparatively easy to groom and take care of. It should be combed and brushed on a daily basis with a short wire brush to prevent the onset of mats and tangles. Knots should be clipped out. Twice per year, these dogs should be clipped professionally. Excess hair should be removed around the eyes and ears with a pair of blunt-nosed scissors. The Miniature Schnauzer sheds little to no hair, and it is considered to be a good choice of pet for those that suffer from allergies.

Clipping the coat tends to make the harsh hair softer as does neutering. Hand stripping should be considered when trying to maintain the coat's natural harshness. However many dog groomers will not hand strip dogs due to the repetitive motion that may cause strains to the wrist.

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Ideal Environment

The Miniature Schnauzer is well-suited to life in a small household or apartment. They are a comparatively active breed indoors, and they are content to live without a yard. They have high energy and they enjoy going for long, brisk, daily walks. They will happily embrace any opportunity to play off of their leash.

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Dog Training!

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Miniature Schnauzer Q&A

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is it common in older breeds to develop a cough


We have a rescue schnauzer and are unsure if it is a mini or standard. Does anyone know what the general height and weight would be for a mini at 5 months of age? This is a pure breed dog.

Well ask a vet or just let it grow. if it is not two feet tall after about a year and a half it is probably a mini.


I'm getting a mini and i wanted to know if solid white is accepted as a color?

I too am getting a white-mini and they are not recognized by the AKC for showing. The only solid color that is accepted is the black.


I'm getting a schnauzer that is a miniature and i was wondering if even though it is a little smaller than the standards require if i can still compete in obedience competitions as a full AKC registered mini?

You bet, you can compete in all AKC events except comformation. We have several people in Colorado that are competing in all kinds of different events.


I have a beautiful 5 year old female. Is she too old to breed? How would I find a mate for her? I want to breed her once and not for profit (just for family and friends). I'm in Missoula, MT.


When is the best time to socialize one, my minu schnauzer/jackrusselterrier is turning one this november and is still very shy and barks at everything,i think because she is scared she doesnt like anyone but my neighbors and my family.she barks at everything how can I stop her,and how can I socialize her best???

I'm not a professional trainer, but the sooner the better on socialization. Some training might comfort yourself and your dog. I have heard that dogs sometimes bark (even when their owner is present) because they do not feel protected by the pack leader. Just an idea.


What do you suggest to clean the hair around the mouth of my schnauzer? It seems to have a dirty color and I don't know what product is safe for cleaning.

I use baking soda and hydrogen peroxide, it is safe for humans and my dog doesn't have a problem with it. Make a paste and rub it in. It will bleach better than any shampoo.


I am soon getting a mini schnauzer and Ive read about them not liking strangers or other dogs.. I had a terrier mix for 16yrs who loved everyone.. what can you do to prevent them from not liking strangers as a young pup?

I am not a trainer, but have a 11 month old mini myself. We started taking her to local dog parks at about 6 month of age and we take her about once a week now. She has been great with other people and dogs this way! Also while on our walks I ask people we see if they mind if she says "hello". I think that gets her used to the fact that most people are friendly - not a threat. Same with dogs on our walks, always asking first, if she can say "hi".


i am getting a 17 week old mini schnauzer. is it better to get a younger puppy? is a 17 week old already set in his ways?

Our puppy spent his first five months locked in a cage at a puppymill before being rescued. He was with a foster family for three weeks who taught him that people can be loving and affectionate. He was afraid of doorways and you couldn't bend down to pet him without causing him great fear. It took only a few hours of kindness, affection and tenderness and he was playing with toys. He was housebroken in just two weeks (after spending his life in a cage doing his business whenever he wanted) and he loves to learn new tricks. Don't worry about your puppy being set in his ways. Show him lots of love and attention, praise and petting. He will be eager to please you.


Do they mix well with other breeds or are the better off living alone?

my mini schnauzer is fun and very energetic.she is 1 years old.she has had a friend ever since she was makes her more friendly and she has someone to ply with.

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