Miniature Schnauzer Information

Overview

The Miniature Schnauzer is a small breed of dog that packs a big punch. They are full of personality and spunk which can often lead to them being mislabeled as a mischievous breed. In reality, they are highly intelligent and can be easily trained to be an obedient and well behaved companion. They are naturally curious and are quick to investigate new sights and sounds. Their small size makes them an ideal companion for people that live in apartments and small houses, but their high energy level requires daily exercise to keep them entertained. They make an ideal canine companion for those with allergies due to a lower shedding rate than other breeds.

Miniature Schnauzer
Basic Info
NameMiniature Schnauzer
Other NameZwergschnauzer (Dwarf Schnauzer)
OriginGermany
Size Type Small Dog Breeds
Breed Group Terrier Dog Breeds
Life Span12 -15 years
TemperamentIntelligent, Obedient, Fearless, Spirited, Alert, Friendly
HeightMale: 12 to 14 in; Female: 12 to 14 in
WeightMale : 12 to 20 lb; Female: 12 to 18 lb
ColorsBlack, Salt & Pepper, White, Black & Silver
Puppy PriceAverage $500 - $1000 USD

Miniature Schnauzer

Physical description

Body Type

Miniature Schnauzers have a sturdy build and are nearly square in appearance due to their height and length being extremely proportional. Ranging from twelve to fourteen inches in height, females weigh between ten and fifteen pounds while males weigh between eleven and eighteen pounds. They have an angular head that ends in a blunt muzzle with a thick beard that is often groomed into a rectangular shape.

The eyes should be small and dark brown in color, and the ears can either be left in their natural shape or cropped to stand up. Ears that are not cropped are small and should fold over close to the head in a V shape. Cropped ears should be identical in shape and length with pointed tips and little to no curve in them.

An arched neck leads into a backline that is straight and declines slightly from the withers to the tail. Adding to the square appearance is an underside that is also a straight line from the chest to the hindquarters. The tail should be docked short and close to the body. It should be barely visible over the back of the body when standing at the head of the dog.

Color

The three color varieties that are commonly accepted for the Miniature Schnauzer are salt and pepper, black and silver, and solid black. Salt and pepper varieties often look gray from a distance, but upon closer inspection are a mixture of dark and light gray. The black and silver variety is mainly black with silver coloring on the face, legs and feet. Solid black Schnauzers are allowed a small white patch on their chest only. All color varieties should have a solid black nose.

Coat

Miniature Schnauzers have a double coat with a wiry outer coat and a softer undercoat. Show conditions require regular plucking, also known as stripping, of the skull, neck and body. The outer coat can be left long and should maintain a thick, wiry appearance. Schnauzers that are groomed with clippers instead of having their coat plucked will often lose the wiry feel to their outer coat. If not maintained, the fur will grow two to four inches in length.

Characteristics
Good with Kids
 
Cat Friendly
 
Dog Friendly
 
Trainability
 
Shedding
 
Watchdog
 
Intelligence
 
Grooming
 
Popularity
 
Adaptability
 
Hypoallergenic  Yes

Grooming

Regular grooming and maintenance is an absolute must for this breed. The wiry outer coat is prone to matting and can easily become tangled. Family pets are typically groomed with clippers, and they should see a professional groomer every four to six weeks. Show quality Schnauzers are usually hand stripped to maintain the integrity of their outer coat. The hair should be cut close on the skull, neck and body. The legs, underside, and face should be left full and thick. The thick beard should be groomed forward and into a rectangular shape, and the underside of the body should have a fringe like skirt appearance.

History

Descending from the larger Standard Schnauzer, the miniature was bred to be a smaller version that would be used for hunting, herding and ratting. Their small size allowed them to go underground to draw out small prey. The Standard Schnauzer was bred with the Affenpinscher and Miniature Poodle to achieve the desired size. The first record of the current Miniature Schnauzer was recorded between 1888 and 1890. The American Kennel Club recognized and accepted the breed in 1926. It was placed in the Terrier group despite the fact that the larger Standard and Giant versions are shown in the Working group. The breed was originally known as Wirehaired Pinschers, but the name was quickly changed to Miniature Schnauzer.

Temperament

Due to its breeding as a hunting and ratting dog, the Miniature Schnauzer has a high prey drive and should not be trusted around smaller animals such as hamsters, guinea pigs, and gerbils. They can be taught to cohabitate pleasantly with these animals and cats with plenty of exposure and training.

They are a highly intelligent breed that possesses a natural desire to please, which makes them easily trainable. Their natural curiosity and high energy demands that they receive daily exercise to keep them from finding trouble. They are also a naturally territorial breed that is known for alerting their owner to any possible intruders, although they are more prone to bark than bite when greeting a new visitor.

Their happy demeanor and active nature make them a popular choice for families with children, and they will often entertain each other for hours before tiring. Due to their breeding and history, they have been reported as trying to herd multiple children to keep them close together.


Interesting Miniature Schnauzer Facts

  • Commonly mislabeled, they are not technically hypoallergenic but are on the top ten list of dogs for people with allergies due to a low shedding rate.
  • Due to their small size and high energy, they make great competitors in agility competitions
  • They are commonly very vocal, but excessive barking can be easily controlled with proper training.