Miniature Schnauzer Guide

Terrier Dog Breeds

The miniature schnauzer is a robust, sturdily built terrier of nearly square proportion. It was developed as a ratter and is quick and tough. Its gait displays good reach and drive. Its coat is double, with a close undercoat, and hard, wiry, outer coat which is longer on the legs, muzzle and eyebrows. Its facial furnishings add to its keen expression.

The miniature schnauzer deserves its place as one of the most popular terrier pets. It is playful, inquisitive, alert, spunky and companionable. It is a well-mannered house dog that also enjoys being in the middle of activities. It is less domineering than the larger schnauzers and less dog-aggressive than most terriers. It is also better with other animals than most terriers, although it will gladly give chase. It is clever and can be stubborn, but it is generally biddable. It enjoys children. Some may bark a lot.

AKC RANKING 11

FAMILY terrier

AREA OF ORIGIN Germany

DATE OF ORIGIN 1800s

ORIGINAL FUNCTION ratting

TODAY'S FUNCTION earthdog trials

AVERAGE SIZE OF MALE Height: 12-14 Weight: 13-15

AVERAGE SIZE OF FEMALE Height: 12-14 Weight: 13-15

OTHER NAME zwergschnauzer

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Energy level Medium energy

Exercise needs Medium

Playfullness Very playful

Affection level Very affectionate

Friendliness toward other dogs Friendly

Friendliness toward other pets Friendly

Friendliness toward strangers Friendly

Ease of training Moderately easy to train

Watchdog ability High

Protection ability Not very protective

Grooming needs Moderate maintenance

Cold tolerance Medium tolerance

Heat tolerance Medium tolerance

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This energetic breed can have its exercise requirements met with a moderate walk on leash or a good game in the yard. Even though it can physically survive living outdoors in warm to temperate climates, it emotionally needs to share its life with its family inside the home. Its wire coat needs combing once or twice weekly, plus scissoring and shaping (clipping for pets and stripping for show dogs) every couple of months.
• Major concerns: urolithiasis, PRA
• Minor concerns: follicular dermatitis, esophageal achalasia, vWD
• Occasionally seen: pulmonic stenosis, Legg-Perthes, cataract
• Suggested tests: eye, DNA test for vWD, (cardiac)
• Life span: 12 – 14 years
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The smallest and most popular of the schnauzers, the miniature schnauzer was developed in the late 1800s as a small farm dog and ratter in Germany. In fact, the miniature schnauzer is the only terrier not originating from European isle stock. It was derived from crossing the standard schnauzer with the affenpinscher (and possibly poodle). All the schnauzers get their name from one individual dog named Schnauzer, who was exhibited around 1879 — an apt name, since schnauzer means "small beard." The miniature schnauzer was exhibited as a breed distinct from the standard schnauzer by 1899 in Germany, although it wasn't until 1933 that the AKC divided the standard and miniature into separate breeds. The miniature is the only schnauzer to remain in the terrier group in America. In England it joins the other schnauzers in the utility group. The miniature schnauzer came to America long after its standard and giant counterparts, but in the years after World War II, it far outpaced them in popularity, eventually rising to become the third-most popular breed in America at one time. It remains as a perennial favorite, a smart-looking and alert-acting family pet and competitive show dog.
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