Friendly – Faithful – Lively
Introducing the Miniature Schnauzer
From an adorable ball of fluff that can literally fit in one hand, to the revered, majestic breed oozing sophistication. The miniature schnauzer grows into such distinguished looks that grown men can only envy its facial hair. But don’t let their appearance fool you, they are still just silly puppies at heart.
Join us in looking at this special German breed in more detail…
Average Lifespan: 10 – 13 years
Average Weight: Female = 5kg – 8kg, Male = 5kg – 9kg
Trainability: Very Easy
Colours: Black, White, Salt & Pepper, Black & Silver, Parti (This is a brown and white variant, not as well known)
History of The Miniature Schnauzer
Originally bred from a combination of standard schnauzers, affenpinschers, and poodles. The miniature schnauzer was bred to be a ratting dog as opposed to the all-round farm dog of the standard variation. Now however, miniature schnauzers are more of a companion dog or a show dog (depending on lineage). The first miniature schnauzer was officially recorded into the kennel club in 1888.
Did you know? The miniature schnauzer is the only terrier that has no British blood.
Miniature Schnauzer Temperament & Personality
Miniature schnauzers are extremely affectionate little dogs, often regarded as a spirited, obedient and willing to please. For this reason, training is very enjoyable with them. They are highly motivated by food and the opportunity for praise. Although they are not used for ratting now, they do still retain some ratting behaviours. Miniature Schnauzers are very vocal by nature, you shouldn’t mistake their noise for aggression.
How Big Is A Miniature Schnauzer?
The miniature schnauzer is a small breed dog. Some are taller and may weigh more than others, but usually they are small.
- Height = 30cm – 36cm
Grooming A Miniature Schnauzer
Schnauzers don’t shed their fur so are often referred to as hypoallergenic. They need to be groomed regularly, in some cases as often as a 6-weekly basis.
There are a few variations on a miniature schnauzer look: the natural, the teddy bear/puppy, the show, the traditional/standard and shaved.
- This is just leaving the coat to do its own thing. It needs a brush and comb (in that order) of the coat each day, focusing on; the skirt (the long hair that falls from their body between their front and back legs), legs/feet, and beard.
The Teddy Bear (Puppy)
- This cut strips away more hair than that of the show or traditional, keeping the overall shape of the features but minimalizing them.
- Maintenance is lower for this type of cut and is best for those that either have less time for grooming, or for dogs that are often re-living their ratting days in the mud.
- As the name implies, this cut is what you would use if you were to enter your furfriend into a show of any kind. Although the hair is left a little longer than the traditional, it can take longer to finish as it requires a lot of hand stripping which is more precise than clippers.
- This cut would require daily maintenance with a brush and comb.
- Very similar to the show cut, but instead of hand stripping the fur, clippers would be used. You would still need to brush and comb daily but as the fur will be slightly shorter there is a little more breathing room for working out matts.
- Not what it may seem; the shaved look doesn’t shave the dog entirely. The head and legs are usually left to their natural fluffiness, with the tail and skirt being trimmed.
Are Miniature Schnauzers Good Family Dogs?
Miniature schnauzers are extremely friendly, loyal dogs that are more people oriented than dog friendly. They make great family dogs, however, will often single someone out as their ‘soul-mate’, this doesn’t mean they disregard everyone else; they just like to pick favourites.
Are Miniature Schnauzers Aggressive?
Miniature schnauzers are vocal, but most wouldn’t hurt a fly, they just let you know they are there. When schnauzers play together you really begin to understand them as they have a unique play style; beards flaring, teeth showing, lots of noise. It’s all completely harmless. Any dog can be aggressive, but miniature schnauzers aren’t known for it.
Are Miniature Schnauzers Intelligent?
Miniature schnauzers are extremely intelligent dogs; combine that with their loves of food and eagerness to please, they are amazing for training
Miniature schnauzers are quite a sensitive breed with a few common health watch-outs:
Allergies: Miniature schnauzers have sensitive skin and stomachs which are prone to allergies relating to both areas.
Epilepsy: Epilepsy is a brain disorder that causes seizures and fitting; sadly, dogs as young as 6 months can be affected. Visit your vet if you fear your dog might be affected.
Diabetes: any dog can be diabetic; however, some breeds are more susceptible than others. Miniature schnauzers being one of those breeds.
Cushings disease: miniature schnauzers have a genetic predisposition to cushings disease and unfortunately, 10% of diabetic dogs, also have cushings disease.
Gastrointestinal: miniature schnauzers have sensitive digestive systems, making them prone to gastroenteritis or obstructions due to eating things they shouldn’t. Miniature schnauzers are also prone to pancreatitis which is the 4th most common illness in miniature schnauzers.
Liver: liver disease is 3 times more common in miniature schnauzers than in any other breed of dog.
Urinary (bladder stones): bladder stones are more common in smaller and toy breeds, especially miniature schnauzers who are more likely to contract them than any other breed. Male dogs and overweight dogs are even more at risk of bladder stones.
Nutritional Requirements of A Miniature Schnauzer
Allergies: Miniature schnauzers are more prone to allergies than most, feeding a hypoallergenic dog food with limited ingredients can be a good baseline for avoiding any complications.
Diabetes: there are 2 types of diabetes, the simplest way to help avoid both; is to limit the sugar intake, in particular foods with unnecessary added sugars and to limit the amount of food the dog eats. Watch out for ingredients like “stock” which can be a covert way of getting added sugar and salt into a recipe.
Liver: To avoid liver problems, look for foods with a high-quality protein source. Adding omega-3 fatty acids can also aid in liver health.
Urinary: as miniature schnauzers are prone to bladder stones, ensuring they have access to plenty of fresh water at all times is critical. A healthy active lifestyle and good diet both help reduce instances of stones.
How Can Scrumbles Help?
Our dog food uses only single source, high quality proteins which aid in liver health. Our food is hypoallergenic and a limited ingredient list which is great for dogs that are prone to allergies. We add salmon oil as a source of omega-3 fatty acids which are great for overall health. We use pro-biotics in our dry food to aid in digestive health and sensitive tums. As well as this, our wet food and treats contain slippery elm which has been proven to line the digestive tract, improving digestive efficiency.
Finally, for those dogs unfortunate to be diagnosed with pancreatitis, finding treats they can still safely enjoy can be very tricky. Thankfully our Gnashers, which are a vegan product and therefore naturally low in fat are suitable.
Miniature schnauzers are a faithfully affectionate breed that are eager to please. Although they were originally bred for ratting, they find more comfort on a lap these days. Still, be careful of what they catch (if anything) as their sensitive tums may not tolerate it very well; be aware of the few health risks miniature schnauzers are susceptible to and they will live a long and happy life with you as their centre of attention.