What is a Miniature Schnauzer?
Miniature Schnauzers are a small dog breed with the personality of a large dog. A dog with a strong will and the instincts of a guard dog, but who is full of love for his family and who is equally at home with adults and children.
It is the smallest of the three different Schnauzer breeds and is between 30-36 cm in height at the withers, depending on whether it is a female or a male.
- Origin: Germany
- Wither height: 30-36 cm
- Weight: 4-8 kg
- Life span: 12-16 years
- Taken: 15,000-23,000 kroner
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The Miniature Schnauzer originally comes from Germany. Schnauzer means “beard” in German and refers to the breed’s distinctive facial hair growth. This hair growth acted as protection during the breed’s original main task which was to catch rats and other vermin on farms.
Miniature schnauzers are from the start a cross between, among other things, standard schnauzers and monkey pinschers, which is a very small dog, which ultimately resulted in a smaller schnauzer of its own – the miniature schnauzer. The more orderly form of breeding of this new breed is believed to have already begun sometime in the 19th century.
What does a miniature schnauzer look like?
The miniature schnauzer is very charming in appearance and has many unique and characteristic traits.
except for a clearly marked moustache, the miniature schnauzer also has prominent eyebrows and shaggy and thick leg hair. At first glance, the whole look is often perceived as a bit disheveled and gives an almost newly woken impression.
The gaze, on the other hand, is very sharp and lively and can sometimes be perceived as a little irritated or angry, which is not true, but it is just the supervision they have. So don’t be fooled! They are actually very happy and playful little dogs.
The miniature schnauzer has a small, but powerfully built body with a height at the withers of up to 36 centimeters. The coat is rough and comes in four different colors – black, black/silver, pepper/salt or white. The first three color variations are the most common, while white fur is very rare.
- Miniature Schnauzer Black: Has completely black fur. That is, both black undercoat and black coat.
- Miniature Schnauzer white: Has white fur throughout. That is, white undercoat and white coat.
- Miniature Schnauzer Black Silver: Mostly black fur with white or silver highlights on legs and beard.
- Miniature Schnauzer salt and pepper: Mottled fur that shifts in different shades of gray and gives the impression of a mixture of salt and pepper.
Temperament and personality
The miniature schnauzer is a small dog with a big personality. It has a lot of energy, is playful, talkative and very intelligent. They are therefore excellent companion dogs and are usually especially appreciated by families with children because they love to play!
As this is a very smart and active dog, they are also very good performers in training disciplines such as agility and rally obedience.
The temperament is calm and even. However, they are vigilant by nature, which means that they like to bark when they hear or see something they don’t recognize.
They can therefore be a little skeptical of strangers before they have had time to form their own opinion about the person in question. However, they are not afraid of unfamiliar people, but they are just a little on their guard until they read their new acquaintance.
Miniature Schnauzer as a family dog
The miniature schnauzer is loyal to those closest to him and a good family friend. They enjoy family life and get along well with children and can also learn to live with other pets.
Children usually especially appreciate the Miniature Schnauzer as they generally never get tired of playing. This little dog could basically play for as long as he wanted without getting tired. They like to socialize and be active with their family and like to go for long walks.
Despite its size, this is a very fearless dog that likes to act as a watchdog for its family through a warning bark when it suspects danger.
With the right amount of exercise, it can also live in a smaller apartment without problems, which makes it a good dog for those who live a little cramped.
Miniature Schnauzer problems and health
Miniature Schnauzers are normally seen as a healthy dog breed and usually live 12-14 years. Like all breeds, they are susceptible to some breed-specific health problems, but with proper care, most live long and healthy lives. Some of the most common ailments among miniature schnauzers are eye problems, urinary stones and elevated blood fats.
The most common eye diseases for the breed is cataracts and PRA. Cataract means that the lens of the eye becomes cloudy, which leads to vision problems, while PRA ultimately leads to total blindness. The breed’s breed club, the Miniature Schnauzer Ring, therefore recommends eye examination for all breeding dogs.
Thanks to well-conducted breeding, PRA is very rare in the breed and only between 3-4 Miniature Schnauzers are born per year.
Cataracts, or cataracts as they are also called, are suspected to be hereditary, but one is not yet quite sure. Soon, however, it will be possible to determine via a DNA test whether a dog is predisposed to cataracts. This makes it possible to reduce the risk of the disease even more by not mating two carriers.
The disease HTG means elevated blood fats, and unfortunately affects miniature schnauzers more than many other dog breeds. However, it is not a very common disease.
How to take care of a Miniature Schnauzer
What you need to put the most emphasis on when it comes to caring for a Miniature Schnauzer is exercise and fur care. The fur is thick and strong and therefore needs to be taken care of to keep it nice and fresh. This is also a very energetic dog that needs to have its need for play and exercise satisfied.
The miniature schnauzer’s coat is thick with plenty of undercoat and therefore needs to be brushed and combed through often, preferably at least twice a week. The areas that have a little extra fur such as belly, legs and face require a little extra care. However, if you do this regularly, this usually goes very quickly.
The coat also needs to be trimmed a few times a year. This can be a little different depending on how much the fur has grown, but between 2-4 times is usually enough. A Miniature Schnauzer’s coat should therefore ideally be trimmed and not cut.
If the dog is for some reason too sore or too uncomfortable to be trimmed, you can of course cut it instead. However, the characteristic fur is at its best if it is plucked. If it is a show dog, picking is a requirement.
How much exercise does a Miniature Schnauzer need?
The Miniature Schnauzer is a very active and energetic breed and basically never gets tired. It loves to move through running and playing and walks and can’t get enough of outdoor activities.
Despite this, it is a very flexible breed that easily adapts to the family’s routines and schedule and therefore does not require an excessive amount of exercise. One hour of exercise a day is usually enough, although it likes to move even more if possible.
Food for your miniature schnauzer
Just like other small dog breeds, the miniature schnauzer should eat food that is specially adapted for smaller dogs. This food has smaller pieces to be easy to chew and also contains all the nutrition a small dog needs.
There’s also feed specially adapted for miniature schnauzers which we recommend. Among other things, this is composed to keep the Miniature Schnauzer’s special and rough coat healthy. The feed is also usually quite low in fat to reduce the risk of obesity. This is because a lack of exercise can lead to obesity as the miniature schnauzer is a very active dog.
Miniature schnauzer food also usually has a slightly higher sodium content, which leads to the dog drinking more. This in turn thins the urine and reduces the risk of urinary stones forming, which is a common breed-specific problem.
If you are looking for a good solution for food storage, there are many good food bins for dogs on the market.
Miniature Schnauzer in case of allergy
Many naturally wonder if you can have a miniature schnauzer if you are allergic. There is no universal answer to this question, but many people today live with a miniature schnauzer without problems despite dog allergies. Miniature Schnauzers are thus one of the dog breeds that are less likely to cause allergies.
If you take good care of the fur, it does not shed, but it does require a lot of fur care, which can be good to be aware of when you suffer from allergies.
Miniature Schnauzer puppy
Miniature Schnauzer puppies, just like any other puppy, need a consistent upbringing. As this is a rather stubborn breed, it may also require a little extra patience and discipline as a puppy.
A common problem is that they often want to nibble or bite, preferably quite hard. It is therefore extremely important to eliminate this as soon as possible through a methodical and comprehensive approach. Show that the behavior is wrong without getting angry or throwing a fit. Instead, act calmly, but firmly.
Try to divert the behavior or ignore the dog so that it understands that it is not worth biting. Also, always be sure to give a reward when the puppy behaves.
Having said that, the miniature schnauzer is a wonderfully cozy and fun little puppy, although it requires a lot of patience and training.
Miniature Schnauzer price
How much does it cost to buy a Miniature Schnauzer? The price is usually somewhere in between 15,000-23,000 kroner. This may vary slightly depending on the color and pedigree and whether it is a bred show dog or companion dog.
Things to consider when buying a Miniature Schnauzer
When buying a puppy, you should always do thorough research on the breeder, regardless of the breed. You want to be sure that the puppy is healthy, has a pedigree and has been raised in good conditions.
Below you will find some tips on what to think about:
- Feel free to check how long the breeder has been active, previous litters, membership in SSK (Svenska Kennelklubben) and so on. The more information the better.
- Try to contact previous buyers for reference. Peek at breeder at the Miniature Schnauzer Ring. All these breeders are members of the breed club and must follow all recommended guidelines for breeding.
- Always meet the puppy and the mother of the puppy at the breeder’s place before purchase. Please meet the bitch at the breeder’s already when she is pregnant if possible.
- The puppy must always be vet inspected a maximum of seven days before collection. You must receive a certificate of this and the pedigree immediately upon collection.