The Miniature Schnauzer – Generally Considered a Delight to be Around

The sweet and likable Miniature Schnauzer is often considered a delight to be around. He’s generally friendly and pleasant and makes a good pet for many kinds of households.

General Appearance and Description

It’s believed that the Miniature Schnauzer is a result of a cross between the Standard Schnauzer and the Affenpinscher, with perhaps a Poodle included in the mix somewhere. He is likely of German descent, because “schnauze” is German for muzzle.

Mini Schnauzers are intelligent and sweet dogs that are loyal and dependable companions.

Miniature Schnauzers are small dogs that have both a bushy beard and mustache. Their eyebrows are also prominent. In fact, Schnauzers are often groomed so that their beard and mustache are accentuated.

The coat is long and silky with a slight curl to it. Schnauzers are most commonly salt and pepper colored, but they can also be black, all white, or black and silver with a soft colored undercoat.

Basic Temperament

The Schnauzer is a perky and happy playmate. He’s smart, energetic and obedient. If you think of your pets as like children, the Schnauzer is a good fit for you. He’s much like a child, because he’s playful, alert and happy and always in the game.

If you enjoy traveling, obedience training and bringing a dog into the home that will truly be a companion, the Schnauzer again fits the role.

While he’s a good companion and enjoyable dog to have around, the Schnauzer has one major behavioral challenge. That is his desire to be a big dog. He can be very aggressive toward other dogs and will even challenge bigger dogs to a fight. If you, the owner, don’t establish yourself as the pack leader, your dog can develop these aggressive tendencies. Socialize him well as a puppy, too, and you likely won’t see any of these troubling characteristics.

Mini Schnauzers can bark often and loudly, but the bark is nothing like a small dog bark and that’s high pitched and yappy sounding. Instead, the Schnauzer has a bark that belies his size. His is low and more intimidating. This can help him when he’s asked to be a watchdog, a role he will happily step into.

Care Required

The Schnauzer’s wiry coat is easy to care for, but it must be combed daily with a wire brush, or the coat will become matted fairly quickly. If your schnauzer does get knots, you can simply clip them out.

As far as grooming, the Schnauzer should be clipped evenly all over. Leave this job for the experts, though you can give him touch ups as needed.

Many people acquire Miniature Schnauzer puppies because they have allergies. This dog isn’t considered hypoallergenic, but sheds very little and is considered an excellent choice for people with allergies.

Exercise Requirements

If you live in an apartment, the Miniature Schnauzer will enjoy living in a small space, but he does like to play indoors and will need plenty of toys to keep him happy, busy and out of trouble. He will do fine without a yard in which to run.

But you must give your energetic Schnauzer a good walk on a daily basis. He will enjoy walking quickly as if you have a mission and will also enjoy any time you can give him off leash to play.

Training

If you buy a Miniature Schnauzer, be prepared to socialize him often, to train him well and to be patient with him. While he’s highly intelligent and takes to training well, he also has a strong will and will require some patience on your part. When trained, however, he can be a joy.

The Schnauzers are usually not difficult to housetrain.

Height and Weight

The adult Miniature Schnauzer will be about 12 to 14 inches tall and weigh between 10 and 15 pounds.

Health and Longevity

Like many small dogs, the Miniature Schnauzer is generally a healthy dog. Some Schnauzers will have some problems, however, ranging from liver disease and kidney stones to skin disorders. They are also at risk of developing von Willebrand’s disease, a common blood disorder in dogs. Some will have eye problems.

More common for your Miniature Schnauzer is the risk of weight gain. Be careful how much you feed him, because even with his high activity level, he can gain weight easily.

Most Schnauzers can live to be 15 years old.

Suitability

Schnauzers are ideal for many different households. They love children and do well with seniors. They are also excellent dogs to have on the farm as they are experts at killing mice and at hunting, tracking, performing tricks and acting as guard dogs.

More Information

Further information about the Miniature Schnauzer can be found here.

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