Miniature Schnauzer Cuddles & Kisses There's a time for Play and a Time for Love
A dog breed who's got it all in one small package: intelligence, affection, extroverted temperament, humorous and a personality that's twice as big as they are. Throw in that walrus mustache and enthusiasm and they will make you laugh everyday. With a Miniature Schnauzer in your home you'll never be alone, not even when you go to the bathroom! Heritage of Love Noble of Heart Gentle of Spirit Regal of Stature
All About Miniature Schnauzers
Written by Anna
So, just what is a Miniature Schnauzer you may be wondering? Pronounced (Shnou'zer). The term "Schnauzer" comes from the German word "snout" and means colloquially "mustache" because of the dog's distinctively bearded snout. The Miniature Schnauzer is a small breed of a dog that is cousin to the Standard Schnauzer that was bred down from the Standard Schnauzer originating in Germany in the mid-to-late 19th century.
Miniature Schnauzers developed from the Standard Schnauzer are believed to be a cross between the Standard Schnauzer, a robust squarely built, medium-sized dog and either a Poodle, a type of water dog also squarely built, but well proportioned dog or the Affenpinscher, a toy terrier-like breed also referred to as the Monkey Terrier. All of these dogs originated in Germany and farmer's bred down the Standard Schnauzer to create a smaller more compact sized farm dog equally suited for ratting (to catch rats).
In 1895 in the first volume of the Pincher-Schnauzer Klub's stud book contained Standard Schnauzers, Smooth Coat Pinchers, Miniature Pinchers, and what was called Wire-haired Pinchers (now known as Miniature Schnauzers). The oldest Miniature Schnauzer appeared in 1888 and was an all black female named Findel. Out of 8 bitches (females) registered in that first volume of the stud book were 3 black, 3 yellow, 1 black and tan and 1 salt and pepper. There was evidently much crossing between the types and their registration was more dependent upon their outward appearance versus their genetic make-up.
Example: One Miniature Pinscher is registered as having a Standard Schnauzer Dam and then a Miniature Schnauzer was listed as having a Miniature Pinscher Sire. Today the standard is: Black, Black and Silver and Salt and Pepper in the United States and in Germany they acknowledge White to be included in the standard.
*It's from these breed outcrossings while developing the Miniature Schnauzer, that other colors came about, the parti, the liver and white is considered to be from the outcrossing.*
Miniature Schnauzers were first imported to the Us in the 1920's. The Wire-haired Pinscher Club of America was formed in 1925 for all sizes and in 1926 the name was officially changed to "Schnauzer". During that time there was no distinction between the Standard and the Miniature sized Schnauzers and they were shown together. The two types were not separated in the breed listing until late 1926. It was the American Kennel Club in 1926 that accepted registration of the new breed and in 1933 the Wire-haired Pinscher Club split into two groups, the American Miniature Schnauzer Club and the Standard Schnauzer Club of America. The start of the modern Miniature Schnauzer we see today is generally considered to have begun in 1945 with the first Miniature Schnauzer, "CH Dorem Display" to win "Best in Show" at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. He was born on the 5th day of April 1945 and lived to be nearly (14) fourteen-years old. Almost every living Miniature Schnauzer in America today can trace it lineage back to Dorem Display.
Miniature Schnauzers can come in Miniature, Toy and Tiny Toy (some call "Teacup") sizes. Miniature Schnauzers weigh between 12-20 lbs full grown and have a very square-shape build, measuring 12-14 inches tall. Toy and Tiny Toy sized Miniature Schnauzer's weigh between 3-11 lbs full grown, measuring 7-11 inches tall. They have a double coat, with a wiry outer fur and a soft undercoat. Miniature Schnauzers are often described as a non-moulting (don't shed) dogs. They are characterized by a rectangular head and bushy beard, mustache and eyebrows.
*The term, "Toy Schnauzers, or Tiny Toy Schnauzers, or what some call Teacups" are only terms used to describe the adorable size of the smaller Miniature Schnauzer. AKC and other club's and registries do not recognize a toy or tiny toy (teacup) size in the Schnauzer breed, but they do however, register these little guys as Miniature Schnauzers* Miniature, Toy and Tiny Toy Schnauzers are a hardy, healthy pet with a generous life-span of approximately 17 years, showing no signs of age until quite later in life.
The Miniature Schnauzer: generally stands about 12-14 inches tall at the shoulder and can weigh between 12-20 lbs full grown.
The Standard Schnauzer: generally stands about 14-16 inches tall at the shoulder and can weigh between 26-44 lbs full grown.
The Giant Schnauzer: generally stands about 24-26 inches tall at the shoulder and can weigh between 55-110 lbs full grown.
Then there's the Toy Schnauzer: generally stands about 10-11 inches tall at the shoulder and can weigh between 7-11 lbs full grown.
Any Schnauzers ranging 10 inches or less and weighing from 3 to 6 lbs full grown are what we coin "Tiny Toys."
You may wonder..."Where do all the different sizes come from?" as described above, the Miniature Schnauzer derived from the Standard Schnauzer said to have come from the Affenpinscher and/or Poodle. This is where the many colors, markings and sizes originated from even back in the 1800's.
**These are an average estimate of height and weight and can vary**
The Giant Schnauzer The Standard Schnauzer The Miniature Schnauzer
*Information provided on Miniature Schnauzers, Yorkshires, Biewers, BIROs, Golddusts and Ocean Pearls are from researching history, personal acquaintances, and personal knowledge of the breeds*
Miniature Schnauzer Weight Chart
Find your puppy's age on the left and locate their current weight and follow it down to find the estimated adult dog's weight. *Remember 1-lb=16-0zs*. Please keep in mind that this is only an estimate and not a guarantee. If you would like to calculate your puppy's weight, you can visit: www.puppyweights.com.
The Miniature Schnauzer Official Breed Standard is:
General Appearance: robust and active resembling their larger cousin, the Standard Schnauzer.
Head: rectangular and strong, top of skull is flat.
Muzzle: is strong in proportion to the skull, ending in a moderate build.
Eyes: are small and very dark brown color, oval in appearance. Ears: uncrossed, small and v-shaped, folding close to the head. Neck: strong and well arched, blending into the shoulders.
Body: short and deep, the underbody does not present a tucked-up appearance at the flank.
Tail: set high, carried erect, and docked long enough to be clearly visible over the backline of the body.
Legs: straight, with covered hair, round paws with thick pads.
Coat: double coat with a hard, wiry outer coat and close smooth undercoat.
Color: standard is, Salt & Pepper, Black, and Black & Silver (White in Germany).
Height: 12-14 inches
Weight: 12-20 lbs Faults: any deviation to the foregoing points listed.
The American Kennel Club, AKC does recognize non-standard colors and does register them as purebred Miniature Schnauzers and all non-standard colors can participate in every AKC sanctioned event except for Comformation.
Below is a list of health disorders more commonly associated with this breed:
Cataracts Cataracts in dogs occur when the eye lens is gradually covered by an opaque cloudiness. Miniature Schnauzers are prone to severe cataracts, which can appear anywhere from birth to six years old. The condition will affect the dog’s vision and can lead to complete canine blindness. However, sometimes the condition can be corrected and vision can be restored with surgery.
Progressive Renal Atrophy (PRA) Progressive retinal atrophy in dogs is a condition that causes the dog’s retina to slowly deteriorate. PRA is an inherited disease that appears when the dog is still young, at around three years old. It begins with night blindness, but will eventually develop to completely blindness in both eyes within a year or two. Although the condition is not painful for the dog, there is no cure for PRA.
Entropion Entropion in dogs is a condition where a dog’s eyelid will invert and roll inwards toward the eye, causing the lashes to rub against and irritate the cornea. This is a painful condition that will require surgery to correct it.
Other Eye Conditions Other less common eye conditions that have been seen in Miniature Schnauzers include retinal dysplasia, glaucoma in dogs, and lens luxation.
Urinary Stones Miniature Schnauzers are more prone than other breeds for the development of bladder or kidney stones at some point in their lifetimes. In fact, urinary stones are more common in Miniature Schnauzers than any other breed. Miniature Schnauzers can develop several different kinds of stones, the most likely of which include struvite and calcium oxalate stones.
Struvite Stones Struvite stones are more common in females, typically appearing at the same time as a canine urinary tract infection. It is believed that Struvite stones occur frequently in Miniature Schnauzers because of breed-related weakness in their urinary tract. When the urinary tract infection that caused the stones is treated with antibiotics, the stones should go away, but sometimes they may require surgery.
Calcium Oxalate Stones Calcium oxalate stones are more common in older male dogs, occurring when the dog’s body cannot handle calcium correctly. This problem can be managed through diet but may require surgery to remove. Urinary stones can be especially dangerous in males because their narrow urethra is more easily blocked. This is a life-threatening emergency.
Pancreatitis Pancreatitis in dogs is a common condition in Miniature Schnauzers that involves an inflammation of the pancreas. It is an emergency situation which will require your dog to be hospitalized and given supportive care, including intravenous fluids. The dog will then need to stay on a low-fat diet for the rest of their life. If your dog has pancreatitis, symptoms may include, fever, lethargy, abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Myotonia Congenita Myotonia is a genetic muscle disease that is sometimes found in Miniature Schnauzers. When a dog has Myotonia, their muscles will contract easily, which causes them to be stiff. The condition causes their muscles to become hyperactive, making them grow too large, bulging muscles that make it difficult for them to get up and move around. Myotonia will also cause difficulty when swallowing because their tongues will swell. There is no cure, but Myotonia can be treated with medication. However, affected dogs won’t be able to exercise or eat normally. A small portion of Miniature Schnauzers can have this condition.
Hypothyroidism The number one inherited disease of dogs in general, canine hypothyroidism, is another condition commonly seen in Miniature Schnauzers. Hypothyroidism is a condition that occurs when a dog doesn’t produce sufficient amounts of the thyroid hormone, which regulates many of the body’s systems. It affects a dog’s metabolism, leading to depression, weight gain, lethargy, hair loss, and even an intolerance to the cold. If Hypothyroidism goes untreated, it can lead to issues with the immune system, cardiovascular system, and reproductive system. Luckily, treatment are relatively easy and inexpensive.
Cushing’s Disease Cushing's disease in dogs is another condition seen with some frequency in Miniature Schnauzers. It affects females more than males and typically occurs in middle-aged dogs between six and eight years old. Cushing’s Disease can cause increased thirst and urination as well as weight gain. It is also connected to an overproduction of adrenal cortex hormones, which can cause sudden blindness.
Skin Problems Miniature Schnauzers can encounter some skin conditions that may include allergies, non-tumorous growths, and tumors, especially sebaceous gland tumors. Most commonly, they develop a skin condition called Comedo Syndrome, in which the dog develops blackheads along its back. In fact, the condition is so common it is commonly referred to as “Schnauzer bumps.” In addition to the blackheads, some dogs will also have scabbing and dog hair loss. The blackheads may feel crusty and are a blockage of the dog’s hair follicles. Comedo Syndrome can be prevented through a healthy diet, consistent dog grooming, and regular bathing. Just like with human acne, you should not squeeze these bumps.
Miniature Schnauzers can also get malassezia dermatitis, a yeast infection that causes hair loss, itchiness, a foul smell, and can also lead to other infections. Other conditions may be triggered by allergies, metabolic disorders, or a lack of grooming or bathing. Pay close attention to your dog’s diet and maintain consistent grooming habits to help prevent skin problems.
Heart Disease Miniature Schnauzers are more likely to develop some forms of heart disease in dogs, including mitral valve disease, sick sinus syndrome, and pulmonic stenosis. Mitral valve disease causes the valve to wear out, sick sinus syndrome will cause the heart to beat irregularly, and pulmonic stenosis is an obstruction of blood flow to the heart.
Dental Problems Miniature Schnauzers are very susceptible to periodontal disease in dogs, in which food and plaque are trapped in their teeth, causing them to develop an infection in their gums and the roots of their teeth. This is a serious condition that shouldn’t be taken lightly, as it can lead to heart disease (see above), kidney or liver damage, and weakened joints, not to mention your dog may lose teeth and have difficulty eating. Not taking care of your dog’s teeth can actually reduce his lifespan. Frequent dental cleanings, or cleaning your dog’s teeth yourself at home, can go along way to maintaining a healthy mouth. You can ask your veterinarian and/or breeder for tips on how to clean your dog’s mouth as well as how to inspect it for issues.
Ear Infections Miniature Schnauzers are known to get ear infections in dogs, which can be quite uncomfortable for the dog. The infections can be caused by allergies, bacteria, and yeast. If you notice your dog scratching or shaking their head more than usual, or they are sensitive about having their ears touch, it may point to an ear infection. The earlier you catch an ear infection, the less pain your dog will suffer.
Conclusion In general, Miniature Schnauzers are healthy little dogs although any dog can develop health issues, regardless of their genetics. Miniature Schnauzer health problems can usually be dealt with when discovered early, and many can be prevented altogether. However, when they do develop health problems, it can be difficult to tell because they are stubborn dogs who don’t want to let anything slow them down. Not all Miniature Schnauzers may develop any of the health issues listed above during the course of their lives. Pay attention to your pet so you can notice if anything is out of the ordinary, and take your Miniature Schnauzer in for regular veterinary checkups to catch things early. If you are proactive with any health issues and maintain a healthy diet, and exercise your dog regularly, you may have a pet that can live for up to 15 years or more.
Bad Foods & Toys for Schnauzers
The following is a list of foods that should be avoided: chocolate, onions, garlic, chives, macadamia nuts, walnuts, all fatty foods, bones in meat (chicken & fish), moldy-spoiled foods, green potatoes, potato peelings, broccoli, pork, raw eggs, salt, persimmons, baking soda, baking powder, apple cores, peach and plum pitts, mushrooms, yeast dough, alcohol in any form (including hops-used in making beer), coffee (including the grounds), tea caffeine, green parts of tomatoes, rhubarb, raisins, grapes, xylitol-sugar substitutes, citrus fruits, baby foods, nutmeg, avocados, figs, coconuts and orange & lemon seeds (including the peels, stems and leaves).
Snacks to avoid: Raw hide, bully sticks and greenies.
The following plants are poisonous to Schnauzers:
How to Grade your Dog's Food
*Start off with a Grade of A (100 pts) then subtract/add points as listed*
Science tells us that nutrition is the center of a puppy and adult dog’s health and well-being. There are a surplus of dog foods these days and one can be overwhelmed with just "What dog food is best for your furry loved one?" So, here are a list of ingredients the that we found to be "beneficial" and "non-beneficial" to look out for in your dog's food:
By-products (-10pts), non-specific animal source (-10pts), BHA, BHT and Ethoxyquin (-10pts), non-specific grain source (-5pts), if the same grain is used 2 or more times in the first five ingredients (-5pts), if the protein sources are not meat meal and are less than 2 meats in the top 3 ingredients (-3pts), artificial colorants (-3pts), ground corn (-3pts), if corn is in top 5 ingredients (-2pts), if food contains any other animal fat than fish oil (-2pts), soy or soybeans (-2pts), if it contains salt (-1pt), if any of the meat sources are organic (+5pts), if food is endorsed by a major breed group (+5pts), if food is baked not extruded (+5pts), has probiotics (+3pts), has fruit (+3pts), has vegetables (+3pts), if animal sources are hormone-free and antibiotic free (+2pts), has barley (+2pts), has flax seed oil (+2pts), has oats or oatmeal (+1pt), has sunflower oil (+1pt), for every different specific animal protein source, other than the first one listed (+1pt), has glucosamine and chondroitin (+1pt), and if vegetables have been tested for pesticides and are pesticide-free (+1pt).
*We like our dogs and puppies to have a top quality dog food with no grade lower than an A.*