Frequently Asked Questions
What size and weight are Miniature Schnauzers?
The breed standard calls for the height at the withers or shoulder blades to be at least 12" and no more than 14". It does not specify any particular weight for the breed. That will depend on size and bone structure. A dog measuring 12" to 14" will usually weigh 11 to 20 lbs.
Does the Pet Miniature Schnauzer require a lot of grooming?
The Miniature Schnauzer is not a "wash and wear" dog. Since they do not shed, they must be groomed on a regular basis. This includes frequent brushing, combing, nail trimming, and ear cleaning as well as periodic clippering or stripping. Even if you have your dog groomed professionally, they still need to be brushed and combed weekly to prevent knots and mats in between grooming.
The breed has a double-coat; wiry topcoat and soft undercoat. To maintain the double coat required for a dog show, the dog’s coat needs to be plucked (hand stripped) or rolled on a regular basis. Most people choose to have their pet’s coat clippered. Pet Miniature Schnauzers should be groomed every five to eight weeks to look their best. This is something most people choose to let a professional do, but you may choose to learn to do it yourself. See Grooming Page for more details.
Whether you choose to clipper or strip the coat, in return, you have a dog that is generally odorless and does not leave hair all over your clothes and home!
Does the Miniature Schnauzer shed or cause allergies?
Miniature Schnauzers shed very little. They tend to cause fewer and less severe reactions in people allergic to dogs than breeds that shed more. Of course, anyone allergic to dogs should spend time around the breed before buying a Miniature Schnauzer because individual reactions vary widely.
Are Miniature Schnauzers good with children?
Miniature Schnauzers are generally good with children if raised with them from a young age. Young children need to be introduced carefully to dogs and no young child should be left unsupervised with a dog of any breed.
Is there such a thing as a ‘Toy’ Schnauzer?
No. There are breeders that are breeding for dogs less than the breed standard of 12” to 14” at the withers. They are many times referred to as “Toy Schnauzers” or “Micro-Mini’s” to make them sound special or like they are a breed of their own. They are not. These are simply undersized Miniature Schnauzers and should not command any type of premium price.
What are the acceptable Miniature Schnauzer colors?
There are ONLY three accepted coat colors, "Salt and Pepper", "Black and Silver", and “Black”. The “Salt and Pepper" is characterized by banded hair, and may be any shade of gray. The “Black and Silver” color pattern generally follows the same pattern as the “Salt and Pepper”; however the entire “Pepper” body section must be black. The “Black” is a solid black, but some may have a small white spot on the chest. As the dogs age and are clippered, “Blacks”, and “Black and Silvers” may fade from black to dark gray. “Salt and Peppers” may fade to a lighter shade of gray.
Why not a White Miniature Schnauzer?
The Miniature Schnauzer was developed to be a smaller version of the Standard Schnauzer which has never come in the white color. In addition, in the US we believe almost all whites are highly likely to have another breed in the background (think West Highland White Terrier).
What about those Parti-color, Liver or Merle Miniature Schnauzers?
These are not colors or patterns ever associated with the Miniature Schnauzer. Some less-than-responsible breeders today are mixing in other breeds to achieve these off patterns and colors, marketing them as “rare and unusual” miniature schnauzers and charging the unsuspecting public big bucks for essentially mixed breed dogs! Buyer beware!
Should the ears be cropped on my Miniature Schnauzer?
The breed standard allows for both cropped and uncropped ears. Ear cropping is usually done between seven and twelve weeks of age. The ear cropping process should be done prior to the puppy being placed as a pet and arranged by the breeder. So if you already have your puppy, it’s best to leave the ears as they are.
Should the tail be docked on my Miniature Schnauzer?
Yes. Tail docking is a simple procedure done at about three days of age (along with dew claw removal) and causes virtually no discomfort to the puppy.
Where can I find a Miniature Schnauzer?
Your best bet to find a healthy, well-adjusted puppy is from a serious breeder who is knowledgeable of the breed. A well-bred Miniature Schnauzer will be a beloved family member and companion for many years. Choose wisely. To help you in your search, we have developed a Referral Page. You want a sound, healthy puppy who will grow up to be a healthy, well socialized representative of the breed.
Rescue / Rehoming
Sometimes an owner has to find its dog a new home. These dogs can be of various ages from puppies to older adults. There are various reasons this can happen including divorce or the owner passes on or has to go into a nursing home. There are groups that help find new homes for these dogs. A responsible rescue group will be very careful in selecting new homes and matching up the dog to the new family, much like a serious breeder does in placing their puppies. The rescuer has usually done some temperament testing to determine if the dog gets along with other dogs, cats, children etc. See Rescue link for more information.
What should I consider if I want to breed my Miniature Schnauzer?
The AMSC believes that Miniature Schnauzers should be bred to preserve the breed traits we all love.
The best way to gain more knowledge on the subject is to contact experienced, serious breeders in your area. They will be a wealth of knowledge. A great place to start looking is at a local AKC all-breed conformation club. You can also check the AMSC Referral page for AMSC members in your area that might be able to give you some guidance. Also, there are many good books on the subject that you should be able to locate at your local bookstore or online stores. The American Kennel Club (AKC) has many resources available as well.