A friendly and child-loving dog, the Miniature Schnauzer enjoys much popularity all over the world. He is one of three varieties of Schnauzer (the other two being the Standard and the Giant) and as his name indicates, he is the smallest.
The Miniature Schnauzer was developed in the 19th century from crosses between the Standard Schnauzer, Affenpinscher, Poodle and other Miniature Pinschers of the time. Although originally developed as a lethal rat catcher and killer, he now enjoys life as a popular companion, show and sporting dog. He is renowned for his dedicated work ethic and excels in sporting activities such as agility.
He is an entertaining and social companion with plenty of heart. He has a sweet, endearing nature that quickly steals the hearts of people he meets. He is very willing to please and makes an obedient and delightful companion.
They make good watchdogs and are protective of their territories and families. Miniature Schnauzers are also avid hunters and may not get on very well with other pets. They enjoy close human companionship and are happiest when they are allowed to live closely with the family.
Exercise and training
The Mini does need daily exercise, but this can be fulfilled in different ways – from a walk to the park or a spirited and interactive game of fetch in the garden to various dog sports.
* The Miniature Schnauzer has a wiry topcoat and soft undercoat, with longer furnishings on the face and legs. He can be brushed weekly. He needs hand stripping to keep the wiry texture of his coat.
* Regular hand stripping helps to remove dead hair from the coat and prevents excessive hair loss through the home.
* Remember to regularly check the eyes and ears. Also check your dog’s feet and nails.
* Remember to check and clean your Schnauzer’s facial hair.
* Ask your vet about the right diet for your Schnauzer, according to his size, age and activity level. The breed should never be allowed to become obese, and healthy eating from puppyhood is an important way to prevent weight gain.
Miniature Schnauzer fact file
Original function: Companion
Average lifespan: 12-14 years
Ideal height: 30-36cm
Ideal weight: 6-7kg
Attitude to strangers: Reserved
Coat type: Hard, wiry outer coat and soft, close undercoat; longer beard and eyebrows
Colours: Pepper and salt, pure black, and black and silver (white is recognised in some countries)
Ease of training: Easy-to-train, intelligent breed
Character: Sociable, spirited, alert, obedient and responsive
The full article appears in the March 2015 issue of AnimalTalk.