Family Pet Guide > Dogs > Terrier > Miniature Schnauzer

Miniature Schnauzer

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with kids
with seniors
with other animals
with strangers
Energy & Exercise
Training Needs
Grooming Needs
Size: Small (10 to 25 lbs.)
Lifespan: Long (12 to 15+ years)
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Miniature Schnauzers, the toy breed cousin of the Standard Schnazuer, are a scruffy terrier-like dog originally from Germany. Miniature Schnauzers are close cousins of the Brussels Griffon (made famous in the movie As Good As It Gets, with Jack Nicholson) and the Affenpinscher, and have earned a reputation as the "grumpy old men" of the dog world. Miniature Schnauzers weigh approximately 10 to 25 pounds, but are bold little dogs with big personalities. They make good watch dogs--Schnauzers don't bark without reason--and are very protective of their family. They're typically guarded with strangers, and will let out a "welcome bark" when someone comes to the door. Schnauzers are active, robust dogs that want to be near their family members at all times, and are good with kids that recognize gentle play (they are relatively bite-less, although they will bark). If bored, Schnauzers will "invent their own fun", much to the detriment of a clean house, and often get depressed without enough attention and affection. Miniature Schnauzers are popular housepets in city and country, and have been described as sturdy, healthy, muscular, elegant, and ruggedly handsome by their fans.

General Care

Mini Schnauzers are generally healthy, smart and easy-to-train family dogs, and are largely a non-shedding breed. That, however, doesn't mean that they are low-maintenance in the grooming department: their curly double coat needs regular brushing a few times a week, and for sanity's sake, many owners get their Schnauzers clipped professionally 3 or 4 times a year. Their long ears should also be checked, washed, and dried regularly. Schnauzers are intelligent and hard-headed, and need both obedience training and socialization early on. These loving dogs were bred as working companion dogs and ratters, and some still instinctually feel they need a "job to do". Schnauzers are also reputed to be quite fearless and the Mini Schnauzer should be carefully monitored around larger and agressive breeds when off-leash. Mini Schnauzers often live to be upwards of 15 years old, but common health problems do include diabetes, pancreatitis, bladder issues, ear infections, obesity, and sometimes hot spots.

For more information on Miniature Schnauzer ownership and care, check out the Miniature Schnauzer breed page on

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