Dog enjoying the view from window.
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The Spunky Miniature Schnauzer Makes A Great Family Pet


Are you looking for a family dog that is loyal, intelligent, sturdy, and has a personality that you will respect and admire?  If so, the Miniature Schnauzer is the dog for your family!

Miniature Schnauzers are smart, easy to train, and loyal little dogs that make excellent family pets.  They are not usually aggressive but will protect their buddies.  They love attention and will cuddle with you on the couch.

The Standard Schnauzer was a popular dog breed long before the Miniature Schnauzer came into existence.  However, the Miniature became more popular over time and surpassed the Standard Schnauzer in popularity, especially after World War II.  By 1899, the Miniature Schnauzer was shown as a distinct breed from the Standard Schnauzer. However, the American Kennel Club did not recognize two dogs as separate breeds until 1933.

Miniature Schnauzers currently (2020) ranks as the 19th most popular breed according to the AKC. By comparison, the Standard Schnauzer is 89th, and the Giant Schnauzer is 78th in the 2020 AKC rankings.

Miniature Schnauzers Have Great Personalities

The Miniature Schnauzers is spunky, inquisitive, and alert.  These pets love being active during playtime, but they are well behaved in the house when play is over. They are less domineering or aggressive than Standard Schnauzer towards other people and strange dogs.

They are great with children and a fantastic watchdog.  If your miniature schnauzer has not been around children as a puppy, they may be intimidated by them and should not be left alone with strange children.  They do not like having their ears or furred pulled.  So, they should be well supervised when there are toddlers in the family.   If your Miniature Schnauzer has not been around children as a puppy, it may be intimidated by the youngsters.

When they feel cornered, they become fearful and may bite in self-defense.   Cleo, my dog, was not around children as a puppy, and when she felt cornered, she bit one of my grandchildren.  Fortunately, it was only a warning nip and not serious, but I did have a prolonged chat with Cleo.

Emotionally, Miniature Schnauzer wants and needs to be with its family.  Cleo did not like being left alone, and when I returned home, even after a short absence, her greetings were most enthusiastic!

Like most dogs, Miniature Schnauzers want and need exercise.  However, a nice long walk on the leash or a romp in the yard each day is usually enough physical activity for this breed. They also do better living indoors with the family, although they can survive outside just fine. Emotionally, these animals need to be part of their pack at all times.  Cleo did not like being left alone, and when I returned home,  her greetings were most enthusiastic!

Miniature Schnauzers Need Grooming

The Miniature Schnauzer needs brushing at least once a week.  They have a thick wiry coat, and they shed very little.  Consequently, they need clipping every two to three months.    You can learn to do a proper Schnauzer clip with a bit of practice.  If you want to do the grooming yourself, get a set of good quality clippers and scissors.

I groomed my minis myself for quite a while before deciding to get them professionally groomed.  Many Youtube videos will help you learn the proper cut.

Because they do not shed or shed very little, they are considered to be a hypoallergenic breed.  Of course, that does not mean someone with dog allergies will not be affected.   Hypoallergenic means they are less of a threat to allergy suffers than dogs that shed their fur.

Miniature Schnauzers Are Good Watchdogs

They alert little dogs and sound the alarm when they hear strange noises or when the doorbell rings.  They have a rather powerful bark, not like some yappy small dog.

They are watchdogs, not guard dogs.  Due to their smaller size, they are not very intimidating dogs.  Also, they are not really aggressive.  Once the alert barking is over, they are usually very friendly to the newcomer.

Every dog has its own personality.  I once had two Miniatures that came from the same litter.   They would both bark almost non-stop whenever the neighbor was in her backyard.  This did not please her, of course, and fortunately, I did not live there for long.  My next home had a high fence the dogs could not see through.

Miniature Schnauzers Are Easy To Train

House training my Miniature Schnauzers was not difficult at all.  They all learned to ask to go outside to do their business after only a week or two.

They can learn many voice commands if you put in the effort.  My dogs seem to understand what I say to them.  I seldom bothered to teach them tricks such as to sit up, roll over or play dead, but I am sure they would have easily learned if I had tried.  When I think about it, maybe they actually were training me.

Miniature Schnauzers Are Usually Healthy Dogs

Minis are probably about average when it comes to health issues.  I didn’t have to take mine to the vet except for routine checkups and shots.  The notable exception, of course, was Cleo.  She developed diabetes at the age of nine.

I noticed Cleo began drinking much more water than she usually did and frequently had to urinate.  Also, she did not have as good an appetite as before.  I suspected diabetes because my daughter has a Pug who was diabetic.  After courageously fighting the disease for about a year, she lost her battle and died when she was 10 years old.


Miniature Schnauzer Coat Colors

Miniature Schnauzers have 4 color variations. They are salt and pepper, black and silver, black, and white. However, the all-white coat is not acceptable for AKC standards.

gray miniature schnauzer
Salt and Pepper
miniature schnauzer in studio
Black and Silver

miniature schnauzer in studio
white miniature schnauzer puppy

Miniature Schnauzers Are My Favorite Dog Breed

I like most dog breeds and would not hesitate to get a German Shepherd, Cocker Spaniel, Poodle, or Pekingese, all of which I have owned.  However, my first choice would still be a Miniature Schnauzer.

The reason for my great affection for Miniature Schnauzers is because of Cleo.  She had such a great personality and was so loyal, loving, and happy that I hold her first among equals of all the dogs I have ever known.

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