Miniature Schnauzers were first developed from crosses between the Miniature Pinscher, Poodle or Affenpinscher and the Standard Schnauzer. The Miniature Schnauzer continues to be one of the most popular breeds of dog in the United States.
Miniature Schnauzers are very distinctive in their appearance. The dog is muscular, compact and of a square build. The dogs have long eyebrows, beards, and feathering on the legs. In the USA, the ears are often cropped to stand upright and the tail is often docked short. The coats of the dog are wiry and do not shed, which is particularly alluring to pet owners. The AKC only recognizes salt, black and pepper color dogs as pure. The height of the dog is generally 12 to 14 inches at the withers (American standard) or 30-35cm and the weight of the dog is generally 10 to 15 pounds (4.5 to 7 kg).
Miniature Schnauzers are well known for their robust and lively personality. The dogs are very loyal to their owners and very energetic, but they will become obese if they do not get frequent advertising. Miniature Schnauzers are also very vocal dogs and are well known for their barking abilities. This makes them very suitable as watchdogs. The dogs are often guarded of strangers until the owner introduces them to the dog. The dog can be too vocal at times, however rarely barks when trained properly. The dog is very good with children, however play should be gentle. Sometimes the dogs can nip and bark at small children.
Miniature Schnauzers generally are easy to train and highly intelligent. The dogs can require a lot affection and attention of their owner whether pets or show dogs. With no attention the dogs will become depressed and have poor mental and physical health. A very versatile and good family dog.
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