Miniature Schnauzers are super healthy, tremendously enthusiastic and goofy companions. High energy is a natural characteristic of this breed and he will not miss a thing that is going around him. Physical square proportion is an indicator of its robustness.
This extrovert pet is going to make your day with its funny activities. But you cannot underestimate him as they were bred to prey on the rodents. They are still good at it. A hypoallergenic coat has brought them all the more popularity among the pet lovers. They belong to the best little dogs’ list.
Miniature Schnauzer Personality:
Size does not tell anything about a Miniature Schnauzer personality. This dog can be described with the word ‘active’. You can be sure of his firm and tough nature in spite of having a small physique.
They like to remain busy almost all the time and their functions include running, digging, chasing and everything that a dog is supposed to do. His terrier nature gives him no quarter for laziness. He likes your presence.
But this is not the kind of dog who is always looking for a chance to grab your lap. Rather, he would keep himself occupied in something around your vicinity. Mini Schnauzer grants little room for smaller pets as they are occasionally considered as enemies to him. You have to put some efforts to shape him as a rounded dog.
Unlike their larger cousins, they are not so dominating. He is watchful of the surroundings because of an alert nature. He will warn you of a new event or a stranger. This dog is sociable and carries a sweet nature along the way. He is scared of almost nothing.
Measure Miniature Schnauzer smartness:
Intelligence is an integral part of his personality and it often leads to obstinacy too. He will find out the things for himself. You are dealing with a master manipulator. He can bend his ways to the target meaning the treats.
His smartness is beneficial for easier trainability. It is an active dog who will enjoy the benefits of hand signals. This dog captures the 12th spot on the dog intelligence ranking prepared by Professor Stanley Coren. This position amplifies the smartness of the Miniature Schnauzer.
He is highly adaptable and is fit for a life in an apartment. He can also manage his jobs well in a ranch. Their extrovert nature gives them an edge in social circumstances. He is a toop class performer in dog sports and shows.
What & how to feed:
An adult Miniature Schnauzer requires one cup of dog food divided into two to three meals everyday. Puppies will ask for 3-4 meals a day. But a dog should be fed according to its age, health, sex and so many other aspects.
So, this is more of a general rule and can be altered as per the situation demands. This is a sturdy dog and needs high quality dog food to preserve his strength and normal activities. Higher metabolic capacity lures him to overeating and can be a reason for obesity.
So, a lot of treats along with free feeding will easily give you a fat dog. Good food ensures nutritional fulfillment instead of filling his stomach with useless fillers. Proteins, vitamins and fatty acids are vital for his well being. His meals must contain 20-30% proteins. It will be the source of his energy.
Fish, lamb, chicken and beef are excellent sources animal proteins. Salmon oil, flaxseed oil and canola oil will provide him with necessary fats. Brown rice and sweet potatoes can get him carbohydrates. Give him fresh drinking water too.
Escape a few health issues:
Miniature Schnauzers are basically healthy dogs. But some of them can develop a few diseases, so, a potential owner has to gather some knowledge in this respect.
Medical clearances from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) and the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF) are going to spare you from some of the major conditions. Ophthalmological tests will bear the greatest importance as these dogs tend to suffer from cataracts and Entropion. Some exclusive care program might come handy in this respect.
Cataracts affect his eye lenses and lead to blindness. Progressive Retinal Atrophy is another ocular issue that damages the retina. Urinary stones will have a symptom in bloody urine or stinky smell and this problem often seeks for a surgery or at least a prescribed diet.
DNA test can obstruct von Willebrand’s Disease which is responsible for blood clotting disorder. As a result, there might occur nose or gum bleeding. This disease also prevents due recuperation from a surgery because of long time bleeding.
Muscular Dystrophy results in a stiff neck or awkward physical movement. Then there is Congenital Megaesophagus. Food gets stuck in the esophagus and this phenomenon causes regurgitation as well as pneumonia.
Insightful care program:
Shedding is almost never a concern for the Miniature Schnauzer. This dog has a double coat with wiry topcoat and soft undercoat.
But you have to brush him regularly in order to keep the shiny look of the coat. Trimming is the common option for most of the Mini lovers. It is usually done in every 5-8 weeks.
Most probably, you will have to go to a professional groomer to achieve his desired appearance. After a few sessions at the groomer’s, you are going to learn the ins and outs of the techniques. Then you can do it all by yourself.
His coat tends to matting and you must brush it 2-3 times each week to prevent it. You can get himself rid of all the dead hair and dirt by bathing him once a month. Trimming the nails and cleaning the ears are vital for his well being.
You should brush his teeth 2-3 times per week. Miniature Schnauzers must be kept within a fenced yard because of his terrier nature.
Despite his active life, you need to take him out regularly and keep the dog on the leash during this period. Take some ideas on what your puppy likes the most. You have to give him identification tag and collar.
Thus, you can get reunited if he is lost somehow. A yearly veterinarian visit for overall health check-up can immensely benefit the dog. They like to remain near you. So, give him a lot of toys to explore while you are leaving.
Proper exercise method:
Exercise is an obligatory requirement for a Miniature Schnauzer. An adult dog should walk for at least 30 minutes. It is going to maintain his mental and physical freshness. This program will put several health issues at bay.
Not to forget, a puppy does not demand scheduled exercise. Walking, running, catching and fetching all the methods are okay for this small dog. Arrange an interactive game session and participate in it.
Throw a ball or something away for him to fetch it. If you do not let his energy out, he will bark and create nuisance. He possesses a fair amount of energy which is not actually swelling up all the time. He can fit well in both a country home or in an apartment. This dog is going to keep himself busy inside your home.
So, a yard will be a blessing for him. You can also put his strong prey drive at work by setting him on the trail of rodents.
Miniature Schnauzer training cues:
Extremely smart Miniature Pinschers respond well to training. As soon as you bring the dog home, you have to start the training. Begin with socialization, crate training and house training. This is basically a friendly dog and do not make a fuss about socialization.
Teach him about how to react to a situation. Kid companionship however should not be allowed without supervision by an adult person. Teach both your children and the puppy on the normal rules of engagement. Kids must not pull his ears or legs.
Let him know the crate as it is going to become his abode. Dogs usually do not spoil their living place. So, you will have ample chances to get his natural orders under control in a timely fashion. It will also help him handle separation anxiety. But do not just live him inside of a crate for a very long period of time.
He is a small hunter and you can use him for little tasks in this regard as he was bred to be a ratter. He can perform excellently in obedience and agility. This dog may stick to one person in some cases. Of course, the basic commands such as ‘come’, ‘leave’, ‘stay, etc come first in his lesson.
Miniature Schnauzer Origin:
He was actually a farm ratter in the old days and still you will get a few hints to that tendency. This street smart dog was developed in Germany like so many other reputed breeds. Standard Schnauzers were their forefathers and several cross breeding resulted in this toy dog breed in the late 19th century.
Actually, their name was Miniature Wirehaired Pinscher instead of Miniature Schnauzer. The Affenpinscher and the Poodle are thought to have contributed to their breeding as well. The Miniature Schnauzers were acclaimed by the Kennel Club (UK) in the mid 1930’s.
You will consistently find this terrier in the top popular dog list because of its interesting personality and amazing verve.