Dog Breed

Miniature Schnauzer

Confidence KingLong-lived
Primary image of Miniature Schnauzer dog breed
Full Name
Miniature Schnauzer
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Life Span
12 - 14 years
11 - 20 pounds

If you're looking for a confident, healthy, and strong dog that happens to be packaged in a small frame (11 - 20 pounds) then you've found your dog. The mini Schnauzer is the smallest of the schnauzer breeds but maintains much of it is proud terrier and schnauzer personality. It is very versatile and can be a big fit on a large farm with many acres, all the way to small apartment living. They can be demanding, but with proper socialization and training, make for an excellent dog. As an extra bonus- the mini Schnauzer is also hypoallergenic.

Bred For
Family Considerations
Child Friendly

Is the Miniature Schnauzer good with children? Nearly all dogs enjoy playing with small children, but some can play too rough, or be a bit careless. In some cases dogs can get jealous of small children, or try and "herd" them due to their natural instincts.

Stranger Friendly

Is the Miniature Schnauzer friendly with strangers? Getting a dog that is friendly with people really depends on what your lifestyle is. Dogs who are more cautious with strangers oftentimes make good guard dogs, which can be a great fit for some owners. If you are social, live in the city, or frequently have guests over, you may want to consider getting a stranger friendly dog.

Dog Friendly

Is the Miniature Schnauzer friendly with other dogs? Of course this is particularly important if you already have another dog at home. However, it's an important factor to consider as well if you plan on frequently going to the dog park. Otherwise, even a dog who is not automatically friendly with other dogs can be an excellent fit, as they can still be affectionate with their human family.

Likes to Cuddle

Does the Miniature Schnauzer like to cuddle? All dogs want love, but they have different boundaries when it comes to physical affection. If you plan on frequently having a dog on your lap or pushed up against you, then you should consider whether this breed enjoys that.


Does the Miniature Schnauzer like to play? All puppies are playful, but as adults certain dogs are more playful. If you have children, or otherwise want to keep your dog active with plenty of play, there are plenty of options of breeds who will be happy to play all day.

Service Dog Ability

Does the Miniature Schnauzer make a good service dog? When looking to train a service dog it's important to consider how they were historically bred, and if their personality makes a good fit. A service dog must be smart, patient, and obsessed with pleasing their owner. Working dogs are a good fits since service dog 'work' gives them a feeling of accomplishment from doing a job.

Overall Ease of Breed
Ease for Novice

Is the Miniature Schnauzer good for first time owners? Dogs that are good for first time owners are ones who are easy to train, and are eager to please their owner. Very large dogs, or dogs with very high energy may also not be the best for first time owners since it adds a layer of complexity.

Training Potential

How well can the Miniature Schnauzer be trained? This rating is about the training potential of the Miniature Schnauzer. Dogs with high training potential oftentimes are good service dogs, police dogs, and dog show competition dogs. This does not necessarily mean they are the easiest to train, since many will be very intelligent and demanding.

Amount of Shedding

Does the Miniature Schnauzer shed a lot?

Ease of Grooming

Is the Miniature Schnauzer easy to groom?

Exercise Need

Does the Miniature Schnauzer need a lot of exercise?


How smart is the Miniature Schnauzer?

Amount of Barking

How much does the Miniature Schnauzer bark? Does the Miniature Schnauzer bark too much? It depends on your lifestyle, and where you live. Dogs use barking to communicate, keep guard, and alert. A strong bark can be a good characteristic for guard dogs, or flock guardian dogs who need to be vocal.In apartment living you should consider getting a dog who is less vocal.

Guard Dog Ability

Is the Miniature Schnauzer a good guard dog?

Tolerates Being Alone

Is the Miniature Schnauzer good at staying alone? Is the Miniature Schnauzer independent?

Home and Environment Considerations
Good for Apartment Living

Is the Miniature Schnauzer a good apartment dog? Can the Miniature Schnauzer live in an apartment without becoming frustrated or destructive? Typically people immediately consider the size of the dog, but energy level and historical habitat are also factors.


How big is the Miniature Schnauzer?

Tolerates Heat

How much does the Miniature Schnauzer tolerate hot weather? When is it too hot for a Miniature Schnauzer?

Tolerates Cold

How much does the Miniature Schnauzer tolerate cold weather? When is it too cold for a Miniature Schnauzer?

Potential to Run Away

Does the Miniature Schnauzer try to run away? Some dogs have natural wanderlust and are escape artists... they will do everything to get out and explore.

Physical Characteristics
General Health

Is the Miniature Schnauzer a healthy dog? The general health of a Miniature Schnauzer should be measured not just by how many years they live, but how often they have health issues during their lives. It is important to know which health conditions your breed is prone to- hip problems, eye problems, bloating, and arthritis are all common dog health problems.

Energy Level

How energetic is the Miniature Schnauzer? Is the Miniature Schnauzer too energetic for your lifestyle?

Amount of Drooling

How much does the Miniature Schnauzer drool?

Prey Drive

Does the Miniature Schnauzer have a large prey drive? Does the Miniature Schnauzer like to chase birds, cats, and other small animals? Prey drive can be bothersome at the park, but really an issue at home if you have small animals, since this comes as a natural instinct for dogs with high prey drive, to chase cats, birds, etc.


Is the Miniature Schnauzer atheltic? Is the Miniature Schnauzer fast and strong?

Breed Variations

  • Terrier
  • Schnauzer
  • Miniature Schnauzer
The Miniature Schnauzer is a purebred dog that belongs to the Schnauzer sub group, which falls under the larger Terrier dog breed group.
Terrier group: Anyone who has had a terrier knows that they come with a big personality. Across the Terrier dog group there is much variation, but they are all feisty, proud, and extremely loyal to their family. With this strong personality comes stubbornness, so they are not the easiest dog, especially for a first time dog owner. However, with training and a strong owner, they can be some of the most rewarding dogs- their strong personality is fun, active, and will always bring something new. Terriers were originally bred for hunting, exterminating small vermin, and home protection. Terriers are a healthy and athletic breed. Because of this they require a good amount of exercise.
Schnauzer sub-group: If you needed a serious chief to run your city, but it had to be a dog, a Schnauzer would be a good option. They are very independent and intelligent. This can be seen in their proud gait... as they walk.. almost as if they are aware of their abilities and strengths. Generally these are all positive traits, but early training and a strong owner are essential. The Schnauzer is mid to high energy, and incredibly alert. They like to 'own' their space, so can sometimes become protective. Because of this they are excellent guard dogs, but again, they need good early socialization and training. In return you will be given an excellent family companion and guard dog. Schnauzers are also hypoallergenic, do not shed very much, and are not a huge breed- so they are a good apartment dog, especially for an owner who can give them the proper exercise.

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