Schnauzer, Standard.jpg
Breed Group Group 5: Pinschers and Schnauzers
Sub-group 5-A: Large Pinschers and Schnauzers
Origin Country Germany
Weight Males: 28-44 pounds. Females: 28-44 pounds.
Height Males: 17-22 inches. Females: 17-22 inches.
Other Name(s) Mittelschnauzer, Schnauzer
Breed Type Pure
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Schnauzer, Standard

Breed Group Group 5: Pinschers and Schnauzers
Sub-group 5-A: Large Pinschers and Schnauzers
Origin Country Germany
Weight Males: 28-44 pounds. Females: 28-44 pounds.
Height Males: 17-22 inches. Females: 17-22 inches.
Other Name(s) Mittelschnauzer, Schnauzer
Breed Type Pure
click here for FULL BREED STANDARD

Breed Spotlight

Origins

Just as Terriers were a favorite farm dog of the English, the Schnauzers have been a favorite farm dog of Germany for hundreds of years. In fact, ancestors of today’s Schnauzers can be seen in history as far back as the 14th century. These dogs have always been multi-talented, herding cattle, serving as guard dogs, ratting, and even pulling carts filled with produce to market. The Schnauzer breeds are believed to be a culmination of early ancestors of German Poodles, German Spitzes, and other early hunting, Terrier, and Pinscher types. In fact, the Schnauzer was originally referred to as the Wirehaired Pinscher. The name “Schnauzer” comes from the German word for “muzzle,” or “schnauze,” a feature that—along with the characteristic facial furnishings of the mustache, beard, and brows—sets the dog apart from other wire-haired breeds. The Standard Schnauzer is the oldest of the Schnauzers, and it is the originator of both the Giant and Miniature varieties. All Schnauzer varieties possess the same excellent working abilities and amiable companion qualities that make them the ultimate all-purpose dogs.

It wasn’t until the 1880s that the Germans began to breed the Miniature Schnauzer, since a smaller version of the already popular medium-sized Schnauzer was desired. To achieve this miniaturization, it is believed that the Standard Schnauzer was bred with the Affenpinscher to create a smaller version of the breed. It is widely thought that at this time some Spitzes, Poodles, and Brussels Griffons were also bred in, in order to set the salt and pepper and solid black coat varieties. Before the time of professional pest control, a dog’s ratting abilities were essential to keeping people safe from pest-borne illnesses. It is largely believed that this was the motive behind the miniaturization of the Schnauzer into the Miniature Schnauzer, since they could access more spaces than their larger brethren.

Just as the mini variety of the breed was being developed in Germany, World War I broke out. The breed development had to be put on hold for the time being, but at the end of the war, the Miniature Schnauzer regained popularity and the development of the breed continued. Subsequently, the first Miniature Schnauzer litter was born in America in 1925, prompting the start of America’s love affair with this plucky breed.

During the 19th century, it is believed that the Standard Schnauzer was crossed with ancestors of today’s Bouviers des Flandres, Great Danes, Rottweilers, German Pinschers, as well as other droving and shepherd dogs. This resulted in the much larger and more powerful “Munich Schnauzer,” or “Munchener,” named for one of the areas in Germany where the dogs became well-known. At the turn of the 19th century, the Munich Schnauzer was renamed the Giant Schnauzer. Giant Schnauzers were renowned for their protective instincts, as well as their herding and droving capabilities. They were heavily utilized for their power and utility in World War I and World War II. Today, the Giant Schnauzer is prized as an excellent working dog, excelling in herding, police work, and protection sports in his home country of Germany.

Breed Characteristics

Head: Somewhat mesaticephalic skull-type, elongated and rectangular, moderate in size and in proportion to the rest of the body. The skull may remain rectangular all the way to the end of the muzzle, or may narrow just slightly, almost imperceptibly. The topskull is relatively long and flat from front and in profile. Due in part to the characteristic beard, appears square from above and ax-head-shaped in profile. The head is never overly narrow or overly bulky, but a good balance of strength and substance. The head is clean-cut, without excess skin or wrinkle.
Eyes: Moderate in size, oval to almond in shape, may be obliquely set, and are medium to dark brown (preferable) in color. The eye rims are well-fitted and well-pigmented. The eyes are never rounded or bulging. There should be sufficient bone in the surrounding orbital sockets to protect the eyes.
Ears: Medium in size, set high on the skull and level with the plane of the skull. They are neither too high and breaking the plane of the skull, nor too low and dropping below the plane. Ears may be natural or surgically cropped. Natural ears should be V-shaped and dropped or buttoned (preferred), and the tips should hang close to the cheeks. Cropped ears may be cropped to any length.
Muzzle: The muzzle is strongly developed, long, full, deep, and broad. It ends bluntly and along with the beard and moustache furnishings, gives the head an ax-head-like appearance. Upper and lower jaws have good bone substance, appearing strong and equal in length. They are never snipy or weak.
Nose: The nose is well-pigmented and black, or self-colored according to the coat in non-standard color varieties. The nostrils are well-opened.
Neck: Moderate length to allow for proud head carriage and strongly muscled with a slight arch. The neck tapers smoothly from the deeper and broader body toward the head. The neck is clean-cut, without excess skin, throatiness, or dewlap.
Chest: Deep, broad, but never wider than deep. The brisket extends to the point of the elbows.
Body: Short, compact, solid, and good substance. The body is never racy or refined. Width at forequarters is approximately equal to the width at the hindquarters.
Feet: Oval to round, compact, with well-arched toes and tough pads.
Tail: Set somewhat high on the croup, thick at the base and tapering toward the tip. Carried in accordance with the dog’s mood and energy level, usually carried above the level of the topline, but never tucked. Tail may be left natural (preferred) or docked short. Natural tails are of a medium length, with the tip of the last vertebrae extending to the hock joints when held down. Natural tails are either straight or will form a hook, sabre, or sickle. The tail may be straight or gently curved. Docked tails are cut short, within two to three vertebrae in length.
Movement: Schnauzers move with effortless, efficient, agile, and powerful movement. The characteristics of healthy structure are evident: when moving away, the forelegs and rear pasterns should remain parallel to one another. When viewing movement from the front, the forelegs should remain parallel, with elbows and paws moving neither moving in nor out. From the rear, the back pads should be visible when the rear legs are extended. As speed increases, the forelimbs and hindlimbs will converge to the center line of gravity. From the side, the topline should remain firm and level. Good reach of movement in the front allows the forepaw to extend out in a line with the nose. The width between the forefeet when extended should be approximately equal to the width between the hindfeet when extended, indicating balance, good reach, and good drive. Dogs that exhibit any sign of breathing or locomotive difficulty shall be disqualified from the show ring.
Temperament: Schnauzers are renowned for their versatility and ability to be trained to do a number of jobs, from watchful family guardian to all-around farm dog. They are intelligent, eager to learn and work, responsive to their handlers, and courageous. They make for excellent family pets or working dogs. Any unprovoked aggressive or fearful behavior toward people is incorrect for this breed.
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Breed Standard

BREED GROUP 5: Pinschers and Schnauzers

Proportions: Square to off-square with length of the body, measured from the point of the forechest to the point of the rump being just slightly greater than the height at the withers. The ideal body height to length ratio is between 1:1 and 10:9. Females may be slightly longer. The body is stocky, well-put together, with sturdy substance and medium bone, never light or racy.

Head

General Appearance: Somewhat mesaticephalic skull-type, elongated and rectangular, moderate in size and in proportion to the rest of the body. The skull may remain rectangular all the way to the end of the muzzle, or may narrow just slightly, almost imperceptibly. The topskull is relatively long and flat from front and in profile. Due in part to the characteristic beard, appears square from above and ax-head-shaped in profile. The head is never overly narrow or overly bulky, but a good balance of strength and substance. The head is clean-cut, without excess skin or wrinkle.
Expression: The expression is reserved, highly intelligent, and watchful.
Stop: The stop is well-defined, and exaggerated by the characteristic brows.
Skull: The ideal muzzle-to-skull ratio is 1:1, with the topskull being equal to the muzzle.
The ideal muzzle-to-skull axis is parallel.
Muzzle: The muzzle is strongly developed, long, full, deep, and broad. It ends bluntly and along with the beard and moustache furnishings, gives the head an ax-head-like appearance. Upper and lower jaws have good bone substance, appearing strong and equal in length. They are never snipy or weak.
Lips or Flews: Lips are clean and fit tightly over the teeth and jaws.
Nose: The nose is well-pigmented and black, or self-colored according to the coat in non-standard color varieties. The nostrils are well-opened.
Cheeks: The cheeks are smoothly muscled to denote strength and give some breadth to the head and face. However, the cheeks should not appear chiseled or coarse, and should not protrude so much as to alter the rectangular appearance of the head.
Dentition and Bite: Forty-two strong, clean, white teeth. Bite may be level or scissor. Contact must be made between the top and bottom incisors. Missing or broken teeth as a result of routine work is not to be penalized.
Eyes: Moderate in size, oval to almond in shape, may be obliquely set, and are medium to dark brown (preferable) in color. The eye rims are well-fitted and well-pigmented. The eyes are never rounded or bulging. There should be sufficient bone in the surrounding orbital sockets to protect the eyes.
Ears: Medium in size, set high on the skull and level with the plane of the skull. They are neither too high and breaking the plane of the skull, nor too low and dropping below the plane. Ears may be natural or surgically cropped. Natural ears should be V-shaped and dropped or buttoned (preferred), and the tips should hang close to the cheeks. Cropped ears may be cropped to any length.

Body and Tail

General Description: Short, compact, solid, and good substance. The body is never racy or refined. Width at forequarters is approximately equal to the width at the hindquarters.
Neck: Moderate length to allow for proud head carriage and strongly muscled with a slight arch. The neck tapers smoothly from the deeper and broader body toward the head. The neck is clean-cut, without excess skin, throatiness, or dewlap.
Chest: Deep, broad, but never wider than deep. The brisket extends to the point of the elbows.
Topline: Straight, and may be level, or gently sloped from slightly prominent withers to croup. The back is short, broad, strongly muscled, and straight, yet supple. The loin is taut, and may be flat and level, or slightly arched, yet supportive. The back is never long, swayed, or roached.
Croup: Gently sloped.
Underline: Slight tuck up present. The underline is taut and firm, without any indication of sagging or excess weight.
Ribs: Long, well-sprung, well-laid-back, oval-shaped, never barrel-chested or slab-sided.
Tail: Set somewhat high on the croup, thick at the base and tapering toward the tip. Carried in accordance with the dog’s mood and energy level, usually carried above the level of the topline, but never tucked. Tail may be left natural (preferred) or docked short. Natural tails are of a medium length, with the tip of the last vertebrae extending to the hock joints when held down. Natural tails are either straight or will form a hook, sabre, or sickle. The tail may be straight or gently curved. Docked tails are cut short, within two to three vertebrae in length.

Forequarters and Hindquarters

Forequarters: Forequarters are always in balance with the hindquarters. Forequarters are well-angulated, with well-laid-back shoulder blades. Shoulder blades are approximately equal in length to the upper arm and forearm.
Elbows: Elbows are close to the body. The point of the elbows is approximately half the dog’s height at the withers.
Forelegs: Frontal View: Straight, of good muscle, moderate bone, and parallel to one another.
Side View: The forelimbs appear straight with strong pasterns.
Pasterns: Never weak or broken.
Hindquarters: Upper thigh and lower thigh are equal in length, strong, sturdy, of moderate bone, and well-muscled.
Rear View: When viewed from the rear, the rear pasterns are parallel to one another.
Side View: Good angulation will allow the rear toes to align with the point of the rump or within one to two paw-lengths behind the point of the rump, with the rear pasterns remaining perpendicular to the ground and parallel to one another.
Stifle Joint: Well-angulated with a good bend to well-let-down rear pasterns.
Angulations: Angulation of hindquarters is always in balance with angulation of forequarters.
Feet: Oval to round, compact, with well-arched toes and tough pads.

Coat

Skin: Well-fitted, yet supple. The skin should never obstruct the outline of the dog.
Coat Type: The coat consists of a double coat. The undercoat is dense and soft. The outer coat is harsh, wiry, bristly, and protective, with the longer coat on the forelimbs and hindlimbs and facial furnishings being longer and less harsh. The Schnauzer’s unique appearance is thanks in part to the breed-specific grooming performed on the breed. The coat on the body is traditionally clipped, plucked, or stripped to neaten the overall appearance, with the coat on the limbs, brows, and muzzle being left longer. Schnauzers should never be completely shaved or clipped to the point that coat texture and quality cannot be determined. Atypically colored varieties tend to have softer, silkier coat qualities with a higher amount of sheen.
Coat Color or Pattern: CKC recognizes two color varieties of the breed equally: the standard color and non-standard color variety.
Standard coat color variety: includes solid black, black with silver points, salt and pepper, or pure white.
Non-standard coat color variety: includes silver, black with tan points (also called phantom).

Movement

Schnauzers move with effortless, efficient, agile, and powerful movement. The characteristics of healthy structure are evident: when moving away, the forelegs and rear pasterns should remain parallel to one another. When viewing movement from the front, the forelegs should remain parallel, with elbows and paws moving neither moving in nor out. From the rear, the back pads should be visible when the rear legs are extended. As speed increases, the forelimbs and hindlimbs will converge to the center line of gravity. From the side, the topline should remain firm and level. Good reach of movement in the front allows the forepaw to extend out in a line with the nose. The width between the forefeet when extended should be approximately equal to the width between the hindfeet when extended, indicating balance, good reach, and good drive. Dogs that exhibit any sign of breathing or locomotive difficulty shall be disqualified from the show ring.

Temperament

Schnauzers are renowned for their versatility and ability to be trained to do a number of jobs, from watchful family guardian to all-around farm dog. They are intelligent, eager to learn and work, responsive to their handlers, and courageous. They make for excellent family pets or working dogs. Any unprovoked aggressive or fearful behavior toward people is incorrect for this breed.

Faults

All dogs should be in proper healthy condition, free from disease or defect. Any departure from this description is considered a fault. Unless altered, all male dogs should have two fully descended testicles.