Miniature Schnauzer - Breed and Grooming Tips

General Information

Known for his distinguished, handsome appearance, the Miniature Schnauzer is characterized by its whiskers and double coat, which has a hard, wiry outer coat and close, soft undercoat.  Coat colors can be salt and pepper, black and silver, and solid black.  Despite his small stature, the Miniature Schnauzer can give an alarm just as well as a larger dog. That, combined with his protective nature, makes him an excellent watchdog. He is also the most popular of the three Schnauzer breeds, which include the Giant and the Standard.

Right Breed for You?

Smart, trainable and consistently cheerful, this diminutive breed adapts easily to small city apartments, yet remains just as much at home in the country with lots of space to run around.  Their double coat requires hand stripping for the show ring or clipping for the average pet owner, but sheds very little.

Source:  American Kennel Club -


Bathing and General Grooming

The frequency of bathing depends on you and your dog's lifestyle. We recommend a bath as frequent as every week up to no longer than every 6 weeks. Regular bathing is essential to maintain healthy skin and coat, as well as good hygiene.  Grooming your pet is one of the foundations of keeping your pet's good hygiene.  Selecting the correct products to match your pet's skin and coat is essential in order to achieve the best end result.

Before bathing the Miniature Schnauzer, it is a good idea to go over the dog's entire body with a high power dryer in order to loosen any debris and dander from the skin. Card the coat and do any hand stripping before the bath. If your pet has any mats or tangles, this is the time to try to loosen them away from the skin. Once you have selected the best products for your dog, it is bath time!

Recommended Products:

Tea Tree & Aloe Shampoo: Great for dogs with sensitive skin or allergies and leaves the coat squeaky clean.

Energee Plus "Dirty Dog" Shampoo: Go ahead and let them play! This degreaser and deodorizer gets even the filthiest dogs clean.

Aloe-Oat Waterless Bath: When a quick touch up is needed or you don’t have time to give a regular bath. A must for every pet owner and professional stylist.

Flea & Tick Shampoo: Kill fleas and ticks while cleaning and conditioning your pet's skin and coat. Leaves a fresh and clean fragrance.  Safe for puppies over 12 weeks. Keep out of eyes.

Luxury Remoisturizer: This remoisturizer will leave the wiry texture intact, while conditioning the face and leg furnishings.

Dead Sea Mineral Mudbath: This product is used to recondition the skin and repair the coat. Great for dogs with clipped jackets who have "schnauzer bumps." The mudbath helps to clean the skin and coat and redistribute healthy oils.

Finishing the Dog: Tools and Finish Grooming

This spirited, alert terrier should be groomed on a regular 4-6 week schedule. The Miniature Schnauzer is a double coated breed with a wiry topcoat and a soft undercoat. In order to keep the coarse, wiry texture and vibrant color, the topcoat is maintained by hand stripping and rolling the coat weekly. It is necessary for a dog to be hand stripped to enter the show ring. A pet trim follows the same pattern and outline, but the coat is clipped rather than hand stripped.  The wiry texture will eventually disappear, but if the dog is carded with appropriate carding tools and a stone, the color should not fade too much.  This is the easiest way to maintain a great looking dog without the time commitment and expense of hand stripping the coat.

Recommended Products:

Aloe Hydrating Spray: Hydrate the skin and coat with nourishing Aloe Vera for a vibrant coat.

High Sheen Finishing Spray: Great for that show-stopping luster while having the added benefit of a touch of sunscreen.


General Health Care:

Prep work is the foundation of all grooming. Prep work includes ear cleaning, nail trimming, trimming the pads, anal gland expression, and proper dental hygiene. Mastering these skills sets the professional stylist apart from the rest. Prep work should be done before every grooming and bathing appointment.   All dogs need to have their ears checked and cleaned. Some need to have the hair pulled from the ear canal. This allows the ear to have proper air circulation, which helps prevent bacteria and moisture in the ear canal.  It is not necessary to remove all of the hair in the ear, as some serves as a barrier to foreign debris. It is imperative that you are properly trained to pull ear hair before attempting this endeavor. Proper nail care is important.  Long, unsightly nails present potential health issues as well as make it more difficult to trim a neat and tidy foot.  Trimming the pads of the foot helps give a pet good traction on different surfaces, and can minimize the amount of dirt the dog tracks into the house.  It also affords the opportunity to treat and condition the paws from cracks and abrasions.  Anal glands should at the least be checked by the professional stylist, as well. Some caring pet owners prefer to have their veterinarian express the anal glands rather than their pet stylist. Good dental hygiene is the essential for a healthy pet, too.

Recommended products:

Ear Care: This ear cleaner has a blend of oils to remove dirt, debris, and ear wax.

Ear Care Aloe Wipes: An easy and convenient way to clean the ears while restoring the balance to the ears.

Ear Powder: A must for removing the hair from the ear canal. It will reduce slippage, while reducing odor, and contributing to drying out the ear canal.

Optisooth Eye Care: To flush foreign matter and debris out of the eye, like excess shampoo.

Tear Stain and Spot Remover: Gently removes tear stains and other unsightly stains with a non-irritating formula of Chamomile and Camphor.

Paw Balm: Use weekly to keep paws pliable and soft. Paw Balm will aid in the prevention of pads to dry out and crack.


Nutritional Care

In order to maintain healthy skin and coat as well as overall health, it is important to provide good nutrition to your dog through diet, vitamins, and healthy treats. 

Recommended Products:

Icelandic Salmon Oil:  Enhances the skin and coat while simultaneously supporting the immune system and joint health.

Frequently Asked Questions

1/ What products do I need if I just purchased a Miniature Schnauzer puppy?

Puppy Shampoo

Optisoothe Eye Wash

Aloe Hydrating Spray

Paw Balm

Ear Care Aloe Wipes

Puppy Aloe Wipes

Paw Wipes


2/ Do they require a lot of grooming?

The Miniature Schnauzer is not a “wash and wear” dog.  They do require regular grooming every 4-6 weeks.  This breed does require frequent brushing and combing, nail trimming, ear cleaning, as well as clipping or hand stripping.

3/ What is a common problem in miniature schnauzers?

A common issue with the Miniature Schnauzer is Follicular Dermatitis, better known as “Schnauzer Bumps.”  Dogs that have a clipped jacket seem to be more prone to follicular dermatitis than those that are hand stripped. There are several ways to help control Schnauzer bumps:

*Use a carding tool or grooming stone on a clipped jacket weekly to help remove the dirt and debris while helping to redistribute healthy oils.

* Add daily supplements including Omega Fatty Acids to your dog’s diet such as Icelandic Salmon Oil.

* Provide a healthy grain free diet.

4/ Does the Miniature Schnauzer shed or cause allergies?

Shedding is minimal in this breed. Because of this, they tend to cause less severe reactions in people who suffer from allergies to dogs.  However, before bringing a Miniature Schnauzer into your home if you have allergies, you should spend some time around the breed to make sure you do not have a reaction.

5/ Are Miniature Schnauzers good with children?

If the dog is introduced to children at a young age, the Miniture Schnauzer typically does well with children.  However, as with any bred, a small child should never be left alone with any dog.

6/ What if I have a show dog?

Whether you have a show dog or a companion quality dog, the same basic care is given regarding nutrition, socialization, and hygiene. The difference is the method of grooming that is required. The dog must be hand stripped rather than clipped if it is going to enter the show ring.  It is always quite helpful if your breeder can help mentor you to lead you in the right direction upon entering the show ring.  A great place is start is with the national breed club like the Miniature Schnauzer Club of America,

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