Standard Schnauzers are medium sized, sturdy and squarely built dogs. They have the distinctive Schnauzer beard and a wiry coat that may be black, black and sliver, or salt and pepper. Their bushy eyebrows and the keen expression of their small, deep-set eyes give them the impression of grouchiness at times. The ears, which are set high on the skull may be cropped or uncropped. When uncropped, the ears are small and V-shaped. The head is rectangular, the muzzle is strong and blunt, and covered in the trademark Schnauzer beard. Their feet are small and the toes are highly arched. The tail is set high, typically docked, and carried erect.
Size and Weight
The ideal height for male Schnauzers at the shoulder is from 18.5 to 19.5 inches, and for females, 17.5 to 18.5 inches. Standard Schnauzers weigh up to 28 pounds.
Coat and Color
The Standard Schnauzer wears a double coat that consists of a thick, soft undercoat and a wiry topcoat. The loose and dead hair that would normally shed off the body tends to get trapped, making Standard Schnauzers good pets for people who suffer from allergies and asthma, or for those neat owners who disapprove of dog hair.
The topcoat can be anywhere from ¾ to 2 inches in length. Most owners prefer to keep the ears, head, neck, chest, stomach and tail trimmed, and allow hair to grow longer on the legs, and of course around the face, forming the trademark Schnauzer beard and eyebrow.
Salt and pepper Standard Schnauzers have a gray undercoat, however, a tan or fawn-colored undercoat is acceptable. The mask should be darker and to complement the coat color. A black Standard Schnauzer's coat, on the other hand, shouldn't be mixed with any gray or tan hairs and the undercoat should also be black.
Standard Schnauzers require regular grooming every five to eight weeks. Many owners prefer to use the services of a professional groomer, as properly clipping a Schnauzer can be tricky. Show dogs need to be hand-stripped, which is a time consuming process, and is unnecessary for dogs who will not be shown. It is important to brush a Schnauzer two to three times per week to prevent mats, though the beard may need grooming on a daily basis.
Check the Standard Schnauzer's ears on a regular basis for signs of wax buildup, irritation or infection. Clean the ears with a cotton ball and a veterinarian-approved cleanser; never use a cotton swab in a dog's ear canal. Teeth should be brushed on a weekly basis to prevent tartar buildup, promote gum health and keep bad breath at bay. Trim nails monthly if the dog does not wear the toenails down naturally outdoors.