An intelligent breed, the Schnauzer has been dubbed “the dog with the human brain.” However, thanks to their devoted nature the Schnauzer also figuratively possess the hearts of many humans. This breed is so beloved by anyone who has been fortunate enough to welcome a Schnauzer into their life that they have their own pet holiday: National Schnauzer Day!
When is National Schnauzer Day?
National Schnauzer Day was launched in 2021 and is celebrated every year on September 25. The day was founded by UK-based Moo Moo and Bear.
Fun Facts about Schnauzers
To mark this pet holiday, we’ve fetched a few fun facts about Schnauzers:
Did you know that the name Schnauzer comes from the German word for snout?
Along with looking quite stylish, the beard and moustache, the Schnauzer sports has a purpose. Originally bred to be a rat catcher on farms, the thick fur protected the dogs’ skin from rodent bites.
Three breeds of Schauzers
There are actually three breeds of Schnauzers!
- Miniature Schnauzer: The popular Miniature Schnauzer has been around since the latter part of the 19th century. Developed by pairing the Standard Schnauzer with the Affenpinscher and the Miniature Poodle, dogs of this variety stand approximately one foot tall.
- Standard Schnauzer: The “parent” of both the Miniature and “giant” Schnauzer, the Standard Schnauzer made its debut in 14th or 15th century Germany. Also called the Mittelschnauzer, this breed was originally known as the Wire-Haired Pinscher.
- Giant Schnauzer: A product of pairing the Standard Schnauzer with such colossal breeds as the Great Dane, the German Shepherd, the Rottweiler and the Doberman Pinscher, among others, the Giant Schnauzer stands approximately two feet tall at the shoulders.
Which Schnauzer is The Most Popular?
While all Schnauzers hold the number one place in the heart of their pet parent, the Miniature Schnauzer has taken the 18th position in the latest American Kennel Club list of the most popular dog breeds, while the Giant Schnauzer lands in the 65th spot. The Standard Schnauzer is in 96th place.
So far only one set of Miniature Schnauzer paws have promenaded through the halls of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. They belonged to Otis, a Miniature Schnauzer whose pet parent was the 19th President of the United States, Rutherford B. Hayes. (Learn more about presidential pets in our Checkers Day post!)
Best in Show
To date, Parsifal di Casa Netzer, a Standard Schnauzer, has been the only member of the breed to win the top honor at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. Better known as Pa, the canine champion was designated Best in Show in 1997.
In December 2021, a Giant Schnauzer named Bayou earned top dog status at the AKC National Championship.
Long Live The Schnauzer!
All three breeds of Schnauzers are generally healthy, with life expectancies that range from 12 – 15 years.
The Schnauzer in Art
The beauty of the Schnauzer has inspired many prominent artists over the centuries. The most famous artist of the German renaissance, Albrecht Durer captured the likeness of the breed in several paintings.
Visitors to Germany can view the statue of The Night Watchman, which looks out over the streets of Stuttgart atop a sculptural fountain. Alongside the form of the watchman is the sculpted likeness of a Schnauzer.
The Schnauzer in Literature
To classic film fans, Asta in The Thin Man movie franchise is a male Wire Fox Terrier, who was portrayed by the tail-wagging thespian Skippy.
However, lovers of classic mystery novels know high society sleuths Nick and Nora Charles’ barking buddy as author Dashiell Hammett created the character, as a female Standard Schnauzer.
Famous Pet Parents of Schnauzers
A number of stars have welcomed a Schnauzer into their heart and home over the years, including:
- 50 Cent
- Ingrid Bergman
- Keysia Cole — The R&B singer was once a pet parent to a miniature schnauzer named Lola Mae Cole. When the dog passed away in 2021, the platinum-selling recording artist stated that “…she was my Besty in REAL LIFE! There through thick and thin every day for the past 14 years!”
- Ronnie Corbett — Miniature Schnauzers Rag and Muffin made this comedian smile.
- Arlene Dahl — The star’s dog Max was the father of several puppies with Liza Minnelli’s Schnauzer, Emelina.
- Doris Day — The entertainment icon and founder of The Doris Day Animal Foundation.
- Bo Derek
- Bob and Elizabeth Dole — The political pair once threw a birthday party for their miniature Schnauzer Leader II at their Watergate apartment.
- Errol Flynn — The swashbuckling star also had the real life role of pet parent to a miniature schnauzer named Arno.
- Amy Grant
- Katherine Heigl — The Emmy Award winning actress and co-founder of The Jason Debus Heigl Foundation was once a pet parent to Miniature Schnauzers Romeo and Stella.
- Rock Hudson (who, in the 1960s, had a pal with paws named Murphy)
- Janet Jackson
- Shirley Jones — The Academy Award winner, who once had dreams of becoming a veterinarian, had miniature Schnauzers named Little Bit and Stoney.
- Avril Lavigne — The “Complicated” singer one shared her home with a miniature Schnauzer named Samuel, Sam for short.
- Bruce Lee
- Rob Lowe
- Ida Lupino
- Steve McQueen
- Liza Minelli — At some point the entertainment legend was the proud pet parent to Schnauzers Emelina, Oscar and Blaize.
- Mary Tyler Moore — The TV icon and co-founder of the annual Broadway Barks pet adoption event was a pet parent to a Miniature Schnauzer called Shana.
- Paul Newman
- Simon Pegg — Minnie, the actor’s Miniature Schnauzer, enjoyed a moment in the spotlight when she starred in the movie Burke and Hare.
- Sugar Ray
- Zendaya — The Emmy Award-winning actress shares the adventures of her miniature Schnauzer Noon on his own Instagram account!
Adopting a Schnauzer
If you would like to welcome a Schnauzer into your heart and home, there are rescue organizations across the country which are dedicated to finding forever homes for members of the breed.