“Miniature Schnauzer Shih Tzu Mix”
The Schnau Tzu is a mixed breed dog, specifically a cross between a Shih Tzu and a Miniature Schnauzer. It is one of the many dog breeds that were developed within the last thirty to forty years. They’re fast gaining popularity among people, specifically since many celebrities are often seen proudly showing of their beloved Schnau Tzu’s thus making the breed more familiar to the public eye.
The concept of mixing breeds is no longer new, this is a practice that has been done for hundreds of years. However, each resulting mixed breed is different. To understand the Schnau Tzu, let us look at the characteristics of its parents, the Shih Tzu and the Miniature Schnauzer.
This dog breed is one of the oldest breeds in existence, tracing its roots to both mainland China and Tibet. The ancient Chinese and Tibetans considered the Shih Tzu as one of the best companion dogs, even illustrating them in paintings and writing about them in various historical documents. They were seen as happy, docile, and intelligent dogs who were also called “little lions.”
These dogs were only found in Asia, until the English decided to breed a pair which they brought to England in 1928. The American Kennel Club officially considered the Shih Tzu as a breed in 1969. Today, the Shih Tzu is still considered by many as one of the best companion dogs. It is known for being extremely affectionate, always seeking to please its master. Shih Tzus can and will spend a lot their time trying to get their master’s attention.
The Standard Schnauzer was crossed with the Poodle, Pomeranian, Miniature Pinscher, and Affenpinscher to create this dog breed. These dogs were bred for the purpose of pest control, such as hunting farm rats. They were also trained to be excellent guard dogs. Even though dog breeding diminished during the two world wars, the Miniature Schnauzer continued to be popular. Back then, they were bred to produce a selection of different colors. But these days, you will find that most Miniature Schnauzers are either silver or black.
This dog breed is known to be very outdoorsy and likes to remain close to its master. Miniature Schnauzers also enjoy being given lots of attention. They are very affectionate and will often snuggle close to their master. That said, this dog can also express manipulative and stubborn behavior in some occasions, particularly when it is stressed.
The Schnau Tzu is a mix of these two dogs and it goes without saying that it inherited traits from both. However, the manifestations of these traits do tend to vary.
The Schnau Tzu’s average height ranges from 5 to 8 inches, and it can weigh between 7 to 15 pounds. Its coat can be described as silky and can either be soft or wiry. It is quite sensitive to touch, very trainable, and can live for 10 to 12 years depending on its health.
The Schnau Tzu is a very loving and loyal dog. Just like a majority of other dog breeds, the Schnau Tzu enjoys the company of its master and is very interactive. It has a tendency to follow its master everywhere.
This dog breed is known to be very smart, playful, and energetic. It will always aim to please you. This attitude is also one of the things that make these dogs very easy to train. The Schnau Tzu is very friendly towards other people. However, it can easily be intimidated by other dogs because of its small size, so if you have bigger dogs in your household, it will take some time for the Schnau Tzu to warm up to them.
Schnau Tzus are very sociable and so you won’t have a difficult time training them to behave when there are other people around. However, they fare better when dealing with children when compared to adults and other pet dogs.
Do know that the Schnau Tzu can be quite moody as well, especially if it is being ignored or if they are hungry, thirsty, or tired. There are also moments when the Schnau Tzu shows a bit of its temperamental side, although most of these episodes are not significant enough to cause much concern.
The dog simply needs to be taken care of and given enough love and attention to avoid mood swings. Schnau Tzus generally do not make very good watch dogs since they easily make friends with strangers and they do not bark that often. The only time that these dogs even bark would be when they are playing or if they are ignored for too long.
The Schnau Tzu is not picky when it comes to its environment. It only needs to be kept in a clean and dry place. Because of its size, they make for great apartment pets.
Schnau Tzus are active dogs so they require a minimum of 45 minutes to an hour of physical activity. These dogs actually require a fairly active lifestyle for their size, and so you will need to devote at least an hour for walks and play time indoors. If your Schnau Tzu also meets the size requirements, you can also bring them to a dog park or try a doggy treadmill. Needless to say, their size makes them quite easy to bring anywhere without real concern that they might damage anything.
When it comes to food needs, Schnau Tzus do not require a lot of feeding. They should only be fed around ½ to a full cup of good quality dry dog food twice a day. You should also ensure that they have a sufficient water supply to keep them hydrated. The following things should also be kept in mind when feeding Schnau Tzus:
- Be mindful of the food items that can give your Schnau Tzu an allergic reaction. There are some vegetables that are actually not good for Schnau Tzus, even if we think that they’re healthy. If your Schnau Tzu is only a puppy, it’s best to give it a hypoallergenic diet so you can weed out potentially problematic foods.
- However, if you acquired your dog as an adult, you ought to have it checked by a specialist first. There are dogs with certain allergies against common protein types like wheat, pork, dairy, soya, and beef. These allergens can cause your dog to have skin infections as well as diarrhea and vomiting.
- Similar to a lot of other dog breeds, the Schnau Tzu’s diet should also be protein rich. The reason for this is because dogs burn calories faster than humans do, and they also have small stomachs. Check the label of your dog food to see if it has at least 25% protein in it per serving. If it does, it is a good quality meal that you can give to your dog.
- There really is no difference between giving your Schnau Tzu wet or dry food. The commonly held belief is that dry food is better for dogs because they are better for their dental health and they also do not cause any tartar buildup, unlike wet food. However, veterinarians have found that this is nothing but a myth, and that the effects of dry food on your dog are just the same as wet food. To keep your dog’s dental health great, always remember to brush their teeth and always give them chewable treats and toys.
- The Schnau Tzu also has a beautiful fur that needs to be taken care of, so ensure that your dog food also has fat. Specifically, make sure that your dog gets the right amount of Omega 3 and Omega 6, as well as Vitamin A to keep their skin well-hydrated and their hair smooth and healthy. Just like the protein content, you can check the fat content of your dog food by looking at the label.
Schnau Tzus can be trained easily, especially if they are still young. They are intelligent dogs that can pick up signals from their masters really quickly. They are very responsive, obedient, and intelligent.
Similar to other dog breeds, when teaching your Schnau Tzu, you need to be consistent and thorough until it learns the behavior you wish for it to learn.
When it comes to other dogs, especially those that are bigger, Schnau Tzus generally show less confidence and may seem unsure about how they should approach them.
You can help your pet Schnau Tzu deal with this by providing her with the right socialization opportunities and training.
For grooming, you can opt to Schnau Tzu a groomer for hair brushing, or you can do the job yourself. Your dog only needs to be brushed at least two times every week. As for bathing, your Schnau Tzu will require one every two weeks, and even less if the dog spends most of its time indoors.
Schnau Tzus can suffer from certain health conditions, just like any other dog. Most of the health conditions they tend to suffer from are inherited from their parents. These conditions include the following issues:
- Bladder issues
- Congenital Megaesophagus
- Dental problems
- Eye issues
- Hip dysplasia
- Myotonia congenita
- Reverse sneezing
- Umbilical hernia
- Von Willebrands
It’s important that your dog gets appropriate medical attention if you notice that they’re not acting as they normally should. Also, always ask the breeder for a health clearance to make sure that your puppy is healthy. Do visit your breeder before you purchase your puppy to make sure that the puppies are raised in well-tended environment.
Where Can You Get a Schnau Tzu?
These dogs can be purchased from your local breeder, although you can also look online. If you are thinking of purchasing or adopting, be aware of certain dog breeders who only seek to profit from these dogs. It pays to do ample research to make sure that you’re getting your puppy from a place that’s ethical and treats its animals well.
A Schnau Tzu puppy can cost around $150 to $450. For other costs like carrier, create, collar, spaying, leash, chipping, blood tests, shots, and deworming, you may need to spend an additional $400. Annual costs for non-medical items like grooming, toys, treats, food, training, and license can be as much as $600. Annual medical needs cost around $500 annually.