Giant Schnauzer


A large sized dark Giant Schnauzer
Giant Schnauzer Quick Summary
Also Known AsVelcro Dog
Height (at withers)24-28in (61-71cm)
Weight55-95lbs (25-43kg)
Hair Colour(s)Black, salt, pepper
Lifespan9-12 years
Energy LevelMedium
Litter size5-8
Barking TendencyMedium
Exercise requirements
Ease of trainingMedium
Suitability for kidsLow
Animal compatabilityMedium
Aggression levelsMedium
Distress if leftHigh

The Giant Schnauzer is a large, muscular dog with a sturdy build. The body has a deep and broad chest, with a strong and straight topline that is slightly higher at the shoulder than at the back end. The elongated head has a blunt muzzle, erect ears, a black nose, dark brown eyes and distinctive eyebrows and beard. The tail is normally docked. The soft undercoat is covered by a coarse, wiry outer coat, the colouring of which tends to be black, or salt and pepper combinations.


Giant Schnauzers are high-spirited, lively, and intelligent dogs that make loving and affectionate companions. They love being around their owners so much that they are sometimes referred to as the Velcro Dog, although without proper training they are not ideal as family pets. These are very active dogs that need plenty of mental and physical stimulation, otherwise boredom can easily set in, which can lead to destructive behaviour. Giant Schnauzers are intellingent and quick to learn, which facilitates training, but they can also be determined and dominant and so are more suited to those with some experience of dog ownership and training. In particular, they need to taught that their large size does not make them the pack leaders. Due to their large size these dogs are only suitable for older, more considerate children, and will need proper training and supervision. They may try to herd children and may also be over protective, which could prove a problem when they are playing with other kids. They will generally tolerate other pets but can be dominating and even aggressive towards same sex dogs, and they can be wary around strangers. As these dogs are loyal, protective, alert and brave, they make good guard and watchdogs.

History & Skills

Giant Schnauzers originate from Germany, and and their name comes from the word schnauze, which is the German term for muzzle. A larger version of the standard schnauzer, they were developed for driving cattle by crossing with larger dogs, possibly Great Danes and rough-coated sheepdogs amongst others. Used as police dogs prior to the First World War, and also as butchers dogs and guard dogs in brewerys, lately they have become more popular as companions and family pets, and perform well as watch dogs.

Breed Specific Ailments

Giant Schnauzers tend to live between 9-12 years, and some of the health problems that have been linked to this breed include glaucoma, heart problems, epilepsy, PRA, hip dysplasia, OCD, allergies, and skin problems. They can also be susceptible to cancer, especially of the toe.


Giant Schnauzers are low shedders and so can be suitable for allergy sufferers. Despite this, they can be high maintenance when it comes to grooming. The undercoat will need brushing once a week to prevent matting and tangling, and the outercoat should be clipped around four times a year to maintain an even length. The hair around the eyes and nose should be kept trimmed to keep the face clean, and the beard will need cleaning daily for hygiene reasons. The ears of should be checked and cleaned regularly to avoid infections, and the hair around the bottom area will need to be kept trimmed, again for hygiene reasons. In show dogs, the dead coat will need stripping every few months.

Exercise & Environment

Giant Schnauzers are not suitable for small homes, as they are large and active dogs. They need large indoor spaces and access to a decent sized and secure yard or garden area in which to play. A daily walk is recommended, and without adequate exercise these dogs can become difficult to handle.


FCIFCI - Federation Cynologique Internationale
KCThe Kennel Club (UK)
AKCAKC - American Kennel Club

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