Sturdy. Steady. Spirited. The Giant Schnauzer isn’t really a “giant” but this large breed Schnauzer that is the largest of the three types: Miniature, Standard and Giant. This dog is a loyal, intelligent and affectionate dog to his family and loves running and romping. Powerful, get gentle, a Giant Schnauzer is a delightful dog all around. Read more about this dog in the Best Bully Sticks Breed Spotlight on the Giant Schnauzer.
History & Background: The Giant Schnauzer is a native of Germany, in particular the Wurttenberg and Bavaria. These were large farming areas and were in need of farm help. This large breed Schnauzer is the result of breeding Standard Schnauzers with Great Danes and Bouvier des Flandres. Farmers used Giant Schnauzers as drovers, which helped them drive or herd their cattle or pigs into market. These dogs were also used as guard dogs for breweries and butchers. During WWI, Giant Schnauzers were trained as police dogs.
The word “Schnauzer” is from the German word “Schnauze” which means “muzzle.” Germans call this dog “Riesenschnauzer” which literally translates to “The Giant.”
Height: 23 ½ to 27 ½ inches
Weight: 70 to 100 pounds
Coat: This Schnauzer has a dense, wiry and harsh outer coat with a soft undercoat. Hair on the head is harsh as are the Schnauzer’s most distinctive features, the beard and eyebrows.
Color: Giant Schnauzer’s only come in two colors: black and “Salt & Pepper.”
Appearance: Even though this dog is called “Giant,” they are just simply larger than a Standard Schnauzer. A regal character, this dog is strongly built and very square because the length and height are usually the same. The head is also boxy looking with black nose, lips and dark oval eyes. The expression of this dog is watchful and alert. Ears are set high and v-shaped. A Schnauzer’s back is very straight and the tail is erect and usually docked to the 2nd or 3rd joint.
Temperament: Highly intelligent, Giant Schnauzers are great working dogs and are easily trained. They are watchful, protective of their family and because of it’s size can be discouraging to any potential offender. This breed loves its family and is affectionate to them. These dogs must be exercised on a regular basis and love a good open run. Some of these large breed Schnauzers tend to have herding instincts as well. However, because this dog is highly loyal to its owner, it will never run away. As with many breeds, a Giant Schnauzer must be socialized and trained as early as possible so it will be comfortable in many situations and with strangers.
Health & Grooming: Sadly, the Giant Schnauzer is susceptible to cancer more than other dogs, especially Toe Cancer. Epilepsy is also common for this breed as well as hip dysplasia, bloat and autoimmune diseases such as hypothyrodism.) Giant Schnauzers usually live 12 to 14 years.
Grooming this dog is reasonably easy to look after. The undercoat should be managed with a short wire brush with a weekly combing to avoid matting. If any knots form, simply cut out then brush with then against the grain to life the coat. A overall clipping usually happens 4 times a year. This dog can also be stripped, which is the process of removing guard hairs. The hair around the eyes and ears should be clipped and the beard cleaned after meals. The Giant Schnauzer tends not to shed or have doggy odor.
Product Suggestions: A Giant Schnauzer needs a giant chew! That’s why we suggest the 12 Inch Jumbo Bully Stick. These are about 30-50% bigger than our typical 12 inch thick bully sticks and we only offer them a few times a year. A tasty, healthy and long lasting treat for any large breed dog.
A Jolly Pets Teaser Ball is a great way to entertain your Giant Schnauzer. This large 10 inch toy is two balls in one, and creates hours of fun for any large breed dog.
Do you own or know a Giant Schnauzer? Tell us your favorite Schnauzer story in the comments section!