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Giant Schnauzer

Tags: working, Large-sized, Kid-friendly, Protective guardian, Requires firm, dedicated training, Calm temperament

Although not the tallest of dogs, (23-27 inches at the shoulder) we're giants compared to the Standard Schnauzer -- who may have been crossed with a Great Dane and a Belgian Cattle Dog in the Wurtemberg and Bavaria sections of Germany to make a bigger shepherd and guard dog. And guard we did -- butcher shops, breweries, farms, livestock on the way to market. Schnauzer means snout or muzzle and refers to our wiry beard, which is punctuated by bushy eyebrows. All that guarding and herding made us highly territorial, a characteristic today's Schnauzers still retain.

Rave review

  • Affectionate, devoted family friend
  • Agile and active
  • Always alert
  • Calm as a clam
  • Confident and self-assured
  • Even tempered, good-natured

Report card

  • Intelligent, ready to learn
  • Loves kids and vice versa
  • Outdoor enthusiast
  • Perfect protector
  • Caters to country, tolerates town
  • Ready to romp
  • Socialization and training should start early
  • Training must be firm, patient, consistent
  • Wary of strangers
  • Willing watchdog

What to expect

What's your exercise plan for me? Long daily walks (through interesting places)? A chance to romp with the kids or other dogs (in a safe, enclosed space)? Are we signed up yet for canine sports activities? Even herding could be vigorous fun -- "herd" is not part of my name, but it's still in my genes. Just one look at my fierce beard and my piercing, eyebrow-shaded eyes and those sheep will move along!

Watch for

Possible hip dysplasia, seborrhea, von Willebrand's disease, hypothyroidism.

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