Merle Schnauzer – Everything You Need To Know

Merle is the pigmentation on the coat because of the mutated gene pattern in Miniature Schnauzers. Merle Schnauzers are not pure breeds and fall under mixed breed for their merle pigmentation. This mutation can be dangerous for the dog, so breeding Merle Schnauzers is restricted in many parts. 

Merle Schnauzers are tough, courageous, friendly companions. Though they are used as ratters and farm dogs, they are not aggressive. They are family-oriented and make excellent watchdogs. 

Merle Schnauzer Pros and Cons 

Pros Cons 
Low Shedding Poor Health 
Exceptional Watch Dogs High Prey Drive 

Merle Schnauzer Basic Information

  • Name: Merle Schnauzer 
  • Height: 12 to 26 inches  
  • Weight: 20 to 70 pounds  
  • Color: Grey and Black, Silver and Black, Solid Black  
  • Coat: Double coated, Wiry, Speckled  
  • Hypoallergenic: Yes
  • Energy: Medium  
  • Activities: Farm dogs, Ratters 
  • Group: Working Group  

Schnauzer Vs Merle Schnauzer Comparison 

          Features  Schnauzer     Merle Schnauzer 
Height  12 to 26 inches  12 to 26 inches  
Weight  20to 70 Pounds  20 to 70 Pounds  
Size  Medium  Medium  
Group  Working Group  Working Group  
Children Compatibility  Medium to High  Medium to High  
Family Compatibility  Medium to High  Medium to High   
Pets Compatibility  Low to Medium  Low to Medium  
Barking Level  Low to Medium Low to Medium 
Shedding Level  Low Low 
Hypoallergenic  Yes Yes 
Grooming Needs  Medium  Medium 
Overall Health  High Low  
Energy  Medium  Medium  
Exercise Needs  High High 
Trainability  Medium  Medium  
Activities  Farm Dogs, Ratting Farm Dogs, Ratting 
Complication in Breeding  No Very High  
Life Span  12– 15 Years  Depends on the health condition 

Merle Schnauzer Personality 

The merle pattern creates spots or patches of blue or green on the coat, and there will be changes in the pigmentations of the eye, nose, or paws. Due to the merle gene, the eye color of Merle Schnauzers is often blue.

Friendliness Overview   

Affection Level                              Medium 
Family-Friendly   Medium to High   
Kid-Friendly   Medium to High  
Pet-Friendly   Low to Medium   
Strangers-Friendly   Low    

Adaptability Overview   

Good for New Pet Owners   Low to Medium 
Good for Apartment Living   Medium to High   
Sensitivity Level   Medium to High   
Tolerates being alone   Low to Medium  
Cold Tolerance   Medium to High 
Heat Tolerance   Medium to High 

Merle Schnauzer Temperament

Merle Schnauzer gets along well with children and elderly family members. They love to be around family and do activities along with them. However, they may not resist chasing or attacking potential prey because of their prey drive. Therefore, it is recommended to never allow Merle Schnauzer in open or public places without a leash. However, they are not aggressive like other dog breeds with high prey drive. 

Merle Schnauzer Training 

Merle Schnauzers are quick learners and always eager to please their owners. You can put them to obedience training, agility training, and rally. They are intelligent and can be easily bored with repeated training. Therefore, it is essential to keep their training fun and interesting to capture their attention. Always prefer positive reinforcement while training Merle Schnauzers.

Trainability Overview   

Easy to Train   Medium  
Intelligence   High 
Prey Drive   High  
Tendency to Chew, Nip & Play-bite   Medium 
Tendency to Bark or Howl   Low to Medium 
Wanderlust Ability   High 

Merle Schnauzer Exercise Needs 

Merle Schnauzers need physical and mental stimulation to control their high prey drives. Their medium energy level can be focused on daily exercises like walking and running. They can also spend time playing in a fenced backyard by running or chasing balls.

Exercise Needs Overview   

Energy Level                                   Medium  
Exercise Needs                              High   
Playfulness                                     High   
                              Intensity   Medium 

Merle Schnauzer Grooming 

Merle Schnauzers have a double coat with a wiry top coat and soft undercoat. They require frequent brushing and grooming to maintain a healthy coat. You can groom them at home by yourself, or you can reach out to a professional groomer.

Merle Schnauzers needn’t be bathed for more than once a month unless they entered an unclean environment. Clean their ears and trim their nails regularly. Other grooming needs include brushing their teeth to avoid dental problems.

Grooming Overview 

Amount of Shedding                     Low  
Tendency to Drool   Low 
Tendency to Snore   Low 
Easy to Groom   Medium 

Merle Schnauzer Health

The standard Schnauzers are generally a long-lived, healthy breed. However, the merle gene can lead to various health problems. Sometimes the merle puppies will not be fully formed and may be born with one eye or no eyes and many other deformities.

Health Overview   

Basic Health   Low  
Weight Gain Possibilities   Low  
Size   Medium 

Merle Schnauzers can have the following health concerns:

Cataracts: Cataracts create a cloudy and opaque layer over the eye lens and can lead to blindness. 

Microphthalmia: It is a defect in fetal formation resulting in small eyes and blindness which can’t be cured. 

Anophthalmia: Anophthalmia is a birth defect where the puppy is born with one eye or without eyes. 

Proptosis: In proptosis, the eyeballs will be displaced from the eye socket resulting in the eyelids trapped behind the eye, which can be cured through surgery. 

Deafness: Deafness is the lack of hearing ability which is more common in pigmented dogs. As it can also be hereditary, breeders should avoid breeding dogs with hearing disabilities. 

Brachycephalic Syndrome: This condition is prevalent in dogs with short muzzles. Their nostrils will be narrowed, and the airways will be blocked, ranging from difficulty in breathing to noisy or total obstruction in breathing. 

Entropion: The condition in which the eyelids are inward and rub against the eye causing eye irritation is entropion. The affected dog might need surgery to correct the eyelash. 

Glaucoma: Glaucoma is an eye condition that can affect both dogs and people and requires medical attention. Symptoms such as pain, squinting, watery eyes, and redness can indicate glaucoma which can lead to blindness. Regular health tests can help in identifying and curing glaucoma at an early stage. 

Cherry Eye: The gland under the eyelid will protrude, looking like a cherry. This condition might need surgery to remove the infected gland. 

Dry Eye: Dry eye is a painful condition caused due to the insufficient production of tears by the tear glands.  The affected eye might appear dry or have a blue haze. Treatments include medication or teardrops. 

Hyperlipidemia: Hyperlipidemia is common in dogs and can result from various disorders like obesity, cholestasis, endocrine disorders. 

Pancreatitis: The inflammation of the pancreas, an organ that produces digestive enzymes and insulin, causes pancreatitis. Symptoms include diarrhea, fever, lethargy, vomiting, belly pain, and dehydration. 

Liver Shunts: Liver shunt is a condition in which the liver does not get blood supply to purify it. As the name suggests, blood flow to the liver will be shunted. This condition can be cured through surgery. 

Merle Schnauzer Diet and Nutrition

Schedule an appointment with your vet to decide on a diet plan for Merle Schnauzers. The diet plan should be planned depending on your dog’s health condition. Your vet will make sure whether your dog gets all the vital nutrients in the diet. Stick to your vet’s advice as the merle gene is dangerous for dogs.

Merle Schnauzer Living Condition

Merle Schnauzers can adapt well to city living as well as country living. They can use a small, fenced backyard for some playtime. They may not be suitable for homes with small pets like cats, rabbits owing to their prey drive. 

Things to Remember Before Breeding 

It is unfair to the puppy to breed merle dogs. Merle Schnauzers face various issues since birth owing to the mutated gene. Therefore, it is better to avoid breeding dogs with Merle genes. Two Merle Dogs should never be bred as it could cause complications  in breeding, and also, the resulting puppies would be unhealthy or deformed.

Photos of Merle Schnauzer 

Merle Schnauzer Videos 

Merle Schnauzer Puppy 

Leo – Merle Schnauzer Puppy 

Adult Merle Schnauzer 

Adding a Merle Schnauzer Puppy to Your Family 

To Buy a Merle Schnauzer Puppy online: Buy a Puppy online

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