About buying a Giant Schnauzer

All puppies are cute, but before you fall in love with the first adorable Giant Schnauzer face you see, take the time to investigate and be sure you are buying from a responsible breeder. Responsible breeders will do all they can to avoid health and temperament problems by researching pedigrees and screening parents for certain inherited problems before breeding. Below is a list of what to look for and what to avoid. You may not find a breeder who fits 100% of these criteria, but don't settle for anything less than one or two negative responses. 

At the end of the list you will find questions to ask yourself. You should be able to answer all of them affirmatively before you make your purchase. Remember you are adding a new member to your family for the next 10 to 13 (or sometimes more) years. NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO BARGAIN HUNT!! Prepare to spend $3o00 - $4000 for a well bred puppy. NOR IS IT TIME FOR AN IMPULSE PURCHASE!! You may have known someone who has, or you have purchased a "backyard" bred dog or a pet store or a puppy mill dog and had great success. That was luck - it is not the norm. Why take the chance? 

Do your research; on the breed, on the breeder, on yourself!

“A responsible breeder tries to breed healthier dogs with sound temperaments and exceptional working, companion, and conformation qualities. A responsible breeder is breeding for themselves, looking for that special pup and as such is never breeding to produce puppies for sale. You, the puppy buyer, are simply lucky that the responsible breeder can not keep all of the puppies. Income derived from selling puppies helps to offset the costs the responsible breeder incurs in trying to create that extra special pup. The responsible breeder will always do what is best for their dogs, even at great financial cost. The commercial breeder, pet shop, or puppy mill can not do that and remain in business.”

Signs of a responsible breeder: 

-Puts the best interest of the breed and of the individual dogs first and foremost
-Is passionate about the breed and will share detailed breed information
-Is dedicated to breeding quality dogs and will only sell to approved buyers
-Is willing to answer any questions about his breed and breeding program
-Has a breeding program "mission"
-Breeds for him or her self first, aiming to contribute to the improvement of the breed
-Breeds after careful consideration of qualities and/or faults in conformation, temperament, and
pedigree and after health/genetic testing
-Questions and interviews potential buyers thoroughly
-Explains potential health issues and genetic defects that may be inherent in the breed
-Breeds to improve the genetic pool of their breed
-Is willing to let you meet the dam and, if possible the stud, however stud dogs may reside in
other states or countries
-Premises are clean and sanitary and dogs are very well cared for
-Supplies vaccination and health records, pedigrees, etc.
-Shares information on education, training, grooming, development, nutrition and health
-Expects - and welcomes - potential buyers to ask a lot of questions
-Is honest about the best and worst of their breed’s qualities
-Will steer you in another direction if they think their breed is not right for you
-Will steer you in the direction of a reputable rescue if they think a puppy is not a good choice
for you
-Are not motivated by profit but by the love of their breed
-Are active in conformation/obedience/agility etc.
-Belong to national, regional and/or local dog clubs
-Will want to keep in contact with new buyers for the entire life of the dog
-Requires a contract which includes that puppies destined as pets be spayed or neutered
-Will always take back a dog no matter what the reason, and will insist on it in their contract
-Prices are at the high end of the local range and does not reflect all that is invested in the pups

Signs of poor breeding practices/puppy mill operators/backyard breeders:

-Usually sell multiple breeds and sells solely for profit (may say motives for breeding are that it's
fun or good for the kids)
-Will sell to anyone (i.e., little or no information exchange about potential buyers)
-Will sell to wholesalers/brokers (i.e., pet stores get their dogs from puppy mills)
-Breeds any female that they can breed without regard
-Does not do health checks on parents
-Does not care about temperament, health, genetics, conformation etc. and often is not interested
in or does not understand these issues
-Operates as cheaply as possible to maximize profits (i.e., poor feeding practices, veterinary care
and/or vaccinations are usually avoided)
-Will not allow visitation to their facilities (as they are usually unsanitary - some will let you see but
it will be evident that the facilities are unsanitary and/or inappropriate)
-Dogs show little or no socialization
-Has little knowledge of breed history, the AKC or CKC standard, or their national breed club
-No concern for the future of the pups or the breed as a whole
-Pedigrees are not available
-Some may have registration papers available but nothing else
-Does not use a spay/neuter contract or AKC/CKC limited registration/non-breeding agreement
-Usually will avoid any calls or emails made after dog has been purchased
-Will not be taking back any pups if you cannot keep it and appears to not care where the dog
ends up once he or she has left their premises
-Prices are at the low range of the local range or "too good to be true" 



____1) Take full responsibility for this dog and all of its needs for the next 8 - 15 years? This is NOT a task that can be left to children! 

____2) Invest the considerable time, money and patience it takes to train the dog to be a good companion? (This does not happen by itself!!!!)
____3) Always keep the dog safe; no running loose, riding in the back of an open pick up truck, or being chained outside? 

____4) Make sure the dog gets enough attention and exercise? (Giant Schnauzers need several hours of both, every day!!) 

____5) Spend the money it takes to provide proper veterinary care, including but certainly not limited to: Vaccines, heartworm testing and preventative, spaying or neutering and annual check ups? 

____6) Become educated about the proper care of the breed, correct training methods and how to groom?

____7) Keep the breeder informed and up to date on the dog’s accomplishments and problems?
____8) Take your questions to the breeder and/or other appropriate professional before they become problems that are out of hand?
____9) Have the patience to accept (and enjoy) the trials of puppy hood (which can last for a couple of years) and each life stage afterward?
____10) Continue to accept responsibility for the dog despite inevitable life changes such as new babies, kids going off to school, moving or returning to work?
____11) Resist impulse buying; instead have the patience to make a responsible choice? 

If you answered yes to ALL of the above you are invited to fill out our Questionnaire. Start early because we, as do most responsible breeders, have a waiting list ranging from a few months to a couple of years. 

Remember, the right puppy or adult dog IS worth waiting for!!

For further information about the Giant Schnauzer and if it is the breed for you please click on the link below and go to the Giant Schnauzer Club of America website:

(External link will open a new window.)