White Miniature Schnauzer

Learn more about the white Miniature Schnauzer.

Is White A Standard Color In Miniature Schnauzers?

Only the FCI, including the German breed club, accepts solid white Miniature Schnauzers.

The American Miniature Schnauzer Club feels that a small version of the Standard Schnauzer should only have the same colors as its model breed. They believe “almost all whites are highly likely to have another breed in the background (think West Highland White Terrier)[1].

What Does A White Miniature Schnauzer Look Like?

A white Schnauzer has a recessive red (e/e) pattern with pale whitish phaeomelanin.

White Minis are supposed to be solid white with no trace of red shading in their coat.

However, many white dogs show some degree of reddish saliva staining in their beards.

Pure white with white undercoat.”

“Faults: Patchy coat in the colours black/silver and white.”

FCI Breed Standard

“Black is the only solid color allowed.”

AKC Breed Standard

White Miniature Schnauzer Nose Color

A dog’s nose gets its color only from its eumelanin pigment.

Dogs with a black-based pattern will always have a black nose. Also, any visible skin pigment like eye rims and lips and even the nails and paw pads will be black.

Dogs with a recessive red pattern are prone to have fading nose pigment. Meaning, it takes effort to maintain the solid black nose required by the breed standard.

“Well developed nose leather, always black

Lips: Black, smoot and tight-fitting to the jaws.”

FCI Breed Standard

White Miniature Schnauzer Eye Color

Eye color is determined by eumelanin color and pigment density.

A white Miniature Schnauzer with its black eumelanin typically has dark brown eyes.

Eyes […] dark with lively expression”

FCI Breed Standard

White Miniature Schnauzer Coat Type

All Schnauzers are fixed for furnishings, they always have a beard and bushy eyebrows.

Miniature Schnauzers are double-coated with a furnished short coat which makes them a wire-haired breed. Their topcoat is harsh and dense with their leg furnishings a little longer and softer.

Some Miniature Schnauzers have a long-coat variant. And even fewer have a curly variant.

“The coat should be wiry, harsh, and dense. […] The hair on the limbs tends to be less harsh. […] Typical characteristics are the not too soft beard on the muzzle and the bushy eyebrows ...”

FCI Breed Standard




White Miniature Schnauzer Genetics

White Miniature Schnauzers have a black-based recessive red pattern.

Basic Pattern

The genetics behind a solid white coat color in Miniature Schnauzers:

    • E/-
      • ky/ky
        • aw/-
          • agouti
            "pepper & salt"
        • at/-
          • tan points
            "black & silver"
        • a/a
          • recessive black
      • KB/-
        • dominant black
    • e/e
      • recessive red
        " white"

The A, K and E locus combined are responsible for a dog’s basic pattern. They tell pigment cells when and where to produce either eumelanin or phaeomelanin.

doesn’t matter

doesn’t matter

recessive red

A Locus

Dogs with a recessive red (e/e) pattern do not express their A locus.

K Locus

Dogs with a recessive red (e/e) pattern do not express their K locus.

E Locus

The E locus is epistatic to both the A and K loci.

A recessive red pattern is caused by having two copies of a recessive e variant (e/e). This prevents any signalling molecules from the A or K genes from transmitting instructions to the hair pigment cells.

And without instructions, all hair pigment cells will make only phaeomelanin.

This is why white Miniature Schnauzers can never have even a trace of black shading, not even in their puppy coat. They will also have white whiskers.

Pigment Colors

White Miniature Schnauzers have black eumelanin and whitish phaeomelanin.

Some genes determine the actual colors in a dog’s pattern.





A white Mini Schnauzer has very pale low-intensity phaeomelanin.


Dogs with a B/- D/D genotype will produce black eumelanin. While a white Schnauzers has no eumelanin in the coat, he will still produce black pigment in its nose color, lips, or eye rims.

Keep in mind that many dogs with this pattern have fading nose pigment.

Other Traits

Traditionally, Miniature Schnauzers do not have white markings or merle.

Some traits can modify a pattern by removing pigment or further modifying colors:




White Markings

White Miniature Schnauzers have a solid coat (S/S).

In color-bred Schnauzers, some may have piebald spotting (sP). However, you wouldn’t be able see white parti markings on a dog that already has very pale whitish pigment.


Purebred Miniature Schnauzers do not come in merle.

Also, merle will be hidden in a white Schnauzer’s pattern!

Even in “rare color breeding“, breeders generally try to avoid a recessive red and merle combination. That is because merle only affects eumelanin and white Mini Schnauzers don’t have any of that.

Strong merle combinations can sometimes delete pigment even from phaeomelanin patterns. But we again wouldn’t be able to see diluted patches in an already solid white coat.

More Miniature Schnauzer Colors

Purebred Miniature Schnauzers come in other colors than white:

Black Miniature Schnauzer

Black Miniature Schnauzers are dominant black.

Pattern #1: E/- KB/- (dominant black)
Pattern #2: E/- ky/ky a/a (recessive black)
Eumelanin: B/- D/D (non-diluted black)

Salt & Pepper Miniature Schnauzer

A breed term for a black-based agouti pattern.

Pattern: E/- ky/ky aw/- (agouti)
Eumelanin: B/- D/D (non-diluted black)
Intensity: white

Black & Silver Miniature Schnauzer

A breed term for a black-based tan point pattern.

Pattern: E/- ky/ky at/at (tan point)
Eumelanin: B/- D/D (non-diluted black)
Intensity: white

White Miniature Schnauzer

A solid white recessive red pattern.

Pattern: e/e (recessive red)
Eumelanin: B/- D/D (non-diluted black)
Intensity: white

Learn More


[1] The American Miniature Schnauzer Club