Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Unacceptable Colors

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Category: Schnauzer Facts

Dilute brown fawnWhy are there other colors besides Black, Black and Silver, and Salt and Pepper being bred in United States ?

Short answer … poodles, pomeranians, miniature Australian shepherds  (and other crosses) have been added to the gene pool at less then reputable “kennels”, Casual Back yard breeders , and puppy mills.




Many people today are seeing Schnauzers in colors and sizes that are not accepted in the breed standard. Often the websites promoting them are flashy, have gospel music playing, and like to toss out a lot of misinformation on dog color genetics.

While the information on how dog colors are passed down itself might not be incorrect, it IS misleading. Breeders who give long-winded information of "dog genetics" to qualify a color they are breeding for pure profit are often masking the real questions.

If you claim your dogs are all Purebred, and the breed has bred true for over 70 years, where did the gene come from?

It may be true that "That gene” creates "that color" , but did you have to introduce another breed to get it in the mix?

Ms. McMillan's site has an interesting article on the chip exercise. What the chip exercise does is show you how genes combine and can be lost or bred out. If genes could not be bred out, then every schnauzer could produce all dog colors, not just schnauzer colors, by breeding the same two dogs together repeatedly. In that case, every dog would also have more than 78 chromosomes.

A color gene cannot be recreated from stock that is no longer carrying it. In order for a color that has been bred out of a breed to show up in a litter, it must be reintroduced. The only way to do that is by out-crossing a purebred line with another breed, thus making the offspring no longer purebreds.

The greater question here is:

Why is the breeder out-crossing a purebred line with another breed for a color that was purposefully bred out and condemned by the parent clubs?

 Breeding is something that should only be done to better the breed to improve the dogs within the breed standard. It is not something that should be done frivolously .

If you’re looking at an "off-color" anyway, please check out your local rescue. There are plenty of actual purebred Schnauzers and mixes in shelters right now who would happily be your loyal companion for the rest of their lives.

It is unlikely that colors that had not been prevalent in the breed for generations would suddenly pop-up without someone re-introducing it. The dogs sold with the off-colors also rarely have the correct "look" or fit the rest of the breed standard.

more reading :

 Focusing on the United States and why we only allow 3 colors in the US.

American* White:

The "American White" with no traceable heritage outside of the United States.

Selections from "Why not White:"

This article already covers the why of no "xxx" colors very well. Please take the time to read it in full at the link provided.

Crossing to other breeds, such as the Affenpinscher and Miniature Pinscher had the side effect of introducing colors that were not considered acceptable to the ultimate goal - and as breeders worked towards the stabilization of the gene pool, mismarked particolors and white puppies would be removed from breeding programs. They were recognized as a step backward.

By the time the breed had crossed the Atlantic to North America, type was relatively well established. The breed standard called for a much smaller dog than the present day MS, but at all times white and particolor MS were considered unacceptable regressions. Very few dogs were successful in making the trip alive to reproduce in the days of distemper and other contagious diseases and no vaccine. The handful who did succeed in leaving descendants were primarily salt & pepper in color. A few of these dogs also carried the black & silver gene and it continued to occur in many of the known foundation kennels throughout the growth of the breed. Although black & silver was not commonly shown in the early years, when it did become more popular in the ring, pedigree analysis was always successful in tracing the origin of the color gene to the known imports who had carried the color.

The gene for black did not become established in the general population until some years afterwards - but again, all black champions are easily traced to one or more of the well known black imports.......""

*Caveat on FCI White .

Although recently there have been a few kennels in the United States importing FCI registered White Schnauzers from countries that do accept the color as a breed , in these countries they are considered a separate breeding stock ,


  • Giant schnauzer is a breed
    • Black Giant Schnauzer is shown and bred as sperate kennels
    • Salt and Pepper Giant  Schnauzer is shown and bred as a sperate kennels
  • Standard schnauzer  is a breed
    • Black Schnauzer is shown and bred as sperate kennels
    • Salt and Pepper  Schnauzer is shown and bred as a sperate kennels
  • Miniature schnauzer is a breed
    • Black Miniature Schnauzer is shown and bred as sperate kennels 
    • Salt and Pepper Miniature Schnauzer is shown and bred as a sperate kennels
    • Black and Silver Miniature Schnauzer is shown and bred as a sperate kennels
    •  White  Miniature Schnauzer is shown and bred as a sperate kennels

These dogs are actually of decent quality coat, and  structure but they exhibit a gene mutation that is not accepted by the  National Miniature Schnauzer Clubs of Canada or the United States .

Due to the showing , breeding , history and breed standard differences between FCI and the non-FCI dogs our parent clubs are not accepting them at this time.  You can read more about the FCI whites history, and the modern White Schnauzer by following this link.


Although there were a spattering of black and white  parti-colored Schnauzers in the very early days(1880's) when out-crossing with other Pinschers was still occurring. These colors stopped showing up with any frequency by 1920. in fact their were ZERO registered Parti-colored schnauzers in the PSK stud book before 1929.

The story is similar to the one kennel in Germany producing whites.
The Poodle/Spitz out-cross argument is not really very valid considering the crosses were rare, and happened in the 1820's well before the breed was even established, where it is documented that only a few very rare crosses with German black Poodle, and Finnish Spitz occurred and it was the Standard sized schnauzer breed not the miniture that saw those out crosses. The miniture schnauzers at the very begining only sharded a stud book with miniture pinchers, and that stopped once the breed was established.

 click for more information on  Parti-Colored Schnauzers .


 Excellent site detailing the dangers and mutations linked Directly to the merle gene :


The first "merle" Schnauzers were marketed in 2006; they did not exist before that and are a crude and dishonest ploy to separate the uneducated from their money.

First attempts at this color by crossing a schnauzer and a pomeranian, chihuahuas were added later to make them even smaller. Later other breeders tried a Miniature Aussie-Schnauzer cross. The dogs that are produced have very domed heads, soft coats(super-coated), and are normally sporting the cockerspaniel's high skirted clip.

There was that ONE "honest" breeder of "designer colors" who states:

By: Nancy Anderson

Very little is known about the history of the merle Schnauzer, but one thing is for sure, WITHOUT DOUBT, that is a cross with another breed that does exhibit in its coat and history the merle pattern.  There are more and more of them showing up for sale on the internet, in local papers, and throughout the United States but I've yet to find anybody who can give me the heritage of them, short of the ones who have taken a merle dog (*i.e. Aussie, Chihuahua, Rat Terrier, Pomeranian ... etc.) and who did their own cross to produce the merle pattern with their Schnauzers. By genetic equation, it takes seven generations of conscientious breeding to produce a LIKE specimen in order to achieve purebred status.

I'd also like to point out that just because you bred this TYPE for seven generations, it will never be a Miniature Schnauzer, ever. You have created a "new breed";

Also just breeding an animal for seven generations doesn't make it an accepted breed.

 Reference Photos of a dog being sold and advertised as rare color purebreds, next to dogs marketed on Hoobly Dec 2011 as Aussie Mixes .


All images fall under Fair use in Copyright act as they are being used as examples for educational purposes and have been obtained from advertisements to SELL these dogs. Section 107 contains a list of the various purposes for which the reproduction of a particular work may be considered fair, such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. All images are considered DERIVATIVE works because they have been made into collages for teaching and Research purposes and are therefore well with-in Fair use Guidelines .

Reasons we need to be honest with the mixes .

Different breeds really do have different caviates on what they may actually need  medically or can't have.

:unsure: Lets  Say you bought that special designer schnauzer from a breeder,

:dry: it was labeled a purebred confetti schnauzer.

:unsure: But Confetti schnauzers ARE all aussie mixes started from a fad in 2006 .

:cheer: The new owner buys it heartguard (Ivermectin) because they are doing whats right to protect it from heartworm.

:huh: But no one told them about the dangers of that drug for the mix of dog because it was labeled as a purebred just a "special color".

:ohmy: Aussies and many herding breeds and mixes , cannot have heartguard or anything that is based on Ivermectin , and it kills the dog.. :(see link for more info.

:unsure: If it's not a recognized color don't advertise the animal as a Purebred call it like it is :mix .

 If it's merel , or a known Aussie cross or suspected Aussie cross due to coat texture or conformation

 ( rounded skull) very THICK coat, wrong colors ,ect. Advise the potential owners of the dangers of certain medication based on genetic history or get the dog tested for the MDR1 Gene. Don't lie and perpetuate the "oh but she has papers myth" , it's not the AKC that set the standard, it's the breed club and according to them , anything outside our 3 accepted colors isn't a schnauzer.


Liver, Chocolate, Red:

Liver/Chocolate/Brown schnauzers would be carrying the reccesive  "B" series to produce Brown Eumelinin in there coats .  Since all Purebred Schnauzers have had this marker bred out of them barring a mutation it is unlikely that any dog exhibiting this coloring would be purebred. The nose leather, pads, and eye rims are also affected by this gene and will be brown. 

For anyone who wants to ride me on being" racist", your an idiot, my baby boy was technically a dark  liver, you can see his nose, eye leather and coat are a deep brown instead of black , we're pretty sure he had a little poodle mixed in there. He defiantly had either a mutation and was exhibiting a recessive "Br" marker, or was a little bit crossbred. He was also Oversize at 22Lbs of solid muscle  most of his life, nearly 7Lbs more then the  average within the breed standard, and his coat was soft, some of that may have been from being clippered as it can also lighten the coat but the damning genetic evidence was in his nose and paw leather which were a dark brown in comparison to his "siblings" and other fosters jet black. I didn't love him any less but even so he ended up in a shelter and we took him in and gave him the best life possible.

Even after that , do I think he should of been bred in the first place?

No, I don't.

Their is more to breeding then just making more dogs. and even-though Fritz got very lucky and was able to live out an awesome life with us , I wonder everyday what happened to his littermates?  or the next puppy coming out of a back yard breeder or miller.


A quick look at the "B" loci for this color.

"B"  notes for schnauzers:

 All pure bred schnauzers appear to be dominate "B" for black eumelanin.
 Purebred schnauzers do not carry for (b) brown eumelanin. 

The "b" series contains the following markers : bs: bd: bc: these produce brown dogs of varying intensity.


e/e produces the  red and yellow phaeomeanin pigment dogs. Since all Purebred schnauzers also are ii intensity, the phaeomeanin would be stripped out of the coat and it would appear white or very light cream.

red                   cd white dark skin

                      e/e Phaeomelanin only coat                                        e/e  Phaeomelanin stripped by i/i

In order for this color to show up.

First a dog with an Ee or ee marker would have to be introduced then a less diluted Intensity marker would have to be introduced by cross breeding to another breed first to bring the color back. It is unlikely that any of these colors come from modern purebred schnauzers in the Americas and they do not show up in any of the American , Canadian or South African show kennels, ( in EXTREMELY rare cases dogs genes can mutate, and it is possible to get a recessive mutation , but it  is VERY uncommon.)

 A phaeomeanin based "red" dog can have a black or brown nose since the B gene governs the The nose leather, pads, and eye rims.



"I" intensity  Phaeomelanin Modifier

All schnauzers seem to carry the most dilute modifier of this type . "ii" Strips most of the Phaeomelanin out of 

the coat and where Phaeomelanin would be a very light cream or white is in it's place because the Phaeomelanin pigment is not produced

  • I - Red (selectively bred out of schnauzers )

  • Ii- Tan selectively bred out of schnauzers )

  • ii- very light tan -> cream -> white , all schnauzers are lowest intensity "ii"

                                  I   solid brown tan IIblack tan II dark

Intensity – effects Phaeomelanin that  colors the coat yellow-red this  marker I produces the deepest red

(examples are tan pointed dogs exhibiting at)

Ii  solid brown Ii medblack tan Ii med

Intensity – effects Phaeomelanin that colors the coat yellow-red  marker Ii produces a tan.

(examples are tan pointed dogs exhibiting at)

ii solid brown iiblack tan ii

Intensity – effects Phaeomelanin that  colors the coat yellow-red  marker ii produces a cream-white

(examples are tan pointed dogs exhibiting at)