In this article, we will take a closer look at just what we can expect when we take the much-loved Schnauzer Poodle cross, the Schnoodle, and decide to add just a bit more Poodle.
As dog breeders continue to get ever more creative, prospective dog owners have more choices than ever. Imagine the dilemma, you finally settle on the Schnoodle only to discover there are even more options dependent on generation and genetic mix.
Well, here at Know Your Doodles we have scoured once more to bring you a rundown of just what to expect if you are thinking of a Schnoodle cross Poodle. Read on to find out more.
Table of Contents
The Schnoodle is a peppy cross between the Schnauzer and the Poodle. This combo makes for a spirited member of the Doodle clan with a playful and loyal nature.
While it is likely that there was accidental hybrid breeding of this pair historically, they began being purposely bred in the late 80s and really took off in the early 2000s. You can see why people thought they would go well together as both the Poodle and Schnoodle come in three sizes and each breed is extremely popular in its own right.
While early breeding focussed on crossing the Miniature Schnauzer with a Toy or smaller Miniature Poodle to create a fluffy petite pet, in more recent years there has been a rise in using Medium and Giant Schnauzers with their Standard Poodle counterparts to create a much larger dog.
If you want to find out more about the Schnoodle be sure to check out some of our other articles at Know Your Doodles including, amongst others, “Are Schnoodles Easy to Train? How Obedient Are They?” and “Schnoodle Size Guide – Giant, Standard, Mini & Teacup: How Big Do They Get?”
The Poodle itself has its roots as far back as the 15th Century as a working water dog, popular throughout mainland Europe where it retrieved game from waterways and ponds during hunts.
Athletic, strong, and with stamina for days, the breed made the perfect working dog. Their loyal nature and alertness also saw them used as watchdogs in country estates.
By the late 18th and early 19th Century, the Poodle became less prolific as a hunting dog and instead became coveted by the wealthy and royals of the time who found the Poodle could make for a delightful companion dog. The Poodle’s natural intelligence meant they could be taught to demonstrate all manner of pleasing and amazing tricks.
The large build of the traditional Poodle was less practical for a domestic companion and as such breeders intentionally sought to match those dogs who were on the smaller end of the scale in order to develop a smaller variation. This eventually led to the Miniature and Toy varieties we see today.
Of course, the largest Poodle variation, the Standard has a stalwart of dedicated fans and remains popular for those looking for a larger dog.
What do you Call a Schnoodle Poodle Mix?
When it comes to hybrid dog breeding such as a Schnoodle Poodle mix, there is a recognized system used to describe the combination of the generation and make-up of the dogs. A first-generation Schnoodle who is a straight cross between a purebred Poodle and a purebred Schnauzer would be referred to as an F1 Schnoodle. In this mix, the genetic make-up is 50% Poodle, 50% Schnauzer
If that F1 Schnoodle goes on to breed a litter, there are a few options. If the F1 Schnoodle was crossbred with another F1 Schnoodle then we get a second generation or F2 Schnoodle. As a result, the next generation will still overall be 50% Poodle and 50% Schnauzer
Alternatively, a breeder may decide they want to increase the level of Poodle genetics, so an F1 Schnoodle may be back bred with a purebred Poodle to create a dog that is now 75% Poodle and 25% Schnauzer. This is referred to as an F1b Schnoodle. The “b” signifies back bred.
Why is the F1b Schnoodle Being Bred?
The main reason that any Doodle breeder considers back breeding to the Poodle is often to improve the coat texture. In the case of the Schnoodle often a litter of first-generation pups can have a lot of variety in coat type. Some could take after the Schnoodle and have a coat that is coarse and wiry instead of the wavy teddy bear like hair often desired in Doodles.
If the breeder wants subsequent litters to be more consistent in coat type, adding more Poodle genetics can help improve consistency and increase the chances of the desired coat type.
Some people may prefer a more Poodle-like temperament and feel an F1b offers them the Schnoodle appearance but with a bit less Schnauzer habits or traits.
Is an F1b Schnoodle an Ethical Cross?
Many people oppose first-generation hybrids, never mind subsequent cross-breeding and back breeding. While there will always be some die-hard pure breed purists, realistically hybrid breeding also has many benefits of increasing the gene pool.
In real terms, the ethics of an F1b Schnoodle as a cross comes down much more to the individual practices of each breeder. Ensuring healthy dogs are chosen for crossing and keeping accurate records to avoid any close familial lines mate is the key to ensuring the health of generations to come.
The Benefits of an F1b Schnoodle
One of the key benefits of the F1b Schnoodle is that it dramatically increases the chance of the favored hair-like wavy coat that gives Doodle crosses their adorable appearance.
Being able to select an F1 Schnoodle that displays the best blend of Poodle and Schnauzer traits also contributes to more predictability in the litter. While it is never certain, anecdotally the first generation (an F1 Schnoodle) litter can be harder to predict what parent they will take after.
In an F1b, we have the luxury of picking the Schnoodle that is the best example of the cross for a parent.
The Cons of an F1b Schnoodle
We mentioned before that crossing two different purebred dog breeds has the potential to improve health. This phenomenon is referred to as “hybrid vigor”. In most health problems a dog requires two copies of a faulty gene, one from the mother and one from the father.
In many purebred lines, certain conditions have become more prolific over the years meaning it is more likely each parent could pass on a faulty gene. By introducing a different breed that does not commonly have those conditions, the chance of passing it into the next generations is reduced.
This health effect however is most prolific in first-generation crosses, by progressing to the F1b the dog is mostly Poodle meaning they have more chance of developing Poodle-specific health issues.
F1b Schnoodle Statistics:
Size and Weight
The Poodle comes in three recognized sizes, Toy, Miniature, and Standard. The Schnauzer also comes in three sizes however they are referred to as Miniature, Standard, and Giant.
Although the names differ the F1 Schnoodle is generally a cross between a Poodle and Schnauzer of fairly regular size. This results in the Mini, Standard, or Giant Schnoodle. Occasionally you may see a Toy Schnoodle referenced which is often a smaller than average Miniature Schnoodle crossed with a Miniature Poodle.
To create the F1b an equivalent Poodle would be matched to either a Mini, Standard, or Giant Schnauzer. While the larger Schnoodle varieties are becoming more prevalent, the most common F1b variation is a Mini Schnoodle crossed with a Toy or Miniature Poodle.
Weight and height averages are outlined below:
- Mini F1b Schnoodle: 12” to 14” in height and 15lbs to 30lbs
- Standard F1b Schnoodle: 19” to 22” in height and 30lbs to 50lbs
- Giant F1b Schnoodle: 20” to 25” in height and 50lbs to 80lbs
Color and Coat Types
The F1 Schnoodle selected to be paired with a Poodle will generally display the best example of the low shedding, hair-like curly coat associated with the Doodle hybrid. While the Poodle brings its instantly recognizable tight curls.
The F1b Schnoodle coat is therefore anticipated to be low shedding and quite densely curled however they often retain bushier less curled hair around their face and muzzle. Instead, they can display the trademark Schnauzer bushy brows and mustache.
In theory, color-wise they could be any variation of the parent breeds colors and markings. The Poodle comes in a near rainbow of color options while the F1 Schnoodle is more likely to be black, silver, white, or gray tones as the Schnauzer has a much more muted palatte.
The F1b is 75% Poodle so has more of a chance of being more varied in color however many purposely choose black, white, or gray-toned Poodles in the hope of keeping Schnauzer-ish tones.
Overall, the F1b Schnoodle is considered a healthy hybrid option, however, there are some conditions attributed to both the Poodle and Schnauzer that they may be predisposed to. These include:
- Eye issues (progressive retinal atrophy and cataracts)
- Patella luxation
- Hormonal disorders (Cushing’s disease and Addison’s disease)
An F1b Schnoodle will be an excitable companion dog who would do well in a family or with single adults or couples. Many owners remark on their intelligence and eagerness to please in training, meaning they can excel in obedience training and have the potential to perform a whole plethora of tricks.
They are people-orientated though and will not do well with extended periods alone. They will enjoy regular exercise and the opportunity to use their brains. A moderate barker the F1b Schnoodle should not bark excessively. However, they have strong watchdog credentials and will alert you to any unusual happenings.
The biggest indicator of exercise needs for the F1b Schnoodle will be its overall size. A Mini may only need one 20 minute walk a day while the Giant F1b Schnoodle will need at least an hour’s vigorous exercise a day and could happily do much more.
Again, the overall size will have the biggest impact on your F1b Schnoodle’s feeding requirements. The smallest variations may only need 0.75 to 1 cup of good quality dry dog food split over two meals while the largest of the Giant F1b Schnoodles could need as much as 2.5 to 2.75 cups a day.