The Miniature Schnauzzie is a rare hybrid breed that has limited data about its history and performance. Therefore, it is important to look at the parent breeds to determine the character traits of the new breed. Strangely enough the Miniature Australian Shepherd has no breeding links to Australia. The origin of the breed was the Basque region in Spain. It was there that the working shepherd dog coined the name as many of the shepherds in the region had come from Australia. In the late 1960s, North American breeders decided to refine the standard breed into a miniature version by breeding only the smaller Australian Shepherds. This refinement developed a dog that was smaller, more compact than the original, yet still maintained its keen instincts and reliable nature. By the 1990s it had attained huge popularity which continues to this day. The Miniature Schnauzer is a spunky little dog whose original purpose was as a vermin hunter and guard dog on the farm. Believed to have developed in the mid-19th Century in Germany by crossing the Standard Schnauzer with smaller breeds such as the Affenpinscher, Pomeranian and perhaps the Poodle, the earliest breed records note the birth of a Miniature Schnauzer which was a black female called Findel, who was born in October, 1888. The first Mini Schnauzer club was formed in Cologne, Germany. While the years of World War 1 were tough on many dog breeds, the Miniature Schnauzer managed to hang on and then boomed in the years afterwards. While the color of the coat has changed from red, black and tan, and yellow to the distinguished shades of silver and black that we see today, one thing hasn't changed and that is their popularity which remains as strong as ever.