9-15 lbs
Miniature Schnauzer
Brussels Griffon

The Sniffon is a designer dog, the intentional mix of two highly adept ratters that are more commonly kept as companion animals today; the Brussels Griffon, originating around Brussels in Belgium, and the Miniature Schnauzer, developed in Germany. These dogs are highly intelligent, but they are more likely to use their intelligence for getting into things than for learning tricks, and they should never be left outside alone, even in a fenced yard as the Schnauzer is a master digger and the Brussels Griffon has a serious talent for climbing things. They are fairly quiet, usually barking only when needed, and they don’t have extensive exercise requirements so they do tend to make excellent apartment dogs.

purpose Purpose
Companion and Watchdog
history Date of Origin
ancestry Ancestry
Miniature Schnauzer and Brussels Griffon

Sniffon Health

Average Size
Male Sniffon size stats
Height: 9-12 inches Weight: 9-15 lbs
Female Sniffon size stats
Height: 9-12 inches Weight: 9-15 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Portosystemic Shunt
  • Sick Sinus Syndrome
Minor Concerns
  • Pulmonic Stenosis
  • Cataracts
  • Diabetes
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Hyperlipoproteinemia
  • Schnauzer Comedo Syndrome
  • Pancreatitis
  • Syringomyelia
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
  • Immune Mediated Haemolytic Anaemia (IMHA)
  • Atopy
  • Urolithiasis
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Epilepsy
  • X-linked Muscular Dystrophy
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • vonWillebrand’s Disease
  • Megaesophagus
  • Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca (KCS)
Occasional Tests
  • Eye Examination
  • Blood And Urine Analysis
  • X-rays or other radiographic imaging
  • Electrocardiograph (ECG - measures rate and rhythm)

Sniffon Breed History

The Sniffon is a deliberately mixed breed dog often referred to as a designer dog, in this case, a combination of two small canines, both bred to be very capable ratters, the Miniature Schnauzer from Germany and the Brussels Griffon from their neighbor, Belgium. The Miniature Schnauzer is a relatively new breed, although the Schnauzer was derived from is a much older breed, dating back to the middle ages in one form or another. The Schnauzer’s characteristic coloration and wiry coats didn’t appear until the 1800s when contributions were made from the Poodle and the gray Wolfspitz, more commonly known as the Keeshond. Towards the end of the 1800s breeders sought to create a smaller Schnauzer designed to hunt and kill vermin. They achieved their goal by breeding the smallest of the Schnauzers with both other small Schnauzers and with other small terrier and pinscher-type dogs, including breeds like the Wire Fox Terrier and the Affenpinscher, and the first Miniature Schnauzer was recorded in a German stud book in 1888. The Brussels Griffons are the descendants of little wire-haired ratting dogs that were commonly used by coachmen to eradicate vermin from stables where the carriages and horses were kept. These dogs, known simply as griffons d’ecurie, or wire-coated stable dogs, were later mixed with companion dogs such as Pugs, Affenpinschers, and English Toy Spaniels, ultimately giving the dog a nearly human-like face, with large round eyes and an upturned mouth. These little dogs became sought after by the Belgian elite after Queen Henrietta Marie of Belgium took an interest and gave them royal patronage. While the United States recognizes the Brussels Griffon as a single breed, other European registries divide this group of dogs into three breeds by coat color and type, the Brussels Griffon with a rough red coat, the Petit Brabancon with a smooth coat in any color, and the Griffon Belge, which has a rough coat in any color but red. 

Sniffon Breed Appearance

The Sniffon is small dog, generally a little over a foot tall at the shoulder with a robust, thickset body structure. The head may have either the short, slightly rounded skull of the Brussels Griffon or the longer, flatter skull of the Miniature Schnauzer and while some may inherit the shortened muzzle of the Brussels Griffon, most have slightly longer muzzles more representative of the Miniature Schnauzer. Their eyes are generally a very dark brown and round, although those that favor their Brussels Griffon heritage will have larger eyes than those that favor the Miniature Schnauzer, and their triangular ears sit high up on their heads and fold down either to the front or to the sides. Both of these breeds are often seen with cropped ears that are held upright, and some Sniffon owners and breeders may choose to do the same, although this practice has been banned in many countries. 

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Sniffon eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Sniffon nose
Coat Color Possibilities
blue Sniffon coat
fawn Sniffon coat
silver Sniffon coat
red Sniffon coat
gray Sniffon coat
black Sniffon coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
coat density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
coat texture
Sniffon wiry coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Sniffon Breed Maintenance

This hybrid has moderate grooming requirements, bathing is only required once every few months or so and usually only requires brushing or combing on a weekly basis, although two or three times a week is better. Many Sniffons will have a wiry coat that needs to be hand-stripped at least twice a year in order to keep the coat healthy and promote new growth, and some will have the abundant fur and bearding of the Miniature Schnauzer which may require scissoring around the face and legs and will almost certainly warrant having their beard inspected and cleaned to remove stray food particles and keep them smelling clean and fresh.  

Brushes for Sniffon
Pin Brush
Pin Brush
Nail Clipper
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
fur daily fur weekly fur monthly
Sniffon requires weekly brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Sniffon Temperament

This dog is an extremely spunky and spirited animal with a great deal of energy. Both dogs are believed to have Affenpinscher in their heritage, a well-known clown of the dog world, so the Sniffon is a rather playful and entertaining companion. They tend to do well with children, although interactions with young children and toddlers should be closely supervised for both the safety of the child and the dog, and they are generally agreeable with other dogs and cats although they may chase the cats for fun due to their Schnauzer heritage. When it comes to smaller pets like rodents and birds, they should be kept far from your Sniffon, as the Sniffon is a very agile and fearless hunter of small things. These little dogs are highly intelligent and versatile and should be monitored closely and kept in a secure environment when you are out of the home as they are prone to using their smarts for things like opening cabinets and drawers to get at food and playthings, and due to their Brussels Griffon heritage, they love to climb and may get themselves into precarious situations. 

Sniffon Activity Requirements

This crossbreed has high energy levels but doesn’t typically require as much vigorous exercise as many dogs, partially due to their small size. They are usually quite satisfied with an hour or so of exercise per day, which is most effective if it is broken down into several short, intense exercise sessions throughout the day. Although these dogs are small enough to get much of their exercise indoors, by playing rousing games of fetch or thought-provoking games of hide and seek, they truly enjoy their outdoor time and should get as many forays into the outer world as possible.

Activity Level
low activity medium activity high activity
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
7 miles
walk mileage
Minutes of Activity Per Day
60 minutes
activity minutes

Sniffon Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1 cups
cup per day cost
Daily Cost
$0.90 - $1.00
food bowls daily cost
Monthly Cost
$25.00 - $30.00
food bag monthly cost

Sniffon Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Sniffon size stats at six months
Height: 9.5 inches Weight: 9.0 lbs
Female Sniffon size stats at six months
Height: 9.5 inches Weight: 9.0 lbs
12 Months
Male Sniffon size stats at 12 months
Height: 10.5 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs
Female Sniffon size stats at 12 months
Height: 10.5 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs
18 Months
Male Sniffon size stats at 18 months
Height: 10.5 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs
Female Sniffon size stats at 18 months
Height: 10.5 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs

Sniffon Owner Experiences

4 Years
1 People
House & Yard
I recently did a DNA test to find out what Mimi is. She looks EXACTLY like the dog in the photo for this page! She is definitely high energy, super playful, and LOVES people. She is very smart, but sometimes is difficult to train because she can outsmart me and do what she wants. She is a snuggle bug at night, and loves to be with me at all times.
2 years, 10 months ago
9 Months
3 People
House & Yard
My Wally is so smart, funny and rambunctious. He loves people and other animals as well.
4 years, 11 months ago
11 Years
2 People
Extremely smart dog. Learns new things very quickly. Very loyal companion and quite vocal "talkative".
4 years, 9 months ago
Book me a walkiee?
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd