Chonzer (Bichon Frise x Miniature Schnauzer Mix): All You Need to Know

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Chonzer (Bichon Frise x Miniature Schnauzer Mix)The chonzer is a cross between a bichon frise and a miniature schnauzer, which means they can inherit traits from either parent. This article will look at the parent breeds as well as what you can usually expect from this crossbreed.

So if you’re thinking of getting a chonzer and want to know more about them before you fully commit, read on to see if this pooch is the right pet for you.

Chonzer (Bichon Frise x Miniature Schnauzer Mix) History

The chonzer first originated in the US and is quite a recent bichon frise cross breed. However, the parent breeds have existed for centuries, so in order to get an idea of the chonzer’s temperament, let’s find out more about where they come from.

Miniature Schnauzer

Miniature SchnauzerThe schnauzer was born and bred in Germany. ‘Schnauze’ in German means snout, or muzzle, and it’s clear from the schnauzer’s long snout and mustached muzzle why this name stuck.

The miniature schnauzer’s roots go back to the 15th century, when the breed known today as the standard schnauzer was bred as an all-round farm dog. German farmers bred the schnauzer down to miniature size in order to better hunt rats, and the first miniature schnauzer recorded was in 1888. With their ratter background, the miniature schnauzer belongs to the terrier dog breed group. According to the AKC, they are the only registered terrier that has no British ancestry.

As spirited, intelligent, and loving little dogs, the miniature schnauzer is the most popular of the three schnauzer breeds. They make great family pets, and they also often excel at doggy sports like agility due to their smarts and athleticism.

Bichon Frise

Bichon FriseThe bichon frise (meaning ‘curly haired small dog’) is thought to have descended from the Barbet, a large water dog, and belongs to the same family as the Havanese, Maltese, and Bolognese. First used as sailing dogs in Spain, they later grew popular in France and Italy with the upper classes and even royalty, becoming pampered companion dogs.

Today, they continue to be a popular breed, particularly with families, due to their affectionate and loving nature – and let’s be honest, probably also their cute, powder-puff appearance!

While hybrid dogs’ characteristics can vary, your chonzer is likely to have the schnauzer’s lively, protective qualities along with the bichon’s loving and sweet nature.

Chonzer Appearance, Coat, Size, and Weight

As a mixed breed, bear in mind that appearance can vary depending on the dominant parent breed, but here is a guide to what you can usually expect.

The bichon frise and the miniature schnauzer are both small breeds that are generally considered fully grown and adult by 12 months old. This means your chonzer will follow in the same (small) footsteps. Chonzers usually grow to be 10 – 16 inches (25 – 41cm) tall, weigh between 25 – 35 lbs (11- 16 kg), and have the schnauzer’s stockier build.

The chonzer normally has the snout (or ‘snauze’) of the schnauzer, with the more rounded head shape of the bichon, and dark eyes. As for their coat, it is usually medium in length and can be white, black, brown, or gray, and often has many tones. They have a double coat: the undercoat is soft, while the outer coat is thick and wavy or curly like the bichon, but can also have some wiry textures of the schnauzer.

The good news here is that both parent breeds are low-shedding, and the chonzer is no different. This means that a chonzer can be a great choice if you’re an allergy sufferer (or you don’t want to spend all your time vacuuming)!

Fonzie

Chonzer Maintenance

Next, let’s look at what it takes to keep a chonzer happy.

Activity and Living Requirements

While they’re no couch potatoes, chonzers are pretty low-maintenance when it comes to exercise. They usually require about 30 minutes of vigorous exercise a day.

These mixed breeds are quite intelligent, so keeping them mentally stimulated is important, too. Teaching them tricks, playing games, and even doing some agility or obedience training can be great ways of doing this.

The chonzer’s small size and moderate energy levels make them well-suited to living in small spaces, so if you’re looking for a dog that’s suitable for apartment living, chonzers can be a good option.

Grooming

Chonzers have a wavy or curly double coat that is low-shedding and not prone to matting. So they don’t require lots of grooming – a brush once or twice a week should do, just to keep it tidy and healthy.

Your chonzer’s coat is likely to be of medium length, but some owners decide to keep the coat short for a tidier appearance, in which case you should hire a professional groomer. Keeping their ears clean is also an important part of their grooming routine, as this hybrid is prone to ear infections.

Chonzer Temperament and Intelligence

When well-trained and socialized, chonzers have very pleasant personalities and their affection can win over even the hardest of hearts. These pooches like to be around their families and tend to get on well with children and other dogs in the household. Chonzers are likely to be your little shadow, so it is inadvisable to leave your chonzer alone for too long.

Chonzers usually inherit the miniature schnauzer’s intelligence and moderate energy levels as well as the bichon’s desire to please, so they are fairly easy to train. As with the miniature schnauzer, agility training can be a good way of keeping your chonzer mentally and physically stimulated.

One thing to be aware of about chonzers is that, like many small breed dogs, they can be barkers. This comes from the schnauzer line, as they were used to guard livestock and so have a strong guarding instinct. While chonzers are friendly with strangers and other dogs, when at home, they will probably alert you to visitors. So, if you are looking for a quiet dog, it may be wise to look for another breed.

Can someone tell these puppies to stop being so god daaaamn adorable. Actually no, carry on pups! #beautiful #chonzer #whitepuppy #heartmelts #flora #puppy

Chonzer Health and Lifespan

The bichon schnauzer mix is generally a healthy crossbreed that lives a long life; their average lifespan is 10 – 13 years old.

The most common minor illnesses chonzers develop are ear infections, skin allergies, and bladder stones. Regular ear cleaning can help prevent infections, and if your chonzer has skin allergies, it is worth changing their food to see if they might be allergic to something in their diet. As for bladder stones, a special diet as well as keeping your pet hydrated can help.

Another minor ailment that some chonzers can suffer with in old age is hip dysplasia (partial or complete hip dislocation), a condition which occurs in many dog breeds. Keeping your chonzer at a healthy weight and feeding it dog food that includes glucosamine and chondroitin (or using supplements) may help alleviate the pain in her joints.

Other, more serious conditions some chonzers suffer with are:

  • Luxating patella – When the kneecap moves out of place. You may notice your dog has a skip in their step or runs on three legs.
  • Von Willebrand disease – A bleeding disorder in which the blood does not clot properly. This means that injuries can cause excessive bleeding.
  • Canine epilepsy – Affecting around 1 in 30 dogs, this is a condition which causes seizures, or fits, and is usually a lifelong disease.

As with any dog, dental care is imperative to keeping your dog healthy, so you should brush your chonzer’s teeth frequently (about 3 times a week is recommended).

5 Chonzer Fun Facts

Lastly, let’s look at a few more things you should know about this cross breed.

1. They’re a Recognized Hybrid

For a crossbreed (designer breed), to become recognized as a ‘new’ breed, an established kennel club needs to register it after checking the documented ancestry of the breed, going back to the original parents. Registering a breed helps to regulate the health and sale of crossbreeds as well as giving that breed more status.

Chonzers may not have been on the scene long, but the chonzer crossbreed is recognized by a few different registries and clubs, including Designer Dogs Kennel Club, Dog Registry of America, Inc., American Canine Hybrid Club, and the International Canine Registry.

2. They’ll Probably Have a High Prey Drive

Due to their miniature schnauzer parent’s terrier roots, the chonzer can inherit a high hunting drive. This means you should take extra care when in the countryside or the park and there may be small animals like squirrels or rabbits around, as your chonzer is likely to chase them!

It also means that if you have other smaller family pets, like guinea pigs, rabbits, or hamsters, it’s a good idea to keep your chonzer well away! The chonzer is likely to accept cats so long as the cat came first and is introduced when your chonzer is still a puppy.

3. They Can Develop Lap Dog Syndrome

Some owners have noticed jealousy from their chonzers when their owner was petting another cat, dog, or giving attention to a child. While this may seem cute, it is an insecurity that should be dealt with early, as it may lead to aggression if you ignore or reinforce it.

Show your chonzer from an early age that she is not in charge and cannot demand your attention. It’s important not to reinforce unwanted behavior they may display (such as shoving another dog or cat out the way) and you should ignore them when they do this. This will show she cannot demand your attention and that you give it only on your own terms. You can reward her and call her over when she is displaying calm and relaxed behavior.

4. They’re “Hypoallergenic”

While no dog is 100% hypoallergenic, some cause far less problems to allergy sufferers due to their low-shedding coats that produce less dander (which is what causes the allergic reaction).

Coming from two low-shedding, so-called hypoallergenic breeds, it’s no surprise that the chonzer is also low-shedding and doesn’t tend to cause reactions with allergy sufferers. They’re also great if you’re allergic to constantly hoovering up the hairs in your carpet!

5. They’re Affordable

As they are not purebred dogs, chonzers come at more affordable rates than some other dog breeds. Usually, prices range from $300 and $600 for a chonzer puppy.

It’s important to make sure you are getting your chonzer puppy from a reputable breeder. A responsible breeder will be knowledgeable about the breeds, be able to show you documentation, and will be happy to show you the parents and their living quarters.

If you’re looking for responsible chonzer breeders, you can ask friends and family and local vets for recommendations. It’s worth checking animal shelters, too.

Is Chonzer the Right Breed for You?

So, is the chonzer the one for you?

Chonzers are great family pets and also make a great companion for single people – as long as you’ve got a lot of love to give, you’re fairly active, and you won’t leave them alone too long. They are good with children and other dogs, and they can live in small spaces due to their size and moderate energy levels. They can be quite noisy pets, though, and they will guard the house, so if you’re not willing to deal with any noise at all, the chonzer may not be the one for you.

Chonzers will suit less experienced dog owners, as they’re fairly low-maintenance breeds with moderate exercise and grooming needs, plus they’re easy to train.

With the intelligence and energy of the schnauzer, loving nature of the bichon, and the cuteness of each, you’ve got the best of both worlds in the chonzer. So if you want a loyal, spirited, friendly, and trainable companion dog, the chonzer is a brilliant choice for you.