To understand eye color, you must understand a little about the history of how the miniature schnauzer was developed. In 1859, they started with small Standard Schnauzers and then bred them to the smaller Poodles and the Affenpinscher. Some authorities also think they used the Gray Spitz, Pomeranians, and Wire Fox Terriers. All those breeds have brown/black eyes except for the poodle. Because of the chocolate poodle which has green or amber eyes, we do have the Liver or Chocolate Schnauzers which all have chocolate noses, chocolate footpads, and lighter eyes which are also green or amber. Dogs that have blue eyes normally have the merle gene, but not always.
Why are there Blue-eyed Schnauzers?
Unfortunately, the AKC is not a purebred registry. It used to state that on their website, but I can no longer find that statement. Because the AKC does NOT DNA both the mother and father like most purebred animal registries (horses, donkeys, etc.), it is possible for a breeder to slip in another breed (for example, Poodle, Yorkie, Australian Shepherd, Dachshund, etc.) In fact, the AKC does not DNA the mother, and only randomly DNA's the father. This is a practice that unfortunately has been going on for years. The AKC is now allowing the Merle pattern to be added into the miniature schnauzer registry as another color. Sadly, you can also find blue-eyed schnauzers in the miniature schnauzer registry. Once again, none of these dogs are purebred schnauzers. You can only get the merle pattern by breeding a Miniature Schnauzer with an Aussie. You can also get a blue-eyed schnauzer by breeding a Schnauzer with an Aussie, Dachshund, Bulldog, or another breed that has blue eyes. Most people believe the AKC to be a purebred registry, and yet as you can see because they do not DNA both parents, this is becoming more and more false in ALL the 190+ AKC breeds.
While I think some of the Merle's are pretty, as well as the blue-eyed schnauzers I wish they had succeeded in becoming their own breed. Our fear now is that we are starting to lose the very things we love about the miniature schnauzer: temperament, relatively free of health issues, non-shedding, intelligence, square conformation, etc. Miniature Schnauzers should be square. They're not supposed to be longer than they are tall. And they should not be taller than they are long. As you can see by the photo below of an AKC registered Miniature Schnauzer with blue eyes, we are starting to see more registered miniature schnauzers that have a longer body, shorter legs, and a lower tail set.
The American Miniature Schnauzer Club and other breeders are working very hard to get the AKC to make changes, but I'm not hopeful that this will happen. Fortunately, because of the new Embark DNA genetic testing, we now test all of our Texas T's breeding stock to make sure they are 100% miniature schnauzer. Unfortunately, after several generations, the DNA does become diluted, and you can have a Miniature Schnauzer that is 100% miniature schnauzer but does have another breed way back in its pedigree background. Fortunately, there is a lot of helpful health information with the DNA testing which will allow us to ensure you that we are producing healthy purebred schnauzers.
Green or Amber Eyes:
We do think that the green or amber eyes that we get from our Liver/Chocolate Miniature Schnauzers are very pretty. There are many different Liver colors: Liver & Tan, Liver Parti, Liver and Tan Parti, Solid Liver, Liver Pepper, Liver Pepper Parti, Liver Tan Pepper Parti, White Chocolate, and White Chocolate Parti. All the chocolate colors variations just mentioned will have green or Amber eyes.
The two photos below show the difference between a standard white puppy and a white chocolate puppy. The white pups will have black eyes and a black nose, and the white chocolates will have green eyes and a chocolate nose. The white pups look like they have black eyeliner around their eyes, whereas the white chocolate pups are "without makeup" or el natural!
I will often post puppy photos of pups that have very blue eyes. However, by the time they are 8 or 9 weeks of age, the eye color will be hazel/green. Below are just some of our Blue-Eyes pups that are 6 weeks or less, (whose eyes will turn Green at 8 or 9 weeks), some of our Green-Eyed Liver Colored Schnauzers, as well as examples of the Amber eyes.