Liver can come in a variety of shades from light to dark brown. But its important to note that Liver usually fades a couple shades by maturity. The lighter the liver puppy typically the more it will fade sometimes completely. See below for examples.
Liver & Tan - Black & Silver
Black & Silver (Phantom)
Salt & Peppers will get lighter with each grooming and at maturity will typically be light grey in coloring. Some hold the darker mixed hair and appear a darker gun metal grey.
Phantom is a term used to describe the bright markings. Typically their markings are prominent at birth. Liver & Tan Like solid livers can fade a few shades or to a lighter cream color. See below for examples.
Color History: The Miniature Schnauzer comes in a variety of colors other than the standard black, black and silver, and salt and pepper. This like the variety in coat types, is due to the cross breeding of the Standard Schnauzer with smaller breeds such as the Poodle and Affenpincher to create a smaller dog. These other breeds came in many different colors that the Standard Schnauzer did not, but by cross breeding they passed on a wide variety of colors into the Miniature Schnauzers gene pool. This is a matter of genetics not dishonesty in how chocolate/liver, chocolate and tan, parti, and white Purebred Miniature Schnauzers came to be. In fact the Black and Silver color that is accepted in the show ring is not a color the Standard Schnauzer comes in. It like the liver, white and parti color came in when the breed was being developed and was thought to be salt and pepper but was already bred to deeply into the breed when they discovered it was in fact a different color so it was added to the standard two colors.
Salt & Pepper
Fading is very prominent in the Schnauzer breed. Most pups will change from their original color as a pup. Some a few shades and other fade more dramaticly. Below are pictures demonstrating how fading and peppers change, the top row is the dogs as puppies and then below as adults.
Liver peppers will get lighter with each grooming and at maturity will typically be mixture of lighter brown hair to cream in color. As puppies they come in a variety of shades.
White Chocolate is a visually white dog that is brown based genetically. At birth they have a pink nose and skin that turns brown after the first two weeks. They will always stay white in appearance. They Typically will have green, gold, or hazel eyes at maturity.
Liver & Tan
Salt & Pepper
Phantom is a term used to describe brightly marked black and silvers. Typically their markings are prominent at birth. Black and Silvers can also fade to a dark grey or maintain their rich black coat.
Normal Black & Silver and Liver & Tan puppies can be born with minimal to darker markings. Unlike the phantom pups that are bright at birth. Their markings get brighter each week as they age. Often times, at maturity, these pups have white legs and muzzles like the phantoms. Pictured below is two puppies at birth and older. You can see their marking brighten.
Partis can come in any of the Black based colors. You can have a Salt & Pepper Prati, Black & Silver Parti, or Black Parti. Partis can either come in random spotting or what we call Saddleback Partis meaning their spots are more uniform, typically covering their back and eyes.
Fading & Peppers
Liver & Tan
Black puppies can be solid in color or have white patches or tipped toes. Typically their color at maturity can be a couple shades lighter than their original color. Some stay rich and dark in color and others on occasion can turn a dark grey color.
White is a visually white dog that is black based genetically. At birth they have a pink nose and skin that turns black after the first two weeks. They will always stay white in appearance.
Partis can come in any of the Liver based colors. You can have a Liver Pepper Parti, Liver & Tan Parti, or Liver Parti. Partis can either come in random spotting or what we call Saddleback Partis meaning their spots are more uniform, typically covering their back and eyes.
Liver & Tan (Phantom)