Premature graying refers to a disorder in which your dog's coat begins to lose the richness of its natural color and adopts a dull gray tone. Often this is associated with loss of hair, or the softening of hair which can ruin the texture of a coat in some breeds such as the Schnauzer or others with a typically coarse and wiry coat. Although almost all breeds will eventually lose some of their color and begin to go gray, graying is considered a problem when it occurs much earlier than could naturally be anticipated.
The disease can affect any breed of dog, but studies have indicated that it is most likely to affect dogs that are both small and possess a tightly woven coat as their standard, again making the miniature Schnauzer a prime candidate. It's not necessarily a harmful disease as it causes no real detriments to a dog's overall health, but it can still be very problematic for some people who paid a lot of money for a dog of a certain color, especially if they had plans to put that dog into the show ring. [...]