The Affenpinscher’s German name means Monkey-Terrier and refers to the breed’s comical, bewhiskered face and slightly undershot jaw. Another name for this dog is Monkey Pinscher. In France the Affenpinscher is known as Diablotin Moustachu, which translates to Moustached Little Devil.
Germany claims origin of the Affenpinscher. It is felt the little dog was bred elsewhere in Europe as well. The Affenpinscher originated in the seventeenth century and descended from terriers that inhabited farms and shops of central Europe. In his neck of the woods, the Affenpinscher was a confident sharp-witted little hunter.
Some writers believe the Affenpinscher is a descendant of the Miniature Pinscher, possibly crossed with some of the German wirehaired breeds or the Skye Terrier. It may be related to the Brussels Griffon and the Miniature Schnauzer.
The original purpose of the Affenpinscher was a vermin hunter, alarm dog and companion. He first came to America in the 1930s and was entered in the AKC studbook in 1936. He first appeared in the American show rings in Chicago and New York.
The Affenpinscher is naturally alert and vigilant, which helps him to be an excellent alarm dog. He is lively, cheerful and entertaining. He bonds quickly with his family and is affectionate. He may challenge strangers who come to your door, but will make friends easily if properly introduced as a friend.
The Affenpinscher needs consistent training. He learns commands quickly. He is anxious to please his handler but may become bored easily. Training sessions for the Affenpinscher should be kept short and varied. The Affenpinscher is intelligent and curious. He likes to learn new tasks. You will need to be creative when training the Affenpinscher.
The Affenpinscher stands 9 to 12 inches tall and weights between 7 and 8 pounds. He is not a delicate toy dog. He is sturdy and has medium bone structure. He has a domed skull which gives him a curious, sort of comical looking facial expression. His unkempt hairstyle adds to his clown like appearance. Ears are cropped or uncropped, erect or dropped. He has a straight, blunt muzzle. His bite is slightly undershot with the lower incisors touching the upper incisors.
The coat of an Affenpinscher is harsh, dense and about one inch long. It may be even shorter on the rear and tail, yet shaggier on the head, neck, chest, stomach and legs. His tail is either docked to approximately one inch or left natural to curve up and over the back when moving.
Colors of an Affenpinscher are usually black but it is sometime seen in gray, silver or black and tan. A small white patch on the chest is allowable, but large white patches are undesirable.
This sturdy and hearty little guy will get by on a minimal amount of exercise. He does enjoy regular romps in the yard and playtime with his owners. Leashed walks are also enjoyable for the Affenpinscher.
The Affenpinscher requires little combing and brushing. After a bath, this little dog shakes off and looks about the same as he did before his bath. Regular combing will keep the coat in good condition.
You will need a medium-toothed comb for general use and a small, fine comb for the hair on the face, particularly around the eyes. A small good-quality bristle nylon hairbrush (for ladies) works well for the Affenpinscher. Do not attempt to make this little dog too neat and tidy – a shaggy appearance is required.
Combing with a medium or fine-toothed comb and then brushing with a nylon or bristle cushion hairbrush will remove loose hairs and keep the coat tidy. The face is scissored to give a round shape when viewed from the front. The beard is left long for show purposes. This pet dog can be left natural or trimmed to appear neat and smart.
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