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Is the Affenpinscher right for you?

Species group:

Other name(s): Affen

The basics:
The Affenpinscher is a toy terrier developed in Germany beginning in the 1700s. Like other terriers, it started out as a determined hunter of vermin-- in its case, rodents-- but it was soon developed into a true toy that was more practical as a companion than a working dog. This little dog thinks well of its own opinion and takes itself so seriously that you can't help but laugh. It doesn't know its own size and considers itself a watchdog, unafraid to rush over and check out any visitors. Unusual for a terrier, they don't demand much exercise, and they can be one of those portable pets you pick up and carry. They are entertaining, but don't tease them or embarrass them. Treat them with kindness and respect to keep their loyalty.

Appearance / health:
The Affenpinscher is a tiny terrier-like dog with a stiff, shaggy coat on a squareish body. It has a comical face with a naturally scruffy-look that makes it endearing. The coat is particularly shaggy over the head and shoulders forming a mane, with shorter fur over the back and hindquarters. A smaller form of the terrier, the Affenpinscher has a lower jaw that is undershot and protruding below the dog's short nose. It sports black eyes that are prominent and round. The neck is short and arched and the limbs are straight and well boned. The Affenpinscher carries its tail high and keeps it docked to two-thirds its length. The ears are hairy and generally docked, pointed, and erect.

The coat of the Affenpinscher requires brushing, combing, and plucking two to three times a week. Brushing is necessary to remove dirt and dead hair from the coat. Owners need to check and clean the Affenpinscher's eyes, ears, and teeth. The breed does not shed much.
Affenpinschers require moderate amounts of exercise, more than most toy breeds. Space for free running is ideal for them. In addition, owners may take their dogs out for daily walks and jogs.

The Affenpinschers are generally very healthy; however, some of them are susceptible to eye ulcers and infections. Also, some of the common health problems seen to trouble this breed include luxating patellas (dislocation of kneecap), leg-calve-perthes (loss of bone mass leading to collapse of hip joint), hip dysplasia (abnormal hip development), collapsed trachea (windpipe), and fractures and slipped knee. The breed is also known to suffer from respiratory problems in hot weather.

Behavior / temperament:
The Affenpinscher has few terrier characteristics and is often described as comically serious. It is definitely spunkier and more spirited than most toys. An extremely keen watchdog, the Affenpinscher may maintain its suspicious attitude even after a guest has been welcomed in. The breed is quite high-strung, tends to tremble when excited, and if it perceives an invasion of its space by an approaching stranger or strange dog, it can become aggressive. The Affenpinscher is proud and sensitive and does not take kindly to being teased.

Affenpinschers need consistent, firm training because some can be quite difficult to housebreak. Routines do not work well with them because they tend to get bored easily. Being inquisitive and sharp-witted, the Affenpinscher has a medium to high learning rate.

They are not noisy, barking only when it is necessary.


cuddly nature, inquisitive breed, energetic playful attitude, great family dog, active people


harsh coat, barkers, fierce persona, stubborn self, potty training


long eyebrows, reputable breeder, pretty neats tricks, great watch dog, Monkey Terrier

Helpful Affenpinscher Review


From PeggyG Apr 13 2015 7:49AM


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