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Affenpinscher Club of America
Diabletin Moustachu (mustached little devil),
1-3, Average 2 Puppies
AKC Toy, Terrier
Weighing 7 to 9 pounds (3-4 kg) and not
exceeding 11 inches (24-30 cm) in height at the withers, the
Affenpinscher has harsh rough coat and a monkey-like expression
(Affe means monkey in German). Its coat is shaggier over the head
and shoulders forming a mane, with shorter coat over the back and
hind quarters. It is harsh and wiry in texture. The FCI and UK breed
standards specifies that the coat must be black, but the AKC also
allows gray, silver, red, black and tan, and belge (not beige; belge
is a mixture of red, black and white hairs); other clubs have their
own lists of acceptable colors, with black being the preference.
This dog exhibits a mixture of exuberance and
serenity. He is lively, alert, loyal, affectionate, bold, and rather
obstinate. The affenpinscher is a hunter of vermin and an excellent
guard dog that will bark a warning to alert his owner.
Head: Round. Monkey-like expression. Short muzzle. Slightly
undershot bite. Black lips.
Ears: Small, set on high. If cropped, held erect and forward.
If natural, v-shaped, drop or held erect.
Eyes: Round. Dark color.
Body: Square body outline. Short neck. Ribs slightly sprung.
Well developed breast. Underline slightly tucked up at the loin.
Straight short back sloping slightly from withers to croup.
Tail: Docked to approximately three vertebrae. Set high and
Hair: Harsh and dense on the body. Less harsh on the head,
standing off and framing the face. Bushy eyebrows, full beard.
Coat: Preferably black. Brown or gray markings or nuances
Size: 25 to 30 cm (10-12 in).
Weight: 4 kg (9 lb) or less.
One of the most ancient of toy dogs, the
Affenpinscher (translated from German as Monkey-Terrier) originated
in Central Europe. During the 17th century, small terriers were
frequently kept around stables, on farms or in stores where they
served as ratters. Bred down in size, these small terriers became
companions in the home and kept mice from overrunning their
mistresses' boudoirs. The Affenpinscher is believed to have been a
major influence in the development of many of the smaller
rough-coated breeds of continental Europe, including the Brussels
Griffon and the Miniature Schnauzer. The area around Munich,
Germany, eventually became the heart of Affenpinscher breeding in
The breed was admitted to the American Kennel Club in 1936. This
quaint little dog's popularity has been overshadowed by that of his
descendent, the Brussels Griffon, but more recently he is enjoying a
return to favor.
Affenpinschers have a distinct appearance that
some associate with terriers. They are different from terriers,
however, in that they are actually part of the pinscher-schnauzer
subgroup of group 2 in the FCI classification so often get along
with other dogs and pets. They are active, adventurous, curious, and
stubborn, but they are also fun-loving and playful. The breed is
confident, lively, affectionate towards family members and also very
protective of them. This loyal little dog enjoys being with its
family. It needs consistent, firm training because some can be quite
difficult to housebreak. The training should be varied because the
dog can easily become bored.
Affenpinschers are somewhat territorial when it comes to their toys
and food, so they are not recommended for very small children. This
dog is mostly quiet but can become very excited if attacked or
threatened and shows no fear toward any aggressor. It is best suited
for a family who likes a show and has a sense of humor.
A small sample of Affenpinschers in a UK survey
had a median lifespan of 11.4 years, which is a typical lifespan for
a purebred dog, but a bit lower than most breeds of their size. The
most common causes of death were old age (24%), urologic (19%), and
"combinations" (14%). The Affenpinscher can get hip dysplasia. As
with many small breeds of dog they are prone to collapsed trachea,
which is best avoided by walking the dog with a harness instead of a
collar. Cataracts are occasionally reported.
This breed can make a good house dog. Daily
brushing and combing is required.
Guard dog. Hunter of vermin. Pet.
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