Affenpinscher Dog Breed (Complete Guide)

Affenpinscher Dog Overview

The Affenpinscher breed was developed to serve as ratters in homes, stables, and stores. They rose in the world after being bred down in size and became ladies’ companions.

They are now calm companion dogs.

Although Affenpinschers adore their owners, they prefer to be in the company of grownups.

They don’t like ball movement, chasing, or being held on a lap without being able to leap down at their leisure.

Despite their small size, adult pet parents will find these dogs to be loving, loyal, and protective.

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The Affenpinscher, often known as the “Monkey Dog,” is a little but tenacious dog with a lot of activity. “Affen” means “ape/monkey” in German, while “pinscher” means “terrier.”

This mustachioed little devil is descended from the countless little terriers who filled stables and stores throughout Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries, eradicating rats and mice.

With medium bone, the Affenpinscher is square-proportioned, compact, and strong. Although this dog is a smaller version of a working terrier, it is not a delicate breed.

This is a lively, robust dog capable of catching and dispatching rodents.

The stride is light, sound, and assured. With thick eyebrows and a beard, the Affenpinscher has a monkey-like facial expression that gives a comedic seriousness to the breed.

On the body, the rough coat is roughly 1 inch long, with the head, neck, chest, stomach, and legs generally slightly longer. This coat provided protection against bugs and harsh weather.

Affenpinscher Highlights

  • Affenpinscher are difficult to housetrain. 
  • An Affenpinscher’s fur is wiry and frequently regarded as hypoallergenic; however, this should not be confused with “non-shedding,” as all dogs shed or create dander.
  • Rodent pets such as hamsters, ferrets, and gerbils do not get along very well with Affenpinschers. They do, however, get along with other dogs in the house and can learn to get along with cats if they’ve been raised with them.
  • The Affenpinscher is a rare breed. Be prepared to spend time on a waiting list if you’re interested in acquiring one.
  • Never buy a puppy from an irresponsible breeder, puppy mill, or pet store if you want a healthy dog. Look for a trustworthy breeder that thoroughly vets her breeding dogs to ensure that they are free of genetic illnesses that could be passed on to the puppies and that they have good temperaments.

Affenpinscher Breed Features & Ratings:


Rated base on a 5 Star Scale
ENERGY LEVEL:                                4 Star
EXERCISE REQUIREMENTS:           3 Star
PLAYFULNESS:                                  4 Star
AFFECTION LEVEL:                           4 Star
FRIENDLINESS TO DOGS:                3 Star
FRIENDLINESS TO OTHER PETS:  3 Star
FRIENDLINESS TO STRANGERS:   3 Star
WATCHFULNESS:                               1 Star
EASE OF TRAINING:                           3 Star
GROOMING REQUIREMENTS:           4 Star
HEAT SENSITIVITY:                              4 Star
VOCALITY                                             5 Star

Affenpinscher Breed Profile:

  • Dog Breed Group:  Working Dogs
  • Height:  9-12 inches (23-30 cm)
  • Weight:  7-9 pounds (3-4 kg)
  • Life Span: 12-14 years 
  • AREA OF ORIGIN:  Germany 
  • DATE OF ORIGIN: 1600s
  • OTHER NAMES:  Affen, Affie, African Terrier, Monkey Dog, Monkey Terrier
  • Temperament: Busy, Inquisitive, Bold, Stubborn, Monkey around, Playful and Mischievous. 
  • Type: Toy Dog
  • Color: Black,Tan, Silver, Red, Gray, Belge
  • Litter Size: 1-3 puppies
  • Puppy Prizes: Average $1800 – $2500 USD

Affenpinscher Health:

Affenpinschers are usually healthy, however, they are prone to some health issues, as are all breeds.

Although not all Affens will contract any or all of these ailments, it’s vital to be aware of them if you’re considering getting one.

Major Concerns:

  • Patellar Luxation:  This condition, sometimes known as “slipped stifles,” is frequent in small dogs. It is caused by a misalignment of the patella, which is made up of three parts: the femur (thigh bone), patella (knee cap), and tibia (calf). This results in limb lameness or an irregular gait, similar to a skip or a hop. It’s a condition that’s present from birth, albeit the actual misalignment or luxation doesn’t usually happen right away. Patellar luxation creates tension, which can lead to arthritis, a degenerative joint condition.
  • Legg-Perthes Disease: This condition—a deformation of the ball of the hip joint—usually occurs at 6 to 9 months of age and can be confused with hip dysplasia in tiny breeds. It results to abrasions and arthritis. It can be surgically fixed, and with the help of rehabilitation therapy, the prognosis is good.
  • Hip Dysplasia: The thighbone does not fit tightly into the hip joint, which is a heritable disorder. Some dogs indicate pain and lameness in one or both rear legs, but a dog with hip dysplasia may not show any signs of discomfort. Arthritis can occur as a dog grows. The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals or the University of Pennsylvania Hip Improvement Program offer X-ray screening for hip dysplasia (PennHIP). Hip dysplasia is a congenital condition, but it can also be brought on by environmental factors such as rapid growth due to a high-calorie diet or injuries suffered while leaping or falling on slick floors.

Affenpinscher Grooming:

Shaggy but neat describes the Affenpinscher’s desired appearance.

He has a thick, rough coat with a harsh texture, approximately one inch long on the body, shorter on the rump and tail, and longer and shaggier on the head (where it contributes to the monkey-like expression), neck, chest, stomach, and legs.

The longer fur around the head and shoulders resembles a cape. Affens don’t shed much, but their rough coat must be stripped to maintain its characteristic texture.

Brush your Affen regularly with a little slicker brush, then comb him with a metal “greyhound” comb to keep his shaggy yet clean appearance.

Break up any mats or knots you come across with your fingers. Spraying them with a detangler solution beforehand can assist.

There’s a lot more to trimming and stripping the Affen’s coat to produce his unique appearance, but it’s simple to pick up.

Your dog’s breeder can show you how, or the Affenpinscher Club of America website has instructions.

You’ll both be thrilled with the outcome if you’re patient and persistent while grooming your Affen.

Affenpinscher Exercise:

Toy breeds are popular because of their small stature, which makes them great apartment dogs.

While Affenpinschers may live in close quarters, they are categorized as ‘moderately active,’ and as a result, they require exercise.

Indoor play, both with his owner and alone with a toy, can account for a significant portion of an Affen’s exercise regimen.

Even so, you should go for a quick walk once or twice a day. These walks allow the Affen the opportunity to socialize with both people and other dogs, in addition to providing exercise.

Affenpinscher Training:

Affenpinschers are brave, bold, and fiery dogs. It’s a good way to start with some basic obedience training.

Because Affenpinschers are independent and obstinate, they have an unjustified reputation for being difficult to teach.

The key is that they are highly smart and anxious to please the humans with whom they have developed bonds.

Remember that they get tired fast and lose interest throughout long training sessions.

Shorter, more frequent sessions with a trainer who is familiar with toy breeds are frequently quite effective.

Affenpinscher Food and  Nutrition:

The Affenpinscher should be fed high-quality dog food, either locally produced or created at home with your veterinarian’s consent.

Any diet should be tailored to the age of the dog (puppy, adult, or senior). Some dogs are prone to becoming overweight, so keep an eye on their calorie intake and weight.

Treats can be a useful training aid, but feeding too much might lead to obesity.

Find which human foods are suitable for dogs and which are not. If you have any concerns regarding your dog’s weight or diet, consult your veterinarian.

At all times, clean, fresh water should be available.

Affenpinscher Temperament and Personality:

In both appearance and behavior, the Affenpinscher lives up to its appellation of monkey terrier.

They’re terriers at heart, busy, curious, bold, and stubborn, but they also like to play and be mischievous. This breed has a tendency for barking and even climbing.

They get along with other dogs and pets better than most terriers. This small dog would be ideally suited to a household that enjoys entertaining and has a strong sense of humor.

Affenpinscher Care/Upkeep:

Although an enthusiastic and athletic dog, the Affenpinscher’s activity requirements can be met by vigorous indoor games or yard romps, as well as short leash walks.

Two or three times weekly combing is required, as well as shaping every three months. A competent groomer should handle the shaping.

Affenpinscher Relationship with Children and Other Pets

Aggressive behavior, such as hitting, unwanted squeezing or embracing, chasing to grab them, or cornering them to hold in a lap, is not tolerated by Affenpinschers.

If they can’t get away, they’ll snarl or snap to defend themselves. As a result, they are not ideal for families with young children.

Young children frequently fail to recognize that a charming tiny Affenpinscher may not desire “love and kisses.”

Even if he won’t be living with them, it’s a good idea to socialize any puppy with young children, but you should constantly oversee their interactions.

Allowing small babies to pick up a puppy or small dog is never a good idea. Make them sit on the floor with the dog on their laps instead.

Always teach kids how to approach and touch dogs, and supervise any interactions between dogs and small children to avoid biting or ear or tail pulling on either party’s side.

Teach your children to never approach a dog who is eating or sleeping, or to try to steal the dog’s food. A child should never ever be left alone with a dog. 

Affenpinschers get along well with other dogs and cats in the house, but, like most toy breeds, they have no concept of their own size and will attack dogs much larger than themselves. Prepare to defend them against themselves.

Affenpinscher Names

RankBoy NamesGirl Names
01CharlieBella
02CooperLucy
03DukeMolly
04JakeLulu
05ZeusSadie
06TuckerZoey
07CodyStella
08BaileyNala
09OliverCoco
10HarleyGracie

All About Affenpinscher

With medium bone, the Affenpinscher is square-proportioned, compact, and strong. It’s a smaller version of a working terrier, so it’s not a delicate creature.

This is a lively, robust canine capable of catching and dispatching rats and mice. It walks with a light, sound, and comfortable gait.

The Affenpinscher has a monkey-like face with long eyebrows and a beard, which gives it a humorous seriousness.

The rough coat of this breed is about an inch long on the body and slightly longer on the head, neck, chest, stomach, and legs. The coat type given support against vermin and harsh weather.

Affenpinscher  History:

The Affenpinscher’s origins can be traced back to at least the 17th century, however more credible documentation of the breed dates from the late 19th century.

Small, rough-coated, bearded dogs are seen in paintings by Dutch artists dating back to the 15th century, and they may very well be the Affenpinscher’s forebears. 

These terrier-type dogs, which originated in Germany and were widely used throughout Central Europe for their rat-catching ability, were welcomed by employees at stables, stores, farms, and houses.

Some of the intelligent, wiry-haired pups may have piqued the interest of females, because they were later bred to be smaller, giving them great companion dogs.

Some sources claim a breeder in Lubeck, Germany, with being the first to miniaturize the ratters, but the history of how the Affenpinscher came to be is lost to history, as it is with so many other breeds. 

They could have been crossed with Pugs, German Silky Pinschers, and smoothcoated German Pinschers.

Other breeds, such as the Brussels Griffon and the Miniature Schnauzer, owe their existence to Affenpinscher-type dogs. When you look at their rough coats and beards, it’s obvious to realize how close they are.

Where to Adopt Affenpinscher:

Due to their mixed breed status, it may be difficult to locate a breed-specific rescue for Affenpinscher.

However, you may like to contact breed-specific rescues for Affenpinscher as they frequently care for mixed breeds as well.

More Dog Breeds and Further Research:

If you are interested in getting a similar breed, considering taking time to know these:

Affenpinscher Fun Facts:

  • The Affen is a curious and friendly creature who is always on the lookout.
  • He is devoted to his family and will do everything in his power to keep them safe.
  • In the face of whatever he perceives as a threat, he can become agitated and take a long time to settle down. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Are Affenpinscher good with kids? 

The Affen is a curious and loving pet who is always on the lookout. He is devoted to his family and will do everything in his power to keep them safe. It’s critical to keep him from attacking canines ten times his own size. In the face of whatever he perceives as a threat, he can become restless and take a long time to settle down. 

How much do Affenpinscher shed?

This dog will only shed a small amount of hair. Owners who don’t want to deal with dog hair in their cars and homes should use this product.

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