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Adopt a Miniature Pinscher

Miniature Pinscher Dog Breed

Picture: Kent and Donna Dannen


terrier, pinscher

Area of origin:


Original function:

small-vermin hunting

Average size of male:

Ht: 10-12.5, Wt: 8-10

Average size of female:

Ht: 10-12.5, Wt: 8-10

Other names:

reh pinscher, zwergpinscher

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    Friendliness towards dogs

  • Friendliness towards other pets

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    Friendliness towards strangers

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    Ease of training

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    Watchdog ability

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    Protection ability

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    Cold tolerance

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    Heat tolerance

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Miniature Pinscher Dog Temperament

Among the most energetic of all breeds, the min pin is a perpetual motion machine. He is busy, inquisitive, playful, bold and brash. He retains terrier-like traits and tends to be stubborn and independent. He may chase small animals and can be reserved with strangers.

Miniature Pinscher Dog Care

The min pin needs lots of activity. Because of his small size, his exercise needs can be met indoors or out; regardless, he needs several play sessions every day. He enjoys a romp outdoors in a safe area, but hates the cold. This is not a breed to live outdoors. His coat is virtually carefree, requiring only occasional brushing to remove dead hair.

Miniature Pinscher Dog Health

Major concerns: none
Minor concerns: Legg - Perthes, patellar luxation
Occasionally seen: PRA
Suggested tests: knee, (eye)
Life span: 12-14 years

Dogs Related to the Miniature Pinscher

Brussels Griffon
Silky Terrier
Yorkshire Terrier

Interested in the history of the Miniature Pinscher dog breed?

The miniature pinscher is not a miniature version of the Doberman pinscher. In fact, he is the older of the two breeds. Clues about the min pin's origin are scarce, but it is noteworthy that a cat-sized red dog resembling a min pin is depicted in a 17th-century painting. By the 19th century, several paintings include dogs of distinct the min pin type. These dogs probably resulted from crossing a small shorthaired terrier (German pinscher) with the dachshund and Italian greyhound. Many of the traits from these breeds can be seen in today's min pins: the strong body structure, feistiness and black and tan coloration of the German pinscher; the fearlessness and red coloration of the dachshund; and the elegance, playfulness and lithe movement of the Italian greyhound. Yet the miniature pinscher is more than the sum of his parts; he is perhaps the world's most energetic breed! These little German spitfires were developed into a distinct breed, the reh pinscher in the early 1800s, so named because of their resemblance to the small red German roe (reh) deer. Pinscher simply means terrier. The emphasis in the late 1800s was on breeding the tiniest specimens, resulting in crippled ugly dogs. Fortunately, the trend was reversed, and by 1900, the emphasis had returned to elegance and soundness. The min pin quickly became one of the most competitive and popular show dogs in pre-World War I Germany, but after the war, the breed experienced a plunge in numbers. His future was left to those dogs that had been exported before the war. His popularity continued to grow in America, and he received AKC recognition in 1929. Dubbed the king of toys, the min pin slowly accumulated admirers and is presently one of the more popular toy breeds in the United States.

Copyright © 1998, 2005 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc. based on

Shelters with Miniature Pinscher Dogs

Some animal welfare organizations with Miniature Pinschers ready for adoption:

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