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Affenpinscher- Dog Breed Information

Affenpinscher- The Little Monkey Faced Dog

The Affenpinscher is a small dog breed in the toy group. This dog likes to keep its self busy, can be head-strong and daring, however, it does love a little bit of horseplay. They are very curious, loyal, and comical! They love their families so much that they will do whatever they can to protect them. That means even going up against a dog that is quite bigger than them. You must absolutely prevent this dog from trying to take on a larger dog. Once this dog gets lit, it may take it a while to calm down.

These little monkeys do not do well in extreme heat or cold, so owners must keep an eye on them when outdoors. They have a very high energy level and need daily activity to keep healthy and out of trouble. A bored dog can lead to a dog getting into mischief. The Affenpinscher is ideal for an active family, that loves to laugh and doesn’t mind barking.

The Affen needs early socialization to be able to get along with other dog and animals. As well as growing up to be friendly and affectionate companion.

Affenpinscher At A Glance

  • Breed: Affenpinscher
  • Breed Group: Toy
  • Temperament:  Comical, brave, self-assured
  • D.H.T. Outdoor Ranking: -2/10 For Temperate Climates
  • Worldwide Popularity: Low
  • Breed Origin: Germany

General Information And Breed History

The Affenpinscher is a rare dog breed from Germany that has been around since the 1600s.   The word Affen means “monkey” and pinscher means terrier.  This little dog is also known as the “diablotin moustachu” in France.  This translates to “moustached little devil”. 

The original function of these dogs was to hunt small rodents and other vermin that would infest kitchens and stables in Germany.   The dogs were also used as lap dogs to warm up their masters and provide entertainment for the entire family with their shenanigans.

The Affenpinscher was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1936.  However,  World War II slowed down their popularity gain, and has since been a rare breed to both Germany and the United States of America. 

Affenpinschers like to clown around and even climb on things.  A true terrier this dog is playful and likes to get into trouble.  They are good with other dogs and pets, unlike most terriers.  These little devils are best suited for a family that likes a class clown and doesn’t mind a lot of barking.

General Appearance

The Affenpinscher is a solid, well-built medium boned small dog breed.  These little guys may be the babies of the working terrier, but they are not weak.   Their coat is made of wiry hair that sometimes looks a little shaggy. 

This dog stands at 9.5 inches to 11.2 inches at the withers.  They have a square appearance due to the fact the body length from the point of shoulder to the tip of the buttocks is the same. Females can be longer than the males.

Affenpinschers have a small little face that resembles an Ewok or even a small version of the Wookie.  For those that are not Star Wars fans like I am, then picture a little cute monkey face on a little shaggy dog.


Affenpinschers stand less than a foot tall. However, don’t let their small size trick you.  These dogs are sturdy, medium boned, and fast!  This dog has a short and straight little neck, which makes sense considering that the dog is small.  The ribs are relatively sprung, and the chest is rather deep and broad.   Their back is short and level with a strong loin.

Their head is well in proportion to its body and held with the utmost confidence!  The eyes are dark, round and medium sized, that do not bulge or protrude.  Ears on these little guys are set high and erect.  Skull- is domed and round with a well- defined stop.  The muzzle is short and narrow with a button nose.  Nose, and lips are black in color.


Affenpinschers have harsh, rough and dense hair that is about 1 inch in length on the body and shoulders. However, their coat may be shorter on the tail and behind.  Their chest, legs, neck and stomach do have a longer coat, but less harsh.  

An adult Affenpinscher has mane-like hair that is strong and incorporates into the back coat in and around the withers.   Their hair is longer on the eyebrows, head, and beard that encompasses their face which gives them an Ewok or monkey like resemblance. 

Legs & Feet

Affenpinschers have very small feet that are round and tight together.  The Pads are black as are their nails.  The front legs, when viewed from any angle, are straight.  The dewclaws are almost always removed.  Elbows are located pretty close to the body of this breed.

Tail & Hindquarters

The Hind Legs when viewed from behind are straight and strong.  The side view, the hindlegs are under the body and gives them a square appearance.  

 Affenpinschers have a small erect tail that is docked or carried naturally. 

General Statistics of The Affenpinscher

  • Life Expectancy: 12-15 years
  • Male Height (at the withers): 9-11.5 inches (22cm – 29cm)
  • Female Height (at the withers): 9-11.5 inches (22cm-29cm)
  • Male Weight: 7-10 lbs (3.1kg – 4.5kg)
  • Female Weight: 7-10 lbs (3.1kg – 4.5kg)

Recommended Dog House Dimensions

The recommended dog house dimensions for the Chinook can be found on the dog house dimensions charts for 440 recognized breeds which includes this dog breed that looks like a wolf.  But to save you time, here are our dog house minimum size recommendations:

  • Door Height: 13.2 inches
  • Door Width: 8.4 inches
  • Inside Ceiling Height: 16.2 inches
  • Interior House Length: 26.4 inches
  • Interior House Width: 16.8 inches

Expected Costs

Breed Average Puppy Cost: $1,800 – 2,500 USD

Starter Costs: $4,000

This is our estimate for initial purchase, shots and a few things like food, a bed, leash, that sort of thing.  Basically, this will get you set up but the costs will be greater once the dog is old enough to get spayed or neutered.

Anticipated Annual Care Cost: $500-$2,000

How The Affenpinscher Reacts To


The affenpinscher is not known to get along with or like children. These dogs will not hesitate to bite if they have been provoked. They will, however, get along with older children who know how to act around a dog, especially a small dog. This dog can get along with small children only if they are raised with them and socialized early in life.

Affenpinschers will not put up with aggressive behavior such as swatting, unwanted squishing, or loving hugs. They do not enjoy being chased or forced to sit in a lap. If the affenpinscher feels that it has been cornered or that it can’t escape, they most definitely will growl and or snap. Therefore, this breed is not recommended for families with toddlers and small children. Children love to play, and they love dogs! However, not all dogs are open to being over-loved by our children.

It is always a good idea to show children how to approach and touch dogs. Children should know that it is never a good idea to try and take away the dog’s food or water while the dog is at said items. A dog may get aggressive if they think someone is taking their food and water away. Children and dogs should never be left alone unsupervised.

Other Dogs

Affenpinschers generally get along swimmingly with other dogs that are in its family. If it comes across other dogs outside of the family it may try to scare it not matter the size of the other dog. So keep an eye on this little one when out and about.


The affenpinscher gets along with cats that are in the family. It is best have these two raised together.

Other Animals

Affenpinschers get along with other animals that are larger than them. They were originally used to get rid of mice, rats, and other vermin. So if you have a hamster or guinea in the house our Affen may think it needs to dispose of it.

Affenpinscher Dog Care Requirements


Even though this dog is small and ideal for condo and apartment living, the Affen is a high energy canine. So this means, they need moderate physical activity every day. It is recommended to take the Affen out on a least two walks a day, and lengthly playtime session at home. The walks will provide socialization with other dogs and people.

Grooming & Coat Info

It is recommended that the wire coat of an Affenpinscher be groomed with a brush, then with a metal comb. This has to be done at least twice a week. If you come across mats you pull them apart using your fingers. The Affen’s coat is slow to grow, so you can get away with a trim every few months or so. This canine should have its nails trimmed regularly along with teeth brushing.

Health & Nutrition

The Affenpinscher is a generally healthy dog breed. However, due to their short face, they are prone to breathing problems if left out in the heat. This dog cannot tolerate the heat and can be dangerous to this breed. A reputable breeder will screen its pack for health issues such as patellar luxation(when the knee cap dislocates) and corneal ulcers(loss of corneal epithelium).

This dog will do very well on high-quality dog food. If you are going to feed your dog some human food, make sure you know what is safe. If you are unsure, contact your veterinarian. Never feed any human food unless you know it is safe. There are many types of foods that are toxic and deadly to our canine friends. Your dog should always have access to its food and fresh water.


This little spicy spitfire is a handful to train. It is highly recommended that the Affenpinscher is enrolled in obedience training. They are known to be highly difficult to train due to their stubbornness and independence. Your saving grace is that this dog is highly intelligent and loves to please the family it has bonded with. That being said, this dog is prone to get bored easily and can get distracted during training sessions that are long. It is best to have short and fun training sessions with this dog breed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Affenpinschers shed?

The affenpinscher does shed. However, they do not shed a lot. This dog requires that its coat be stripped frequently to reduce the amount of shedding. Stripping the hair means you have to brush and comb the dry and dead hairs, leaving a shiny new coat in its place.

Does The Affen Bark A lot?

The Affen does like bark, and they bark a lot. This dog will make a good watchdog, and alert you when it thinks there may be trouble around. Even though this dog is known to bark, there are training classes you can enroll your dog in to stop this. If your dog is barking all the time, then that can be bothersome, and you may get some complaints from neighbors. So if your Affen is barking all the time, seek out a professional dog training to help you with this problem.


  1. The Encyclopedia of Dog Breeds- D. Caroline Coile Ph. D
  2. American Kennel Club
  3. Affenpinscher Club of America
  4. Wikipedia
  5. Google Scholar

Recommended Dog Gear

Take a look at our Recommended page for a variety of dog products and items. Here are some of the things you can expect:

  • Dog Houses – For small dog breeds, medium dogs, large dogs, and even extra large dog houses!
  • Books, Literature, and Media – We’re working on compiling hundreds of titles of the best video, audio, and books we can find on dogs just for you.
  • Gifts – Only gifts for the discerning dog, and maybe something nice for you too.
  • Harnesses, Collars, and Leashes – We don’t recommend anything that will harm a dog. At DHT we believe in a harm-free training experience so you won’t find any of those collars that cut into the dog’s neck. And no shock stuff either. But, we do have some very cool tech collars worth looking at.
  • Dog Life Jackets and Other Specialty Equipment – Keep your dog safe with you out on the water this summer.
  • GPS and Tracking Collars – As mentioned, very cool tech collars worth checking.
  • Dishes for Dog Food and Water – No garbage, only decent products. We like stuff that will last and won’t fade in the sun.
  • We’ve got more reviews coming at you all the time so stay tuned for more from the Dog House Times team!

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