• Other Names: Monkey Dog
  • Size: Small Average
  • Life Expectancy: 12 years
  • Average Weight: 8 pounds (3.6kg)
  • Average Height: 10 inches (25cm)
  • Grooming: Minimal
  • Shedding:¬†Minimal
  • Exercise: Average
  • Training: Easy / Moderate
  • Color: Black, silver, gray, red or black and tan
  • Country of Origin: Germany
  • AKC Dog Group: Toy
  • Personality: Alert, Confident, Loyal and Inquisitive


Affenpinschers are one of the most ancient toy dogs and originated in Germany. They were used to keep rats and rodents away around stables and farms during the 17th century. They were later bred down to a smaller size and used in homes as companions and mice catchers. Its thought that Affenpinschers were a big influence in the breeding of other rough coated terriers, including the Miniature Schnauzer and Brussels Griffon.


They are small, stocky dogs with a terrier looking appearance. The longer hair around the Affenpinscher face gives them their trademark “monkey looking expression”. They are usually black in color but can also be gray, silver or tan. Their ears natuarlly drop down and their tails are carried high over their backs. Affenpinschers have dense, wiry hair and their coats are about 1 inch in length. The name Affenpinscher translated from German means “monkey terrier”.


Affenpinscher’s are very loyal to their owners and protective of their families. They often want to protect their families from any visitors or unfamiliar people, making them good little watchdogs. They are very alert, naturally curious and full of confidence. Affenpinschers can become excited but are generally not noisy or yappy dogs. If threatened or attacked they can be fearless in fighting back. Toys and food may bring out their territorial side which needs to be watched with small children. Affenpinschers get along well with children and other household pets so long as firm boundaries are maintained so they know who’s boss. Their loyalty, playful nature and affection towards their owners makes them ideal house pets.


Affenpinschers have a good level of intelligence making them easy to train and teach commands. It is important that they have firm training otherwise Affenpinschers can take on the role as the pack leader making them difficult to control with their naturally stubborn personalities. Early socialization with children and pets is important.


They do need a moderate level of exericse, so a daily walk is recommended to keep Affenpinschers active and healthy.


Little grooming is needed to keep Affenpinschers looking tidy as they have a shaggy appearance anyway. A quick brush now and then to keep them knot free is sufficient.