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BaxterBoo Blog
May 14, 2013

Meet the Breed: The Miniature Pinscher

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  • Height: "10- 12”
  • Weight: 8-10 pounds
  • Historical function: Ratter, companion
  • Modern function: Companion
  • AKC classification: Toy

Physical Characteristics:

The Miniature Pinscher is a small but sturdy dog with a square build. With his short, tight coat, he is naturally clean. The ears may be cropped and erect or left natural with the tips folding over. The high-set tail is often cropped in the U.S., though the practice is now illegal in most European countries. Coat colors are usually black with rust markings, but they can also be chocolate with tan markings, solid red, and red stag (red with black hairs.) Additional colors not recognized through the AKC are blue with rust or red points, blue stag, and solid black. 

A black and rust Min Pin with natural ears and tail.

History of the Breed:

The Miniature Pinscher was developed in Germany from the Italian Greyhound, the Dachshund, and the shorthaired German Pinscher. There has been confusion about the Miniature Pinscher being a miniature form of a Doberman Pinscher as the AKC states that the appearance should resemble a small Doberman but, in fact, both breeds were developed from the German Pinscher. The breed was originally called the "zwergpinscher, which means "little biter." The breed was used as a barnyard ratter, controlling the rodent population in the stables. The Min Pin is often called the "King Of The Toys."


The Miniature Pinscher is an assertive, outgoing dog that is for experienced dog owners. He is loyal to his master, lively, and brave. Eager to please but scrappy enough to get into trouble. Care must be taken to prevent Small Dog Syndrome to ensure a stable, well-balanced dog with a handler who knows how to be the dog's pack leader. Should be well socialized. Have plenty of tough chew toys for this breed. Be vigilent with housetraining.

  • Best suited for: Families, retirees, and apartment dwellers.
  • Preferred living conditions: This dog adapts to many living situations but must be protected from the cold. Excellent explorers that require a securely-fenced yard.

Care and Health:

  • Grooming requirements: Easy care, naturally clean coat needs occasional brushing or wiping down with a damp cloth. This dog is an average shedder.
  • Exercise needs: Daily walk will mitigate any behavioral problems.
  • Life expectancy: 15+ years.
  • Health concerns: Generally healthy.

Breed Club Links: Miniature Pinscher Club of America, Inc. Perfect Pairings: Moose Antler Dog Chew

Have any stories about a Miniature Pinscher? Please share!

Featured photo courtesy of Leonardo Dasilva. Uncropped/undocked Min Pin photo by Wikipedia Commons. 

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This entry was posted by Mary.

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