The Affenpinscher

Group: Toy Breed

Height at the withers: 9 1/2″ to 11 1/2″
— Withers height is approximately the same as the length of the body from the point of the shoulder to the point of the buttocks, giving a square appearance. The female may be slightly longer.

Average Weight: 7-8 pounds (3-3.36 kg)

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Breed Profile:

The Affenpinscher is believed to have originated in central Europe and is one of the oldest of the Toy breeds. The literal translation to the breed name means “monkey terrier”. In France, the breed is sometimes referred to as the Diablotin Moustachu, or “Moustached Little Devil”. The breed makes an excellent watchdog as well as a wonderful companion.

With a terrier-like personality, the Affenpinscher is bold, inquisitive and stubborn but also playful and mischievous. The Affen is often said to have a “big dog in a small body” mentality. Generally, a quick learner he does well in such activities as obedience and agility as well as in the show ring. Courageous, confident and sometimes with a dominant nature, early socialization and training is recommended.

The Affenpinscher has a harsh, shaggy coat, and longer hair all over the face. A sturdy little dog, the Affen has a square-body, with a deep chest and round head with a pronounced stop. The lower jaw is undershot, protruding below the dog’s short nose. The black eyes are prominent and rounded. The neck is short and arched and the limbs are straight and well boned. The coat is usually black or dark gray, but tan and red are also acceptable. The undercoat is slightly curly.


Health Issues

If you are considering the adoption of a Affenpinscher puppy, or any breed, it is very important to be selective in choosing a responsible and reputable breeder. Ensure that the prospective puppy’s parents have all health clearances. Breeding of any dog should not be done until after they have been proven to be free of evidence of significant hereditary diseases. (For more information on selecting a breeder, see the articles on the General Information page.)

Recommended Health Screening:

The Affenpinscher Club of America recommended testing includes:

For the Affenpinscher, the CHICNote 1 database includes health screening for:

  • Eye Examination by a board Ophthalmologist
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Optional screenings include Hip Dysplasia and Legg-Calve-Perthes

Additional Health Resources:


Grooming Information

  • Grooming — This section of the Canada’s Guide to Dogs website includes tips, articles and information covering all aspects of dog grooming along with a listing of Groomers from across Canada.


Training Resources

  • Toy Breeds—Housebreaking
  • Training — For training information, see this section of the Canada’s Guide to Dogs website for tips, articles, as well as listings of training centres across Canada.


Additional Information


*NOTE 1: CHIC – The Canine Health Information Center “is a database of consolidated health screening results from multiple sources. Co-sponsored by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) and the American Kennel Club (AKC) Canine Health Foundation, CHIC works with parent clubs to identify health screening protocols appropriate for individual breeds. Dogs tested in accordance with the parent club established requirements, that have their results registered and made available in the public domain are issued CHIC numbers.” To learn more, visit:

*NOTE 2: The Fédération Cynologique International (FCI) is the World Canine Organization, which includes 91 members and contract partners (one member per country) that each issue their own pedigrees and train their own judges. The FCI recognizes 344 breeds, with each being the “property” of a specific country. The “owner” countries write the standards of these breeds in co-operation with the Standards and Scientific Commissions of the FCI, and the translation and updating are carried out by the FCI. The FCI is not a breed registry nor does it issue pedigrees.

Breed Listing

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