Learn how to breed Affenpinschers with the most complete guide on the internet. The Monkey Terrier is a lovely, playful and friendly breed that enjoys great popularity in the USA, and today you are going to learn everything about it.
Exclusive info about its origin and history, insights about its temperament and appearance, a complete review of the health issues and expert advice for breeding Affenpinschers successfully.
Background of Affenpinschers
The Monkey Terrier has a fabulous history that traces back to Germany in the 17th century. To bring you a solid and complete background, here you have a complete revision. You will learn why they were created, where they come from and why they are so special.
As we saw, the Affenpinscher origin dates back to the 17th century in Germany, but back then, they were different from the version we have nowadays:
12-15 inches versus 9-11 inches
White chest and feet (a very common trait)
Bred to be a ratter (to eliminate rats and mice at home, farms, and granaries)
To fulfill its main purpose – to be a ratter – breeders needed to make it smaller and better adapted to deal with such pest at home, as well as more likable appearance-wise. Therefore, they started to crossbreed it with other breeds:
Silky Pinscher: Responsible for giving many Affenpinschers their beautiful and soft silver coat
Pug: To reduce its size and bring it special skull and facial features
German Pinscher: Responsible for giving it its characteristic wiry and soft coat
The experiments were successful and gave origin to a smaller, cute and playful terrier that won the hearts of German women in no time. It made an excellent lapdog and an efficient ratter; the recipe for success.
It is important to know that it was not until several decades later, the 1800s, that this dog got scientific recognition of its kind thanks to Swiss and German zoologists:
The ancestor of Affenpinschers were wirehaired pinschers, which can be traced back as far as the 15th century in Germany. They inspired several works of art, being the most prominent:
The paintings by Jan van Eyck, an important Flemish artist
The woodcuts by Albrecht Dürer, a recognized artist from Nürnberg
When we talk about the ancestry of the Affenpinscher, it is necessary to talk about one of the most important events of the dog world, the Neolithic lake dwellings in the alpine region (1854). This amazing discovery brought us relics that dated back to 3000 B.C. and allowed us to discover that the Stone Age Canis familiaris pallustris was the main ancestor of Pinscher breeds, including of course the modern Affenpinscher.
In addition, the Affenpinscher was also used in the development of the Miniature Schnauzer and the Brussels Griffon.
The Affenpinscher is a rather rare breed with a scarcity of puppies available on the marketplace.
Affenpinschers in America – The Rise, The Decline and The Rise
Although the breed originated in Germany, nowadays the USA has the biggest population of Affenpinschers in the world. According to the AKC Gazette, the breed arrived in America during the decade of 1930. Furthermore, this statement becomes fully valid because Mrs. Bessie Mally (Cicero, Illinois) was the first person to import Affenpinschers to America in 1935.
Although they suffered a severe decay in popularity since 1940, because it was the last time the Stud Book registered an Affenpinscher entry. It was due to the strong negative sentiment towards everything related to Germany. This dramatic event lasted for nine years.
Nonetheless, after such events, it again gained notoriety, especially thanks to celebrities like Evalyn Walsh McLean, a famous heiress, and socialite, known for being the owner of famous diamonds: the 45-carat Hope Diamond and the 94-carat Star of the East. She owned several dogs and had a special love for the Affenpinscher, to which she brought priceless publicity that boosted its popularity.
Banana Joe V Tani Kazari
The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show is one of the most prestigious contests in the dog world, and the Banana Joe V Tani Kazari was the first Affenpinscher in the world to win it. It won the 137th edition and brought more publicity and notoriety to its breed, thanks to becoming the champion of the Toy Group.
Nowadays it is 12 years old and his accomplishment marked a hit in history, which has inspired more owners of this breed.
The appearance of the Affen is one of the most powerful traits that draw more and more fans. These are the main characteristics.
Size and Weight – They are small dogs that belong to the Toy category; this is the average range for size and weight:
Size: 9 to 11 inches
Weight: 7 to 10 pounds
That is why it made an excellent lapdog, thanks to its petite size.
Furthermore, there are several variations:
Red with steel blue sable and mask
Fawn with black sable
As you can see, there is plenty of variety when it comes to colors. Nonetheless, black-coat Affens are the most popular.
Skull Shape – Its head shape is round, domed and slightly high. Its face is similar to an ape, and that is why it receives the name of Monkey Terrier as well as Ape Terrier. In fact, Affenpinscher means “monkey dog” in German. Furthermore, it resembles the brachycephalic skull shape and it is proportional to the body.
Coat & Fur – Their coat and fur are soft, shaggy and untidy. Furthermore, it is harsh and dense. Its coat does not shed and requires minimal grooming.
Ears – They range from small to medium in size. They are located close to the skull and they are set high. They have a characteristic V shape. They can vary from erect to semi-erect, mismatched and dropped.
Eyes – Round in shape, dark color, and their size is moderate. One of the most distinctive features are the eyes rims, which are highly pigmented and fit perfectly.
Nose – It features well-opened nostrils and the color is bright and can vary from black to liver or flesh-colored.
Muzzle – Its muzzle has a straight plane and it is significantly shorter than the top skull. Furthermore, its jaws are well-developed and can exert plenty of force.
Its grooming requirements are quite low because you only have to do it once a week. Its coat is inherently shaggy and untidy, and therefore, brushing it once a week is more than enough. Here you have the best grooming tips:
Use a slicker brush for the entire coat
Use a greyhound comb to comb through its fur
With your hands, break apart mats
Do this once a week and you will keep the coat of your Affen in excellent conditions. Furthermore, the good news is that this breed does not shed hair at all, and therefore, it is considered a hypoallergenic dog.
When you choose what dog to buy or to breed, the temperament and attitude play a critical role. Here we will let you know if an Affenpinscher is a right dog for you.
As we have seen in the background about the breed, they were created to hunt small rodents like rats and mice. Furthermore, after successful crossbreeding, they became ideal lapdogs.
Main Personality Traits
The Affens are popular for being playful, alert, curious, active, inquisitive and affectionate. It is a unique blend of features that sets it apart from other toy breeds. Furthermore, they had a great work ethic, because after all, they were bred with a functional purpose. They act with tons of confidence, just like they were the biggest dogs in the neighborhood. Nonetheless, it is also known for its stubbornness.
They can do well with children at home; however, this breed is very territorial, and therefore, it requires training to do well with small kids.
Again, due to their territorial nature in addition to their alertness, they do not welcome strangers easily. Early socialization and training will ease this aspect of their personality. However, it makes them excellent alert dogs.
With Other Dogs
The same traits make it a priority to socialize your Affen with other dogs from an early age. They are fearless, and therefore, they can react negatively to any kind of dog. Therefore, if you want to make your Affen friendlier towards strangers and other dogs, then you need to start the socialization process as soon as possible.
With Other Pets
Due to being ratters, they do not well with other small pets, especially rodents. It is their instinct to go after them. Socialization can ease up this aspect; however, remember that they will attack small rodents no matter what.
Due to their stubbornness, they are difficult to train, but not impossible. In their favor, they have the love and loyalty to their owners, which makes it a priority to please their masters, along with their surprising intelligence, which is above average. Training them is a challenge, for sure, but it is doable.
The secret to training an Affenpinscher successfully is to keep it challenged constantly. Therefore, it is better to keep training sessions shorter and more frequent, with plays and walking in between, to maintain their interest and mood in a good state.