Dog breeds: Affenpinscher temperament and personality

Dog breeds: Affenpinscher

All about the Affenpinscher

These beautiful small dogs were originally created as ratters.  Affenpinscher dogs went from ladies companion to toys and home companions.  They are also known as Monkey Terriers.

Origins of the Affenpinscher

This originally German breed goes back to the seventeenth century.   However, artistic depictions from the 15th century suggest that they were known farther back.  Due to their rat-catching abilities, they were heavily used throughout Europe in homes, farms, and kitchens.

The breed was then made smaller as they became a lady’s companion.  The exact time these events happened as well as the creation of the dog breed are pretty unclear. 

Physical Characteristics

The Affenpinscher usually weighs from 7 to 14 pounds.  They stand from 9 to 12 inches at the shoulder.  It gets his name from his monkey-like appearance and expressions (affe means monkey in German).  Its coat is harsh and rough if not clippered.  

Their coat is mainly black.  However, some colors that are still accepted of the breed include red, silver, tan, black, beige, and gray.   

Temperament and Personality

These pets are very active and happy to go dog walking.  They are curious, adventurous, and stubborn.  If you are looking for a small pet to play with, this little fella will keep up with you and will always make you laugh. 

It is very loyal and protective of its family and children.  Their temper is like that of a terrier.  When it comes to toys, they are very territorial.  It is usually quiet but can become aggressive if threatened. 

Caring for an Affenpinscher

You need to keep him always busy so it doesn´t get bored. The Affenpinscher will show no fear to whatever creature threatens him so you should be careful with him when around larger dogs.  They are not heavy shedders.  In fact, they are in the category of non-shedders. 

The recommended food intake is two daily meals of 1/4 or 1/2 a cup of dry nutritious food.   


Training must be constant and varied.  Sometimes, the Affenpinscher can be difficult to housebreak.  Keep in mind that it is a small dog, ergo, a bit more difficult to train.  


As with any small breed, Affenpinschers can suffer from some diseases like collapsed trachea or luxating patella.  Their lifespan is no longer than 12 years, which is a bit lower than the average for dogs its size.  But overall, they are pretty healthy dogs. 

Fun facts

  • They are no friends with rodents.  So keep him away from hamsters, rats, gerbils, ferrets, etc.
  • They are a rare breed.  So you will need to get in line if you want one. 

If you would like to adopt a dog, contact us here at Dogalize.  We will help and guide you through the process  of finding your new best friend