Miniature Pinscher

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8-10 lbs
Reh pinscher, Zwergpinscher, Mini Pin

The Miniature Pinscher is not a small version of the Doberman Pinscher, though this pint-sized breed is almost a miniature replica of the larger dogs.  In fact, the Miniature Pinscher pre-dates the Doberman.  The Miniature Pinscher, affectionately called the Min Pin for short, is a descendent of the German Pinscher family and may have Italian Greyhound and Dachshund breed ancestry as well.  This breed has been formally documented in the last 200 years, only so the ancestral origins of the Min Pin are widely debated.  However, this regal breed has been seen gracing Renaissance paintings and relics of its existence have shown up in artifacts as old as 2000 years ago. 

Date of Origin
terrier, pinscher

Miniature Pinscher Health

Average Size
Height: 10-12 inches Weight: 8-10 lbs
Height: 10-12 inches Weight: 8-10 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease
  • Skeletal Deformities
Minor Concerns
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Cataracts
  • Mitral Valve Disease
  • Corneal Dystrophy
Occasional Tests
  • Knee
  • Heart
  • Hips
  • X-Rays
  • Eye Examination
  • Physical Examination

Miniature Pinscher Breed History

The Miniature Pinscher is not to be confused with the large Doberman Pinscher breed though the Min Pin looks like a shrunken replica.  The Doberman is a younger breed than the Miniature Pinscher. Unfortunately, the Min Pin’s ancestry is under debate.  Most people can agree this breed is very old, dating to possibly 2,000 years ago, but detailed accounts of this breed were only kept starting in the 19th century.  Most believe the Miniature Pinscher hails from the German Pinscher family, Pinscher being the German term for used for biter or terrier. Some people have also suggested the Italian Greyhound, and the Dachshund influenced breed development. The red coat variety on the Miniature Pinscher was nicknamed the Reh Pinscher for its similarity to small red deer living in Germany at the time. By the late 1800s development of the Miniature Pinscher was underway and the Pinscher Klub was formed in Germany; the association was later renamed the Pinscher-Schnauzer Klub.  By 1900, the Min Pin was being shown at the Stuttgart Dog Show in Germany.  Only a short 19 years later, the Miniature Pinscher arrived in the United States where it gained popularity.  By 1929, the Miniature Pinscher Club of America was formed and the breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club the same year. Originally, this breed was used to help control the rat populations just like a Manchester Terrier, but now the Miniature Pinscher is considered a wonderful companion dog.  Today, this small package breed with its regal look and stout heart has earned the nickname “King of Toys”. 

Miniature Pinscher Breed Appearance

A structurally well-balanced dog full of poise and grace, the Miniature Pinscher has fearless animation, high spirit, and self-possession.  The Miniature Pinscher’s head is tapered and narrow with slightly oval-shaped dark eyes.  The Min Pin’s ears are set high on its head and stand erect from the base.  The muzzle is strong, not delicate and ends in a black nose except for chocolate coats, which are self-colored.  The Min Pin’s lips are tight, checks are small, and the bite is scissor.  The Miniature Pinscher’s shoulders are clean and moderately angled with elbows set close to the body.  As viewed from the front, the Miniature Pinscher’s forelegs are straight and strong with small, catlike toes.  The hind legs are straight and well-angled with well-muscled thighs.  Like the front feet, the back feet are small with well-arched, catlike toes.  The Min Pin’s tail is usually cropped in proportion to the dog and stands above back level.  The Miniature Pinscher can come in a variety of colors but is most often seen in red or black with defined rust-colored markings on the face and chest.

Eye Color Possibilities
Nose Color Possibilities
Coat Color Possibilities
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Miniature Pinscher Breed Maintenance

The Miniature Pinscher has a short, thin coat that makes maintaining it a breeze.  Light brushing once a week is sufficient for keeping a shiny, well-groomed coat.  It is not recommended to bathe or shampoo your Miniature Pinscher unnecessarily.  Bathing can dry out this breed’s skin and lead to unhealthy skin conditions.  Many Min Pin owners use a wet washcloth to bathe their dog when necessary.  You should start at the head, removing any dirt from under the eyes, and move your way back towards the tail.  Teeth cleaning and toe-nail clipping are also suggested to keep your Min Pin feeling and looking healthy. The Miniature Pinscher is a playful dog with a lot of energy, so this breed needs plenty of exercise to burn up the excess energy.  They do not do well on their own and need human interaction and play time.  The Min Pin’s short, thin coat does not make this breed ideal for colder climates, and it doesn’t tolerate overly hot climates either.  Temperate zones are the ideal climate for a Min Pin and this dog, though extremely playful, adapts well to apartment and city living. When it comes to feeding your Miniature Pinscher, this breed is a toy size and requires ½ to 1 cup of dry food divided into two meals daily.  However, the amount of food you feed your Miniature Pinscher will depend on his activity level, age, and metabolism.  Monitoring your dog’s nutritional health and adjusting amounts as needed will ensure you keep your Min Pin healthy.

Brushes for Miniature Pinscher
Pin Brush
Slicker Brush
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
Daily Weekly Monthly

Miniature Pinscher Temperament

The Miniature Pinscher is not just called the “King of Toys” for his regal look.  This pint-sized breed has a strong pack-leader mentality, and novice dog owners may find themselves being ruled by a small, playful monarch.  Early and frequent training and socialization will help train your Miniature Pinscher to respond to your leadership. The Miniature Pinscher is a family affectionate dog that loves children.  However, as a small dog, spending unsupervised time with young children may not be wise.  Always guard your children and your dog from accidents with proper supervision.  Though this breed is very affectionate with its family, the Miniature Pinscher is shy around strangers and not overly friendly with other dogs and or cats.  If you intend on keeping other dogs, you must socialize the Miniature Pinscher at an early age to prevent any negative behavior towards other pets. With high energy levels and a spirited countenance, the Miniature Pinscher needs a lot of exercise and a chance to run around.  Training your Min Pin can be frustrating because he only responds moderately well. With time, consistency, and patience this breed can be a loyal fun companion for the family.

Activity Level
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
6 miles
Minutes of Activity Per Day
60 minutes

Miniature Pinscher Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1 cups
Daily Cost
$0.8 - $1
Monthly Cost
$20 - $30

Miniature Pinscher Height & Weight

6 Months
Height: 7 inches Weight: 4 lbs
Height: 7 inches Weight: 4 lbs
12 Months
Height: 9 inches Weight: 7 lbs
Height: 9 inches Weight: 7 lbs
18 Months
Height: 11 inches Weight: 9 lbs
Height: 11 inches Weight: 9 lbs

Miniature Pinscher Owner Experiences

18 Months
2 People
Molly has been in my life since six weeks of age. She is a bundle of joy. I’ve always had large dogs in the past and she is my first toy breed. I wouldn’t trade her for anything. She’s my baby and spoiled rotten. She loves walking and hiking in the mountains as well as digging up worms and mice. She was bit by a large dog when about 5 months old and now tends to nip at large dogs when they approach her. The owners think she “feisty” but she’s frightened and runs to Mommy for comfort. She’s very loving towards cats and kittens oddly enough. She’s been a wet nurse to my daughters kitten without having a litter of her own.
1 month, 2 weeks ago