One of the oldest of the Toy breeds, the Affenpinscher is believed to have originated in Germany in the 1600s; the name means “monkeylike terrier” in German. In their early years, Affenpinschers excelled at hunting rodents on farms and in homes. The breed’s hunting skills come from its Terrier roots, but its wiry hair stems from the German Pinscher. Less common today, this monkey-faced breed is still a beloved companion, amusing owners with playful antics.


Tiny, 8 to 11 inches, average 7 to 9 pounds.


Black, gray, silver, black and tan, beige, red.


Inquisitive, bold, alert, mischievous. Loyal and affectionate with family and friends, but will bark when threatened or attacked. Fearless for its size.

Energy level:

Medium to medium high. Can be busy.

Best owner:

Active owner with a sense of humor.


Exercise and play (indoors or out), socialization, regular brushing, and periodic clipping and stripping.

Life expectancy:

12 to 14 years.