How to Identify an Affenpinscher

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How to Identify an Affenpinscher

The Affenpinscher is not a particularly common dog, but it is recognizable. Its name, derived from German, means “monkey-like terrier;” and its French name translates to “moustached little devil.” With its petite frame, coarse hair, devious behavior, moustache, and monkey-like face, the Affenpinscher is not easily confused with other breeds.

Recognizing the Physical Features of an Affenpinscher

Tips to Identify an Affenpinscher

1. Look for a moustache.

The Affenpinscher has prominent eyebrows and a “mustache” of thick fur that covers the entire area between its mouth and nose. The mustache consists of a much longer and thicker coat of fur than is present on the rest of the head. This unusual feature is one of the easiest ways to recognize an Affenpinscher.

2. Look for a face that resembles a monkey.

The Affenpinscher's face is rounded and flat. The snout should be short and pushed in like that of a pug. Many people say that it looks like a monkey.

3. Look for small, perky ears.

An Affenpinscher's ears vary somewhat, but they are generally short and stand up straight. They should not be long or flop down along the side of its head.

4. Find rounded, dark eyes.

An Affenpinscher's eyes should be round and dark. Its eye rims should be black. This sometimes is not a reliable aspect as the eyes are generally hidden.

5. Look for an undershot bite.

The Affenpinscher should have an undershot bite, which means that the lower jaw protrudes out past the upper jaw. The dog should have a prominent, black lower lip that covers the tongue and teeth. The teeth should be straight and even.

6. Look for a dense, rough coat.

Like most terriers, the Affenpinscher has wiry fur. It is harsh to the touch, dense, and about 1 inch (2.54 cm) long. The fur should be slightly longer and less rough around the head, chest, stomach, and legs.

7. Look for the little guy.

The Affenpinscher is typically 10-15 inches (25.4-38.1 cm) tall. It generally weighs 7-8 lbs (around 3 kg). Unlike some other small dogs, though, the Affenpinscher’s body is proportional. Its head and legs look neither abnormally small or large for its body.

Recognizing the Affenpinscher's Behavior

Tips to Identify an Affenpinscher

1. Watch for a bold, stubborn little guy.

Despite its size, the Affenpinscher is intimidated by no one. It is very willful, stubborn, and unlikely to back down. Although it can be trained, it is far less amenable to training than some other breeds.

2. Notice mischievous behavior.

The Affenpinscher is generally known to be playful. It even seems sometimes, to be mischievous and funny--an extension, perhaps, of its unruly behavior. Although it likes to cause trouble, it is not generally aggressive.

3. Look for love and affection.

The Affenpinscher is a bad boy with a heart of gold. Though it likes to cause trouble, it is generally quite loving and takes to its owners. It will frequently seek attention and affection.

Verifying Your Dog’s Breed

Tips to Identify an Affenpinscher

1. Buy a dog from a reputable breeder with a pedigree.

Pure-bred dogs should have a pedigree which records the dog’s family for at least four generations. The pedigree might include the physical features of family members and dog show awards that they have won. A reputable breeder should be willing to show you the pedigree and ought to know all the pertinent information by heart.

  • Ask a veterinarian to recommended a reputable breeder.
  • Look for a reputable breeder on the American Kennel Club website. Breeders may advertise available puppies in the AKC marketplace.
  • A good breeder ought to let you see where the dogs are raised. The mother should be on-site, and you should be able to meet her. Verify that the space is clean and comfortable. The breeder should also be able to provide veterinary records for the mother and any care the puppies may have received.
  • Reputable breeders do not sell all breeds and cannot provide dogs on demand. They typically require that you put your name on a wait list. They specialize in a couple of breeds. Ideally, they can prove that they are involved in clubs and have won awards for those specific breeds.

2. Ask your veterinarian about the breed.

Most veterinarians should be familiar enough with dog breeds to be able to tell you if yours is a purebred Affenpinscher. If it is a mixed-breed dog, however, they might have more difficulty saying with certainty if it is part Affenpinscher.

3. Buy a DNA test.

Several companies offer DNA tests that can determine the breed of your dog. They might not be perfect when determining the various stands in a mixed-breed dog. However, they should be able to determine if your dog is exclusively or predominately an Affenpinscher.

  • Not all breed tests are created equal. Some companies spend more time on research and quality control than others. Before purchasing a test, do your research and choose a company you trust. You may consider discussing the topic with your veterinarian.
  • The DNA test can be purchased online. A kit will be sent to your house with instructions on to collect the DNA.