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Meet the breed: Affenpinscher

Choosing to add a furry friend to your growing household is a long-term commitment, and picking a breed that fits your lifestyle presents the key to a happy home. With over 160 American Kennel Club-recognized breeds, that decision can seem overwhelming. We’re here to help you meet the breed that’s right for you. If you’re looking for an active and fun-loving family dog, find out everything you need to know about the Affenpinscher.


  • Playful
  • Mischievous
  • Confident
  • Family dog
  • Apartment life



Affenpinscher comes from the German word meaning “monkey dog/terrier.” Living up to its name, the breed enjoys playing and monkeying around. With a Terrier-like personality, the Affenpinscher is bold, curious and very loving with people and other dogs. Requiring training, the dog will do well in apartment life and with children if handled properly.

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Breed standards

  • AKC group: Toy
  • UKC group: Terrier
  • Average lifespan: 12 – 14 years
  • Average size: 7 – 8 pounds
  • Coat appearance: Shaggy and wiry
  • Coloration: Black, gray, silver, red, tan and black
  • Hypoallergenic: Yes
  • Other identifiers: Square body; deep chest; longer hair on face than rest of the body; round, black eyes; short, small nose; undershot jaw; tail is carried high at 2/3 length and ears are pointed upward; slightly curly undercoat
  • Possible alterations: Ears and tail may point down depending on breeder

Is this breed right for you?

A smaller breed that enjoys being around his family, the Affenpinscher will need consistent training in the home. Getting along well with other dogs and cats when raised with them, he’ll become loving and affectionate with children if both the dog and children are raised together. Spunky and confident, he loves to play outside and will need a yard or daily walks if living in smaller spaces. Because of his wiry coat, he doesn’t shed and will only require special grooming once or twice a year.

A dream day in the life of an Affenpinscher

Waking up to a quick cuddle session with his family, the Affenpinscher loves to start his morning with a nice walk around the neighborhood. Giving in to his curious nature, he’ll smell every nook and cranny the lovely street has to offer him. On returning home, he’ll take a quick nap before retreating to his toy area to play with the other animals and family members of the home. He’ll end his day just as it started, by cozying up with his favorite humans.

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