Back to all breeds
Miniature Pinscher
Characteristics, History, and Health

Miniature Pinscher

Despite the Miniature Pinscher's striking resemblance to the Doberman Pinscher, they are not a miniaturized version of the Doberman. In fact, the Miniature Pinscher is the older of the two breeds. The breed originated in Germany, where it was used for many years to control the rat population in homes and stables. It's a combination of the Italian Greyhound, Dachshund, and German Pinscher. The breed was first recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1925.

Main Info
Alternate Names
Zwergpinscher, Min Pin, King of Toys, Reh Pinscher (reference to stag-like appearance)
Life Expectancy
12-16 years
Average Male Height
10-12.5 inches
Average Female Height
10-12.5 inches
Average Male Weight
8-10 pounds
Average Female Weight
7-9 pounds
Coat Length
Coat Type
Coat Colors
Fawn (Isabella) Stag Red, Fawn & Rust, Black & Rust, Black & Tan, Chocolate & Tan, Red, Stag Red, Chocolate & Rust, Blue & Tan, Blue & Rust, Chocolate Stag Red, Blue Stag Red, Fawn (Isabella) & Tan
Coat Pattern
White Markings, Self-colored Nose

Genetic Predispositions and Health

Miniature Pinschers can be affected by a range of health conditions, including color dilution alopecia, cystinuria, deafness, demodicosis, diabetes mellitus, eclampsia, epilepsy, hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, immune-mediated hemolytic anemia, Legg–Calvé–Perthes disease, heart conditions such as mitral valve disease, mucopolysaccharidosis VI, pannus, patellar luxation, pituitary dwarfism, portosystemic shunts, sebaceous adenitis, Shaker syndrome, urolithiasis (calcium oxalate), and urolithiasis (cystine). They can suffer from eye disorders such as vitreous degeneration, cataracts, corneal dystrophy, glaucoma, optic nerve hypoplasia and micropapilla, persistent pupillary membranes, and progressive retinal atrophy.

Personality and Behavior

Despite their small size, Miniature Pinschers are fearless, energetic, and alert. They're known for their curiosity and high-spirited temperament. They can be independent and stubborn at times, but they're also intelligent and learn quickly. They're good watchdogs but can be vocal, which might not make them the best choice for those living in apartments or other close-quarters living situations. Miniature Pinschers require regular exercise to keep them mentally and physically stimulated.

Fun Facts

They were originally bred in Germany to hunt rats in stables.

Despite their small size, they have a large, bold personality and are often described as "big dogs in small bodies".

Miniature Pinschers have a distinctive high-stepping gait, similar to that of a horse's trot.

Miniature Pinschers have a smooth, short, and lustrous coat that's easy to groom.