The Miniature Pinscher (aka Zwergpinscher, Min Pin) originated on German Farms in the 1700s. They were bred to be ratters and were developed by crossbreeding various terriers and other dogs, including the German Pinscher, Dachshund and possibly the Italian Greyhound.
Despite a great similarity in appearance, the Miniature Pinscher is not, as many believe, descended from the Dobermann Pinscher. The Min Pin is, in fact an older breed. The Dobermann Pinscher was bred by Karl Frederich Louis Dobermann in 1880, and Dobermann had noted that he was looking to create a dog resembling the Miniature "Zwergpinscher" Pinscher but 15 times larger.
The Miniature Pinscher is often referred to as the “King of the Toy Dogs”. In America, UK, and Canada - min pins are shown in the Toy Group. In the kennel clubs affiliated to the Federation Cynologique International, (FCI) – Miniature Pinschers are listed in Group 2, along with other pinscher dogs such as Doberman Pinscher, German Pinscher, Austrian Pinscher, and Affenpinscher. The term pinscher comes from the English word “pincher” which describes the biting action the breed uses when holding prey.
The breed standard between the Kennel Club and the FCI are different. The KC specify that the movement of the dog should be characterised by a hackney like action “a high-stepping, reaching, free and easy gait in which the front leg moves straight forward and in front of the body and the foot bends at the wrist. The dog drives smoothly and strongly from the rear. The head and tail are carried high”. The FCI standard (Ireland and Europe) does not require this high stepping action as the original miniature pinschers did not move like this. “The Miniature Pinscher is a trotter. His back remains firm and rather steady in movement. The movement is harmonious, sure, powerful and uninhibited with good length of stride. Typical of the trot is a ground covering, relaxed, fluent movement with strong drive and free front extension.”
Min Pins are Lively, spirited, self assured and even tempered, these qualities make him an agreeable family and companion dog. They are fun loving extroverts with bags of courage. They have high energy, and are ideal for those looking for an entertaining, loving and loyal pet. They can sometimes be hard to house train and will require a consistent approach to training. They are outgoing brave and gregarious, they will shower you with love, but they will also try their best to get away with naughty things if they are allowed.
Min Pins are a working dog, with many terrier characteristics. Min Pins are very flexible and agile and will curl up in almost any position to get comfortable, however this agility also makes them good escape artists and any owner’s back yard should be “dog proofed” to reflect this.
When grooming a wipe down with a damp towel is usually sufficient. The smooth short-haired coat requires little attention.
Care should be taken in extremes of weather. Their short fine coat does not provide adequate protection.
Min Pins needs a medium sized yard. Daily walks are important as a bored Min Pin can be destructive and yappy!
Min Pins can be rather headstrong, so it is important to be firm and consistent in their training. They are quick learners and are willing to please their owners. As with all dogs, socialisation at a young age is very important.
Miniature Pinschers are generally a very healthy breed that rarely has serious health problems. They often live to 15 years of age or longer. They sometimes suffer from Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) and Patella Luxation.