Other names: Miniature Pinscher, Zwergpinscher, Medium Pinscher, German Pinscher, Deutscher Pinscher, Min Pin, King of Toys


The Pinscher exists in two varieties: the medium one, commonly called German Pinscher, and the miniature one, also known as “toy”. The main elements that differentiate them are their size, but also the watchdog aspect of the German variety. Otherwise, they are as energetic and lively as one another and both resemble a miniature Doberman, even if they have little in common with the latter.

Key facts about the Pinscher

Life expectancy :





Temperament :


Size :

Origins and history

As archeological elements dating back to the neolithic era can attest to, these dogs have prehistoric roots. The origins of the miniature variety, however, are recent: it was created in Germany, in the second half of the past century. The standard was established in Germany in 1895, and the first Breed Club was founded in the same year. Both varieties are descendants of the Doberman. Both varieties were officially recognised by the FCI in 1955, and possess their own, distinct official standards.

Physical characteristics of the Pinscher

    Adult size

    Female : Between 18 and 20 in

    Male : Between 18 and 20 in

    Miniature variety size

    Male: Between 10 and 12 inches
    Female: Between 10 and 12 inches


    Female : Between 31 and 44 lb

    Male : Between 31 and 44 lb

    Miniature variety size

    Male: Between 9 and 13 pounds
    Female: Between 9 and 13 pounds

    Coat colour

    Type of coat

    Eye colour



    They are proportionally-built dogs, with a clean-cut profile and harmonious traits, generally harmonious-looking. The medium-sized variety resembles a miniature Doberman. The miniature breed should never present signs of dwarfism (such as saggy eyes, enlarged back of the head, etc.). The anatomy of the torso must be as square-shaped as possible. The head is robust and elongated, with a straight muzzle, and a subtle but perceptible stop. The eyes are medium-sized and oval. The ears, when they are whole, are attached quite high, and can hang into a V-shape folding forwards, or be naturally erect. The limbs are straight and perfectly upright. The tail hangs high.

    Good to know

    The miniature Pinscher is a consequence of crossing several breeds, including the German Pinscher (medium-sized variety), the Italian Greyhound, and the Dachshund.


    Medium Pinscher ( German Pinscher, Deutscher Pinscher)

    Miniature Pinscher (Zwergpinscher, Toy Pinscher)


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      This little german dog is very close to his family members and will prove to be very affectionate. 

      However, he is also very capable of understanding when it’s not the time to disturb his family. He knows how to distance himself if needed.

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      This miniature dog is very playful, overflowing with energy. He takes a lot of pleasure in interacting with both children and adults on a regular basis, it is a way for him to expend himself and reinforce his bonds to the group.

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      Whether of miniature or medium variety, both kinds are particularly animated and do not stay still for an instant. Naturally excitable and lively, this dog is a real live wire.

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      This little german dog is intelligent, cunning enough to trick you into giving him what he wants. He’s very brave and unafraid of anything, which will allow him to be able to adapt to many environments.

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      The miniature version was initially used in hunting rodents, such as rats and mice. A faint predatory instinct is still remnant, but remains very easy to control since contemporary breeding favours the selection of companion dogs.

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      Fearful / wary of strangers

      This mini Doberman is very gentle within the family but particularly suspicious towards strangers. He needs a lot of time to give his trust and can become quite the ‘barker’ if he doesn’t immediately ‘click’ with someone.

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      This little ball of energy can prove to be as independent as it is clingy. This will vary depending on his training and the relationship he has with members of his social group.

      Behaviour of the Pinscher

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        Tolerates solitude

        If this german dog gets plenty of exercise and has been accustomed, in a gradual and positive manner, to staying on his own from his youngest age, he can absolutely tolerate his owner’s absences.

        Be careful, however, that the absences don’t drag on for many hours, because a bored dog, whether small or big, can rapidly cause damage in the house.

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        Easy to train / obedience

        Both varieties are relatively easy to train. Attached to their owners and eager to please, these miniature Dobermans are very cooperative if the training methods are respectful, fair, and coherent. 

        Brutality must never be part of the tactics used by the owners as this little dog cannot stand violence or groundless reprimands. With a moderately firm hand, you will have to prioritise the reinforcement of good behaviours. 

        This dog is known to be stubborn, but if the proverbial “iron fist in a velvet glove” is applied, nothing should stand in the way of a good interaction between master and dog.

        Be wary regarding the Zwerg (the miniature version), as one often tends to be indulgent with him, citing his small size as a reason- letting them tug and jump etc. This is in no way a good solution! Diligence and consistency must be at the core of training a dog, no matter its size.

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        This little dog is very brave and is not scared of anything, he’s a ferocious ‘barker’ if he perceives imminent danger. In this way, he is a good, alarming watchdog.

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