A true toy terrier, the Affenpinscher dog has been in existence for more than 300 years. His origins are difficult to pinpoint, but he is seen in nearly his present form in 17th-century paintings.
The Affenpinscher dog may be a miniature form of the wire terrier prototype which came from Nordic dogs, such as the Schipperke. These, crossed with the little pin-schers or with small brachycephalic Pug like dogs from Asia found in Europe, could have created the Affenpinscher. In fact, earlier Affens may have had a longer muzzle, because the Affenpinscher and smooth Miniature Pinscher were at one time considered two coat varieties of the same breed and even occurred in the same litter. Whatever the Affenpinscher dog ancestry, this quaint little dog has earned the description of “monkey dog.” His rather flat, turned-up nose, alert cropped ears, prominent round eyes, bristling eyebrows and bushy mustache and beard all add to this description. The French often call this dog Dia-bletin Moustache, literally the mustached little devil!
Belying his very small size, he is every inch a terrier in personality. He is alert, yet quiet, game and sturdy. The FCI standard translates: a charming mixture of fearlessness, obsti-nancy, loyalty and affection which he will show in rapid change from amusing earnestness to raging passion.”
Regular brushing and tidying up is all the Affenpinscher dog requires to look neat. The tail is docked short. Although not among the most numerous of dogs, the Affenpinscher has his proponents internationally. American and Canadian recognition was granted in 1936 but, perhaps because of the wealth of terrier types already in Britain, he remains virtually unknown there.