The affenpinscher is a small dog with a harsh and shaggy coat and a monkeylike expression; hence the German name affen which means monkey It has a compact and square body and round head with rounded eyes and a short nose. It has a remarkable inner beauty and a clovn-like attitude that will charm most people. When a friendship with an affen is achieved you'll have a faithful friend for life.
The affenpinscher should have a shoulder height of between 25 and 30 cm. It's weight may vary, but is often somewhere in between 3,5-6 kg. An affenpinscher doesn' demand much exercise, but it will still very much appreciate a stroll or a wee hike every now and then and a larger sized garden to play in. The Norwegian affenpinscher is often seen at shows, but it's eagerness and quickness to learn also makes it suitable for obedience and agility. It's been said that there's no need to keep an affenpinscher on a leach, it will follow it's owner everywhere. But it is a very curios dog and when discovering something exciting on the other side of the road it is very unlikely to stop and look for cars so it is recommended to keep a leach on it.
The affenpinscher is a very old German breed. It was seen portrayed in a painting by Albrecht Durer and Jan van Eyck as early as the 1400's. It is related to and has played a vital part in the breeding history of Griffons, miniature pinschers and miniature schnauzers. In the German studbook during the 1870's and 80's, short, long and rough coated miniature pinschers. In the original standard the affenpinscher was descried as "ein kleiner Teufel voll Gift und Galle" meaning "it's a little devil full of poison and gall" towards the people it did not know. It may have been like that once, but today it's a known as a social dog, a good companion and guard dog (try sneaking in to a house full of affenpinschers). The breed was registered for the first time in Germany in 1879 and was finally 'established' in 1913. It was originally used to catch rats, which indicates that it's a curious, brave, eager and quick dog.
The Marriage of Giovanni Charles Van Den Eycken Arnolfini 1434
Charles Van Den Eycken
Despite the fact that the breed is rumoured to be one of the oldest toy breeds there are very few of them today. At the end of 2001 there were only approximately 50 registered in Norway. At the moment, in 2019 there is about a 400 of them scattered across the country. Most affenpinscher owners in Norway bought their first dog from Sweden; there have been some English and Finnish imports as well. When mating we have also brought in some American and German affenpinscher-blood.
We are noticing, with much joy that the interest for affenpinschers has increased the last couple of years and our wish for the future is that even more people discover this amazing dog with all it's endearing quirks and lovely appearance.