Halfway in size between a Miniature Pinscher and a Doberman Pinscher, the German Pinscher is a medium-sized powerhouse – fearless, imposing, and completely devoted to the family he loves. German Pinschers have big personalities and tend to believe the world revolves around them. They are fiercely protective of their territory and family, and despite their medium size make excellent guard dogs and can be counted on to take down an intruder with shocking efficiency. This breed is quite dependent upon human companionship and will want to be included in every aspect of home life, from work to play to sharing the bed. German Pinschers are an excellent choice for experienced dog owners and for people who lead an active lifestyle.
Their medium size makes the Pinscher appealing to apartment dwellers, but this is not their ideal living situation. Pinschers need room to romp and play, and their daily activity should involve running whenever possible. People who love the outdoors make excellent matches for this breed. They can keep up on jogs or bike rides, love hiking and can make an entire afternoon out of playing ball or frisbee. About an hour of exercise every day should keep a Pinscher physically and mentally fit. If he starts developing destructive or anxious behaviors, this is a red flag that that he's not getting enough exercise.
Pinschers have an independent streak in them, but are generally easy to train. They possess a strong desire to please and pick up on new tasks quickly when rewarded with affection and treats. Consistency is important, as their independent side makes them prone to testing boundaries. Pinschers can be incredibly manipulative, their faces often look like they are smiling, and their eyes are quite expressive. The soft at heart can be easily walked all over by a Pinscher. But once leadership is established and basic obedience is mastered, however, German Pinschers can excel in advanced obedience, tracking and agility activities.
German Pinschers, despite their imposing look, make excellent service and therapy dogs. Individual dogs with steady temperaments enjoy working with the elderly and infirm, especially if it involves having lots of attention and treats lavished upon them.
German Pinschers are not an ideal breed for families with small children. This breed is highly possessive of food, toys and even their favorite people, and a toddler with no sense of a dog's boundaries could get snapped at or even bitten.
This breed barks at just about everything, which makes them excellent watchdogs, but not so excellent housemates. Early training to obey commands to stop barking is essential for household sanity.
Pinschers were designed to hunt small vermin, and this hunting instinct is still present in the modern breed. They should not be raised alongside cats or other small animals, and when outdoors, Pinschers should always be on a leash or in an enclosed area.