The Miniature Pinscher originated in Germany, where it has been used for several hundred years as a formidable ratter, a trusted watchdog and a cherished companion. It also has been bred for many years in Scandinavia, where it remains highly popular to this day. While the precise ancestry of the breed is unknown, the Miniature Pinscher most likely is a direct descendent of its larger cousin, the German Pinscher. Other contributors are thought to include assorted terriers, the Dachshund and the Italian Greyhound. The Min Pin is often mistaken for a miniature Doberman Pinscher, but it has no direct relation to that breed – other than that both the Miniature Pinscher and the Doberman may share the German Pinscher as a common ancestor. There is no Doberman blood in any Miniature Piinscher.
The German Pinscher-Schnauzer Klub (Club) was formed in 1895, marking the real start of the development of the Miniature Pinscher. Min Pins were first exhibited in Germany at the Stuttgart Dog Show in 1900; they were virtually unknown outside of Germany and the Scandinavian countries at that time. Miniature Pinschers improved steadily in type and popularity from that point until the advent of the First World War, which disrupted the progress of almost everything. Starting in or around 1919, breed fanciers abroad revived their efforts to advance the Miniature Pinscher, which rapidly caught the attention of dog lovers everywhere. The breed did not make much headway in the United States until the mid-1920s. The Min Pin was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1925 as a “Pinscher – Toy”, showing in the Miscellaneous Class. The Miniature Pinscher Club of America was formed in 1929 and became a member of the American Kennel Club the following year. The Min Pin became fully accepted into the Toy Group in 1930. Its name was officially changed to Miniature Pinscher in 1972. A specialized breed club was not established in England until the 1950s.
Today’s Miniature Pinscher is an exceptional watchdog, with keen hearing and a sharp voice that he does not hesitate to use. The Min Pin also excels in the show ring, where he seemingly was born to show off his animated, high-stepping gait. Miniature Pinschers are extremely devoted to their owners and make wonderful household companions. They have ranked among the top breeds in popularity in the United States for several decades. The Min Pin is the top toy breed in Denmark, Holland and Italy.
The Miniature Pinscher is long-lived breed, with an average life expectancy of 15 years or more. Breed health concerns may include intervertebral disk disease, epilepsy, chronic superficial keratitis (pannus), glaucoma, cataracts, generalized progressive retinal atrophy, cystine urolithiasis, hypothyroidism, Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, shoulder luxation and patellar luxation. The Min Pin is prone to obesity if not regularly exercised and is particularly sensitive to cold temperatures.