How to Care for a Miniature Pinscher

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The miniature pinscher, also known as a min pin, is a small breed that weighs between 8 and 11 pounds when full grown. Their coats may be solid red, red with black hairs mixed in or black and tan as well as other variations of red and chocolate. They have faces similar to Doberman pinschers , but do not resemble them in size and are not related to Dobermans. The min pin breed is actually older than the Doberman breed and is said to have originated from a cross of a dachshund and an Italian greyhound.

Personality Traits

Miniature pinschers are not a lap dog like most toy breeds. The Miniature Pinscher Club of America describes the breed as “dynamite in a small package.” They are inquisitive dogs who are full of energy and are wary of unknown people, which makes them an excellent watch dog. They are escape artists, therefore constant supervision is required even in fenced areas. Min pins are excellent jumpers who can reach areas you would not consider for a small dog. A leash is always best to prevent mad dashes for freedom when you least expect them.

Feeding and Grooming

The most important thing to remember when feeding a min pin is to maintain a diet that is high in protein and at least 40 percent meat based. Avoid foods that include meat byproducts, grains, corn or dyes. Choose a food that is formulated for small breed dogs, with smaller kibbles.

For min pin puppies, the food needs to be soaked in liquid to make it easier to digest. You can use hot milk, meat broth or just hot water. Allow the food to soak for several minutes and reach room temperature before serving. Feed pups less than 3 months old four times daily, and cut out one feeding per day between 3 and 6 months old. After 6 months of age, feeding can be reduced to twice daily. Min pins need approximately 1 ounce of food per pound of body weight daily, although this varies depending on age and activity level.

Min pins do not require a lot of grooming. Bathing is only needed if he has gotten into something smelly or gotten dirty and frequent bathing is discouraged since it will deplete natural oils in the skin and cause irritation. Brushing frequently will keep his coat shiny and healthy as well as free from dirt. Toenails will need to be trimmed twice monthly, and the inside of the ears can be wiped out at the same time.

Health Care

Having your min pin vaccinated, starting when he is a puppy and continuing yearly from then on, is vital to keep him healthy. Yearly trips to a veterinarian for vaccinations and a health check will save you costly medical bills if conditions are caught early.

Spaying or neutering your dog does more than prevent unwanted litters. It also greatly reduces the risk of reproductive cancers and other illnesses. Altering is best done before 6 months of age as the risk of cancer is higher in older dogs.

Training Your Min Pin

Min pins are stubborn, therefore consistency is key to training. Letting them get away with unwanted behaviors could turn your sweet puppy into a terror. Set ground rules early.

Constant supervision is necessary during training, especially during housebreaking. When you cannot supervise him, it is best that he be kept in a crate that is large enough for him to stand, turn around and stretch out, but no larger. This will prevent crate accidents. Take him outdoors regularly, roughly every two hours in the beginning. Praise him and give him a treat when he potties in the correct area outdoors.

Warning

  • Miniature pinschers have thin legs and are prone to leg injuries. Use caution when allowing him to jump on or off of furniture or other high places. Prevent young children from handling him to avoid injuries.

    Small dogs are easy prey for larger dogs, birds and many other animals. Avoid leaving your min pin outdoors unattended.

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