The German Pinscher
The German Pinscher is a medium-sized, Molossoid-type breed of dog native to Germany, originally used as a good ratter and a vigilant watchdog. Nowadays, this breed is becoming increasingly popular as a companion and guardian dog. Some of the varieties of this breed, suchlike the Swiss Shorthaired Pinscher and the German Silky Pinscher are currently extinct. A great deal of the traits of this breed are incorporated into other related breeds suchlike the Doberman Pinscher, the Miniature Pinscher and the Miniature and Giant Schnauzers. This breed is a versatile one and it is used as a watchdog, guard dog, herder, pest destroyer and family pet.
When the rough- haired Standard Schnauzer was born in the same litter as the smooth-haired German Pinscher, the latter was deemed as a distinct breed, not a variety any longer. The distinctive features in general appearance used to be the cropped ears and docked tail, in order to prevent injuries when herding, a practice which is not compulsory nowadays, because the standard allows for its ears and tail to be left unaltered. The coat is short, shiny and smooth and it varies in color from black and rust, fawn, red to blue and tan, but the standard of the breed only accepts red and black and rust. The colors black and harlequin are extinct. The average height is 16-19 inches and the average weight is 25-35 pounds.
This working breed is everything an adoptive family can wish for in a dog. It is an ideal companion, a fearless guard dog, a vocal watchdog, an effective pest repellent and a high performance livestock herder. Owners of this breed strongly believe they could not do without it. This dog is energetic, friendly, active, alert yet docile and it thrives on plenty of regular activity to maintain it fit. It is equally devoted to all family members, yet it has a soft spot for children, of whom it is fiercely protective. Hence, this breed can be trusted with your property, your family members, your children and your livestock.
Early obedience training and socialization are typically required for well-balanced instincts and proper mutual communication. This breed is typically fairly good with other dogs, but not with cats and other small pets, which it tends to chase and possibly hurt, since it is after all a ratter.
This even-tempered and very intelligent dog can adapt to any living environment and it is happy both indoors and outdoors. Apartment living conditions are suitable for it, being a medium-sized breed, but its exercise program needs to be respected, because it can get quite vocal when its workout needs are not met. It is advised to be walked on a lead at all times and at heel, in order to let it know who the leader is and to prevent it from running away upon catching sight of something that needs its chasing or herding touch. Also, if kept in a courtyard, you have to make sure it is securely fenced, to minimize the chances of roaming off. It requires practically no regular grooming, just an occasional brushing of its short coat, and it sheds moderately. In terms of health, this breed is prone to an increased risk of developing heart disease, von Willebrand disease, hereditary cataract, hip dysplasia and thyroid disorders.
If you decide to give a German Pinscher a home, then you should be prepared for a versatile working breed and a lively, loving, loyal and protective family companion for a lifetime.