Miniature Pinscher Care

Often called "the King of Toys," the Miniature Pinscher (Min Pin) is a lively, bold, athletic little breed that needs plenty of supervision. Though often considered a smaller sub-type of the Doberman Pinscher, the Min Pin is a breed all its own--and definitely fits the "large dog in a small dog's body" description! Overall Miniature Pinscher care and maintenance will take a moderate amount of work, and will consist of a good bit of exercise and plenty of training and socialization.

Below you'll find plenty of details on caring for a Miniature Pinscher: raising and feeding puppies, exercise requirements, diet and nutrition, and more. If a Min Pin needs a home, adopt one--and keep reading to learn all about the breed!

Miniature Pinscher Exercise Needs

As a very active and athletic breed, Miniature Pinscher exercise requirements are pretty high. Not only will these dogs need a good bit of activity, but their boldness and curiosity mean they'll need constant supervision while they're doing it!

The typical adult Min Pin, depending on its age and overall activity level, will need about an hour of proper exercise per day--which you can accomplish with a couple of walks or jogs and a good period of play. You can start exercising your Min Pin puppy at 10-11 weeks of age by taking it on short (5- to 7-minute) walks, then you can increase the walks' length and frequency as the puppy grows. And these early walks are a good opportunity to begin teaching obedience, through leash training: have the pup walk beside or behind you on the leash instead of being allowed to lead or "tug" on it. This, in the puppy's mind, establishes you as the leader, and will make future obedience training easier.

A few precautions to keep in mind when exercising your Min Pin: first, puppies younger than eight months old shouldn't participate in activities that include a lot of jumping, running on hard surfaces, or navigating of stairs, as doing so can injure their still-developing joints and bones. And regardless of age, all Min Pins must be leashed at all times when in public. These dogs--even as puppies--are usually fearless and extremely curious, which means they can get into tricky (and dangerous!) situations if allowed; a leash will help you control your Min Pin if the dog tries to go where it shouldn't. Even if you're exercising in your own yard, the area will have to have a tall, secure fence. Min Pins are extraordinary escape artists, and will quickly run off if they can! And finally: Min Pins get cold rather easily, so it's best not to exercise these dogs in frigid temperatures.

Safeguards aside, it's important to exercise your Min Pin every single day. Dogs of this breed are already bold and active, and without regular physical activity they'll become irritable, disobedient, and incredible pains in the neck! Consistent exercise will be great for both the dog's and your own peace of mind. A few exercise ideas:

  • Walking/Jogging: Two 20-minute walks (or 15-minute jogs) per day is a good target
  • Fetch/Frisbee: These dogs love chasing a ball, stick, or Frisbee
  • Tug-of-War: Good indoor, rainy-day activity; use a rope or old towel
  • Dog Park: If properly socialized, Min Pins enjoy the company of other dogs
  • Canine Sports: These dogs can excel at obedience and agility trials, flyball, and other events

When indoors, it's good to give your Min Pin access to one or more balls or toys that will allow the dog to burn excess energy. It's also recommended that you establish a regular exercise schedule for the dog, such as walks or jogs after breakfast and dinner and a play period in the afternoon.

Miniature Pinscher Maintenance

In terms of shedding and drooling, these dogs don't need much care. Miniature Pinscher shedding is pretty light, and drooling isn't an issue.

Min Pins have short-haired, sleek coats that don't shed very much. Owners will only need to brush them once or twice a week with a bristle brush or grooming glove to keep the amount of shed hairs to a minimum--and since Min Pin shedding is light, cleanup (vacuuming the floors and lint rollers on clothes and furniture) will only be necessary once in a while.

And a Min Pin almost never drools. If your Miniature Pinscher is drooling excessively, it might be a sign of a medical issue, in which case a veterinarian's care is needed.

Miniature Pinscher Diet

Like that of all breeds, the Miniature Pinscher diet will need to include plenty of animal proteins and carbohydrates for energy, vitamins and minerals for digestive and immune health, and omega fatty acids for coat and skin wellness. This means the best Miniature Pinscher food is premium dry kibble, because it contains balanced portions of the above listed ingredients.

And while premium dog food is expensive, the good news is that your Min Pin won't eat too much of it at once! Each day, depending on the dog's age, size, and activity level, the typical adult Miniature Pinscher food amount is 1½ cups, divided into two meals. Puppies, again depending on age, will need a bit less: about one cup, divided into three meals (not two) until six months of age. For more info on feeding these dogs from puppyhood through maturity, here's a handy Miniature Pinscher feeding guide:

Miniature Pinscher Feeding Chart
Dog AgeDog WeightFood TypeAmountFrequency7-8 Weeks1 lbDry (Puppy formula)6-8 pieces3x/day3 Months2 lbsDry0.2 cups3x/day6 Months5 lbsDry0.33 cups3x/day8 Months8 lbsDry* (Puppy/Adult)0.6 cups2x/day10 Months+10 lbsDry (Adult formula)0.75 cups2x/day

*--Around this time, transition to adult food by first mixing in a bit of adult formula with the puppy formula. Over the course of a week, with each meal add a little more adult food to the mixture, until the dog is eating it entirely.

If possible, try and stick to the above-listed portions. If constantly overfed (and under-exercised), these dogs will quickly become overweight--and a fat Miniature Pinscher will have joint, breathing, and digestive issues. That same fat Min Pin will also most likely have a shorter lifespan. You can help control your Min Pin's weight by establishing consistent feeding and exercise schedules, by not feeding the dog table scraps, and by not leaving food in the dog's bowl all the time, thereby allowing it to eat anytime it wants. It's better to put the dog's bowl down only at mealtimes, then pick it up a few minutes after the dog begins eating.

If you're worried your Mini Pinscher is overweight, try this simple test: run a hand along the dog's side, and if you can't feel any ribs, it's diet time. Reduce the dog's daily food consumption by one-fourth, and add an extra walk, jog, or play period to its daily exercise schedule.

Miniature Pinscher Grooming

Read the grooming requirements for Miniature Pinschers including coat care and other maintenance.

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About this Article

Authored by:Dog-Learn
Updated:January 8, 2019