Affenpinscher Breed Magazine - Showsight

Affenpinscher Breed Magazine features information, expert articles, and stunning photos from AKC judges, breeders, and owners.


Let’s Talk Breed Education!

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Official Standard of the Affenpinscher General Appearance: The Affenpinscher is a balanced, wiry-haired terrier-like toy dog whose intelligence and demeanor make it a good house pet. Originating in Germany, the name Affenpinscher means "monkey-like terrier." The breed was developed to rid the kitchens, granaries, and stables of rodents. In France the breed is described as the "Diablotin Moustachu" or moustached little devil. Both describe the appearance and attitude of this delightful breed. The total overall appearance of the Affenpinscher is more important than any individual characteristic. He is described as having a neat but shaggy appearance. Size, Proportion, Substance: A sturdy, compact dog with medium bone, not delicate in any way. Preferred height at the withers is 9½ to 11½ inches. Withers height is approximately the same as the length of the body from the point of the shoulder to point of the buttocks, giving a square appearance. The female may be slightly longer. Head: The head is in proportion to the body, carried confidently with monkey-like facial expression. Eyes - Round, dark, brilliant, and of medium size in proportion to the head but not bulging or protruding. Eye rims are black. Ears - Cropped to a point, set high and standing erect; or natural, standing erect, semi-erect or dropped. All of the above types of ears, if symmetrical, are acceptable as long as the monkey-like expression is maintained. Skull - Round and domed, but not coarse. Stop -Well-defined. Muzzle - Short and narrowing slightly to a blunt nose. The length of the muzzle is approximately the same as the distance between the eyes. Nose - Black, turned neither up nor down. Lips - Black, with prominent lower lip. Bite - Slightly undershot. A level bite is acceptable if the monkey-like expression is maintained. An overshot bite is to be severely penalized. A wry mouth is a serious fault. The teeth and tongue do not show when the mouth is closed. The lower jaw is broad enough for the lower teeth to be straight and even. Neck, Topline, Body: Neck - Short and straight. Topline straight and level. Body - The chest is moderately broad and deep; ribs are moderately sprung. Tuckup is slight. The back is short and level with a strong loin. The croup has just a perceptible curve. Tail may be docked or natural. A docked tail is generally between 1 and 2 inches long, set high and carried erect. The natural tail is set high and carried curved gently up over the back while moving. The type of tail is not a major consideration. Forequarters: Front angulation is moderate. Shoulders - with moderate layback. The length of the shoulder blade and the upper arm are about equal. Elbows - close to the body. Front legs straight when viewed from any direction. Pasterns short and straight. Dewclaws generally removed. Feet small, round, and compact with black pads and nails. Hindquarters: Rear angulation is moderate to match the front. Hindlegs straight when viewed from behind. From the side, hindlegs are set under the body to maintain a square appearance. The length of the upper thigh and the second thigh are about equal with moderate bend to the stifle. Hocks - Moderately angulated. Coat: Dense hair, rough, harsh, and about 1 inch in length on the shoulders and body. May be shorter on the rear and tail. Head, neck, chest, stomach and legs have longer, less harsh coat. The

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mature Affenpinscher has a mane or cape of strong hair which blends into the back coat at the withers area. The longer hair on the head, eyebrows and beard stands off and frames the face to emphasize the monkey-like expression. Hair on the ears is cut very short. A correct coat needs little grooming to blend the various lengths of hair to maintain a neat but shaggy appearance. Color: Black, gray, silver, red, black and tan, or belge are all acceptable. Blacks may have a rusty cast or a few white or silver hairs mixed with the black. Reds may vary from a brownish red to an orangey tan. Belge has black, brown, and/or white hairs mixed with the red. With various colors, the furnishings may be a bit lighter. Some dogs may have black masks. A small white spot on the chest is not penalized, but large white patches are undesirable. Color is not a major consideration. Gait: Light, free, sound, balanced, confident, the Affenpinscher carries itself with comic seriousness. Viewed from the front or rear, while walking the legs move parallel to each other. Trotting, the feet will converge toward a midline as speed increases. Unsound gait is to be heavily penalized. Temperament: General demeanor is game, alert, and inquisitive with great loyalty and affection toward its master and friends. The breed is generally quiet, but can become vehemently excited when threatened or attacked, and is fearless toward any aggressor.

Approved June 12, 2000 Effective July 27, 2000



L earning to evaluate the Affenpinscher can be dif- ficult for several reasons. As a rare breed, with no dogs exhibited in many areas of the US, peo- ple need to travel in order to be exposed to any good specimens of the breed. Addition- ally, there are few long-term breeders to use as mentors or large kennels with many dogs to observe. “Affens” have only one specialty week- end per year, with entries of 30 to 50 dogs. For these reasons it is imperative to make an effort to find, observe, and examine Affens when the opportunity presents itself. Judges’ Education for the Affenpinscher Club of America tries to participate in seminars put on throughout the year in various parts of the country. We also have an excel- lent Illustrated Standard available. Addressing the major characteristics that make the breed so endearing to its owners and so special to judge: “This is a small, sturdy, harsh coated, shaggy looking little dog who is comical, inquisitive and alert.” Taken from the ACA Illustrated Standard introduction, this describes what you need to see as they enter the ring. We do not want heavy, coarse or big dogs. Affens are square and up on leg, not long in body or low on leg, which are “drags on the breed.” Shape, proportions, and angles are specifically different from other Toy dogs. They have a “short vertical neck” and moderate angulation front and rear. This creates correct move- ment, described as being jaunty and light, but without excessive reach and drive. The Affen needs to pounce, jump, and twist to capture a rodent, not chase it down. When in the ring, they should not be raced, but rather be moved at a speed to show off agility and lightness. Affens are very determined and alert, but also comical. They will walk and dance on their hind legs to attract attention. When moving, they may remind you of Charlie Chaplin as the “Little Tramp” in the movies; comic in appearance, but serious in purpose. Their gait should be sound on four legs, but with



Prior to the 1990’s, it was rare to see a natural tail or ears. Now, almost all are shown au naturel . The AKC standard is, and always was, very specific in the matter. Tails may be docked or left natural, with no bias allowed for either. The same with ears as long as they are symmetrical. All earsets are acceptable as long as the monkey- like expression is maintained. To put it another way, the standard doesn’t care about natural vs. docked/cropped—and neither should you! You are judging the entire dog, not just its parts. Type is the utmost, with no single attribute more important than another. Now, a word about grooming and how styles and empha- sis change. Our standard states “shaggy but neat” and this has been interpreted differently by many people. This does not mean sculpted, sprayed, scissored or over-teased. You must feel free to put your hands on their heads and bodies to feel coat and texture and shape and bone. You must (gently) feel the stop and tail set, and check substance. The biggest challenge in judging a new breed for you may be in setting priorities. No dog is perfect and all have faults of varying degrees. Each breed has certain attributes that are essential and, possibly, faults that are almost unforgiveable. The Affenpinscher Club of America’s Illustrated Standard is invaluable reading and states eight things that are important attributes of type: 1. Monkey-Like Expression 2. Preferred Height 9 ½" to 11 ½" 3. Square Appearance, Bitches May Be Longer 4. Hindlegs Set Under the Body 5. Substance—Must Be Sturdy 6. Temperament is Comical, Inquisitive 7. Gait is Sound, Tracking 4 Square, Converging with Speed 8. Coat is Harsh, Neat but Shaggy Using the Illustrated Standard as a guide will help you judge the whole dog and not just look at specific parts. Stay positive. You can do justice to our breed. Remember, Affens of quality should make you smile or laugh in the ring.

no hackney or crossing over, even as they tend to converge when increasing speed. Having seen a square, sturdy little dog enter the ring, now you can table examine the head and face. You must put your hands on the head (very gently, please) to feel the shape (round, but not domed), the stop, and the muzzle, which needs to be level and equal in length to the distance between the round dark eyes. Ears come in many shapes and sizes, according to our standard, but what is important is for them to be symmetrical and to add to the monkey-like expression. They do not look like monkeys, but rather remind you of a monkey. This includes their expression, attitude, and action—not just the face. The nose is larger, black, with open nares. The Affen exhibits a visibly pouty lower lip, created by a slightly undershot or reverse scissors bite, with a jaw broad enough to accommodate 12 evenly placed incisors; six top and six bottom. The round, dark, nicely spaced eyes, the pouty lower lip, and the hair standing away from the face create the impish, intelligent, comical, and deter- mined expression of the Affenpinscher. Now, with these important initial characteristics in mind, we can discuss color, coat, tails, and grooming. In the US, unlike FCI and other foreign countries that allow only black Affens, our little monkeys come in lots of colors; black, black and tan, red, belge, and silver—all with or without a black mask. You will see mostly black Affens in the US, but many have silver shadings on the head and legs, and white hairs interspersed in the coat. All are perfectly acceptable. It is important to know that Affens have two distinct types of coat. The body (jacket) is harsh and coarse, but not “wirey.” The head is softer and stands off to frame the face. On mature dogs, you will find hair that is longer from the occiput along the neck to the withers and over the shoulders. This forms a “cape,” not to be confused with a “mane” or “ruff.” In the past 15 years, the practice of docking tails and cropping ears has decreased in many breeds. The Affen is no exception.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Pamela Peat became actively involved in the show dog world in the 1970’s as a breeder of Dachshunds and is currently breeding and exhibiting Affenpinschers under the Pramada prefix. She has also bred Pomeranians. While raising a family and becoming a Reproductive Endocrinology Nurse Practitioner, she was active in all-breed and specialty dog clubs in multiple capacities in Minnesota and Arizona. In addition, she participated in performance events with her Dachshunds and Pomeranians. She is a Parent Club approved mentor for both Dachshunds and Affenpinschers, and currently serves as the Judges’ Education Chair for Affens. Her judging career began in the early 1990’s. She currently judges the Hound, Toy, Terrier, and Non-Sporting Groups. Pam has had the opportunity to travel and judge in Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Australia, South Africa, Sweden, and Italy as well as the US and Canada.




T ime? Yes, it’s time to step back and take a good, long, hard look at the Affenpinschers that are being shown in the rings today. What is being bred, shown, promoted, and rewarded today will influ- ence the direction the breed takes tomorrow. We must, as breed preservationists, objectively evaluate that direction. All breeders, exhibitors (handlers included), and judges must have the strength and courage to main- tain BREED TYPE and reverse the direction the breed is currently taking. We are moving away from moderation and forward to exaggeration. We must ensure that “Affens” stay looking like Affens, not caricatures of Affens. MODERATION is repeatedly stated—seven times, actually—in the AKC breed Standard, approved June 12, 2000, and the descriptions provided in the Standard sets the breed type. References made include forequarters, hindquarters, chest, and front/rear angulation. The tuck-up is described as “slight.” Exaggeration is now seen frequently in these areas and is, unfor- tunately, being rewarded. It is erroneous and detrimental to this breed to promote exaggeration as this corrupts breed type. Here are just a few examples to illustrate this point regarding moderation as referenced in the Standard: Chest: Is moderately broad and deep; ribs are moderately sprung. Forequarters: Front angulation is moderate. Shoulders—with moderate layback. Hindquarters: Rear angulation is moderate to match the front. Hind legs straight when viewed from behind. From the side, hind legs are set under the body to maintain a square appearance. Hocks—moderately angulated. From this, one should deduce that this makes for a short LEVEL back, which can still have a barely perceptible curve at the croup. In an over-angulated front (more than moderate layback of shoulders), the whole front assembly moves away from Affen type. Choosing exagger- ated angles and layback for the breed allows for a longer neck while bringing the humerus further back under the body. This puts the elbows in conflict with the rib cage, and can lead to a wider front and elbows that must move out to avoid the ribs, making for unsound gate. The longer neck, coupled with exaggerated shoulder angles, prevents the presence of the “short vertical neck” as described in the Standard.

Near perfection for head and expression; Eye shape, color, set, nose, lower lip line. Neat but shaggy appearance.

Eyes, round, full, medium size, not prominent.



Remember, movement is to be light and free, sometimes described as jaunty. Neither excessive reach and drive nor hackneyed gaits are called for in the Standard.

AFFENPINSCHER Priorities of Type • Monkey like expression • Preferred height 9 1/2 inches-11 1/2 inches • Square appearance, bitches may be longer • Hindlegs set under the body • Substance - must be sturdy • Temperament is comical, inquisitive • Gait is sound, tracking 4 square converging with speed • Coat is harsh, neat but shaggy

When hindquarters are exaggerated, the dog will have a sloping topline, standing with the hindlegs stretched out behind the rear. Or they may appear to be standing on their hocks rather than on their feet, moving with hocks so over-angulated they look as if sickled. When this exaggerated rear angulation is coupled with a moderate front, the rear must swing around to avoid interfer- ence with the front legs when the dog is in motion. Remember, movement is to be light and free, sometimes described as jaun- ty. Neither excessive reach and drive nor hackneyed gaits are called for in the Standard. Assessing movement matters. Affens can and should be SOUND. When they are bred to the Standard they will have “light, free, sound, bal- anced, confident [movement]…legs move parallel to each other [and]…con- verge toward a midline as speed increases. Unsound gait is to be heavily penal- ized.” A fast, ground-covering gait is not compatible with breed type, and should not be rewarded. Connecting the dots from the Standard thus far, we have a “squarish” appearing, sturdy, compact Toy dog with medium bone, with MODERA- TION asked for seven times. Not once is an attribute described as exaggerated. Now, onto coat and presentation. Yes, style is style and may well be just a current fad, BUT when is enough enough ? NOW! We know the hair should be dense, rough, and harsh on the body and shoulders, about an inch long, and somewhat shorter on the tail and rear, with furnishings longer and less harsh. According to the Standard, which sets the breed type, in the mature adult a cape or mane of strong hair is to blend into the back coat at the WITHERS. This is where the current problem with breed type in grooming begins. Where does the Standard speak to building up a long-arched neck starting at the middle of the back; backcombing, spraying up much like a Poodle all the way to the back of the skull? I have looked and looked and can’t find it anywhere. So, back to my point about Back to Basics—the Affen itself (and in its appear- ance) should be MODERATE in every way. I agree that this presentation is somewhat attractive, but what it creates in the overall view and outline is in direct conflict with the Standard. It may give the appearance of a short back, but also promotes a ski sloped topline, a long neck, and great exaggeration. On a positive note, coat color, tails, and ears have improved. It’s so nice to have the essence of the monkey-like expression present and rewarded very often. The distance between the eyes is to be approximately the length of the muzzle; a well-defined stop, finishing-off to a blunt nose, with open nares set straight and tipping neither up nor down. The nose and eye rims must be BLACK. To achieve the monkey-like expression, the eyes themselves must be medium in size, round, dark and brilliant, and set in the middle of the skull without corners or set obliquely. A prominent lower lip line is the icing on the cake. Color is a near non-issue now. Breeders are more interested in color and

Illustration by Anne M. Hier

Prepared and published by the Affenpinscher Club of America, Inc. copyright 2011 For a copy of this publication please contact Affenpinscher Club of America, Inc. Corresponding Secretary Proper profile as shown in the Affenpinscher Club of America, Inc. Illustrated Standard. Illustration by Anne M. Hier



Left: An example of good body-length to leg-length to depth-of-body. Right: A bitch with a well maintained shaggy but neat appearance. This correct coat needs little grooming to blend the various lengths of hair.

No. This is exaggerated in many ways. Excessive rear angulation, sloping topline; front assembly far too forward; groomed to excess

Less than ideal; over-angulated rear; severe underline; short on leg; front heavy; over-groomed.

No. Such an appealing image. Correct? No, note exaggerated rear angulation

and expression, and groomed—but not over-groomed to the point that it affects breed type. I agree that “fancy” is very, very appealing, but it is wrong, wrong, wrong for an Affen. Let’s revert a bit so the unique features of the Affenpinscher will prevail. This breed is amazing and, if we leave well enough alone, it should flourish for many, many years to come. Please jump on this train! One of the great beauties of the breed is its unique features. Please help us to preserve them.

accept that color continues to change on the “dogs of color” over their lifetime. Most judges have accepted color, as well they should, since the Standard does not discriminate against it. The grooming of heads on most is really improving; there is less backcombing, hair spray and product used. Leaving the hair more natural rather than so “done up” does help get to the oxymoron in the Standard that says they should have a “neat but shaggy appearance.” Don’t be misled with what I have written. When I judge, I must see the entire outline of the dog, its shape, make, head

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jacqueline Stacy has been involved in purebred dogs for over 50 years, starting as an exhibitor, then breeder, then all-breed professional handler and, ultimately, as a much sought after AKC All-Breed judge. Under the Tamarin Kennel, reg prefix, she and her husband, Terry, have bred and shown Affenpinschers since 1998 and have produced over 100 champions and multiple Best in Show winners & National Specialty winners, including the top-winning BIS American- Bred Champion, Ch. Tamarin Tug, who also became America’s Top Toy Dog. Their dogs have been the foundation for several successful Affenpinscher Kennels that are active today. She has been a member of the ACA since 1998, has served as their Newsletter Editor, Board Director and President of the Club for six years. She and her committee authored the ACA Illustrated Standard that was prepared and published by the Club in 2011. She is a member of the committee to create Judges Education for the Canine College. She is passionate about Affenpinschers and preserving Breed Type.




I nviting an Affenpinscher into your home is akin to inviting a willful, intelligent being from another planet to take up permanent residence within your walls, and within your heart. The “Affen” makes his or her needs known from the very beginning of your relationship. You’d better catch on quickly that the Affen is more humanoid, with more personality, than one would imagine possible from a monkey-like creature that weighs less than ten pounds. Having had the good fortune to own wonderful dogs of all sizes and breeds, I learned within a few days of getting my Chloe that you don’t own an Affen, he or she owns you. You either relinquish your alpha posi- tion for the joy of seeing the pleasure it gives the Affen to feel in charge, or you resign yourself to a lifetime of power struggles. Regardless of your decision, the Affen will take complete control. Remember Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs from Psych 101, the motivational theory that is diagrammed like a pyramid with needs (physiological, safety, love/belong- ing, esteem, and self-actualization) positioned like rungs on a ladder? The theory was meant to address human needs, but since Affens are the most human dog you’ll ever meet, the pyramid is useful in understand- ing what matters to them. Almost 12 years of relatively constant contact has taught me a lot about having an Affen in your home, but Chloe still teaches me every day. And she has taught me that for Affens, the Hierar- chy of Needs pyramid is completely upside down. SELF-ACTUALIZATION Knowing that its adorableness will ensure that all basic needs are always met, the Affen is most concerned with self-actualization. The Affen wants to achieve full potential in everything. This dog doesn’t just want to be the best version of his or herself, but the best dog possible. Such desire doesn’t come across as a wish to please so much as a desire to outshine all other dog rela- tionships you have—or will ever have had.



SAFETY Those basic needs that the Affen knows will always be covered? Safety is critical on two levels. Psychologically, the Affen needs to feel secure at all times. Despite high self-esteem, somewhere in that smart, little brain, the Affen knows he or she is dependent. Highly sensitive to emotionally charged environments, the Affen wants everyone happy all the time. This is impossible to achieve, but knowing how much it matters to your dog can help keep chaos at bay. If the Affen is an only dog, he or she may not want to see you petting or even talking to another dog. The Affen may demonstrate jealousy by barking or turning his or her head so that the disloyalty isn’t observed. That’s what Chloe does, knowing full well I will fol- low up any perceived betrayal with a reminder that she is much cuter than that little puppy or much more beautiful than the per- fectly groomed dog we just passed. She knows she is the best and only dog I love. She eventually forgives me. The Affen takes the job of guard seriously, but can only do so if he or she already feels protected. It’s not a good idea to have an Affen in a household with small children. As much as the Affen resembles a stuffed toy, a child will soon discover that this isn’t the case. A child wanting to play with a dog’s possessions could be accidentally harmed. An Affen could be accidentally harmed by a child’s attempts at play. The Affen is potentially fragile, as is the child. If the home includes children under age six, it’s better to have a dog that won’t mind if its ears and tail are pulled. Most Affens will mind. The Affen has relatively few potential health problems of which to be aware. As with all small dogs, protection of the trachea with a soft harness is critical. Luxation of the patella might be a problem, but can be surgically corrected if severe. Dry eyes might require dai- ly Tacrolimus drops. A suspiciously breed-related allergy to chicken may evidence in dry, itchy skin. Vaccines can be tricky. Never, ever bundle them. Never give a leptospirosis vaccine. Chloe had a bad reaction to the rabies vaccine, so those were eliminated early. Even heartworm preventative caused an allergic reaction, so blood tests every six months manage that dreaded possibility. Thankfully, Affens live forever. At least that’s what I tell myself every day. PHYSIOLOGICAL Finally, the most basic of basic needs, although there is nothing basic about an Affen that deserves—and will demand—the best. A typical Chloe day includes: Fresh food plated on a snuffle mat to encourage her foraging skills; only Fiji water, ever; thick beds with soft blankets for luxurious sleep; lots of fresh air on long walks under beautiful trees; and other creatures to observe. Most importantly, all of the Affen’s physiological needs should be provided in a stimulating routine. New streets to explore, new smells, and new people all encased in a familiar schedule. If Chloe’s long morning walk or car ride is postponed for any reason, she isn’t pleased. She knows how things are supposed to go, and if they don’t go in the correct order, she tries to get things back on track with nudges. This, however, doesn’t mean she can’t go with the flow when necessary. She can be flexible. She just likes her routine and doesn’t want to ever be bored. You won’t be bored, either, if you have an Affen in your home. You will be in for the relationship of a lifetime. Lucky you!

ESTEEM The Affen, born with high self-esteem, takes his or herself very seriously. He or she wants to be respected for strength, despite not being exactly strong. Sturdy? Well, that depends. Agile? Oh yes! Stamina and endurance? Yes, depending upon what the situation requires and for how long it is required. But strong? Those little legs are about the size of a thick pencil and the little head slightly larger than a golf ball. I would say an Affen is the opposite of strong—except in personality. However, the Affen is completely unaware of any physical discrepancies in the strength department. With a few well-timed barks, he or she can project an aura of fierceness sufficient to make a dog ten times its size quiver. But barking is reserved only for serious communication alerts such as “Daddy” arriving home, the mail- man, the UPS truck whizzing by, a ringing phone or doorbell, and a dog playing in the park across the street. No whining or yipping, ever, but you may find yourself on the receiving end of a scream or two if you are not where you are supposed to be when you are supposed to be there. Other communications include chortles, baby ground hog noises, a gentle nose knocking at the ankle if lunch is late, a slight cock of the head when trying to understand a word or requesting a run when a good stretch of grass is in sight. Remember how Lassie used to communicate with anyone who would listen? Affens are as communicative and interactive as a trained movie star dog. Maybe more so! LOVE AND BELONGING Regarding love, the Affen doesn’t show the neediness evident in some small dogs, but nevertheless craves love. The sense of connection with the primary caretaker is paramount, but there is plenty of love in an Affen’s heart to dispense to other mem- bers of the family. Separation anxiety can arise if everyone in the Affen’s pack, especially the primary caregiver, isn’t visible. Consequently, the primary caretaker can find him or herself reorganizing life so that the Affen is always present. This may be for both the Affen’s and the caretaker’s sense of well-being. This may also be so because life is just more fun and interesting with an Affen by your side. Regardless, the Affen wants to be an active member of the family—included in everything, con- nected to all. In return, the Affen will keep you entertained with his or her wicked sense of humor and constant antics. As for friendships with other dogs, once Chloe lost contact with her true love, a Chihuahua named Santiago, she was finished with dogs. Other Affens may be able to love again. Not Chloe.




2. What are your "must have" traits in this breed? Correct monkey-like expression, square outline, harsh coat and comical mischievous attitude with jaunty movement. 3. Are there any traits in this breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? Affens have become over-groomed with too much sculpt- ed coat and excessive added product. Movement is to be “jaunty” not moved fast with “excessive reach and drive”. These are dogs that pounce on their prey—not chase it down! 4. Do you think the dogs you see in this breed are better now than they were when you first started judging? Why or why not? We have worked very hard to improve the soundness both in mind and body. Affens have much more sound- ness in legs, better outlines and our temperaments are more fun-loving and less timid. This has come about due to the concerted efforts of many breeders. We must continue to work to not become the “generic show dogs” that are over-groomed and run very fast around thus los- ing our unique mischievous attitude. 5. What do you think new judges misunderstand about the breed? It is a Terrier-like Toy dog. They then miss coat texture, size and mischievous attitude. 6. Is there anything else you’d like to share about the breed? Please elaborate. As Affenpinschers become more popular we need to pro- tect them from the “generic show dog” trap! Keep them happy, healthy and true to their standard. 7. And, for a bit of humor: What’s the funniest thing you’ve ever experienced at a dog show? I needed one point on a lovely Affenpinscher bitch and, under Gloria Geringer, Eleanor decided to be a puppy and refused to walk! I stood in the middle of the ring with a statue of an Affenpinscher on a leash!

I live in Scottsdale Arizona with my husband, David, and multiple Affenpinschers. I really don’t do much of anything “outside of dogs”. They keep me busy with their antics, grooming and puppies. We also spend a lot of time traveling and judging in the USA and other parts of the world. I have been in show dogs since 1972. We bred Standard Longhaired Dachshunds until 1997. In 2000, we got our first Affen, Trevor, and have been hooked ever since. I started judging in 1991 and now do four groups: Hound, Terrier, Toy and Non-Sporting. I became actively involved in the show dog world in the 70’s as a breeder of Dachshunds and am currently breeding and exhibiting Affenpinschers. While raising a family and becoming a Reproductive Endocrinology Nurse Practitioner, I also was active in all breed and specialty dog clubs in mul- tiple capacities. My judging career began in the early 1990’s. I am active in the Scottsdale Dog Fanciers Association and Arizona Toy Dog Fanciers. I serve as Judges’ Education chair for the Affenpinscher Club of America. As a member of the Dachshund Club of America, I am a Parent Club Approved Mentor.I have had the opportunity to travel and judge in Tai- wan, Japan, South Korea, China, Australia, Sweden, South Africa and Italy as well as the US and Canada.

1. Describe the breed in three words. Comical, Monkey-like Toy.





B reeding is not for the faint of heart. It’s for the truly com- mitted. I mean really, really committed as much as the pig is truly committed in the making of a ham and egg sandwich. Truly commit- ted. The chicken is just involved. Don’t even think you can “dabble” in breed- ing. Not even once. You’re in or you’re out. Once you’ve bred your bitch there’s no going back. And the work it takes just to breed your bitch. Yikes. I live in New Hamp- shire. I’ve traveled to California, North Carolina, Montana and Winnipeg Can- ada. If a three or four hour drive (one way) was possible, I did it. I’ve been to New York, Maine, Pennsylvania (actu- ally that one was seven hours), Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts for two to three breedings. Each breeding requires another round trip. I’ve driven through tornadoes, floods, blizzards and, in one instance, I found myself and my bitch alone on a major interstate highway that had been closed due to statewide weather emergencies. None of these trips were easy or inexpensive. Getting the bitch to the right loca- tion is actually the easiest part. Upon arrival The Deed has to be done. I’ve had to restrain some girls who just want to rip the face off their future husband. Some want no part and will not, abso- lutely no way, cooperate. Other times I have had very, very willing girls and a boy who won’t look twice at her. One boy kept snapping at the girl as if to say “You’re not my type. At all.” Plan B has to kick in here. AI, or artificial insemination, or “assist the idiots” as I have been known to refer to the process. I am so blessed to have had the most expert advice in the art of this method. And let me just tell you, don’t think you can just “figure it out” on your own. You cannot. These are dogs, not people, and things are just a teensy bit different. Back to my men- tors, did I mention that they happen to be two very gentlemanly and patient gay guys? They were awesome. I now consider myself to be an expert in the process and, to date, have had only one miss. That was due to the bitch hav- ing a medical problem (read: expen- sive, expensive and time consuming to cure). Oh, and the male who suddenly

Plan B for shipped kicked in. A sec- ond shipment was sent to the correct address and my bitch was implanted surgically. (Read here: Huge expense. this operation is the same as a C-sec- tion in reverse). Success! Two puppies. (read: expensive c-section as these pups were huge on the expensive ultrasound and expensive x-ray). Oh, and now that puppies are “on the ground”—time to pay the stud fee. I could go on and on but won’t. I’ll save all the rest of the breeding things for another time. Right now I’ll cut to the chase and the topic of this article—names. Yes, puppies are cute and fuzzy and smell delightful. Yes they are so much fun to cuddle and kiss. But the best part about puppies? They need names and the breeder gets to pick them. This is the best part. Seriously. The next time you read the names and I mean all of the “official AKC registered name”—stop and think for a moment. Someone, a breeder 99.9% of the time, had to think of that name. And they thought of it with a purpose, a reason, a definite goal in mind. And a drink in hand, I’m think- ing. Believe me—these names are care- fully worked on. Sometimes for days, months and in a few cases of folks who collect names, years. I was almost overwhelmed and ready to throw in the towel the first time we had a litter. It took me weeks. I finally settled on using the alphabet as a helpful tool (crutch). We simply started with A and after we got to to Z we started all over again. Simple, you say? Think about it. Think about U, X, Y and Z. Dwell on Q, for a while. Staying away from the expected is not easy. We chose Una, Xanthippe, Yardley and Zuc- ca. And the Q pup became a gorgeous belge dog named “Q”. The most recent litter we whelped (went into debt over) landed back on the letter “E”. Easy. My parents have both recently left this Earth but their middle names began with E. So...we’ve got an Evange- line and a Eugene. Stunning babies with super special names. I won’t go so far as to say choosing names makes breed- ing all worthwhile, but I will say it can make part of it a lot of fun.

became sterile. There’s a topic for a whole new article. With this Plan B I have to carry with me all the necessary tools (customs in Canada can be brutal). I’ve used kitchen tables, kitchen counter tops, bureaus in hotels, bathroom floors, hotel beds, RV beds, living room sofas and chairs and once I actually got to use a grooming table. And there are stories to be told about every “adventure”. But not now. Getting back on topic—If I can’t travel there I have the semen shipped. I have had semen shipped from places as far away as New Mexico and Alabama, to name just two. Shipping semen is no bargain. The stud dog vets charge me for collection, preparation, and the actual FedEx shipping. I also have to pay for the very very large carton that contains a small vial, packed in news- papers and surrounded by styrofoam. It looks really cheap. It isn’t. One time I actually laughed out loud when the cardboard box was delivered. It was decorated with a picture of a big stork carrying a baby printed on the side. Nothing like letting the neighbors think they know what you’re doing. One time I cried when I opened the box. The vet had not added any extender and there was nothing, absolutely nothing inside the vial. Those of you who have been unfor- tunate enough to use this method also realize that there’s a serious time factor involved and a shipment that is useless can set a breeder back by six months. The only other time I cried over a ship- ment was when the shipment never arrived. Some how, some way, some- one at the vet office had addressed this precious (read: expensive) shipment to themselves only to find it on their own doorstep in the morning. While my bitch and I sat waiting at a reproduction vet office 3,000 miles away. That was the first and only time I used a repro vet by the way. And a good thing it was. Due to severe snow storms which even I couldn’t navigate, a holiday which FedEx didn’t navigate on, and a slow rise in progesterone/LH counts (are you confused, those who wisely don’t breed? Read: expensive blood tests, letting science take out the guess work of the perfect day)—we were down to the last possible day.


by BARRY LEECE & CAMERON RIEGEL Enchante’ Affens & Bouvier des Flanders MONKEY DOGS IN AMERICA

O riginally from Germany, Affenpinschers are a sturdy, comical Toy Breed histori- cally believed to have been used in the home and farmsteads as a ratter. Woodcuts and paintings depict- ing small Terrier-like dogs that are prob- able precursors of the Affenpinscher place this little dog in Europe in the late 1400s-1700s, although official records and formal breeding programs for this breed did not exist until the late 1800s. In the United States, the Affenpinscher was first listed in the American Kennel Club (AKC) Stud Book in 1936. From Jerome Cushman’s authorita- tive book on the Affenpinscher, he notes that, “in German the word affenmartig means ‘monkey-like’ and the word pin- scher means ‘Terrier’” In France, they are often referred to as ‘Diablotin Mous- tachu’, or ‘mustached little devil’, pos- sibly referring to not only their looks, but also to their often times goofy and mischievous behavior. ABOUT THE AKC STANDARD The American standard for the Affen- pinscher was adopted from an abbrevi- ated translation of the German standard in November, 1936. The Affenpinscher standard is specific for size, eye color, structure and a number of phenotypical traits, but broader and open to inter- pretation in describing other aspects of the breed. For example, ears may be cropped or not, upright (prick ear)

or bent, but must always be symmetri- cal. The American standard allows for a broader coat color spectrum span- ning silver, reds, beige and black. This color variation is in marked contrast to European standards where black is preferred and no other color is encour- aged or allowed to be exhibited. From the Breed Standard, “The total over- all appearance of the Affenpinscher is more important than any individual characteristic. He is described as hav- ing a neat but shaggy appearance.” However, In the AKC Club standard, the description of a monkey-like expres- sion is included no less than four times, emphasizing the relative importance of the distinctive facial traits. The breed’s temperament is described as, “game, alert and inquisi- tive with great loyalty and affection toward its master and friends. The breed is generally quiet, but can become vehemently excited when threatened or attacked and is fearless toward any aggressor.” Having lived with Affens for many years, for a small dog, Affenpin- schers have more than their share of attitude. A favorite description of the monkey dog refers to their ‘over-inflat- ed sense of their own self-importance’. It may be a Toy, but they don’t know it! ENCHANTE’ KENNELS Affenpinschers in New Mexico, “The Land of Enchantment”! What place could be more fitting for such

an enchanting little breed? After retir- ing from a twetny-five year career with Johnson & Johnson and Cameron’s suc- cessful real estate management busi- ness, we left California and decided to return to New Mexico as our base of operations for a burgeoning travel and dog-showing lifestyle. As AKC Breeders of Merit, we have bred and shown Bou- vier des Flanders for nearly thirty years, but wanted to expand our canine hori- zons into something different. Affens fit the bill perfectly because of their comic temperament, easy-going nature, small size, portability and minimal shedding. They are accommodating to active lifestyles, wonderful at agility or content to be couch potatoes. We abso- lutely love our Bouvs, but come bed- time it is much easier to fit six Affens on the bed!


As in so many things in life, getting our first Affen ten years ago was a com- bination of planning and sheer luck. Monkey dogs are relatively uncommon and getting one usually means going on a waiting list of a somewhat limited field of breeders. So, we were thrilled when our long-time handler friends, Jorge and Susie Olivera, contacted us to ask if we would be interested in adopting a stun- ning little Champion, Tamarin Tequila. She certainly wasn’t perfect, but she was perfect for us. Comical, fearless, adorable and eager to insert herself into our pack of Bouvs; she became our introduction to the breed that has slow- ly taken over our lives. Compared to most of the AKC breeds, there are only 500 or so Affen- pinschers in the United States. This rarity presents its own set of challeng- es for judges, breeders and pet fanci- ers because it can be difficult to get hands-on experience getting to know their unique set of traits, correct pheno- type, temperament and attitude. As pre- viously mentioned there are profound differences in the standard between the United States and international stan- dards regarding dentition and color. So, what a judge may see at Crufts may not correlate to what is seen in the Unit- ed States. A strong judges’ education

program helps develop competent, objective evaluations of our breed. In our opinion, one of the developing threats to the quality of purebred Affen- pinschers stems from their scarcity and the unscrupulous cashing in by com- mercial breeders not interested in the show ring, improving the breed or care- ful attention to maintaining a relatively healthy breed. Specifically, reputable breeders of Affens have an almost mani- acal attention to avoiding eye and joint problems. Many years ago, a friend of ours fell in love with Tequila and want- ed an Affen of her own. She wasn’t will- ing to wait, so found several breeders selling ‘Quality Affenpinschers’ online for a fraction of the cost of a monkey dog from health-tested, AKC Champion Dam and Sire. She purchased a female that grew to be nearly four inches over the height standard and almost unrec- ognizable in facial expression, coat and temperament relative to the standard and Affenpinschers seen on the show circuit. To a great extent, there is truth and danger in the adage about getting what you pay for! Because of the Affen’s small size, it isn’t uncommon for litters to be as few as one puppy, but more typically in the 3-5 range. Survivability can sometimes be an issue with any litter, but as lit- ters get larger, so does the probability of mortality. We’ve had our share of heartache so having a strong genetic foundation can’t be overstated. Know- ing this, breeders are always scouring the country and the world for genetic compatibilities to strengthen the breed. This is a sturdy little breed, but genetic weakness can be an insidious threat if not managed proactively. For the new breeder, it can truly be daunting to enter the world of Affens. Start with love of the breed and add in healthy doses of education, diligence, willingness to listen and hard work;

it pays off. Reputation is hard fought and hard won. There aren’t any short- cuts, but it helps to latch on to a will- ing mentor and listen religiously to what they offer in terms of developing a sound-breeding program. Everyone has misses in judgment, but a good mentor can help keep those to a minimum. At some point, breeders will likely want to develop a relationship with another breeder who may have a puppy, bitch or sire to incorporate into their breeding program. Remember, they are guarding their reputation as well, so respect that and go into the relationship educated and aware of potential pitfalls. As in most purebred breeds, amateur handlers can feel disadvantaged and dis- couraged from venturing into showing their own dogs. One of the reasons we love breeding and showing Affens is the camaraderie that develops between other owners, handlers, pet owners and breeders. Fortunately, there are many long time breeders and handlers who are more than willing and generous in helpful hints to improve grooming and handling. We have always maintained that, outside the ring, we absolutely enjoy our relationships with other Affen fanciers and are quick to share a glass of wine or a story. But, in the ring, the gloves come off and we compete the best way we know how. Is it all serious competition? Hardly! This is a comical breed, so we learn to laugh at ourselves and our little dogs and those we encounter along the way. Who hasn’t missed a ring call or been caught snoozing when supposed to be in the ring? Oh, and did we mention how notoriously unpredictable Toy Dogs can be? It only takes a time or two of not realizing that your dog has decided it’s time for a break and you just have to acknowledge the applause until they’re done. After all, they’re only human!



as if he couldn’t fail. Linda said it was meant to be because he was born on Sharon’s birthday. For the first few months, Sharon focused on building a bond between the two of them. Then training began about six months later. Sharon just knew that he had the right stuff—and boy did he! Jag finished his AKC con- formation championship in 2 weekends and with that achievement in his rear- view mirror, he focused on his real pas- sion: performance events! Sharon spent about two years train- ing Jag before entering Agility events. While he finished as the #1 Agility Affen for 2016, she feels that it will take another 2-3 years of work to get their timing down. In the meantime, they “fill in their training time” with other performance events to prevent bore- dom and enhance Jag’s natural abilities: first his CGC title, then attending Barn Hunt seminars to fine-tune his hunting ability (side note: he has killed several rats, a squirrel and more birds than Sha- ron can count. Yuck!) And, of course, he earned his Lure / Coursing Ability Test championship. While Jag excels in running and jumping in Agility, in CAT it’s all about the chase, a natural fit for this speedster. His attitude in these per- formance events is “just put me down and let me go, go, go!!!!” When in gear, Jag is in overdrive! Jag has also demonstrated a natural talent for alerting to blood sugar issues. This was certainly a hidden skillset that Sharon did not anticipate but knew what to do to develop. The result: He is a diabetic alert dog for her. Jag clearly demonstrates Affenpin- scher versatility, a characteristic often overlooked in this fabulous breed. No matter what the starting line, Jag will race to the finish with his pedal to the metal. Meanwhile, Sally took a decidedly different road to success. While she is now known as International Best in Show Champion, AKC Bronze Grand

O n a hot summer day, August 24, 2013, a “six pack” was born at Ferlin Affenpin- schers—an unusually large litter size for Affens. Even more unusu- al—they all survived! With their sire being CH Roadie and dam CH Journey, they became known as the “car” litter. Three of the puppies went on to finish their AKC championships—Porsche, Jag and Sally. While Porsche retired to a loving companion home, Jag and Sally were just getting their engines revved up. Little did breeders, Linda Ferris and Sharon Boyd, know that their col- laboration would produce two history making Affens. You see, Jag, as he’s commonly known, is really Ch Ferlin’s Black Jaguar

MX MXJ CAX CGCA CGCU co-owned and trained by Sharon Rafferty. While he excels in Agility, he is the first and only Affenpinscher in the world to obtain a Lure/Coursing Ability Test (CAT) Championship. Backing up a couple of years to begin at the beginning. As an experi- enced Agility trainer/handler, Sharon knew the attributes she wanted in a performance Affen. In evaluating the litter for one that fit the bill, Linda and Sharon assessed the puppies one by one while Sharon ticked off her list. When they came to Jag, it was clear that he was the one: size of bone (check), atti- tude, confidence, resilience (check, check and check!). He scored very high on every aspect of the test. It was


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