You’ll be doing very little grooming to keep him tidy. A good brushing to remove loose hair and a bath on occasion. Be aware he does not like to be cold and some will bury themselves under the blanket even in the warmest weather. Do you need a fenced in yard? Abso- lutely! A four-foot fence is not too high for a Min Pin looking for adventure. Th ey are a curious little dog and will try something new just to see if they can do it. Chewing is a game that needs watching, as they can choke on small objects that they find in the house or yard. When training a Min Pin, you must be extremely patient and be able to teach them using a firm, but gentle hand. Th ey bore easily and can be distracted. You must be able to guide them back into their lessons and keep them focused. Once focus is lost, time to do something else! Many who are owned by a Min Pin will tell you they are flexible and can learn how to do many things. Th ey are excel- lent at obedience competition at all levels and will thrill those watching them work through agility. Go ahead! Train basic obedience and earn your CGC title. Th is title will help getting permission for the both of you to go into senior homes and hospitals to visit with folks that just want to hug your Min Pin. Oh, did you say you wanted to show your Min Pin in the conformation ring? Standing on his own in the ring and show- ing o ff is how it’s done. Don’t get down on your knees to stack or pose, he is only stacked on the table. Th at’s the rule and we old-timers will tell you right o ff . Th e Min Pin is not a one dimensional breed, breed type and sound typical hackney-like move- ment is paramount. Go to the shows, whether it be for obe- dience, agility or conformation and meet
the folks standing around the ring. Ask questions and watch every dog in the ring. Outside the ring you are interested in will be a person that will be your mentor. Ask questions, spend the time researching, and watch, watch, watch. Learning from a men- tor is the best way to get involved in the competitions. A mentor will give you the tool kit to start you on the way to achieving your goal with your Min Pin. Miniature Pinschers are a pretty healthy breed. Th eir life span is 12-15 years. When you bring your puppy home, have a bowl for food, bucket for fresh water, good hard puppy kibble, sturdy collar and leash, warm blanket and crate ready. Remember training begins as soon as you bring him home. Major issues are patellar luxation, cer- vical (dry) disc, legg-calve perthes, epi- lepsy, thyroid, heart defects and eye prob- lems. Talk to your breeder and ask them what health issues are in the pedigree of your puppy. Keeping your Min Pin in shape and not overweight will help him live a long and busy life. Mentoring is a very important to this sport and part of the enjoyment of being a mentor is being involved in stories such as this story…he stood outside the ring and watched the dogs move around the ring with their handlers. I could do that he thought. He had been to many shows with his breeder, but had never thought about entering into the ring himself. She excitedly came out of the ring with a handful of ribbons and breathlessly said he could do this! Look how much fun we are having. Th e next day, she called and said she needed his help and it was time he stepped up to the plate and showed his own little dog. He basically understood the workings of the ring, but was he ready? Did he have the “right stu ff ”? Th e training?
He dressed in a nice shirt, tie and slacks, bathed his dog and headed to the show. He was a bit on edge and so was his dog, but into the ring they stepped. It was so exciting! He listened to the judge intently, and followed his instructions to the letter… as they started to go around the ring, the lead slipped o ff his dog’s head! He bent down, called his dog to him and slipped the lead back on. Th ey finished going around and he hid in the corner for them to relax. To his surprise the judge was calling him to the front of the line! He was in the fourth spot! What did that mean? He and his dog were Select Dog! He definitely would have to talk to his mentor, where was she? At the end of the line? Oh this is really good. Remember, a mentor can help you understand the competition you wish to begin. Th ey will teach you how to train, enter the show, and share ideas how to succeed and enjoy yourself. So you say, ‘What makes us want to believe what you just wrote?’ 25 years of experience handling, showing, breeding, playing and just living with Miniature Pin- schers. Currently, I write for the American Kennel Club Gazette and prose many other articles for di ff erent magazines. I have been honored with many cham- pions who have competed to Best In Show, Best in Specialty Show, National Specialty winner, and have shown all over the world. Most of all breeding and show- ing has allowed me to meet wonderful people, enjoy some great times, and most of all live with some great dogs that will remain in my heart forever. Join us! For more information on this amazing little breed, please check out the Miniature Pinscher Club of America website, www. minpin.org.
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