Living in an small apartment in a great big city like Chicago but long for a companion dog? The Affenpinscher is your best bet! These little dogs are intelligent, playful but fiercely loyal pups whose needs can be easily met in a big city—like Chicago.

Affenpinschers as a dog breed, trace their origins back to 17th century Germany. They are a toy breed, often likened to terriers. This dog breed came much before the Brussels Griffon. Affenpinschers are often called monkey dogs (affe in German is ape) quite possibly because of their antics and their fearless curiosity in exploring things and places! Small built (9- 12 inches), these dogs were originally bred as ratters or mice hunters. The average litter size is 2 pups and the normal lifespan is about 12 years.

These dogs have a moderate tolerance to heat and cold-for Chicago they will need coats during the winter. For their size, these dogs need a lot of exercise – walks or a game in the backyard of your home in Chicago every single day. Common colors of Affenspinschers in the Chicago are silver, black, gray, tan, red and beige. Affens, as these dogs are often referred to, are usually friendly, curious, independent, fearless against other aggressive animals and fiercely loyal and protective of their owners.

This dog can, at times be stubborn and difficult to housebreak. The Affenpinscher’s loud, fierce bark can, at times provoke an attack from larger dogs. He may not be the ideal dog choice if you have other pets from the rodent family (hamsters, hedgehogs) as his ratter’s instincts run deep. Though each dog has his own personality, Affens generally tend to be a little possessive of their toys and may not be ideal pets if you have very small children. Their slight build also makes them susceptible to injury from children stepping on them, sitting on them or dropping them. They will also attempt to dominate weak or passive owners and while they are small, they may be too much dog for elderly dog lovers.

Sturdy little independent dogs, Affenpinschers make ideal travel companions for sophisticated Chicago citizens. This dog breed craves human affection and they are quite sociable. The social nature of the Affenpinschers are a babe-magnet, making them the perfect choice if you are a young urban professional in Chicago’s West Loop or River North area. Taking them out to the local coffee shop or bakery in one of the Chicago neighborhoods as pups, letting them get used to new places and new people makes it easy for them to deal with their territorial instincts and makes them lively and mannerly urban companions.