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Living With a Min Pin
King of Toys
Known as the King of Toys (small breeds) in the dog world, I think the min pin is the King of the House. Fearless and energetic this little breed can take over your entire family. However, they are also fiercely loyal to their owners. Quite a mixture of talents in a little bundle of dog.
I've written about the min pin several times but I just can't help myself. The only real way to understand a min pin, and it's owner, is to have a min pin yourself. Once you do you'll see why they're called a big dog in a small package.
Training is key to owning a lovable and loving min pin. They are very independent minded and can become aggressive. Every time I take mine to the vet he tells me Buzz is the only min pin that's never bitten him. Hmm, do you really want a min pin? Yes, you'll love him to pieces.
About the Min Pin
Min Pins are very active, all the time. They love to run and play and dig holes I might add. At five years old my Buzz still acts like a puppy. If you're not prepared to deal with a slightly crazy, always puppy look for another breed.
Min Pins can be good with children but it is a delicate balance. First of all little children cannot pull on min pins legs or you would soon be dealing with broken bones or dislocated kneecaps. The earlier and more often a min pin puppy is around small children though, the quicker he will become accustomed to them, just watch them closely. My Buzz loves children and gets upset when he hears them crying on television.
Another thing to remember is min pins were bred to be ratters, to chase out and catch small animals. As a result they may chase other fast moving objects, including cats, children etc., if they're not used to them. Buzz has caught birds, frogs, and sorry to say worms. He has been in hot pursuit of the neighborhood squirrel but the squirrel always seems to get to the tree before Buzz can get him, lucky squirrel.
Min Pins are fairly long-lived dogs. They live anywhere from fourteen to seventeen years. Another thing to take into consideration if you're getting a min pin. He's going to be around for quite a while. There's nothing worse than having to give up your dog because you didn't plan on the long term.
One good thing about the min pin is they are low maintenance as far as their fur goes. They can be brushed to keep the sheen on their fur but they shouldn't be washed often as they have dry skin. Washing your dog once or twice a year is certainly not a big chore. Of course if he gets into something outside you may have to up the ante but for the most part once or twice a year does the trick. Like all dogs his nails need to be kept short. If you walk your min pin on concrete or blacktop a lot you won't even need to do that. Because of the winter weather this year Buzz needed his nails trimmed for the first time in two years.
If you plan on leaving your dog alone in your backyard be extra sure there is no way out. Min pins are escape artists and will dig, jump, squeeze, or use any means they can to escape or to get out to check out what's going on across the road. Nosey and inquisitive. Not necessarily bad traits but ones that can be dangerous so be careful.
Did I tell you about snuggling? Oh how they love to snuggle. The minute you sit down they will jump up into your lap or cuddle as close to you as they can with their head in your lap. They prefer to sleep in bed with you but that's a decision you need to make. Buzz is our second min pin and his traits are identical to our first. We really loved the breed and when our first min pin passed we got another.
Min Pin and CatClick thumbnail to view full-size
Min Pin and Cats and Other Dogs
Our Buzz adapted well to the cat we had when we brought him home. Of course she was older and put him in his place on day one. They did get along well though and spent time chasing each other around the house then lying in the sun by the front door when they were done. She was almost ten years his senior but she had been very good friends with our first min pin.
Buzz is amazing with other dogs in our house. My family is a dog centered family and we currently have two havanese, a whippet, a springer spaniel, and a miniature yorkie-poo (I think. Forgive me he's only four months old and I forget). Anyway, Buzz gets along just great with all of them.
He used to be good outside too but since he's reached puberty he can be a bit aggressive on leash with other dogs. I think he needs a refresher obedience class.
Behaviors of a Min PinClick thumbnail to view full-size
Min Pins Are Fun
Watching Buzz around the house is an experience. The pictures above and below give you some idea of his antics. He can be a clown and make you laugh.
The vent in our living room floor really confuses him. He seems to know there is something down there and will occasionally sit and look through the vent to see if he can see what's going on.
As you can see he loves it when children are in the high chair eating. They will either feed him or drop something. Either way, he wins. He is a totally food obsessed dog and will do anything for food. You can see him standing in his dish, a performance he gives when he's hungry and there's no food in his dish. However, he's been well trained and when the full food dish is put in front of him he knows he cannot eat until he is told to.
Buzz likes to take a dip in the pool now and then but gets cold when he gets out. We put a towel on the ground for him and he rolls around on it and/or gets under it to keep himself warm. (Min Pins don't like the cold.)
Anything moving on the other side of the fence drives him crazy. He really feels he should be there checking it out in person but thankfully our fence is Buzzproof.
He always looks at you with affection, melting your heart and leading to a lot of spoiling. You can see when he's lying in my lap he likes to hang is head down. I have no explanation for that!
At five he's still playful as you can see by the picture with the stuffed gorilla on his back and the one of him playing/biting his new toy.
He doesn't often wait patiently for anything. Somehow I caught him waiting patiently to be let in the house. The next photo shows him sitting on my husband's lap. He was watching the children play on the floor. Speaking of floors, he's jumping due to the chance of a treat. He heard his treat jar being moved and thinks he should have one. He gives you that look and you just can't refuse.
Lastly is the lick. He is a licker. He'll lick your face incessantly if you let him. Really, loving a min pin is so easy. If you're thinking of getting one, do your homework and be sure you have the patience and place for one.
Copyright Tillsontitan - All Rights Reserved - Photos sole property of Tillsontitan, they may not be reproduced without permission.
Min Pin PhotosClick thumbnail to view full-size
Low fur maintenance
Prone to skin rashes
Not all min pins get skin rashes, but many do
Can be hyperactive
They thrive on human interaction and love to run and play
Good with other animals
Can be overly protective
Socialize early and often and they we will be outgoing and playful
Can be trained not to pick things up off the floor
Will pick up anything on the floor including pills, paper clips, etc.
Very important to teach them the "leave it" command. Good training is the key to a good min pin.