Also known as the Spotted Pinscher and the Merle Pinscher, the Harlequin Pinscher is an outgoing and spunky breed. But how do you know whether you are ready to purchase a pet and if this breed is right for you? This information is absolutely necessary in making the decision to purchase a pet.
The origin of the Harlequin Pinscher can be traced back to late 18th century Germany. Enthusiasts believe these dogs to have been created by crossing the Miniature Pinscher with the Rat Terrier or the Toy Fox Terrier, though this has never been proven scientifically or otherwise.
Throughout its history, the Harlequin Pinscher has been most commonly used for hunting and killing small rodents such as rats, mice, and snakes, proving its superior abilities to work while providing companionship.
The destruction of World War II threatened complete extinction of the Harlequin Pinscher. Credited for saving the breed are several unnamed breeders and enthusiasts, who worked feverishly to collect breed-able specimens in order to repopulate the breed to the stable numbers it remains at currently.
Today, while the Harlequin Pinscher has attained an underground popularity as a companion dog, the breed remains rather rare world wide.
Best known for its spunky and feisty nature, the Harlequin Pinscher is full of character. These dogs thrive on strong and dependable relationships with humans, and love to play the role of lap dog. This breed is very intelligent and generally easy to train. As a pet, the Harlequin Pinscher is obedient, loyal, loving, and affectionate. The Harlequin Pinscher adapts well to full-time indoor or apartment living, and views spending time outdoors as a rare and special treat.
Due to its need for human attention and willingness to learn, the Harlequin Pinscher generally responds well to basic training and commands. These bright dogs have the ability to learn to perform most any task their trainer is willing to take the time to teach, including using a littler box.
Establishing immediate dominance, trust, and respect is key to successfully training the Harlequin Pinscher. This breed requires a confident, patient, and caring handler with a stern yet gentle approach to repetitive exercises and tasks.
Benefits and Disadvantages of the Breed
There are many benefits to owning a Harlequin Pinscher, such as its no hassle, low maintenance coat. These lively dogs are always on the go, and often quite amusing and entertaining to watch while at play. When properly socialized from a young age, the Harlequin Pinscher gets along well with small children. This breed is intelligent, easy to train, and capable of learning to perform many impressive tricks and tasks. These dogs are alert and aware of their surroundings, serving as an effective watch dog by announcing the arrival of guests and unwanted visitors. This breed adapts well to indoor and apartment living, and only requires moderate amounts of daily exercise. The Harlequin Pinscher is obedient, loyal, loving, and affectionate, making an excellent family pet and companion alike.
Unfortunately, there are also disadvantages to owning a Harlequin Pinscher. Like many companion breeds, these dogs are known to suffer from separation anxiety. Individuals seeking to purchase this breed who travel frequently, have full-time work, or are away from the home on a daily basis are advised to begin researching another breed. During an attack of separation anxiety, the Harlequin Pinscher will act out of nervous destruction and may destroy property, chew, bark, whine, and ignore basic training such as housebreaking.
The Harlequin Pinscher is not recommended for households with other pets. Even when properly socialized, these dogs are known to show excessive aggression and jealousy towards other pets.
As previously mentioned, the Harlequin Pinscher remains rather rare world wide and can prove quite difficult to obtain. Individuals wishing to purchase this breed often encounter such challenges as inability to locate a breeder, extremely high prices, and being placed on long waiting lists.
Common Health Concerns
Sadly, the Harlequin Pinscher is known to suffer from a wide array of health problems, including: patellar luxation – dislocation of the knee, epilepsy, congenital heart defects, hearing issues – sometimes leading to complete deafness, digestive problems, skin allergies and sensitivity, primary lens luxation – dislocation of the lens, glaucoma, cataracts, and cryptorchidism – failure of one or both of the testicles to fully descend.
Now that you know all about the breed, do you think you are ready to own a Harlequin Pinscher? Remember, purchasing a pet is a big decision and should be discussed thoroughly and seriously with your entire family.