Although the mini Manchester terrier and miniature pinscher look somewhat similar, once you're familiar with the breeds it's not difficult to tell the difference between them. Both are small dog breeds but the Manchester terrier comes in two sizes. Also, there's a slight color distinction between these two types of dogs along with a notably different gait.
When trying to decide which breed is the best for you, evaluate your lifestyle and speak with reputable breeders. They can help make you make a decision about which of these little dogs should join your household.
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Mini Manchester terrier size options
With a Manchester terrier, you can choose between a toy and standard size, while the miniature pinscher comes in just one type. The toy Manchester terrier weighs between 7 and 12 pounds, while the standard mini Manchester terrier weighs between 12 and 22 pounds. Note that the breeds' standards are based on weight, not height.
Don't confuse the one-size miniature pinscher with the Doberman pinscher — they are two separate breeds, and the former is not a small version of the latter. Miniature pinschers (affectionately called min pins) are a bred of their own and stand between 10 and 12.5 inches high at the shoulder. The min pin standard doesn't have a weight limit, but the dog's weight should be proportional to its height. The miniature pinscher's tail is also docked in proportion to its size.
If you're not sure if a dog is a mini Manchester terrier or a miniature pinscher, observe his movement. Min pins boast a distinctive, high-stepping gait, similar to the hackney horse or pony. The prance of the miniature pinscher is unique; it's a reaching gait which has the front legs moving straightforward. This notable walk adds to the spirited personality of the min pin.
Conversely, the Manchester terrier standard specifically states that sort of "hackney" gait is not permitted in the breed. Instead, Manchester terriers should move freely and effortlessly, with good reach of the forequarters. Manchester terriers run like other small dog breeds, without the distinctive min pin prance.
The only color pattern allowed in the AKC standard for Manchester terriers is black with tan, the latter consisting of a spot over each eye and one on each cheek, with a tan muzzle but black nose. There is additional tan coloration on the legs and in the anal area.
Permissible colors in the AKC miniature pinscher standard include solid red, stag red, or some black hairs mixed within a red coat. Black with rust markings on the legs, head, and anal area are permitted, along with chocolate with rust markings in the same areas.
Although every dog is an individual, the Manchester terrier and the miniature pinscher were bred for different activities, which is reflected in their behavior and temperament. Bred to hunt vermin, the Manchester is a true terrier. That means he enjoys digging, chasing after small animals, and generally getting into mischief. Like most terriers, the Manchester is energetic and athletic dog, usually affectionate with family members.
The miniature pinscher, however, can be territorial — he thinks of himself as a big dog. That can get him into trouble if he tries to take on a larger canine. However, the miniature pinscher is capable of bonding deeply with their family and make good watch dogs. Min pins have a reputation for constant barking and a high-strung nature, which isn't usually true of Manchester terriers.
Either dog needs good, consistent training. The Manchester terrier soaks up training like a sponge. The min pin is relatively easy to train, with one caveat: housebreaking can take some time.