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Carlin Pinscher

Nicole Cosgrove

June 18, 2021

carlin pinscher

The Carlin Pinscher is still in its developmental stages and is a modern dog being developed to be a charming, social and loving companion. Most commonly it is mistaken for a small Rottweiler. It was originally started as a cross of the Miniature Pinscher and Pug but other breeds are being added to its development. It is a small dog with a life span of 13 to 15 years. It is not to be confused with the designer breed Pug-Min, they are two separate dogs.

The Carlin Pinscher at a Glance
Name Carlin Pinscher
Other names None
Nicknames Carlin, CP
Origin France
Average size Small
Average weight 12 to 14 pounds
Average height 11 to 13 inches
Life span 13 to 15 years
Coat type Short, smooth, sleek without undercoat
Hypoallergenic No
Color Light Brown/Golden, Black and Brown, Black and Tan
Popularity Not recognized by the AKC
Intelligence High
Tolerance to heat Good
Tolerance to cold Low – give extra protection in the colder months
Shedding Low to moderate – should not be a lot of hair around the home
Drooling Low to moderate
Obesity Average – measure its food and make sure its well exercised
Grooming/brushing Low to average – brush once or twice a week
Barking Occasional – some barking but should not be all the time
Exercise needs Moderately active
Trainability Moderate – experience helps
Friendliness Very good with socialization
Good first dog Good but experience does help
Good family pet Very good with socialization
Good with children Very good with socialization
Good with other dogs Very good with socialization
Good with other pets Very good with socialization
Good with strangers Good with early socialization but can be wary
Good apartment dog Very good to excellent
Handles alone time well No – prone to separation anxiety if left alone for long periods
Health issues Fairly healthy but a few issues include PRA, eye problems, hip dysplasia, patellar luxation
Medical expenses $435 a year for basic health care and pet insurance
Food expenses $75 a year for a good quality dry dog food and dog treats
Miscellaneous expenses $195 a year for license, basic training, miscellaneous items and toys
Average annual expenses $705 as a starting figure
Cost to purchase $700
Rescue organizations None breed specific, check local shelters and rescues
Biting Statistics None reported

The Carlin Pinscher’s Beginnings

The Carlin Pinscher is a modern developing breed from France. In the early 1990s two breeders Morgan and Buenafe left their Miniature Pinscher with a Pug owner while they went on vacation. When they returned they found there had been an accidental mating between the Pug and their dog which resulted in a litter of 3 puppies that were like miniature Rottweilers. One of the puppies named Snooz was gifted to a friend, Milionta and a lot of people admired the dog and wanted one of their own. </p >

In 1998 Milionta, the two owners of the Miniature Pinscher and another breeder Vitrichenko began a breeding program to develop a new dog they named the Carlin Pinscher. Initially they used the original Miniature Pinscher and crossed it with female black Pugs to create puppies with solid black coloring and black and tan coloring. As they wanted the breed to be more than just a passing fad, one of the many designer mixed breeds being created in the last 3 decades they also started to add other breeds to the process including the Boxer to improve its characteristics and its gene pool. </p >

New Lease on Life

The Carlin Pinscher is not really a purebred yet, it is not recognized by any major kennel club, and it is still being developed. There is the goal though to reach a stage one day where it is accepted as a new breed. In the mixed dog world it has some popularity within its homeland of France but elsewhere is less common. It is often confused with the designer mixed breed sometimes called the Muggin but these are different, the Muggin is just a cross of the Min Pin and the Pug, the Carlin Pinscher is being developed to be something more. Muggin is also a term used more the US. The Carlin Pinscher is kept as a companion dog valued for its sweetness and playfulness. </p >

The Dog You See Today

At the moment this dog can have a varied appearance, some looking more like the Miniature Pinscher, some more Pug like and some showing the other breeds being added more clearly. It is a small sized breed though weighing 12 to 14 pounds and stands about 11 to 13 inches tall. As mentioned it looks quite like a small Rotti. It has a robust and compact body with thick pug like legs. Its skull has a dome and its muzzle is short but not too short. The coat is short and low shedding, single and common colors are browns, golds, tan and black. </p >

The Inner Carlin Pinscher


The Carlin Pinscher is a sweet and calm dog but it has a lot of personality and is playful too. It is a great mix of a loyal, affectionate and loving companion as well as being entertaining, full of life and joy. It is enthusiastic about everything and has quite a curious nature. It can be quite amusing to watch, and it can also have times where it is quite annoying! It is charming and outgoing, it loves to be included in activities, it is a social dog that enjoys human companionship. It does not like being left alone for long periods and can suffer from separation anxiety. While it can be fine with first time owners, because it is good at getting its own way which can lead to behavioral problems, experience does help. </p >

As mentioned it loves to play so make sure it has plenty of toys to rotate through. It is intelligent too so some of those toys need to offer it some mental challenge. Otherwise it can act out. It loves to get attention but with strangers it can wary at first. Socialization is important to ensure it does not grow up to becomes suspicious which can lead to aggression. As it is such a spunky character owners need to be firm and in control. It also does best with owners who are not out all the time, people who work from home, are retired and such. </p >

Living with a Carlin Pinscher

What will training look like?

The CP is moderate in terms of how easy it is to train and really needs owners who can be firm, confident but still gentle and positive in their approach. Start its socialization and basic obedience training early and things will be easier as it learns the right way to do things and avoids developing bad habits. Socialization means bringing different sounds, people, places and situations to it so it learns how to react appropriately. Obedience training sessions should be kept short, frequent and engaging so it does not get bored. Carlin Pinschers are usually easy to house train and can even be taught to use litter boxes if needed. </p >

How active is the Carlin Pinscher?

These dogs are playful and lively at times but it is easy to see their exercise needs are met being as it is a small dog. With toys to rotate through indoors it will get some of its mental needs and activity needs from play indoors. It can be an apartment dog, it is small enough as long as it still gets outside a couple of times a day for short to moderate walks and play with you. A dog park is a good place to visit sometimes as it is a safe place to let it off leash for run time. It does not need a yard but one is a bonus as it loves to get outside. It does need some extra protection when the colder months have set in though. Make sure if there is a yard that it is well fenced! If your dog does not get enough physical and mental activity it can become hard to live with with digging, chewing, barking and other ways of destroying the property. </p >

Caring for the Carlin Pinscher

Grooming needs

Its short coat is easy to brush and quick being the size it is. It sheds a low to moderate amount so there may be some hair in the home but not a great deal. Brushing needs to be done once or twice a week to keep it clean using a soft bristled brush. You can also use a damp cloth to wipe it down, and giving it a rub with something like a chamois gives it a good shine. Wiping with a damp cloth will mean there is less need for a bath and they can be saved for when they really need one. Bathing too often and using non canine shampoos can cause skin problems from damaging the natural oils it has. </p >

You then need to brush its teeth two to three times a week to prevent tooth decay and gum disease! Use a toothpaste and toothbrush made for dogs to do this. Check its ears weekly for infection and wipe them clean but do not push anything into them. Use an ear cleanser or just a dam cloth. Its nails will need cutting down when they get too long. You can have the vet or a professional groomer do it or you can learn how yourself. You must be careful not to nick too low where there are blood vessels and nerves in the nails. It will hurt the dog and lead to bleeding. </p >

Feeding Time

A Calin Pinscher will need to eat about ½ a cup to 11/2 cups of a good quality dry dog food each day, split into two meals. How much though can vary from one dog to another as things like its size, rate of metabolism, health, age and level of activity will affect it. </p >

How is the Carlin Pinscher with children and other animals?

With early socialization the Carlin Pinscher is good with children who know how to handle them correctly, so the older ones. Usually toddlers can be too rough and too loud and can be clumsy which can overwhelm the Carlin. It helps to be raised with them and it can be playful with them and affectionate. If there are young children make sure you supervise them. Also teach all children how to touch and play nicely. It can get along with other pets and with other dogs with socialization. </p >

What Might Go Wrong?

Health Concerns

The Carlin Pinscher lives for 13 to 15 years and is a fairly healthy breed but there are issues it can be prone to such as PRA, eye problems, hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, von Willebrand’s disease, liver problems, skin problems and dental problems. It does not have the breathing problems Pugs can have as the muzzle is a but more like the Miniature Pinscher’s. </p >

Biting Statistics

A good way to get an idea of whether there are aggression issues with a breed is to check out data on reports of attacks against people doing bodily harm by dogs. In such data over the past 35 years has no mention of the Carlin Pinscher. Its parents do come up, the Min Pin had 1 incident, the Pug had 2. This is not an aggressive dog and its size does mean damage is less than other larger dogs can do. However people seem to think some breeds are totally safe, or small dogs are safe. Neither is true, all dogs can have an off day and size or type does not change that. The Carlin needs good socialization or it can grow up to be more aggressive with strangers. As well as that make sure it is well trained, looked after, given the attention it needs and the exercise and stimulation you need. </p >

Your Pup’s Price Tag

A Carlin Pinscher will cost about $700 for a puppy but the prices to range a lot since this is not a settled breed. As with any pet buying make sure you really check out the breeders you are considering to find ones that are experienced and committed to proper breeding practices and caring for the animals. Finding one at a shelter is unlikely but finding just a mixed breed is probable so check them out if you are flexible about where it comes from and what parents it had. Adoption fees tend to range from $50 to $400. Avoid backyard breeders, pet stores for the most part and puppy mills. </p >

Initial costs covers items that are needed and medical checks to be done. Things to get for it include a crate, carrier, collar and leash, bowls and such and come to about $100. It should be examined by a vet when it is home with you so it can be vaccinated, dewormed, have blood tests done, be micro chipped and spayed or neutered. That is likely to cost around $190. </p >

Annual costs are another thing to consider before you commit to owning a pet. For the rest of its life there are yearly costs you will need to be able to afford. Feeding it a good quality dry dog food and dog treats will be about $75 a year. Dog insurance and basic health care like shots, tick and flea prevention and check ups come to another $435 a year. Other miscellaneous costs such as a license, basic training, toys and miscellaneous items come to $195 a year. This gives a total of $705 a year as a starting figure. </p >


Looking for a Carlin Pinschers Name? Let select one from our list!

Carlin Pinschers are a playful, attention seeking, smart and spirited small dog. It needs owners who are consistent and firm but also positive and gentle. Otherwise you can end up with small dog with behavioral problems like being aggressive and destructive. It is loving and loyal dog and should be in a home where people are in more than out. As well as being with it a lot of affection and devotion it will also make you smile a great deal, and then also sigh occasionally too! </p >

Featured Image Credit: SNS Photography, Shutterstock

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.

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