AN ANCIENT GERMAN BREED
The German Pinscher originated in Germany and is included in the origins of the Doberman Pinscher, the Miniature Pinscher, Affenpinscher, Miniature Schnauzer, Giant Schnauzer, and the Standard Schnauzer. The Wire Haired and Smooth Haired Pinschers, as the Standard Schnauzer and German Pinscher were originally called, were shown in dog books as early as 1884. The picture at the right is by Malers Vernets (a Frenchman) and drawn around 1780. These medium-sized dogs descended from early European herding and guardian breeds and were not related to the superficially similar terriers of Britain.
All Black German Pinscher
There were more colors in the 1959 German breed standard, including two more associated with schnauzers -- pure black and salt n' pepper, (the "silberpinsch") -- as well as the colors we know today. This picture shows a pure black pinscher from 1912. These colors became extinct during the war years. The 1973 breed standard only lists the current colors.
WERNER JUNG'S CONTRIBUTION
German Pinscher Picture taken in 1935
Following both World wars, the breed was nearly lost. There were no new litters registered in West Germany from 1949 to 1958. The picture at the left was taken in 1935 in the early years of the war. Werner Jung is credited with single-handedly saving the breed. He searched the farms in Germany for typical Pinschers and used these along with 4 oversized Miniature Pinschers and a black and red bitch from East Germany. Jung risked his life to smuggle her into West Germany. Most German Pinschers today are descendants of these dogs. Some pedigrees in the 1959 PSK Standardbuch show a number of dogs with unknown parentage.
German Pinscher Bred by Jung
The German Pinscher at the right was bred by Werner Jung and carries the name of his kennel. German Pinschers were also known in Germany as the Standard Pinscher. In the 1960s, Jung tried to revive the silberpinsch through crosses of German Pinschers to the famous Standard Schnauzer Bundesseiger Furst von Hahlweg, but this attempt was unsuccessful.
ARRIVAL IN AMERICA
In the late 1970's and early 1980's, German Pinschers began entering the United States and bred in small numbers. Dogs have been imported from Germany, England, Sweden, France, and Czechoslovakia. Visit the GPCA information page for the history of the German Pinscher Club of America.