In pictures 1A and 1B you can see the Miniature Pinscher (1A) and Manchester Terrier (1b) have undeniable similarities. They are often mistaken for being the same breed. Looking at pictures 2A and 2B below you will see that the Miniature Pinscher (2A) and Manchester Terrier (2B) have noticeable differences when seeing the two breeds side by side. These difference set the two breeds apart from each other. We are going to discuss the similarities and differences between these two breeds to help you tell the two apart.

Min Pin & Manchester Terrier Compare

Sizes & Origins

The Manchester Terrier comes in two sizes, standard and toy. For this article we will focus on the toy size Manchester Terrier. The toy size is more likely to be confused with the Miniature Pinscher. The Manchester Terrier is the result of the crossbreeds of the whippet racer and an unknown black and tan terrier that was used for catching rats. The Miniature Pinscher is thought to have been a crossbreed of the German Pinscher, the Dachshund, and the Italian Greyhound.

Comparison Chart
Manchester TerrierMiniature Pinscher
Size10-12” tall10-12.5” tall
Weight12-22 lbs8-10 lbs
Country of OriginEnglandGermany
Original UseHunting small rodentsHunting small rodents
TemperamentGentle, playful, timidPlayful, daring, stubborn
Energy LevelHighHigh
Climate ToleranceLow – Likes HeatLow – Likes Warmth
Life span14-16 Years12-14 Years

Toy Vs Standard Size Manchester Terrier

The toy and standard size Manchester Terriers are considered two interbreeding versions of the Manchester Terrier breed. The toy being up to 6” smaller than the standard size and approximately 14 pounds lighter. The only other difference besides their size is the ear shape and the way they are cropped. Cropping is when part of a dog’s ear is removed so the ears stand up straight. In Europe, cropping is illegal but the AKC considers cropping “acceptable” because it preserves the characteristics of the breed. Against common misconception, the Miniature Pinscher is not a smaller version of the Doberman Pinscher. Sure, they have similar appearances but they are two separate dog breeds.

Can You Guess Which Breed is Which?

Doberman Pinscher

Miniature Pinscher

On the right you will see the much larger Doberman Pinscher and on the right is the small Miniature Pinscher.

Exercise – Life Expectancy – AKC Faults

Both the Manchester Terrier and the Miniature Pinscher enjoy playing outside, but heavy exertion is not necessary. A quick round of play will do the trick as they don’t require a lot of exercise. Both breeds live around 14 years and do not have any major health concerns. Their smooth and glossy coats require little maintenance and have similar tan markings on their feet, face, and chest. The Miniature Pinscher has more narrow ears, while the Manchester Terrier has round ears. They are petal shaped ears that come to a pointed tip. Overly wide or curved ears are considered “faults” by the American Kennel Club. The toy Manchester has naturally erect ears, having cropped ears is considered another “fault” by the AKC. The Miniature Pinscher’s ears are often cropped by their owners.


Unlike the Manchester Terrier, the Miniature Pinscher has a high, straight tail that is docked. Docking is a procedure where the dog’s tail is severed or the blood supply is cut off from the tail until it falls off or is amputated. The Manchester has a similar tail to an undocked Miniature Pinscher. The tail is thin, straight, and curls upwards. The tail should never curl over the back like a Pomeranian.


All in all these two breeds have many characteristics in common such as lifespan, historical uses, and energy levels. But the differences in their country of origin, ears, tails, and size set them apart from one another. Next time you see the more popular and well-known Miniature Pinscher running in the park, stop for a second to consider if the dog is actually a Manchester Terrier. Now you’ll know the difference!

John Mattar
August 13, 2011
Updated on July 31, 2019

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