Something that yields more abuse than reward. The phrase refers to performing monkeys, who would earn money from passersby and then get kicked by their masters, as encouragement to continue performing. I know they promised you a raise, but I've heard that your new boss is really vicious. I think you'd be getting a monkey's allowance if you worked under him.
See also: allowance
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.