We’ve provided simple steps to a clean, shiny, healthy GWP coat for easy living with our whiskery friends.
The goal for German Wirehaired Pointer breeders is to create a dog with a very low-maintenance coat that repels dirt, burrs, and water. Sometimes that just doesn’t happen. Pet owners and hunters don’t need to spend hours creating a special “do” for their Wirehair. They just want their dogs to be tidy, not track in mud from the yard and not soak up a gallon of water in their beards with every drink.
Check out Laura’s video to learn more!
Keep in mind that grooming should be a treat for the dog, not a chore. Start slowly and gradually increase the duration of time spent grooming the dog. If possible, start when the puppy first arrives rather than when the dog is two years old, bigger, stronger and the hair is out of control. Regular grooming each week will reduce the amount of time required to keep the coat in good shape. Thirty minutes is about average for a dog that is maintained consistently. Your buddy will appreciate the time spent bonding and the special attention he gets on grooming day.
GWP Daily Care
German Wirehaired Pointers are high-energy sporting dogs who enjoy outdoor activities with human partners and make great companions on long walks or hikes.
Regular daily exercise such as long walks and play sessions with their owner will help keep them healthy and happy. The breed also exercises mind and body by participating in hunting, obedience, tracking, agility, rally, and other activities that can be enjoyed by dog and owner.
The German Wirehaired Pointer should be fed a high-quality dog food appropriate to the dog’s age (puppy, adult, or senior) and activity level. Check with your vet or us if you have any questions or concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean, fresh water should always be available.
While German Wirehaired Pointers are generally healthy dogs, there are health and genetic screening considerations specific to the breed. Responsible breeders test their stock for conditions the breed can be prone to and communicate with other dedicated breeders regularly, working together for breed health and preservation of the breed’s qualities.
Your Wirehair wants nothing so much as to be with you. Preferably touching you. If he's a house dog, that's easier to accomplish than if he's a kennel dog. GWPs that don't get enough quality time will bark, dig, shred and otherwise entertain themselves with games they make up by themselves. You probably won't enjoy these games nearly as much as he does.
Wirehairs certainly love to sleep in bed with you. Starting a puppy out that way can be a disaster, as it encourages him to believe he's in charge. Puppies should be crate trained and sleep in their crate next to the bed for the first 6 to 12 months. When they are invited to sleep in bed it is a privilege that can be removed if it is abused.
German Wirehaired Pointers are very intelligent, responsive, and eager to please, so they are generally easy to train. Early socialization and puppy training classes are recommended and help to ensure that the dog grows into a well-adjusted, well-mannered companion. The breed is smart, talented, versatile, and athletic and excels in a wide range of canine sports and activities.
The German Wirehaired Pointer is a well-muscled, medium-sized dog of distinctive appearance.
Balanced in size and sturdily built, the breed’s most distinguishing characteristics are its weather-resistant, wire-like coat and its facial furnishings.
The head is moderately long. Eyes are brown, medium in size, oval in contour, bright and clear, and overhung with medium length eyebrows. Yellow eyes are not desirable. The ears are rounded but not too broad and hang close to the head. The skull broad and the occipital bone not too prominent. The stop is medium. The muzzle is fairly long with nasal bone straight, broad and parallel to the top of the skull. The nose is dark brown with nostrils wide open. A spotted or flesh-colored nose is to be penalized.
The neck is of medium length, slightly arched, and devoid of dewlap. The entire backline showing a perceptible slope down from withers to croup. The skin throughout is notably tight to the body. The chest is deep and capacious with ribs well sprung. The tuck-up apparent. The back is short, straight, and strong. Loins are taut and slender. Hips are broad with the croup nicely rounded. The tail is set high, carried at or above the horizontal when the dog is alert. The tail is docked to approximately two-fifths of its original length.
The shoulders are well laid back. The forelegs are straight with elbows close. Leg bones are flat rather than round, and strong, but not so heavy or coarse as to militate against the dog’s natural agility. Dewclaws are generally removed. Round in outline the feet are webbed, high arched with toes close, pads thick and hard, and nails strong and quite heavy.
The functional wiry coat is the breed’s most distinctive feature. A dog must have a correct coat to be of the correct type. The coat is weather-resistant and, to some extent, water-repellent. The undercoat is dense enough in winter to insulate against the cold but is so thin in summer as to be almost invisible. The distinctive outer coat is straight, harsh, wiry, and flat-lying, and is from one to two inches in length. The outer coat is long enough to protect against the punishment of rough cover, but not so long as to hide the outline of the dog. On the lower legs the coat is shorter and between the toes, it is of softer texture. On the skull, the coat is naturally short and close-fitting. Over the shoulders and around the tail it is very dense and heavy. The tail is nicely coated, particularly on the underside, but devoid of feather. Eyebrows are of strong, straight hair. Beard and whiskers are medium lengths.
The angles of the hindquarters balance that of the forequarters. A straight line drawn vertically from the buttock (ischium) to the ground should land just in front of the rear foot. The thighs are strong and muscular. The hind legs are parallel when viewed from the rear. The hocks (metatarsus) are short, straight, and parallel turning neither in nor out. Dewclaws are generally removed. Feet as in forequarters.
Height: 22 to 26 inches
Temperament: Affectionate, Eager, Enthusiastic
Weight: 45 to 75 pounds
Life Expectancy: 14 to 16 years
Coat Color: Black, Brown, Gray, White
Barking Level: Medium
Good Dog Advisor
Supporting Dog Breeders
How do you think about reducing health issues in your puppies?
I start with the healthiest dogs I can. Dogs which are tested clear of as many genetic diseases as is scientifically possible. I only include dogs in the breeding program that have been tested clear for multiple generations. If I encounter an issue (Mother Nature is a surly mistress….) I do extensive research to identify and eliminate the problem where at all possible.
What health problems commonly occur in German Wirehaired Pointers?
The most impactful issues in the breed are autoimmune thyroiditis. In itself, it is easily manageable with medication. But it is just one of a number of more serious autoimmune diseases. It indicates a hereditary potential for the body to attack itself in other areas. All Scotiadawgs in the breeding program are required to be “normal” for thyroid function. Hip dysplasia, some cancers and other more random diseases of dogs are seen, although less frequently.
Can you tell me about any health tests you perform on your dogs and why?
Our breeding dogs are tested for and certified clear of: hip and elbow dysplasia, heart and eye abnormalities and autoimmune thyroiditis.
If you have done health testing, where can I see the results?
All results are available at OFA by searching for the dog’s registered name. I am happy to supply links to any of the dogs in question.
Have any of the dogs in your breeding program ever been afflicted with these conditions?
Yes. As has often been noted, “Man plans and God laughs….” As my contract clearly spells out, all of my dogs are guaranteed for life to be free of hip dysplasia or hypothyroid or they will be replaced or have the purchase price returned at the preference of the owner. I spare no expense or amount of time to ensure my dogs are healthy and stand behind that guarantee without exception.