German Wirehaired Pointer
Sometimes known by its German name, "Deutsch Drathaar" which translates
to "German Wirehair," the German Wirehaired Pointer, as it's formally
known in the U.S. by the American Kennel Club,
is a fascinating breed that finds its roots in several other hunting dogs. The
coat is weather-resisting in every sense of the term, and it is to large extent
water-repellent. It is straight, harsh, wiry, and quite flat-lying. One and one
half to two inches in length, it is long enough to shield the body from rough
cover, but not so long as to hide the dog's athletic outline.
Clearwater Sam, Courtesy of Ed Nuzum
photo by Matt Laur
The breed was first imported into the United States in the 1920's, and was admitted
into the AKC's stud book in 1959. Most of the early wirehaired Pointers represented
a combination of Griffon, Stichelhaar, Pudelpointer, and German Shorthair. The
Pudelpointer was a cross between a Poodle dog and an English Pointer bitch, while
the Griffon and the Stichelhaar were composed of Pointer, Foxhound, Pudelpointer,
and a Polish Water dog. It's easy, then, to appreciate the different hunting skills
incorporated in the wirehaired pointers of a century or more ago.
Clearwater Sam, Courtesy of Ed Nuzum
photo by Matt Laur
By the nature of their breeding, these dogs need a lot of exercise, but they will
adapt to a small yard or long walks. They are affectionate dogs, and although they
may be aloof with strangers, they are devoted and somewhat protective of their
families, and they especially enjoy children.
Below is the breed standard as recorded by the AKC:
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. Typically Pointer in character and style, the
German Wirehaired Pointer is an intelligent, energetic and determined hunter.
Size, Proportion, Substance
The height of males should be from 24 to 26 inches at the withers. Bitches
are smaller but not under 22 inches. To insure the working quality of the breed
is maintained, dogs that are either over or under the specified height must be
severely penalized. The body is a little longer than it is high, as ten is to
nine. The German Wirehaired Pointer is a versatile hunter built for agility
and endurance in the field. Correct size and balance are essential to high
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 lips
are a trifle pendulous but close to the jaw and bearded. The jaws are
strong with a full complement of evenly set and properly intermeshing teeth.
The incisors meet in a true scissors bite.
Neck, Topline, Body
The neck is of medium length, slightly arched and devoid of dewlap. The
entire back line 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 angulation of the hindquarters balances that of the forequarters.
The thighs are strong and muscular. The hind legs are moderately angulated
at the stifle and hock and, as viewed from behind, parallel to each other.
Dewclaws are generally removed. Feet as in front.
The functional wiry coat is the breed's most distinctive feature. A
dog must have a correct coat to be of 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 length. The hairs in the
liver patches of a liver and white dog may be shorter than the white
hairs. A short smooth coat, a soft woolly coat, or an excessively
long coat is to be severely penalized. While maintaining a harsh, wiry
texture, the puppy coat may be shorter than that of an adult coat.
Coats may be neatly groomed to present a dog natural in appearance.
Extreme and excessive grooming to present a dog artificial in appearance
should be severely penalized.
The coat is liver and white, usually either liver and white spotted,
liver roan, liver and white spotted with ticking and roaning or solid liver.
The head is liver, sometimes with a white blaze. The ears are liver. Any
black in the coat is to be severely penalized.
The dog should be evaluated at a moderate gait. The movement is free
and smooth with good reach in the forequarters and good driving power in
the hindquarters. The topline should remain firm.
Of sound, reliable temperament, the German Wirehaired Pointer is at times
aloof but not unfriendly toward strangers; a loyal and affectionate companion
who is eager to please and enthusiastic to learn.
This standard was approved July 9, 1985 and reformatted May 14, 1989
Browse The EU Here:
A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-V | W-Z