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German Wirehaired Pointer

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An Intelligent and Devoted Companion

Active, clever, loyal

German Wirehaired Pointers are energetic, obedient, and athletic, large dogs. They have a functional weather-resistant, wiry coat that protects them from cold conditions as well as rough terrain. This breed can be independent but can become very obedient with strong leadership and reward-based training. German Wirehaired Pointers make great companions for active singles, families with older children, suburban dwellers, and those who enjoy the outdoors. These energetic dogs require daily exercise, both mental and physical. 

Understanding their unique needs will help keep them healthy and create a strong bond between the two of you. Explore this page to learn more about the breed’s history, health concerns, characteristics, and care needs. 


Breed Details

Height:22-26 in. Weight:45-75 lb Lifespan:12-14 years

Size
4

1 = small - 5 = large

Grooming requirements
3

1 = little grooming - 5 = much grooming

Energy level
5

1 = low energy - 5 = high energy

Ease of training
3

1 = difficult - 5 = easy

Affection toward owners
3

1 = independent - 5 = very affectionate

Friendliness toward strangers
2

1 = shy - 5 = very friendly

Routine Care: The German Wirehaired Pointer is a smart dog with lots of energy, so keep her mind and body active, or she'll get bored. That's when the naughty stuff starts. She can have a high prey drive, so she needs to be leash walked and a sturdy fence is a must.

Grooming: Brush her coat as needed, at least weekly. Twice a year stripping or clipping is also required for her wiry double coat.

Dental: German Wirehaired Pointers generally have good teeth, and you can keep them perfect by brushing them at least twice a week! 

Ear Care: Clean her ears weekly, even as a puppy. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!


The German Wirehaired Pointer is an exuberant hunting dog that is intelligent and loyal with a stable temperament. When given proper exercise and socialization she can be a calm family companion. 


Positive Traits:

  • Energetic, active, and athletic 

  • Excellent family dog, watchdog, and hunting dog 

  • Lively, with a friendly personality 

  • Eager to please and responsive to training 

  • Obedient and devoted 

  • Confident, steady, and fearless

Negative Traits:

  • Requires vigorous, frequent exercise and space to run 

  • Easily bored if not given something to do, which leads to barking and chewing 

  • Can be rambunctious and rowdy, especially as a younger dog 

  • May be territorial when it comes to cats and other dogs 

  • Exhibits signs of separation anxiety if left alone too much 

  • Standoffish toward strangers


Whether you are considering adding a new German Wirehaired Pointer to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every German Wirehaired Pointer will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. By exploring the health concerns specific to the German Wirehaired Pointer you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. She’s counting on you to be her health expert.

Some health issues a German Wirehaired Pointer could encounter:

The German Wirehaired Pointer is a versatile all-purpose hunting dog that originated in Germany during the late 1800’s. They have a functional weather–resistant, wiry coat that protects them from rough cover and, like all German pointers, they have webbed feet. This gun dog is able to point, retrieve, trail, and hunt on land or water. They have a stable temperament and are good with calm children. The GWP is loyal and protective of her family, but tends to bond with one person.


Consult with your veterinarian if your German Wirehaired Pointer shows sings of the following:

  • Dry heaving or a large, tight, painful abdomen 

  • Blinking, redness, pain or itchiness around the eyes 

  • Cloudiness to eye lens 

  • Increased blinking, extra tears and squinting 

  • Bumping into objects, startles easily 

  • General reluctance to run or play 

  • Pale gums, labored breathing, weakness, or sudden collapse 

  • Swollen lymph nodes or glands, unexplained weight loss 

  • Excessive licking or chewing, pawing at face and/or ears, head shaking, face rubbing 

  • Any abnormal shaking, trembling, or excessive involuntary tremors 

  • Dull coat, hair loss, sluggish, weight gain

  • Care

    Routine Care: The German Wirehaired Pointer is a smart dog with lots of energy, so keep her mind and body active, or she'll get bored. That's when the naughty stuff starts. She can have a high prey drive, so she needs to be leash walked and a sturdy fence is a must.

    Grooming: Brush her coat as needed, at least weekly. Twice a year stripping or clipping is also required for her wiry double coat.

    Dental: German Wirehaired Pointers generally have good teeth, and you can keep them perfect by brushing them at least twice a week! 

    Ear Care: Clean her ears weekly, even as a puppy. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!


  • Characteristics

    The German Wirehaired Pointer is an exuberant hunting dog that is intelligent and loyal with a stable temperament. When given proper exercise and socialization she can be a calm family companion. 


    Positive Traits:

    • Energetic, active, and athletic 

    • Excellent family dog, watchdog, and hunting dog 

    • Lively, with a friendly personality 

    • Eager to please and responsive to training 

    • Obedient and devoted 

    • Confident, steady, and fearless

    Negative Traits:

    • Requires vigorous, frequent exercise and space to run 

    • Easily bored if not given something to do, which leads to barking and chewing 

    • Can be rambunctious and rowdy, especially as a younger dog 

    • May be territorial when it comes to cats and other dogs 

    • Exhibits signs of separation anxiety if left alone too much 

    • Standoffish toward strangers


  • Health Concerns

    Whether you are considering adding a new German Wirehaired Pointer to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every German Wirehaired Pointer will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. By exploring the health concerns specific to the German Wirehaired Pointer you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. She’s counting on you to be her health expert.

    Some health issues a German Wirehaired Pointer could encounter:

  • History

    The German Wirehaired Pointer is a versatile all-purpose hunting dog that originated in Germany during the late 1800’s. They have a functional weather–resistant, wiry coat that protects them from rough cover and, like all German pointers, they have webbed feet. This gun dog is able to point, retrieve, trail, and hunt on land or water. They have a stable temperament and are good with calm children. The GWP is loyal and protective of her family, but tends to bond with one person.


  • Watch Out For

    Consult with your veterinarian if your German Wirehaired Pointer shows sings of the following:

    • Dry heaving or a large, tight, painful abdomen 

    • Blinking, redness, pain or itchiness around the eyes 

    • Cloudiness to eye lens 

    • Increased blinking, extra tears and squinting 

    • Bumping into objects, startles easily 

    • General reluctance to run or play 

    • Pale gums, labored breathing, weakness, or sudden collapse 

    • Swollen lymph nodes or glands, unexplained weight loss 

    • Excessive licking or chewing, pawing at face and/or ears, head shaking, face rubbing 

    • Any abnormal shaking, trembling, or excessive involuntary tremors 

    • Dull coat, hair loss, sluggish, weight gain

German Wirehaired Pointer Discussions

Share your thoughts and experiences, ask questions, or just show your love for the German Wirehaired Pointer breed here!

Select Another Breed

To view the sources for the information listed on this page, see our Dog Breed Guide Reference page.

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