This is a Griffon-style gun dog that was developed in the late 19th century for the hunting of game, predominantly wild fowl. By the 1980s it was one of Germany’s top gun dog breeds.
It is often incorrectly called the Drahthaar (which is a separate breed). The Wirehaired Pointer was developed by crossing various similar native wirehaired breeds known for their hunting ability in rough, mountainous terrain. These included the Wirehaired Griffon, Stichelhaar and Kurzhaar.
The intention was to create a hardy versatile wirehaired hunting dog which could work either singly or as part of a larger group. At this time the various breeds each worked in their own terrain, farmland, mountains, forests etc. By a select programme of crossbreeding a dog was developed that was equally at home on Alpine terrain or in towns.
This breed is medium-sized, well-muscled and sturdy. Its functional coat provides protection both on land and in water, but is easy to maintain. It is waterproof and well suited to the German climate, which fluctuates between summer heat and Alpine cold during a working season.
The coat is coarse, straight and extremely wiry with an undercoat which varies from dense to almost invisible, according to the season. The colour varies, but is typically liver.
The length of the body should be greater than the height, as measured at the shoulder. The head has a characteristic beard and whiskers. The tail is either left long or docked to 2/3rds of its length. The feet are webbed.