The German Wirehaired Pointer
'Wirehaired Drahthaar'

descriptive textDog breed info
German Wirehaired Pointer
Weight: 45 — 75 lbs
Height: 24” — 26”
AKC Rank 2008: #70
Lifespan: 12—14 yrs
Group: Sporting

Dog breed info - The German Wirehaired Pointer

Breed Overview

Origin: Germany, 1800’s. Original Function: Hunting, Watchdog. Today: Pointing, Companion.

Originally, there was a need for some kind of versatile hunting breed in Germany. At the time, the German Wirehaired Pointer was one of the most successful dogs they had. Hunters wanted a dog that could locate and point upland game, track wounded game, confront tough vermin, retrieve water foul on land and in the water, and also function as a companion and watchdog for the hunter. The breed needed a rough, wiry coat to withstand working and hunting in bramble bushes. An important ancestor was the German Pudelpointer. They crossed this with the German Shorthaired Pointer, Griffon, and Polish Water Dog. The breed, known as Drahthaar in Germany, has become the most popular hunting breeds in Germany. It was not officially recognized there until the 1920’s when the first dogs of the breed came to America. The German Wirehaired Pointer was registered in America in 1959.


Yes, pretty easy to train; quite responsive. Use the new clicker training for quickest and best results with your training.

Crate Training

Want to crate train your German Wirehaired Pointer puppy? It's easy and if you're interested, take a look and you'll see what to do. Crate training your puppy will save many headaches and problems.

Potty Training

The German Wirehaired Pointer puppies are generally easy to house train, potty train, toilet train, housebreak or whatever you want to call it. If you have a puppy, decide if you want to crate or paper potty train it. For the best results, we have a page at Crate vs Paper Potty Training which will help you decide and from there you can get all the information you need to get the job done. Always praise the pup profusely when she goes potty in the RIGHT PLACE so she knows she has done a good thing. Either method will work for this breed.

If you have an older dog, take the dog outside every two hours until she gets the idea which door leads to her potty area. Older dogs catch on to the potty or housebreaking pretty fast once they are shown what to do.


The German Wirehaired Pointer is a friendly, intelligent, companion, bird and gun dog that has an enormous amount of energy and can hunt for hours at a time. He responds well to commands but is also quite stubborn with a guard dog instinct. Good choice for an active outdoor hunter, camper.

If you happen to a Pointer with a separation anxiety problem, that can be dealt with by investing a few hours of work on your part and some "tough love."

Friendly Toward Other Dogs

Wary and cautious toward strange dogs. Can get along with some dogs.

Friendly Toward Other Pets

Best if raised with them. Doesn't do well with small animals.

Friendly Toward Strangers

Wary and cautious toward strangers; always on guard.


Very playful.


Moderately affectionate with his family only.

Good with children

Fair. Okay for older, obedient kids. Not tolerant for normal “kid stuff.”

Good with Seniors over 65?

No. Needs too much exercise.

Living environment

House with doggie door and fenced yard, or, a farm. Needs to be inside with his family but not locked up. Great on camping, biking and hiking trips.

The German Wirehaired Pointer would like a medium size yard but not necessary. If you plan to throw the ball and play fetch, that would requite a secure yard to run in so it's up to you.

Energy level

Very high. Can run and chase all day in the field.


Exercise needs, daily

Very high. The German Wirehaired Pointer makes a good jogging partner but keep him on leash. If he sees a squirrel or rabbit, he's gone. Two long walks, a training session and a fast game of fetch should work.


Excellent. Especially watchful over his family.

Guard dog

Good. Protective of family.


Low. Very low shedding.


Hand stripping may be needed. Brush weekly with a medium bristle brush from the pet store.



Suggested Reading - The German Wirehaired Pointer

The book on the right is put out by the American National Red Cross and is first aid for dogs only. It's very informative and every dog owner should have a copy as it tells what to do in all kinds of emergencies and questionable situations including emergencies, injuries and illnesses.


German Wirehaired Pointer Breeders

In the event you decide to go looking for German Wirehaired Pointer puppies, be SURE to find reputable breeders that really know what they are doing. Be sure the puppy has been VERY well socialized and started in obedience training. Below is a site with worldwide exposure for breeders where you might find what you want:
German Wirehaired Pointer Breeders with puppies for sale.

German Wirehaired Pointer Rescue

In the event you are seriously considering the adoption of an older dog and are looking for a German Wirehaired Pointer rescue group or groups in your state, here are several links that might help:
Petfinder - Dog Rescue - (Nationwide)At the time of this writing, there are only 49 GWP dogs listed by Petfinder as available for adoption in the USA. This figure will vary, but it is a good indicator that this is a very scarce breed in the States.
Adopt A Pet This is an interesting site but you will most likely have to go online and surf for German Wirehaired Pointer Rescue groups, kennels, adoptions and whatever else you can think of.



Dog Health Issues For German Wirehaired Pointer
Below are the illnesses or medical problems listed for the German Wirehaired Pointer by various vets.

This is basically a healthy breed. Don’t let the list below scare you! Your own dog will probably never have ANY of these problems. These are medical issues this breed is prone to that have been listed by various veterinarians at different times over the past decade or so and some pertain to puppies and very young dogs that a breeder would deal with.

The information contained herein has been gathered from numerous books by veterinarians and is intended as general information only. Every dog and situation is different. You must see your vet. Our information is for general interest only and not intended to replace the advice provided by your own veterinarian.