German Wirehaired Pointer

German Wirehaired Pointer


Group: Sporting Group

Origin: Germany


    – Males: 24-26 inches (61-66cm)
    – Females: smaller but not under 56 cm at the withers

Other Names: Deutsch Drahthaar

German Wire Haired Pointer
Cdn CH Oakcrest Kaus N Kaos, CGC “KAOS”
Photo: SHYDAL German Wirehaired Pointers

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Breed Profile

The German Wirehaired Pointer was developed in Germany by sportsmen who wanted to produce a dog that had all the versatility of the German Shorthaired Pointer but was robust enough to be used in hunting larger game and had a coat that could protect him when working in rugged areas. Thus, the Wirehaired Pointer has a tough coat to protect him under the worst conditions, and he has more nerve but less speed than the Shorthaired Pointer. The GWP’s origin dates back about 120 years and, despite his appearance, he has no Terrier ancestors. The breed was developed by selectively crossing the Pudelpointer with a variety of other hunting breeds including the German Shorthaired and the Polish Water Dog. Today, the German Wirehaired Pointer is the most popular dog in Germany and is also very popular in Scandinavian countries.

In Germany and other European countries, the breed is known as the Deutsch Drahthaar which is a literal translation to “German Wirehair”. In addition, in Europe the breed is not considered a “Pointer” but rather one of a group of breeds known as Continental Versatile Gun Dogs. The American Kennel Club officially recognized the breed in 1959 and changed its name to the English translation with the word “Pointer” added on for classification purposes.

The GWP is very intelligent, highly trainable, sharp, energetic, and a determined hunter with excellent water retrieving abilities. He is also a loyal, affectionate and extremely devoted companion who is always eager to please. When raised with children, a German Wirehaired Pointer makes a wonderful and playful companion.

A very important characteristic of the German Wirehaired Pointer is his versatility — from waterfowl retriever, to pointer of upland game birds, to tracker, hunter and retriever. The breed is also seen successfully competing in Schutzhund trials, tracking, obedience, agility, skijoring, the show ring and many have participated and qualified in the North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association’s tests. The GWP is an active breed who enjoys having a job to do.

His coat is harsh, wiry, weather-resistant and somewhat waterproof. With his bushy eyebrows, beard and whiskers, the German Wirehaired Pointer has a very distinct appearance. The colour of his coat is liver and white, either liver and white spotted, liver roan, liver and white spotted with ticking and roaning, or solid liver. He has a dark brown nose, brown ears, and a brown head with or without a white blaze.

Health Issues

If you are considering the adoption of a German Wire Haired Pointer puppy, or any breed, it is very important to be selective in choosing a responsible and reputable breeder. Ensure that the prospective puppy’s parents have all health clearances. Breeding of any dog should not be done until after they have been proven to be free of evidence of significant hereditary diseases. (For more information on selecting a breeder, see the articles on the General Information page.)

Additional Health Resources:


Breed Standards


Grooming Information

  • Grooming — This section of the Canada’s Guide to Dogs website includes tips, articles and information covering all aspects of dog grooming along with a listing of Groomers from across Canada.


Training Resources

  • Training — For training information, see this growing section of the Canada’s Guide to Dogs website for tips, articles, as well as listings of training centres across Canada.


Additional Information

  • Drahthaar or GWP? Is there a difference? — From the Deutsch Drahthaar Central website
  • Deutsch-Drahthaar Central — This is a resource for and by the membership of the Verein Deutsch-Drahthaar/Group North America, and those interested in the breed.
  • Clubs, Sports & Activities — For information on the many sports and activities you can get involved in with your dog.
  • Working Dogs — The Working Dogs section of the Canada’s Guide to Dogs website provides information and listings of organizations that are involved in various dog jobs, such as Guide Dogs, Therapy Dogs, Police Dogs, Protection Dogs, and much more.

*NOTE 1: CHIC – The Canine Health Information Center “is a database of consolidated health screening results from multiple sources. Co-sponsored by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) and the American Kennel Club (AKC) Canine Health Foundation, CHIC works with parent clubs to identify health screening protocols appropriate for individual breeds. Dogs tested in accordance with the parent club established requirements, that have their results registered and made available in the public domain are issued CHIC numbers.” To learn more, visit:

*NOTE 2: The Fédération Cynologique International (FCI) is the World Canine Organization, which includes 91 members and contract partners (one member per country) that each issue their own pedigrees and train their own judges. The FCI recognizes 344 breeds, with each being the “property” of a specific country. The “owner” countries write the standards of these breeds in co-operation with the Standards and Scientific Commissions of the FCI, and the translation and updating are carried out by the FCI. The FCI is not a breed registry nor does it issue pedigrees.

Breed Listing

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