German Wiredhaired Pointer —the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Discussion in 'California Flyway Forum' started by Arrieta, Feb 7, 2018.

  1. Arrieta

    Arrieta Senior Refuge Member

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    Hey guys, seeking your expertise...

    I’m gettin ready to add to the pack... currently have a 10 year ole’ shorthair. She’s a much better dog than I deserve and despite me being as about as stupid as they get, she’s pretty sharp —Senior Hunter and a few walking field trial wins. She’ll retrieve just about anything, including beer, and sorta made the cut as a gun dog... But, she’s not good at handling the cold —even with a vest in California— and she whines non-stop in the blind. She marks beautifully, sees birds in the air before we do, and I think she believes she should be flying and pointing the ducks for us to shoot. Needless to say, a pointer she is... a duck dog however not so much despite being an awesome retriever.

    So, I’m lookin at a new dog. Been down the Labrador road before and while they hold a special place in my heart, I’m thinking about sumptin different: a German Wiredhaired Pointer.

    Found a possible breeder, know a bit about the owners of the parents. They are super good guys, but mostly upland guys and definitely good dog people... so, my questions for those in the know about these beasts are:

    1) Cocklebur magnets? How do they compare to a Lab or Chessy? Am I gonna spend the rest of my life untangling dog hair?
    2) How do they handle the cold? On par again with a Lab?
    3) Temperment? How do they compare to a Shorthair, a Pointing Griffon, or a Lab? I’ve worked with a quite a few Griffs and they’re not my favorites. The few Wirehairs I’ve worked seemed great... not sure if that’s a characteristic across the board though...
    4) How do they handle the boredom of the blind? Most Labs are pretty relaxed. My shorthair looses her mind and whines... I know that a lot of this is the individual dog, but there are some breed characteristics? Thoughts?

    Thanks in advance...
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2018
  2. SPOONKILR

    SPOONKILR Elite Refuge Member

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    If you are looking for different???? They are different!
    1. Sticker magnets?--YES
    2. Handle the cold?- Yes with a vest. never really seems to ever be an issue.
    3. Temperament? I think this is based on how they are raised and socialized? I will say they are super protective!!!! If a stranger gets near kids or property without you close they will get bit!
    4. Boredom in the Blind? YES...training as alot to do with this! Mine does not whine or whimper but she does need to get up and stretchem out every so often! but so do I!
    My GWP is as mellow around the house as any of the labs I have every owned! Are GWP as good as a Lab for waterfowling?? They can be! Is a GWP better at all around hunting everything?YES IMHO
    IMG_1994.JPG IMG_1123.JPG kate and trudy doves.jpg IMG_1884.JPG
    PS... Best Dog I have ever owned!
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2018
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  3. cagwp

    cagwp Senior Refuge Member

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    I have had one GWP male that we lost spring 17 to old age. Ruger was my first bird dog and was our first kid to my wife and I. It was not the same hunting without him this year. I am also looking to get another wirehair in the near future and am in the beginning process of searching for a new family member. I will do my best based off of my experiance to answer your questions.
    1. Cocklebur's, Yes they are magnets to them especially in-between the toes/pads and face. We would cut them out with safety scissors after each hunt and eventually he would be trimmed up enough that they wouldn't be as bad as the season went on. Wire hairs also break there hair off if hunted hard enough, mine would loose most of his long hairs as the season went on due to brush,tules, trimming etc. We also were chasing pheasant, quail, and chuk's so that also wore down his long coat hairs. I have heard that people use show shine or pam to help prevent them from being as bad, I never had the patience to apply it before hunts.
    2. Cold, My dog was on par with most labs I have hunted with, I have seen many different thickness of coats on wirehairs though. My dog was med/light on his coat and seem to handle the cold well. I have seen some GWP'S that looked like shorthairs and some that were covered in wirehair. Depends on the genes and what the parents look like usually from my experience. So this may vary based on each dogs coat.
    3. Temperament, I believe this is the product of a few combined products, breeding, socialization, and the environment the dog lives in. My dog was very protective of our house, vehicles, and kids. If there was a unknown person around I would have to put my dog away in any of those situations. Out in the field he was good to go with other hunters, dogs etc. Yes some breeders have known dogs that seem to have aggressive traits in their kennels, I have seen this with more male GWP'S than females. My next GWP will be a female and I hope to have it at a younger age this time so we can properly socialize it, something that we were not able to do with our first one. I think we all know people that have dogs that are aggressive and no matter what dog they get they will always be this way because of the way the owner has brought the dog up. I have yet to find a Female GWP that has not wanted to be in your lap, sweet, and demanding of your attention. They are very prey driven though, family cat was safe due to socialization, any other outside cat was immediately on the radar if they were in the area. This also holds true for ALL other fur-baring animals. I was lucky that Ruger pointed skunks on several occasions and didn't break his from point.
    4. Boredom. I think this is a training and also a socialization issue as well. I have seen my friends female GWP on heal and in about every hunting situation around be so quiet that you never knew she was around. My male GWP wanted to go. He would wine quietly all day if we were sitting. I feel if I trained him for ducks when he was young it wouldn't have been an issue. When we got him he was strictly an upland dog so he was not used to the waterfowl hunting that I got into about 5 -6 years after we got him. The next dog I get will be trained for dual purpose from the start, so I think that should help in the boredom/whining department.
    I would not hesitate to own another GWP. There is always the chance that you may get one that will not work out, but there's also the chance that they will be that one great dog that the other recent post was about. I personally hope that with my guidance they end up being a great member of my family first and also a dog that I will look forward to sharing time in the outdoors with. Keep us updated with your progress.
    Brad
     
  4. Silver Wings

    Silver Wings Elite Refuge Member

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    1. Yes and no...The soft fur is a cocklebur nightmare. The "harsh" wirehaired fur is not. That's why it's very important to choose a dog with a good, dense and harsh coat. They all have the soft fur on the head and face, but some have it everywhere and that doesn't work for me.
    2. Mine have all done well with the cold. Below 30 I put a vest. Again...coat quality!
    3. It all depends on the individual...I've seen them with personalities close to all the dogs you mention. Typically though I would say closer to GSP. Intelligent and biddable, like a Lab. Not a boot polisher like the Griff. Not as wide ranging as the GSP. Can be hell on cats and other fur. Again...on average. Very good in the home and with kids.
    4. I have not had one that would not sit quietly on his dog stand for hours.

    I don't know who your possible breeder is, but I will say that great dogs from TESTED stock is near the same price as untested. Do yourself a favor and research NAVHDA and VHDF testing programs and the dogs coming out of them.

    I like Jeff Funke's dogs and will probably be buying another one in the next year.

    http://www.threedevilskennel.com/
    http://www.vhdf.org/
    https://www.navhda.org/

    Good luck whatever you decide.
     
  5. J.Bennett

    J.Bennett Elite Refuge Member

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    966381CA-B580-4711-B072-F312C562A3E4.jpeg I picked one up a few of years ago. I wasn't really in the market for one, but someone let me know about a great deal on one that I couldn't pass up. She is a well-bred dog, but has a non-standard coat. The non-standard coat is considered a major fault, but it is a blessing as far as I'm concerned as she doesn't pick up cockleburs and such. I haven't used her for waterfowl (I have my lab for that), but she is an outstanding upland dog. Temperament-wise, she is cautious around people that she doesn't know but warms up quickly and will try to kill any dog (or any animal, really) besides my lab if I'm not there (my dad borrows her quite a bit for pheasant hunting and she gets in a fight every time, but when I'm present it doesn't happen). Intelligent, but not eager to please like a lab is.
     
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  6. Kevin Burroughs

    Kevin Burroughs Elite Refuge Member

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    Save your money and buy a Drahthaar. Best breeding, every breeding adult is tested and a proven hunter. Not good with cats.
     
  7. Jktckc

    Jktckc Senior Refuge Member

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    Check out Pudle Pointers too. They are amazing dogs.
     
  8. Arrieta

    Arrieta Senior Refuge Member

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    Thanks for your replies. Your comments on coat and temperment have been helpful. I will be looking for a female. The breeder I’m looking at getting a pup from is Rob Lewis. He’s a pretty experienced dog guy, does the hunt test and field trial game, is a judge, and owns the female. Gary Bonini, another hunter test, field trial, and upland guy and is the owner of “Argos” (trained by Scott Azevedo) —the stud dog. I’m not sure how much NAVDA stuff they do... most of it is AKC stuff.
     
  9. J.Bennett

    J.Bennett Elite Refuge Member

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    I got my dog from Robert Lewis...
     
  10. Arrieta

    Arrieta Senior Refuge Member

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    Mr. Bennet;

    If I remember right, your dog is a female “slicker”. I was in love with that pup a year or two ago. At eight weeks she was sitting on my tailgait as Rob and jack jawed fer hours. You got a great looking dog in my book. I’d love to see more pictures of that dog and know how that dog developed. I’m curious about the fighting thing... did she get rolled as a pup? My experience is that the more dogs get into fights, the more fights they get into...
     

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