German Wirehaired Pointer - Breed and Grooming Tips

When the Germans wanted a dog that could do it all, they created the German Wirehaired Pointer, a versatile, multi-purpose hunting dog. Strong and medium-sized, with a typical Pointer personality, the breed’s most distinctive feature is its functional wiry coat. Weather resistant and water-repellant, the outer coat is straight, harsh, wiry and flat lying, which helps to protect the dog against rough cover while hunting. The coat must be liver and white in color.

A Look Back

Most of the early wirehaired Pointers represented a combination of Griffon, Stichelhaar (both mixtures of Pointer, Foxhound, Pudelpointer, and Polish water dog), Pudelpointer (a cross of Poodle and Pointer) and German Shorthair. The Germans continued to breed the distinctive traits of Pointer, Foxhound, and Poodle until they had created what is today the German Wirehair, a constitutionally tough, courageous breed who points and retrieves equally well on land and in water.

Right Breed for You?

Loyal and affectionate, the German Wirehaired Pointer craves human companionship and bonds closely with its "people." A high energy and high drive breed, the Wirehair must receive regular exercise or have a job to do; otherwise their creativity and independence may get them into trouble! Although they shed lightly year-round, Wirehairs with a correct coat require only minimal grooming.

Source:  American Kennel Club -


General: The German Wirehaired Pointer has a hard, straight, harsh wiry and flat coat that is long enough to protect it against the elements. The undercoat is dense during the winter months but almost non-existent in the summer months. Grooming needs vary depending on the shedding cycle. Dogs should be groomed every 4 – 8 weeks to keep nails clipped , ears clean and remove undercoat in spring. Pointers are very active dogs and enjoy running out in the field. If your dog is an indoor dog it may require frequent bathing to keep it clean and smelling fresh.

Ears: Monthly ear cleaning with Ear Care is advised to be sure no ear problems that might need vet attention arise.

Eyes: Since Pointers were bred to retrieve game from land and water they should have their eyes checked often. Optisoothe Eye Wash can be used daily to help flush foreign matter.

Bathing: Frequency of bathing your GSP will depend on if it is an indoor dog or outdoor dog. The GSP require 2 baths, The first bath should be a general bath to get off the dirt and grime. The second bath is targeted for the need of your dog. If your dog has allergies or sensitive skin we would suggest a Hypo-Allergenic Shampoo and follow it with a Oatmeal Baking Soda Shampoo to control the odor. Do not use a heavy conditioner, but choose a light conditioner to keep the coats natural hard texture, Plum Perfect Cream Rinse or Rainforest Conditioner are light and will leave a clean fresh scent. Texturizing shampoo will help maintain a harsh texture.

Common Problems: Keep 3 in 1 Healing Cream on hand since these dogs love to run through brush while retrieving game.

Coat Care: Extreme Odor Eliminator can be used between baths to help with keeping your dog smelling fresh and clean after an outdoor adventure.

Tools: A brush and a comb should be used daily to weekly to keep the coat in good shape and matt free. An undercoat rake  or shedding blade will be needed for the spring shed.

Show Dog Tips: Spray Quick Finish Styling Spray to keep the hard texture for the ring. High Sheen Finishing Spray right before entering the ring will add a little sheen without leaving a residue.

Coat Care: Aloe Hydrating Spray should be used during the dry winter months as well if you live in a dry climate. Simple Shed and Static Spray between grooming is a great help to keep the shedding under control.

Paws: Paw Balm should be used weekly to keep paw pads soft and pliable. This makes the pads less likely to dry and crack.

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