Complete Guide To The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon: Health, Personality, Exercise and More

The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon is an example of the world’s finest breeding. We have a few Wirehaired Pointing Griffons that come into our veterinary practice and they are really distinctive dogs. Rare, they’re tailor-made to be incomparable hunting dogs and loyal companions. Let’s dig into this unique breed of dog to find out more.

How Big Does A Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Get?

Male22″ – 24″ at the shoulder50-75 lbs
Female20″ – 22″ at the shoulder35-50 lbs

What Does A Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Look Like?

Griffons are medium-sized dogs, weighing 35-70 pounds. Lean but well-balanced, they’re built more for speed than strength. Ample eyebrows, sculpted facial hair, and a scruffy bi-colored coat in shades of brown and gray are remarkable among breeds — no other dog compares.

Tails are docked up to half their length at birth. Ears are natural and extend to the jawline, framing their square-shaped heads. Their large expressive eyes range in color from pale yellow to dark brown.

Every characteristic from their weather-resistant double coats to their webbed feet was selectively bred to enhance their versatility in the field. Ready to retrieve on land and in water, it shows in their rugged, confident look.

What Is The Personality Of A Wirehaired Pointing Griffon?

Griffons are devoted family dogs, but they were bred for hunting and enjoy an active lifestyle. Energetic and quick-witted, they’ll do best in homes where they’re part of the daily grind. Adventure-ready, they make poor nine-to-five kennel dogs.

Quiet, they’re suitable for apartment living if they get enough fresh air and exercise — they’ll alert you to trouble without nuisance barking. Sensitive and social, Griffons thrive on human companionship and are nurturing toward children and other dogs. Easy-going but rambunctious, early socialization and training are musts.

How Much Exercise Does A Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Need?

Few dogs need as much exercise as Griffons — plan on an hour a day or more. Daily physical and mental challenges that utilize their unique abilities are essential. They prefer games and family outings to solitary play — dog parks are a favorite stop.

Athletic, Griffons are excellent swimmers and enjoy AKC athletic events. Early enrollment in hunting activities maximizes their working potential.

How Much Grooming Does A Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Need?

Wirehaired Pointing Griffons have an unusual double coat — a soft insulating layer close to the skin covered with long hair so harsh it repels both water and dirt. It’s a key trait breeders emphasized to keep their dogs comfortable in the field.

Though they shed year-round and seasonally, their grooming needs are minimal. Weekly brushing with a slicker or grooming mitt removes dead hair and debris — occasional hand-stripping is helpful to promote new growth. Bathing every 4-6 months is enough to keep them fresh.

While most Griffons get enough exercise to keep nails naturally short, long hair on their feet can conceal overgrowth. Check them monthly and trim them as needed with a clipper or grinding tool.

What Kind of Dog Food Is Good For A Wirehaired Pointing Griffon?

Personally I believe that most foods are fine for most dogs. Some dogs may not do well on some foods. However, as a rule I don’t blanket-prohibit any dietary ingredient from any breed at this time.

Best Puppy Food For Wirehaired Pointing Griffons:

Best Adult Food For Wirehaired Pointing Griffons:

Please don’t listen to the folks at the pet store trying to convince you to buy a grain-free diet for your dog. There’s zero science behind that and vets are actually seeing diseases now related to feeding grain-free foods.

It’s very important they remain at their optimal weight throughout their life. Have your vet go over with you exactly where to feel to know when your dog is too big.

How Long Does A Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Live?

12-15 years based on information from the AKC

What Health Problems Can Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Have?

As with other larger-breed dogs, male Griffons can be prone to orthopedic issues as they age. Elbow, hip, and knee arthritis are things that every owner should be aware.

If your dog is particularly active when young, consider a good quality joint supplement by the time they reach 4-5 years of age.

Where Can I Find Out More About The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon?

American Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Association (AWPGA)

AKC Breed Profile

Where Can I Find A  Wirehaired Pointing Griffon?

Breeder listings from the AWPGA is the best way to start looking for a puppy.

How about a Rescue? The national breed club is a great place to start.

Interesting Facts About the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

Wirehaired Pointing Griffons are rare enough in the US to escape easy recognition — they rank just 65th on the AKC’s list of most popular dogs. But despite their rarity, they have a loyal following. Here are a few intriguing facts about the breed.

• Their Ancestors Hail From Ancient Greece

Where Griffon-type dogs originated is a mystery, but writings from the Greek historian Xenophon suggest they existed 500 B.C. In Europe, they were used as hunting dogs by the Gauls from 500 B.C. to 500 A.D.

• They’re a Modern Miracle

In the 1800s, Dutchman Eduard Korthals took European sportsmen’s penchant for versatile hunting dogs a step further by refining local breeds. Building on the work of Mendel’s experiments in genetics, he selectively bred for distinct characteristics — strength, speed, endurance, sense of smell and swimming ability — successfully developing the “supreme gundog” we know today.

• Are They Dutch, French or German?

The process of developing Wirehaired Pointed Griffons began in Holland, but it continued in both Germany and France as Eduard Korthals moved from place to place. Nations continue to squabble over claims to the Griffon’s origins, but most are still bred in France.

• The Beard and Mustache Are Natural

Unlike dogs that need extensive trimming to sculpt their facial hair, the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon’s distinctive eyebrows, beard and mustache grow naturally without primping. Only minimal trimming is allowed for shows.

• A Royal Companion

Bred for outdoor activities, the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon isn’t a dog associated with royal life. But among the most beloved belonged to Prince Rainer III of Monaco, husband of American actress Grace Kelly. Odin, named for the Norse god of wisdom and more, mournfully followed the Prince’s casket during his funeral procession.