Often referred to as the “grey ghost” for the distinctive coloring of its sleek coat, the Weimaraner is a graceful dog noted for its aristocratic characteristics. Highly regarded for its ability to work effectively with tremendous speed, stamina, and courage, its friendly disposition as a family companion has helped the Weimaraner become the 29th most popular breed in the United States by the American Kennel Club. If you are considering also opening your home to a Weimaraner, the following is a full breed description to figure out if it would be a great match.
|Other Name||Weimaraner Vorstehhund, Weim, Grey Ghost|
|Size Type||Large Dog Breeds|
|Breed Group||Hunting Dog Breeds|
|Life Span||Average 10 to 12 years|
|Temperament||Intelligent, Aloof, Steady, Alert, Powerful, Energetic, Stubborn, Fast|
|Height||23 to 27 inches at the shoulder|
|Weight||55 to 90 pounds|
|Colors||Silver, Silver-gray, Mouse-gray|
|Puppy Price||Average $600 - $800 USD|
As a moderately large and athletic working dog breed, the Weimaraner has a medium-sized head with a moderate stop and medial line bisecting the forehead. With a gray nose and teeth that meet in a scissors bite, the dogs have wide-set eyes that can be various shades of grey, bluish grey, and light amber. The ears set high on the head are long and pendant-shaped to fold forward and hang down alongside the cheeks. Although illegal in many parts of the world today, the tail is traditionally docked to one and a half inches in length when the dog turns two days old. Male Weimaraners are typically between 24 to 27 inches at the shoulder height with a weight ranging from 55 to 70 pounds, but females are slightly smaller at 22 to 25 inches and weighing from 50 to 65 pounds.
With all shades of grey being acceptable for the Weimaraner according to the breed standard, the coat may range anywhere from mouse-grey to silver-grey or charcoal-blue. It is common for the dogs to exhibit darker shades of grey on the body with lighter shades blending on the head and ears. At times, the Weimaraner may have a small white marking on its narrow chest too.
The Weimaraner possesses a short, smooth coat that is tight against the whole body sloping gently downward from the shoulders to the hindquarters. Outside of the American Kennel Club, most other breed registers of the world also accept a long-haired variety that exhibits a silky coat with an undocked tail with feathering. Wherever the fur is thin or non-existent on the dogs, including within the ears or lips, the skin is pinkish in tone instead of black or grey.
|Good with Kids|
Since the breed usually has a short-haired hard coat, the Weimaraner is extremely low maintenance when it comes to grooming requirements and is rather easy to keep in peak condition for health. However, the breed is an average shedder during certain seasons, so many owners choose to brush their dog with a firm bristle brush occasionally to remove any dead hair that may end up on furniture otherwise. It is suggested that Weimaraners are only bathed when necessary and that owners use a mild soap approved by a veterinarian to avoid any skin conditions the breed is susceptible to. If desired, rubbing the coat with a chamois will also help to provide a gleaming and shining appearance. Veterinarians also suggested that Weimaraner owners inspect the feet for damage often and trim nails monthly.
Originally referred to as the Weimer Pointer, it is believed that the Weimaraner is several centuries old with descendants derived from the same selective stock as other German hunting breeds. With roots tracing back as far as the 13th century in the court of King Louis IX of France, experts speculate that this breed came about by the breeding of the St. Hubert Hound and the Bloodhound. Created exclusively for the nobility as a reliable gundog, the breed made an appearance in a famous Van Dyck painting from the early 1600s. The Weimaraner was highly prized for its natural instincts for hunting big game, including deer, wolves, and bear. Quickly becoming an all-purpose family dog capable of guarding the home and being loving towards the family members, it was one of the few hunting dogs not restricted to kennel living. Over the years due to the increased rarity of bigger game in its surroundings, the Weimaraner changed roles to adopt a lifestyle as birddog, water retriever, and personal hunting companion. Although some of the earliest dogs were sterilized in Germany to ensure their specialized breed was not popularized, the Weimaraner became more common throughout Europe and the United States after Howard Knight imported the dogs in 1929. While the breed is slightly slower than some other gundogs, the dogs were made a welcome addition by sportsmen for their happy temperament. By 1943, the Weimaraner was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club.
Often described as being happy, loving, cheerful, affectionate, playful, and brave, the Weimaraner is excellent around older children and usually other canine pets. While they are often mistaken as dumb for their tremendous focus, the Weimaraner is an intelligent breed with a good sense of small and passion for working or hunting. Craving strong, consistent leadership from a pack leader, the dogs must receive training to avoid behavioral problems associated with boredom, stubbornness, willfulness, and hyperactivity. As a courageous, protective, and loyal companion with a love for barking, the Weimaraner makes an exceptional guard and watchdog. From adolescence, the highly energetic and powerful Weimaraner requires extensive amounts of exercise, including a daily long brisk walk, jog, run, and playtime. Although the breed tends to be very stubborn, solid training will help to curtail some of the rambunctious energy and lessen natural hunting instincts. However, their strong prey drive means that the dogs should not be trusted around small non-canine animals, such as hamsters, cats, rabbits, and guinea pigs. While they do thrive on play with their athletic build, the Weimaraner is typically suited to an indoor family lifestyle as well if given plenty of exercise.