Featured Dog Breed: Weimaraner

Weimaraners are a devoted dog breed who want to be with people
all of the time, which can be unnerving. But if you enjoy always
having a dog by your side — and can spare plenty of time for
hiking, jogging, or hunting — the Weimaraner can be an ideal
canine sidekick.

Today, we’ll take a look at the Weimaraner dog breed,
including its temperament, health, history, appearance, and
grooming!

Weimaraner Temperament

Weimaraners can be friendly, happy, fearless, intelligent,
curious and playful. They are very good with children and can be
extremely attached to their family. They require a lot of
attention, and they become deeply attached to their owners and will
want to follow you everywhere. They make great watch dogs and are
very protective of their families. 

Weimaraners have an incredible level of energy, and they need to
run everyday. They enjoy almost all activities, including jogging
with you, running alongside your bike, hiking with you, swimming,
agility, and retrieving. It is said that no one has reported
something a Weimaraner couldn’t do. 

On the flip side, these dogs cannot be ignored. If ignored, they
can bark excessively, soil the house, or just plain destroy your
house in minutes! They have been known to chew, chase cats, and
steal food off the kitchen counter. They need to be well socialized
to counter these tendencies. 

Owning a Weimaraner is a full-time job, but one that pays off in
dividends if they are well treated and well trained.

His personality can range from in-charge to laidback. Males tend
to be sweet, while females have more spunk. Puppies with more prey
drive and independence do well in the field, while those who are
easygoing and upbeat are best suited for companion homes. If
you’re hoping to show, opt for puppies with outgoing and
confident attitudes. 

And, if you pick up a puppy and he doesn’t settle down in your
arms quickly, it’s a clue that he’s going to be highly
energetic — the same is true if he bosses the other puppies —
so think long and hard about whether he’s the right kind of dog
for you. For most of us, the best choice is the nice,
middle-of-the-road puppy who is neither too bossy nor too shy.

Fortunately, Weims are sensitive, smart, and aim to please,
which gives you a head start with training, especially if you start
early. A young Weimaraner will test you to see how much he can get
away with, so try to get him into puppy kindergarten class by the
time he is 10 to 12 weeks old, and socialize, socialize,
socialize. 

However, be aware that many puppy training classes require
certain vaccines (like kennel cough) to be up to date, and many
veterinarians recommend limited exposure to other dogs and public
places until puppy vaccines (including rabies, distemper and
parvovirus) have been completed. In lieu of formal training, you
can begin training your puppy at home and socializing him among
family and friends until puppy vaccines are completed.

As lovable as he is, the Weimaraner can be high-maintenance. He
needs lots of social interaction and reassurance to establish that
confident, devoted Weimaraner attitude. He’ll also introduce you
to two fundamental laws of nature: A Weim at rest is bored and a
bored Weimaraner is destructive. So plan to keep him busy or
he’ll put his own plan into action — like noshing on rugs and
walls — and you probably won’t like it.

Weimaraners enjoy running, hunting, going for walks, boating,
swimming — essentially anything, as long as it involves being
with you. (Tip: These dogs live to chase any object that moves,
including runners, bikers, kids, and other animals, so confine him
to a safely fenced yard and always walk him on leash.) 

When it comes to dog sports, they love agility, tracking, and
hunt tests. In fact, be prepared for gifts of dead things: frogs,
birds, the nice cat that’s been hanging around the yard. Your
Weim doesn’t know that she’s your neighbor’s cat; he’s
primed to hunt furry things and that’s what he does. And never
reject his gifts or punish him, which could severely damage your
relationship.

A Weimaraner loves you and wants to please you, but he’s also
an independent thinker who likes to have his own way. He’ll be
pushy and challenging — and not just during adolescence. In the
case of the Weimaraner, the “teen” years can start at six
months and continue until the dog is about two years old. 

Training a Weim calls for sensitivity, firmness with a light
touch, and a superb sense of humor. It takes a very smart person to
stay one step ahead of a Weimaraner, and even then, there’s still
plenty of room to be outwitted by one of these dogs. 

Weimaraner Appearance

German Weimaraners usually weigh between 55 to 85 pounds and
stand approximately 23 to 27 inches tall. They are a large dog with
a trim, athletic and muscular build. They have a short coat that
comes in various shades of gray. Their nickname is “The Grey
Ghost.”

Generally speaking, the Weimaraner is a large dog with an
athletic build and good muscle tone. The coloring of the Weimaraner
ranges from mousy gray to silvery gray. His coat is sleek, smooth,
and close fitting, and he sports an alert and eager expression. The
weight of the Weimaraner is around 55-70 pounds for females, and
75-90 pounds for males. The height of these dogs is around 23-25
inches for females, and around 25-27 inches for males.

Weimaraner Grooming

Although the Weimaraner requires a pretty much no-fuss approach
to grooming, he will need to be brushed on a regular basis in order
to keep his coat sleek and in good condition. With regular brushing
shedding is kept to a minimum with the Weim, which means that he
may prove suitable for some allergy sufferers.

The Weimaraner’s short coat is easy to maintain: Brush it with
a rubber curry brush at least once a week. The brush removes dead
hair that would otherwise end up on your floor, furniture, and
clothing. Weimaraners shed, so the more you brush, the less hair
you’ll have flying around. And bathe your Weimaraner only when
he’s dirty, which shouldn’t be very often. 

The Weimaraner is a hunting dog, so good foot condition is
important. Keep his toenails trimmed short. Last but not least,
brush his teeth with a vet-approved pet toothpaste for good overall
health and fresh breath.

Weimaraner Health Problems and Life Expectancy

All dogs have the potential to develop genetic health problems,
so it’s important to choose your breeder wisely. Weimaraner
breeders should know about several conditions, including hip
dysplasia, hypothyroidism, tricuspid dysplasia (a congenital heart
disease), and eye problems like corneal dystrophy and
entropion.

A small percentage of Weimaraner puppies can develop an
autoimmune reaction following vaccination. It usually manifests as
a condition called hypertrophic osteodystrophy, a painful condition
that can affect the bones. 

To help prevent such reactions, breeders recommend giving each
vaccination separately, rather than all on the same day. The
Weimaraner Club of
America
(WCA) does not recommend giving vaccines for
coronavirus, leptospirosis, Bordetella, and Lyme disease, unless
the diseases are prevalent in your locale. Ask your veterinarian if
your dog should be vaccinated against any of these diseases.

Weimaraners can also have elevated levels of uric acid in their
urine, predisposing them to form painful bladder and kidney stones,
which may require surgery. This condition, known as
hyperuricosuria, is inherited. A DNA test for the condition is
available from the University of California at Davis Veterinary
Genetics Laboratory.

Not all of these conditions are detectable in a growing puppy,
and it can be hard to predict whether an animal will be free of
these maladies, which is why you must find a reputable breeder who
is committed to breeding the healthiest animals possible.  They
should be able to produce independent certification that the
parents of the dog (and grandparents, etc.) have been screened for
these defects and deemed healthy for breeding. That’s where
health registries come in.

The Weimaraner Club of America participates in the Canine
Health Information Center
(CHIC), a health database. Breeders
must agree to have all test results, positive or negative,
published in the database, which can be accessed by anyone who
wants to check the health of a puppy’s parents.

Before Weimaraners can be issued a CHIC number, breeders must
submit hip and thyroid evaluations from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA)
and eye test results from the Canine Eye Registration
Foundation
(CERF). PennHip certification of hips is also
accepted. Another optional test that’s recommended: a DNA
screening for hyperuricosuria from the University of California at
Davis Veterinary Genetics Lab. To be safe, many breeders also test
hearts and elbows. 

Weimaraner History

The Weimaraner dates back to the early 19th century where they
were developed in Weimar, Germany. The noblemen who bred them loved
to hunt and wanted a dog with courage, intelligence, stamina,
speed, and good scenting ability. 

The breeds they used to create the Weimaraner include the
Bloodhound, the English Pointer, the German Shorthaired Pointer,
the blue Great Dane, and the silver-gray Huehnerhund, or chicken
dog. They were originally bred as big-game hunters for bear, deer,
and wolves, but they eventually hunted birds, rabbits, and
foxes. 

They were and are excellent pointers and all-around hunters.
Weimaraners made their way to America in the early 1900’s, and
then after World War II many American servicemen brought
Weimaraners home with them where they quickly grew in popularity.
Weimaraners were recognized by the American Kennel Club in
1942. 

Finding A Weimaraner Breeder

Selecting a respected breeder is a great way to find the right
puppy. Reputable breeders will welcome questions about temperament
and health clearances, as well as explain the history of the breed
and what kind of puppy makes for a good pet. Don’t be shy about
describing exactly what you’re looking for in a dog — breeders
interact with their puppies daily and can make accurate
recommendations once they know something about your lifestyle and
personality.

To start your search, check out the website of the Weimaraner
Club of America (WCA), which offers resources for finding a good
breeder. Select a breeder that has agreed to abide by the club’s
code of ethics, specifying that members not place weim puppies
prior to 12 weeks of age, prohibits the sale of puppies through pet
stores, and calls for the breeder to obtain recommended health
clearances before breeding.

Lots of breeders have websites, so how can you tell who’s good
and who’s not? Red flags to look out for: multiple litters on the
premises, puppies always being available, having your choice of any
puppy, and being offered the option to pay online with a credit
card. 

Breeders who sell puppies at a lower price “without papers”
are unethical and should be reported to the American Kennel Club.
You should also bear in mind that buying a puppy from a website
that offers to ship the dog immediately can be a risky venture —
it leaves you no recourse if what you get isn’t exactly what you
expected.

Whether you’re planning to get your new best friend from a
breeder, a pet store, or another source, don’t forget that old
adage “let the buyer beware”. Disreputable breeders and
facilities that deal with puppy mills can be hard to distinguish
from reliable operations. 

There’s no 100% guaranteed way to make sure you’ll never
purchase a sick puppy, but researching the breed (so you know what
to expect), checking out the facility (to identify unhealthy
conditions or sick animals), and asking the right questions can
reduce the chances of heading into a disastrous situation. 

And don’t forget to ask your veterinarian, who can often refer
you to a reputable breeder, breed rescue organization, or other
reliable source for healthy puppies.

The cost of a Weim puppy varies depending on the breeder’s
locale, the sex of the puppy, the titles that the puppy’s parents
have, and whether the puppy is best suited for the show ring or a
pet home. Puppies should be temperament tested, vetted, dewormed,
and socialized to give them a healthy, confident start in
life. 

While most Weimaraners have good dispositions, a breeder who has
American Temperament Test Society (TT) certification on her dogs is
preferable. If you put as much effort into researching your puppy
as you would when buying a new car, it will save you money in the
long run.

Before you decide to buy a puppy, consider whether an adult
Weimaraner may better suit your lifestyle. Puppies are loads of
fun, but they require a good deal of time and effort before they
grow up to be the dog of your dreams. An adult may already have
some training, and he’ll probably be less active, destructive,
and demanding than a puppy. 

With an adult, you know more about what you’re getting in
terms of personality and health and you can find adults through
breeders or shelters. If you are interested in acquiring an older
dog through breeders, ask them about purchasing a retired show dog
or if they know of an adult dog who needs a new home. If you want
to adopt a dog, read the advice below on how to do that.

Adopting a Weimaraner

There are many great options available if you want to adopt a
dog from an animal shelter or breed rescue organization. Here is
how to get started.

  1. Use the Web

Sites like Petfinder.com
and Adopt-a-Pet.com can
have you searching for a Weimaraner in your area in no time flat.
The site allows you to be very specific in your requests
(housetraining status, for example) or very general (all the
Weimaraners available on Petfinder across the country). AnimalShelter.org
can help you find animal rescue groups in your area. Also some
local newspapers have “pets looking for homes” sections you can
review.

Social media is another great way to find a dog. Post on your
Facebook page that you are looking for a specific breed so that
your entire community can be your eyes and ears.

  1. Reach Out to Local Experts

Start talking with all the pet pros in your area about your
desire for a Weimaraner. That includes vets, dog walkers, and
groomers. When someone has to make the tough decision to give up a
dog, that person will often ask her own trusted network for
recommendations.

  1. Talk to Breed Rescue

Most people who love Weimaraners love all Weimaraners. That’s
why breed clubs have rescue organizations devoted to taking care of
homeless dogs. The Weimaraner
Club of America’s rescue network
can help you find a dog that
may be the perfect companion for your family. You can also search
online for other Weimaraner rescues in your area.

The great thing about breed rescue groups is that they tend to
be very upfront about any health conditions the dogs may have and
are a valuable resource for advice. They also often offer fostering
opportunities so, with training, you could bring a Weimaraner home
with you to see what the experience is like.

  1. Key Questions to Ask

You now know the things to discuss with a breeder, but there are
also questions you should discuss with shelter or rescue group
staff or volunteers before you bring home a dog. These include:

–          What is his energy level?

–          How is he around other animals?

–          How does he respond to shelter workers,
visitors, and children?

–          What is his personality like?

–          What is his age?

–          Is he housetrained?

–          Has he ever bitten or hurt anyone that they
know of?

–          Are there any known health issues?

Wherever you acquire your Weimaraner, make sure you have a good
contract with the seller, shelter or rescue group that spells out
responsibilities on both sides. Petfinder offers an
Adopters Bill of Rights
that helps you understand what you can
consider normal and appropriate when you get a dog from a shelter.
In states with “puppy lemon laws,” be sure you and the person
you get the dog from both understand your rights.

Puppy or adult, take your Weimaraner to your veterinarian soon
after adoption. Your veterinarian will be able to spot problems,
and will work with you to set up a preventive regimen that will
help you avoid many health issues.

 

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Learn more about the Weimaraner Vorstehhund.

Weimaraner Temperament

The Weimaraner is a very strong minder, independent, and
energetic dog, with bags so stamina. These large dogs have
boundless energy, and need to be in a household that is active, as
well as with people that have plenty of time and devotion to
dedicate to a pet. Thee dogs do not like to be confined or
neglected, and this can lead to boredom, frustration, and
destructive behavior. These dogs need early socialization,
consistent training, and a confident, assertive owner with some
experience of dog ownership and training. The Weimaraner will
delight in taking part in a range of outdoors activities with his
owner, and is the ideal companion for those that enjoy outdoor
recreation. Although the Weimaraner can be very strong willed,
which can make training a challenge, he is also highly intelligent
and responsive with the right trainer. Some Weimaraners can be
difficult to housebreak.

The Weimaraner tends to get along okay with children, but his
large size may mean that he inadvertently knocks down a small
child. He can be bossy with other dogs, and smaller animals may be
viewed as prey, including cats. When it comes to strangers the
Weimaraner is cautious and wary. He does make an effective watchdog
and will raise the alarm if something appears to be amiss. Although
the Weimaraner can seem like a handful, these large dogs make
excellent companions and pets for owners with the time, energy, and
training ability to handle them effectively.

Weimaraner Appearance

The Weimaraner is a large dog with an athletic build and good
muscle tone. Known as the ‘Silver Ghost’, the coloring of the
Weimaraner ranges from mousy gray to silvery gray. His coat is
sleek, smooth, and close fitting, and he sports an alert and eager
expression. The weight of the Weimaraner is around 55-70 pounds for
females, and 75-90 pounds for males. The height of these dogs is
around 23-25 inches for females, and around 25-27 inches for
males.

Weimaraner Grooming

Although the Weimaraner requires a pretty much no-fuss approach
to grooming, he will need to be brushed on a regular basis in order
to keep his coat sleek and in good condition. With regular brushing
shedding is kept to a minimum with the Weimaraner, which means that
he may prove suitable for some allergy sufferers.

Weimaraner Health Problems and Life
Expectancy

The life expectancy of the Weimaraner is around 10-12 years.
There are a number of health problems to look out for with this
breed, and this includes entropion, heart problems, spinal
problems, digestive issues, bleeding disorders, PRA, HD, elbow
dysplasia, HOD, PRA, torsion, bloat, cancer, skin problems, and
thyroid problems. The parents of the Weimaraner puppy should have
OFA and CERF certificates.

Weimaraner History

The history of the Weimaraner dates back over a century, and he
originates from Germany. Bred to hunt bear, wild boar, and deer,
this breed started to become popular in the USA, Canada, and
England after the Second World War. The breed was registered with
the AKC in 1943.

http://www.justdogbreeds.com/weimaraner.html

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Featured Dog Breed: Weimaraner
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Featured Dog Breed: Weimaraner