Weimaraner belongs to FCI Group VII, Continental Pointing Dogs type Bracco.
Of course, he is best known for his striking metallic gray color, which used to be called the Gray Ghost, as well as his athletic body build that shows every muscle. But did you know that this dog was once kept a secret?
Weimaraner as a top-secret?
The breed was allegedly “created” in the court of the German Archduke Karl Augustus of Weimar – usually referred to as “zero year” in 1810.
However, this type of dog has existed for centuries, to be exact – sometime since the 13th century, when a similar type was mentioned in the court of Louis IX in France.
The breed is thought to have been obtained by mixing blood hunting, several German pointers, and several French hounds, with the aim of creating a “perfect hunting dog”.
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Originally hunting larger game, such as deer, wolves, bears, and boars, and later (when forests were deforested – industrialization and urbanization) they still used it for bird hunting.
A favorite dog of the German aristocracy
There is no doubt that this dog was primarily intended solely for the aristocracy. A favorite form of entertainment at the time was hunting.
A meeting was held in Erfurt in 1897 with the aim of not only protecting the breed but also banning the use of the breed by ordinary people.
At this meeting, the Weimaraner Club of Germany was established for this purpose and only its members could be entitled to own such a dog.
In the event that they are forced – because of aristocratic rules of good behavior – to leave a dog to some ordinary person.
The dog would be secretly castrated so that it could not be used for breeding! They probably waited until the scar was completely gone.
The club was managed by Major Herber with a steel arm – even inside the club, it was not allowed to breed dogs without the permission of the breeding leader and breed committee. Litters that would be considered of low quality would be destroyed immediately.
But one day, an American, a hunter and a dog breeder named Howard Knight of Providence, Rhode Island, came into this strict German story.
The founding of the Weimar Dynasty in America
Howard Knight has been in Germany for some time hunting and finding out about this well-kept secret breed and wanted to bring the specimen back to America.
Of course, with the intention of cultivation. In 1929, members of the Weimaraner Club agreed (no doubt not without a heavy fee) to allow, as an exception, this stranger to take as many dogs as possible.
But when Knight arrived home, he soon realized that they had a nice sled and the dogs were neutered!
But he didn’t just surrender – it took him nine years to get new dogs, which he managed to do just before World War II broke out.
From them came the entire dynasty of American Weimaraners.
In 1941, the American Weimaraner Club was founded – in 1943 the AKC recognized the breed.
Like its German predecessors, Knight adhered to very strict breeding rules and strictly enforced what Major Herber had laid down as a condition: no sales out of the club, bad litters being destroyed!
However, as is usually the case – the club had more and more members and soon it became impossible to manage the situation.
Ordinary mortals started buying and breeding these beautiful new dogs and soon reached such a price that they were some of the most expensive dogs in the world for a while.
With a parade step and shiny hair, they were destined to become popular with the exhibitors, which of course meant that their exclusivity resounded!
However, the breed does not appear to have deteriorated – at least visually – (although the spirit of Major Herber should be questioned), so Weimaraner is still true to its original type (unlike many other breeds).
In the 1950s he reached the UK and soon – starting with Crufts – conquered the world of dog shows.
As for his performance qualities, this is a 3 in 1 dog;
It is also suitable for many modern dog sports and skills – from agility to snooping, pursuit as a defense/attack (Schutzhund sport), hence a very versatile dog.
Weimaraner also exists in the long-haired variant – its hair is like a setter, silky and fluttering, but shorter.
The long-haired Weimaraner is still not recognized in the AKC (the fight is ongoing) but is by the FCI.
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Unlike the short-haired, whose tail was cut short by half its natural length – the long-haired tail never shortened. Registered hunters may shorten their tail by their own Weimarians.
- Height 57-70 cm
- Weight 25-40 kg
- Color – gray, silver-gray and deer gray
- Hair – short (lines) and long (brushes)
- Activity Level – High (like most hunting dogs, needs an owner who can handle the hunting instinct and run at least 2 hours a day so it may not be the ideal family dog because it requires a lot of attention)
His personality is friendly, obedient, easy to learn, but he is quite protective of his people and can be reserved and quiet trusting of strangers.
This is an active and intelligent dog but in the hunt, it is dedicated without fear.
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Others claim that the breed’s high popularity has led to problems with aggression and separation anxiety in some breeding lines. Yet it is more up to the breeders than the dogs themselves.
A beautiful T-shirt with a Weimaraner fashion detail on it
Weimaraner in popular culture
- Weimaraner has gained unprecedented popularity thanks to photographer William Wegman, who began photographing his dogs in the 1980s in unusual scenery and costumes.
- A Weimaraner first appeared in a Van Dyck painting in the early 1600s.
- President Dwight D. Eisenhower brought his Weimaraner Heidi to the White House.
- The TV show Sesame Street often plays skits and dresses up Weimaraners in human clothes.
- They make excellent police, service for the disabled and search and rescue dogs.