GRIFFON WIREHAIRED POINTING
Let’s Talk Breed Education!
Since then, because of its hunting abilities, sound temperament, conformation, and effortless movement, the Griffon has exploded in popularity. In the eight years between 2008 and 2016, the breed more than doubled in AKC litter registrations. Those numbers do not take into account the litters registered by the North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association (NAVHDA) which is another common registry used by breeders. With an average litter size of 10 puppies (up to 14 puppies is not unusual), there are over 10,000 puppies born annually and this growth is not expected to level off any time soon. A decade ago, seeing a Wirehaired Pointing Griffon was something of a rarity. Seeing one in the show ring was even more rare. The American Wirehaired Pointing Griffon
With this fast rise in popularity, many conformation judges have not previously had the opportunity to judge a good-sized entry. With more Griffons making it to the show ring, the Griffon is no longer considered a “low-entry breed.” However, a dog in the show ring is not just another pretty face. Many of these dogs also have proven performance in the field and have advanced hunting titles with both AKC and NAVHDA. Since the AKC parent club, The American Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Association is relatively new and did not acquire AKC recognition until 1990, what is seen in many areas of the country are a variety of coats, sizes, structure and bone.
This can be confusing to judges, breeders and owners. The following is a brief review designed to assist in judging the Griffon. AVersatile Hunting Dog The Griffon is a versatile hunting dog. It is often referred to as the 4-wheel drive of hunting dogs due to its ability to hunt any terrain for a wide variety of game in all weather.
He has the capability to track a wounded bird in the water because of his keen nose and his strength as a swimmer. And because vast, open hunting grounds are becoming more scarce in the United States, his style — which is to stay within gun range — is becoming increasingly attractive to the modern day hunter. In Europe, Griffs also commonly hunt rabbit, fox and other small furred game. Their intelligence, coupled with a moderate amount of train- ing and exposure to game, will enable the Griff to be an ex- cellent companion for the walking hunter. Their strength and bone density coupled with their confident demeanor allows them to charge through heavy cover in search of prey. The Griff never tiptoes around the edges when he hunts. Instead, he will confidently push his way through heavy cattails and underbrush with ease.
He does it all: points and retrieves and hunts upland birds and waterfowl, exactly what breed developer Eduard Korthals set out to do.
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Size The Griff is a medium-sized hunting dog. Height and proportion are important to maintain function as a versatile hunter )emales are Ý Ý at the withers males are Ý to Ý 7hey are slightly longer than tall a to ratio 7he appearance of a Ý bitch versus a Ý bitch is significantly different and Mudging height can be difficult However, both are equally correct. While the breed standard does not disqualify an oversized dog, it is to be severely penalized. Undersized dogs are also incorrect and should be judged accordingly. The Coat In judging the Griffon, you may see a variety of coat types. 7he coat is designed for protection and warmth in the field )rom the standard ³7he outer coat is medium length, straight and wiry, never curly or woolly. The coat should lay Àat 7he harsh te[ture provides protection in rough cover´ Medium is considered 2 Ý to 3 Ý in length. Coat density and harshness should be checked on the back, shoulders, loin and tail, in an area with no spots. The spots, (also called plates), tend to be less coarse with less guard hair. The Griffon has a double coat, with a softer undercoat that extends to the head and ears. The undercoat provides insulation and protection and the amount of undercoat changes with climate and hormonal cycles.
Color is preferably steel gray with brown markings, freTuently chestnut brown, or roan, white and brown white and orange also acceptable. A uniformly brown coat, all white coat, or white and orange are less desirable. $ blacN coat disTualifie s. The breed should be exhibited in full body coat, not stripped short in pattern. Trimming and stripping are only allowed around the ears, top of head, cheeks and feet. The Head and Neck )rom the standard ³+ead 7he head is to be in proportion to the overall dog. The skull is of medium width with equal length from nose to stop and from stop to occiput. The skull is slightly rounded on top, but from the side the muzzle and head are square. The stop and occiput are only slightly A Griffon’s eyes are soulful and have a human-like quality. The Griffon has an eye that is more round than elliptical, unlike the German Wirehaired Pointer. The eyes should be well open and not protrude. The third eyelid (haws) should not be visible. Eye color ranges from yellow to any shade of brown )rom the standard ³1ecN rather long, slightly arched, no dewlap.” The Griffon must track and pick up large birds to retrieve. The neck needs to be long enough to perform these tasks. The Front Assembly The front assembly of the Griffon is extremely important to the breed’s function. As the standard says, the Griff should have ³shoulders that are long, with good angulation, and well laid back. The forelegs are straight and vertical from the front and set well under the shoulder from the side.” This requires pronounced.” The correct bite is scissor, with under/overshot considered a serious fault.
The facial furnishings are an extension of the undercoat. It can take up to three years for a Griffon coat to fully develop, which sometimes maNes it difficult to Mudge a puppy coat. A puppy should not have a curly or wooly coat, but it may be a bit softer than a mature adult coat. The coat on the tail is the same as the body any type of plume is prohibited 2ften the dog in the ring is the dog who e[cels in the field, so allowances should be made for some wearing of both facial furnishings from pushing through cover, and from neck hair worn from a hunt collar.
adequate length of upper arm for the forelegs to be in the correct position. The depth of chest should be level with the elbow.
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The Back, Topline and Tail Set From the AKC breed standard ³the bacN is strong and firm,
Summary These elements of breed type should not be overlooked when judging the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon. They are listed in no specific order. • Structurally sound front assembly: This is critical in the field and very difficult to get back once a breed loses this functional characteristic. • Slightly sloped topline, parallel to the ground during movement, no dips. • Reach and drive: should be able to see rear pads at the trot; front legs should reach to the end of the nose. Correct movement is essential. • Coat Texture: As a sporting dog, the medium-length (2 Ý to 3 Ý in length), harsh coat is important. Check the coat on the back away from any plates (spots). The breed should be exhibited in full body coat, not stripped short in pattern. Trimming and stripping are only allowed around the ears, top of head, cheeks and feet. • Well-muscled rear with moderate angulation – Long thigh bone, angulation balanced with the front. • Size – The Griff is a substantially-built sporting dog, but being over the height standard
descending in a gentle slope from the slightly higher withers to the base of the tail. The croup and rump are stoutly made with
adequate length to favor speed. The tail extends from the back in a continuation of the topline. It may be carried straight or raised slightly.” The Griffon should be well-m uscled, with good bone to effectively worN the field The Rear Assembly 7he standard reads ³7he thighs are long and wellmuscled Angulation in balance with the front. The legs are vertical with the hocNs turning neither in nor out 7he stiÀe and hocN joints are strong and well angulated.” Hocks placed close
together or cow hocks are incorrect. The Griff in Motion
As is with all sporting dogs, movement is paramount. From t he $.& 6tandard ³$lthough close worNing, the *riffon should cover ground in an efficient, tireless manner He is a medium speed dog with perfect coordination be- tween front and rear legs. At a trot, both front and rear legs tend to converge toward the centerline.” Rear drive should be evident by the ability to see the rear pads during a fast trot. The reach of the motion is indicated by the extension of the front legs to the end of the nose. The front and rear legs converging gives that easy-going gait. A Griff in motion should give you the impression of an effortless gait and that he could cover ground all day long.
is considered a serious fault. Undersized is also incorrect and judged accordingly.
This article was approved by the AKC Parent Club, the American Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Association. Written by Lisa Durand, AWPGA Judges Education Mentor/Presenter, Breeder of Merit and Lisa Boyer, DVM, AWPGAAKC Delegate and Breeder of Merit.
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Official Standard of the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon
Hindquarters: The thighs are long and well muscled. Angulation in balance with the front. The legs are vertical with the hocks turning neither in nor out. The stifle and hock joints are strong and well angulated. Feet as in front. Coat: The coat is one of the distinguishing features of the breed. It is a double coat. The outer coat is medium length, straight and wiry, never curly or woolly. The harsh texture provides protection in rough cover. The obligatory undercoat consists of a fine, thick down, which provides insulation as well as water resistance. The undercoat is more or less abun- dant, depending upon the season, climate, and hormone cycle of the dog. It is usually lighter in color. The head is furnished with a prominent mustache and eye- brows. These required features are extensions of the undercoat, which gives the Griffon a somewhat untidy appearance. The hair covering the ears is fairly short and soft, mixed with longer harsh hair from the coat. The overall feel is much less wiry than the body. The legs, both front and rear, are covered with denser, shorter, and less coarse hair. The coat on the tail is the same as the body; any type of plume is prohibited. The breed should be exhibited in full body coat, not stripped short in pattern. Trimming and stripping are only allowed around the ears, top of head, cheeks and feet. Color: Preferably steel gray with brown markings, frequent- ly chestnut brown, or roan, white and brown; white and orange also acceptable. A uniformly brown coat, all white coat, or white and orange are less desirable. A black coat dis- qualifies. Gait: Although close working, the Griffon should cover ground in an efficient, tireless manner. He is a medium-speed dog with perfect coordination between front and rear legs. At a trot, both front and rear legs tend to converge toward the center line of gravity. He shows good extension both front and rear. Viewed from the side, the topline is firm and paral- lel to the line of motion. A smooth, powerful ground-covering ability can be seen. Temperament: The Griffon has a quick and intelligent mind and is easily trained. He is outgoing, shows a tremendous willingness to please and is trustworthy. He makes an excel- lent family dog as well as a meticulous hunting companion. Disqualifications: Nose any color other than brown. Black coat.
General Appearance: Medium sized, with a noble, square- shaped head, strong of limb, bred to cover all terrain encoun- tered by the walking hunter. Movement showing an easy cat- like gracefulness. Excels equally as a pointer in the field, or a retriever in the water. Coat is hard and coarse, never curly or woolly, with a thick undercoat of fine hair, giving an unkempt appearance. His easy trainability, devotion to family, and friendly temperament endear him to all. The nickname of "supreme gundog" is well earned. Size, Proportion, Substance: Size-22 to 24 inches for males, 20 to 22 inches for females. Correct size is important. Oversize to be severely penalized. Proportion - Slightly longer than tall, in a ratio of 10 to 9. Height from withers to ground; length from point of shoulder to point of buttocks. The Griffon must not evolve towards a square conformation. Substance medium, reflecting his work as an all- terrain hunting dog. Head: The head is to be in proportion to the over- all dog. The skull is of medium width with equal length from nose to stop and from stop to occiput. The skull is slightly rounded on top, but from the side the muzzle and head are square. The stop and occiput are only slightly pronounced. The required abundant mustache and eyebrows contribute to the friendly expression. The eyes are large and well open, more rounded than elliptical. They have an alert, friendly, and intelligent expression. Eye color ranges in all shades of yel- low and brown. Haws should not show nor should there be protruding eyes. The ears should be of medium size, lying flat and close to the head, set high, at the height of the eye line. Nose-Well open nostrils are essential. Nose color is always brown. Any other color is a disqualification. Bite scis- sors. Overshot or undershot bite is a serious fault. Neck, Topline, Body: Neck- rather long, slightly arched, no dewlap. Topline- The back is strong and firm, descending in a gentle slope from the slightly higher withers to the base of the tail. Body- Chest- The chest must descend to the level of the elbow, with a moderate spring of rib. The chest must nei- ther be too wide nor too narrow, but of medium width to allow freedom of movement. The loin is strong and well developed, being of medium length. The croup and rump are stoutly made with adequate length to favor speed. The tail extends from the back in a continuation of the topline. It may be carried straight or raised slightly. It is docked by one-third to one-half length. Forequarters: Shoulders are long, with good angulation, and well laid back. The forelegs are straight and vertical from the front and set well under the shoulder from the side. Pasterns are slightly sloping. Dewclaws should be removed. Feet are round, firm, with tightly closed webbed toes. Pads are thick.
Approved October 8, 1991 Effective November 28, 1991
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The WIREHAIRED POINTING GRIFFON
German Wirehaired Pointer with more hair in regard to the amount of leg to height. This creates an outline that is distinctly Wirehaired Pointing Griffon. LG: The most misunderstood aspect of this breed is the idea that they don’t need a job to be good friends and compan- ions to their families. They make terrific family members, but if they don’t have a job, they will create one... such as gnawing on the family’s Oriental rug, or eliminating the need for a garbage disposal. They are easily bored and while they aren’t super busy, they need to be engaged physically and mentally. A tired Griff and a well-trained Griff is a great member of a household. From a judging standpoint, the most misunderstood aspect of this breed is that “bigger is better”. If one takes into consideration the function of this breed and the rationale for its devel- opment, it is obvious that an over sized dog is incorrect and, in my opinion, should not be rewarded. 2. What about him makes him stand out in the group ring? DB: For me in the group ring it is the honesty of the breed-purposeful conformation, sound movement that is not “fancy” and practical coat. They look like working sporting dogs. LG: This is a question I always have mixed feelings about. A Griff, specifically intended to be moderate in every aspect, probably shouldn’t stand out in the Group, but somehow it does. In a Group which encompasses so many striking breeds, to me those aspects of the breed which bring it to group attention are its wonderful shag- giness, balance and movement. It can be an intensely happy dog in the ring and that, as with any breed, can single it out. A not-overly groomed, well-moving, coarse- coated shaggy beast is a joy to behold, at least for me. I believe that the Griff’s superior hunting instincts serve him well as a pet only with an active and engaging family (there’s that word engage again). By engaging I mean allowing the dog to use its natural gifts, if not for hunt- ing, then for analogous activities. For example, Griffs are amazing trackers... enter them in tracking events. Or let
I live in Pennsylvania on 14 acres. My interests outside of dogs are gardening and traveling. I started in dogs in 1977 (38 years) and I started judging in 1999. My dogs (Chesapeake Bay Retrievers) were always expected to be good hunters and I take that view in my judging of all the Sporting breeds.
LINDA GAGNON I live in Massachusetts with my husband, a trainer and hunt test judge, on 27 acres, mostly wooded, with acreage cleared and fenced for dogs to run and “ex”. Outside of dogs, I do... dogs! I’m retired and spend much of my free time involved in dog club activities: chair a show, assistant chair another and serve on boards of three kennel clubs. Before retirement I was a Senior Counselor in Vocational Rehabilitation for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. I’ve been showing dogs since 1973... help! I started with Dandie Dinmonts and my husband and I obtained our first Griff in 1992. She was shown to a Championship, was hunted to a title and bred very suc- cessfully. That was our beginning. So, I’ve been showing for 42 years (God, am I really that old? Do I look that old?). I’ve only been judging for four years and currently judge Griffs and Dandies, with applications for more breeds “coming soon to a dog show near you”. 1. What is the most misunderstood aspect of this fasci- nating breed? DB: The most misunderstood is what is correct size and proportion. There is a tendency to see this breed judged ignoring its size and that it is not to look like a
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“The misundersTanding is To ignore The size sTandard. if The biggesT is The besT, use iT, buT if There is a dog of equal qualiTy which meeTs The size sTandard, use iT.”
them use their nose in barn hunts. Bring them on hikes and/or long walks. Do not let them become couch pota- toes and do not, ever, let them be in charge. A Griff can take over in a heartbeat and a spoiled Griff, like any dog, is not a pretty picture.
“slicks”. These latter resemble GSPs more than Griffs. Not a good thing!
6. What do you think new judges misunderstand about the breed? LG: I think new judges misunderstand several things about this breed. As the former Judges Ed Coordinator and Chair, I always advised to put up the best dog in the judge’s opinion. If it’s the “big one”, so be it. The misun- derstanding is to ignore the size standard. If the biggest is the best, use it, but if there is a dog of equal quality which meets the size standard, use it. Another misun- derstanding is re: the coat. The breed should not be over groomed. Much of the Griff’s charm is the result of its “bed head” appearance—neatened, bathed, combed/ brushed, appropriately trimmed. Period. And the coat should not be soft. Please. No matter how good it can be made to look, if it’s not correct, it won’t “throw” correct. 7. Is there anything else you’d like to share about the breed? LG: What I’d like to share about this breed would be an entire article, and I’m sure that’s not your intent. To judges: Please consider the dog’s purpose when award- ing. The standard is there for a reason and use your best judgment. To owners: Give these dogs the opportunity to be the best they can be. Give them limits and jobs (if not hunted), so they can be the best companions and friends possible. Use their minds, their innate talents and their hearts! 8. And, for a bit of humor: What’s the funniest thing you’ve ever experienced at a dog show? LG: OMG, as they say. I am the world’s worst handler, so the funniest thing I’ve experienced at a dog show involves... me. This latter doesn’t even involve my very first show where I entered the ring with a dog lead in my left hand and my purse in my right. Or asking the judge, who had just awarded my puppy and me a five point major, “Are you sure?” I guess it’s the time I wore thigh high stock- ings in the ring and as I gaited my Dandies, they began to roll down. I finished the round with my legs together from hips to knees. (At least it’s not an underwear story. I don’t actually have one of those.)
3. Describe the breed in three words. LG: Unkempt, goofy and joyous.
4. Are there any traits in this breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? LG: Exaggeration of traits is an easy trend. I think size, if considered a “trait”, is an issue. There are some great Griffs that are, in my opinion, too large. Those dogs are rewarded and, therefore, bred to. So, oversized dogs become the norm. Again, keeping in mind the dog’s origi- nal purpose, the latter is a problem. Also, softer more “groomable” coats are becoming prevalent. Think again of function as opposed to pretty. A soft coat is no help in the field and, very fortunately, this breed still retains its original purpose and is shown frequently during the same period. So, please folks... reduce size and work toward coarser coats. 5. Do you think the dogs you see in this breed are bet- ter now than they were when you first started judg- ing? Why or why not? DB: Over grooming of the coat and—horrors—some clipping. The breed is much, much better than when I started judging them. There is more consistency to the look of the breed—proportions especially. When I started, you would see leggy GWP type and short, dumpy legged dogs. Breeders are doing a good job on structure and soundness of movement, which goes with that. LG: I only started judging 4 years ago, so I don’t think I can answer this question from a judging standpoint. From a breeding standpoint, I think Griffs, in large part, still resemble the “progenitors”, the gaggle of Griffs that were used in developing the breed. I think the quality of what is being bred is still high, but among those few who still breed only for field or only for the pet market (fortunately a rarity), it is compromised to a degree. Some who breed for field only are producing what I consider
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Judging the WIREHAIRED POINTING GRIFFON By Mary Kiblan
I t is a Sporting Breed that has languished in the shadows of the “big running dogs” for years. Now it is a breed newly discov- ered in the fi eld and in the home. And it is a breed poised on the edge of a popularity explosion. Th e Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff on was bred to be versatile—and he is. He was bred to hunt any terrain for a wide variety of game in all weathers. He has the capa- bility to track a wounded bird in the water because of his keen nose and his strength as a swimmer. And because vast, open hunt- ing grounds are becoming more scarce, his style—which is gun range—is becom- ing increasingly attractive to the modern day hunter. Th e Gri ff on has the capacity to go into heavy cover and retrieve a bird where other breeds cannot. Th is dog is also a “clean-up man”. He will often track and fi nd wounded game when the larger rang- ing dogs do not. When you take your fi rst look at this dog in the ring, you should see the symme- try and balance that spell power. You may also see a variety of type. Remember, this is a relatively new breed in this country; the Parent Club AWPGA did not acquire AKC recognition until 1990. Prior to that there was a Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff on Club in the US but it outcrossed dogs and was not recognized by the AKC. In the last few years, the American breeders have produced some very com- petitive, very nice dogs—included in which are several Best in Show winners. At our National Specialties almost every dog in the Best of Breed ring has at least two legs on an AKC, NAVHDA or NASTRA Perfor- mance title in addition to its Champion- ship. Th e Judges are “wowed” by this. Not very many breeds can make that claim. Th is is a medium-sized breed. Th ere are two hallmarks of the WPG. One is size and proportion, the other is coat.
Proportion is very important. Th e Gri ff is slightly longer than tall: as 10 is to 9. Height in the bitches is 20"-22" and the males 22"-24". As you can see, this is not a big dog, but you must see good substance. Oversize is to be severally penalized. Th e coat is a double coat. Fine, dense undercoat and wiry outercoat. Th e coat lays fl at and is never curly or wooly. It is of medium length. When you put your hands on the body, the coat should feel harsh. Th e hair on the head and ears is an exten- sion of the undercoat with some of the feel of the outer coat. In Europe the head is commonly stripped somewhat close leav- ing abundant eyebrows and moustache. You will see this in this country and it is entirely permissible. Th e Standard says “unkempt look” but this does not mean unclean, uncombed and unbrushed! Th is is a wire coat and as such requires mainte- nance. Th e coat should be rotated or rolled to keep it healthy; this can sometimes be done with just a fi ne comb, sometimes with stripping. Th e Gri ff on is not to be stripped in a pattern; but neither should it look neglected. Th e judge should see and feel a healthy, harsh coat of medium length. It should be noted that when judging the WPG you will frequently see a less than ideal coat in your puppy classes. An
old adage in this breed is that it can take three years before the correct coat devel- ops. In a puppy one should not see a curly or woolly coat, but may see a rather soft coat. Th is should not be penalized. Th is coat will change over time. Th is may be one area in the Gri ff on ring where it is appropriate for a judge to ask a dog’s age. Best areas to check coat texture are over the loin, shoulders and tail. Th e dark, solid patches are not appropriate as those areas are actually undercoat. Th e Gri ff on has a noble head. Viewed from the side it is square; not rectangu- lar! Th e distance from the occiput to the medium stop is the same as from the stop to the end of the nose. Viewed from the front the head is moderately broad and the top of the skull is slightly rounded. Th is head must not have a narrow look. Th e Gri ff on has a round eye unlike the GWP which is more elliptical. Th is gives the Gri ff on an owlish look. Th e eyes should not protrude nor should haws show. Th e eyes of a Gri ff on should be visible. Th is is not a Bouvier head! Eye color ranges from yellow to any shade of brown. Nose is any shade of brown. A black nose or black coats are disqualifying faults. Th e bite is scissor. Undershot or over- shot mouths are to be severally penalized.
A versatile hunter excelling in both upland game and waterfowl.
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A well developed under jaw should be easily discernible. Th e ear is of medium length. It sits high on the head. Th e fold of the ear is eye level. Th e ear lays fl at to the skull. Th is breed possesses a noble bearing and is not aloof. He is an outgoing dog and should never show shyness or aggression. Anything other than sound temperament should be penalized. When you go over the dog, remember this dog was bred to work in all terrain— mountainous, rocky, fl at, dry and swampy. He has a moderate spring of rib. Th e chest extends to the elbow to allow good lung capacity but at the same time a complete, correct movement of the upper arm. Th e loin is moderate of length and strong. Th is is important as a strong loin transmits the rear leg drive through the back.. Th ere is good balanced angulation front and rear—neither over angulated nor under angulated. Pasterns are slightly sloping, neither upright nor 45° as in the Shepherd. Th is is important as the pastern absorbs much of the shock of rough ground. Shoulders are well laid back. Neck is rather long, slightly arched and well set in to the shoulders. Hocks are perpendicular. When viewed from the front, the chest is moderate. Shoulders are never loaded. Front legs are perpendicular to the ground. Cow-hocks are a fault. Neither should the hocks turn out. Feet are round, well arched and tight. Pads are thick. Toes are webbed. Feet are an important feature often over- looked by the Judge. A hare’s foot is incor- rect in the Gri ff on. Th e croup is level with the topline. Th e tail is an extension of the topline and is car- ried level or slightly higher than the topline. A gay tail is undesirable and is an indication of a faulty croup. Th e tail is docked by ⅓ to ½ . Any type of plume is prohibited. An undocked tail is not permitted. Th e Gri ff on should show good mus- cling in the fore and rear quarters and over the loin. Th e thigh is broad. In motion the back should be fi rm and level and one should see beautiful reach and drive, never hackneyed. No wasted motion; moving
close in the rear is a fault as is any wasted motion in front. At a trot the front and rear legs converge to a center line. Remem- ber, this dog must be able to move in an e ffi cient, tireless manner. He must search, freeze when he fi nds his quarry, he must carry everything from a grouse to a goose to his owner and start all over again. He must be able to do this all day, perhaps six or seven days in a row! So now we come to the question of breed type. And type, to me, is as much a matter of the eye as it is a summation of parts of the Standard. It is a concept that is on the one hand concrete and on the other hand de fi es description. Th e good Gri ff on has beautiful bone and substance. He is not a “reedy” looking dog. He has an iron hard level topline, a level tailset, is beautifully, powerfully balanced, front and rear and has a harsh coat. You should see a beautiful headpiece and neck. He is noble of bearing and sound of mind. Th ese are the points on paper. Th e part that de fi es description is in the eye of the beholder! With some people it is a gift they are born with. Th at indescrib- able something. A gift that enables one to spot the “ideal”. With others it is a marvel- ous ability to study a Standard and proj- ect it on to every dog in front of them in the ring. However you arrive at it: “Type” truly is a concept of all that is correct. Hopefully this discussion will leave you with a better understanding and apprecia- tion of the Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff on. BIO Mary Kiblan lives on a farm with two Dobermans, three Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff ons and Black Angus Cattle. She has been in Purebred dogs since 1956.
Top: Correct movement in a Griffon; Middle: The eye is round with good fill underneath; Bottom: A correct head, eye, ear and furnishings.
This article appeared in ShowSight Magazine February 2012. Reprinted with permission from the author.
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“FIELD” VS. “SHOW” DOGS— for Griffons it’s One & the Same! By Kristi Rogney
W hile some Sport- ing Dog breeds and breed clubs have struggled with the split of their breed into the “field” versus “show” lines, the American Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff on Association (AWPGA) and its members have worked hard to keep their breed true to the following two breed club mission statements: t0CKFDU PG DMVC TIBMM CF UP FODPVSBHF and promote the quality breeding of Pure- bred Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff ons—and to do all possible to bring their natural hunting qualities to perfection. t 5P VSHF NFNCFST BOE CSFFEFST to accept the standard of the breed as approved by the AKC as the only standard of excellence by which the Wirehaired 1PJOUJOH(SJĊPOTIBMMCFKVEHFE Th e AWPGA has embraced the descrip- tion of the Gri ff on as a “Versatile Hunt- ing Dog.” Not only a field dog that hunts game, but he is also e ff ective in hunt tests, tracking, obedience, show and agility. In the United States, largely due to the e ff orts of the AWPGA, many Wirehaired Point- ing Gri ff ons have demonstrated their competitive merit by earning obedience, agility, field, hunt and show titles, includ- ing NAVHDA (North American Versa- tile Hunting Dog Association) Versatile Champion, National Shoot to Retrieve Association Champion, AKC Master Hunter and AKC Best in Show. Th e AWPGA celebrates the achieve- ments of their member’s Gri ff ons in all venues in their quarterly magazine, Th e Gri ff onnier . Th e AWPGA also holds an "XBSET#BORVFUFBDIZFBSJODPOKVODUJPO with their National Specialty. Awards and Recognition are given to club members
from around the US and Canada for their achievements in the show ring, the field, PCFEJFODF BOE BHJMJUZ 0OF TVDI BXBSE iɨF $BQJUBJOF 'SBDBTTF $IBMMFOHF 5SP - phy”, is awarded to a Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff on who is an AKC Bench Champion of record and earning the greatest num- ber of points in AKC, NAVHDA and/ PS/453"mFME QFSGPSNBODF UFTUT PS USJ - als in a given calendar year. Th is particu- lar award celebrates the dual role of AKC bench Champion and outstanding field performance. In 2012, the inaugural Korthals Cup FWFOU XBT IFME JO DPOKVODUJPO XJUI UIF
club’s National Specialty. Entry require- ments were limited to Gri ff ons that had top field titles such as AKC Master Hunter, CKC Field Dog Excellent, NAVHDA Ver- satile Champions, Utility I and 2 Prized dogs. Th is competitive event encompassed both field and water work. Th e event drew in some of the best field tested dogs in the country, many of them also competing in UIF 4QFDJBMUZ BT XFMM 0G UIF FOUSJFT 8 of them were AKC and/or CKC Bench Champions and one AKC Grand Cham- pion. Th e 2012 National Specialty saw the top-winning show dogs all carrying hunting titles which included AKC Junior,
AM/CANCH Duchasseur Bayou CGN FDAGNS UT I t4 )08 4 *()5 . "(";*/& . ":
Left: GCH Flatbrook’s Heir About Him MH NA III; Right: GCH Stonehenge Willo’The Wisp JH CA NAII
Senior and Master Hunters along with multiple NAVHDA prized dogs taking the IJHIFTUIPOPSTPG#FTU0G#SFFE 0QQPTJUF Sex, Select Dog/Bitch and Award of Mer- its. When you combine the Korthal’s Cup with the results of the National Specialty itself, one can see that the Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff on is truly a breed that keeps its original purpose at the forefront with dedicated owners willing to compete with their dogs in all venues. Th ere are many excellent examples of how club members have worked with dedication to promote top winning dogs in the field, the ring and in our breeding QSPHSBNT0VSUPQQSPEVDJOHTJSFPG",$ Champions in 2008, 2010 and 2011 was AM/CAN CH Duchasseur Bayou CGN '% "(/4 65 * i#BZPVw #BZPV IBT produced many AKC and CKC bench Champions including many top ranked show dogs. He has also produced more than 56 NAVHDA Natural Ability Prized pups, 2 Utility Prep Prized dogs and 12 Utility Prized Dogs, including 5 with Prize I’s. He has produced 7 litters of pup- pies that earned a NAVHDA Breeder’s Award for Natural Ability. Bayou, himself, is a CKC multiple group placing, RBIS XJOOFS "0. XJOOFS BU &VLBOVCB National Championship and 2005 Win- OFST %PH BOE "0. XJOOFS BU PVS AWPGA National Specialty. In 2009, he was awarded Best Stud Dog at the Nation- al Specialty. In 2011, Bayou was the #1 'JFME 5SJBM (SJĊPO JO $BOBEB JO UIF
5PQ5FO1PJOUJOH%PHTJO$BOBEBBOEUIF AQGAPD Poule Korthals winner. Th e 2012 AWPGA Korthals Cup win- OFSBOEKPJOUXJOOFSPGUIF$BQJUBJOF 'SBDBTTF $IBMMFOHF 5SPQIZ XBT 7$ ". CAN CH Duchasseur Crownpoint JHR $%/"*65* i$SVw *O$SVmO - JTIFEJOUIF5PQ5FO1PJOUJOH%PHTJO the CKC and placed in several field trials in Canada. She has earned multiple place- NFOUT JO0CFEJFODF5SJBMT JO UIF64BOE Canada. Cru also competes in the show ring; always owner handled, and is a mul- tiple Best of Breed winner. She took a CKC Best Puppy in Sporting Group, and JO$SVFBSOFE#FTUPG0QQPTJUF4FYBU the AWPGA National Specialty. Th is past year, all five of the Wire- haired Pointing Gri ff ons earning West- minster invitations had hunting titles; the only Sporting Dog breed to make UIBU DMBJN 0VS UPQ mWF TIPX EPHT (breed points) in the US for 2012 includ- FE +VOJPS )VOUFST B 4FOJPS )VOUFS NAVHDA Utility II Prize dog and a Master Hunter. Th e Best of Breed win- OFS GPS 8FTUNJOTUFS ,FOOFM $MVC and 2012 Eukanuba National Champi- onship was GCH Flatbrook’s Heir About Him MH NA III, that also earned an "81(" 'JFME %PH 5JUMF JO GPS completion of the AKC Senior and Mas- ter Hunter titles in 2011. Receiving other top honors as Best of Breed at the 2012 /BUJPOBM4QFDJBMUZBOE#FTUPG0QQPTJUF 4FY BU 8FTUNJOTUFS ,FOOFM $MVC
was GCH Stonehenge Willo’ Th e Wisp JH CA NA II; another multi field titled/ top winning show bitch. Th ese Gri ff ons are following a long tradition of field titled Gri ff ons in the show ring compet- ing at the highest level. Since 1992, two AKC Master Hunters, three AKC Senior Hunters and eight AKC Junior Hunters have won Best of Breed honors at the Westminster Kennel Club shows. Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff ons like these that are able to succeed in multiple ven- ues at the highest levels are more common than rare. Th e AWPGA will continue to encourage their members to promote their dogs in all venues. In doing so, we hope in the future that the Gri ff on will continue to be true to both the original purpose and physical attributes as outlined in our breed standard—medium sized, with a noble, square-shaped head, strong of limb, bred to cover all terrain encountered by the walking hunter. Movement showing an easy catlike gracefulness. Excels equally as a pointer in the field, or a retriever in the water. Coat is hard and coarse, never curly or woolly, with a thick undercoat of fine hair, giving an unkempt appearance. His easy trainability, devotion to family, and friendly temperament endear him to all. Th e nickname of “supreme gundog” is well earned. *IPQFZPVIBWFFOKPZFEMFBSOJOHNPSF about our wonderful, versatile dogs and the work we do to celebrate and promote our breed.
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LIVING WITH A Wirehaired Pointing Griffon
By Susan Edginton
he Wirehaired Pointing Gri ff on (WPG or Gri ff ) is a versatile sporting/ hunting dog used to hunt upland game birds and waterfowl.
With their bushy beards, and an ability to sop up all the water from their bowl, you may find that your floors are cleaner and your face wetter with a Gri ff in the house. Th ey have a goofy personality and often greet you with something in their mouth (a shoe, a toy) wanting to play. If left alone, they will find something to occupy them with a purpose; food on the countertop, leather shoes left out, any- thing in the yard, a tissue that surely must need shredding, inventing games. Life Span & Coat Care Given proper care, nutrition, and exer- cise they can live for 12 years and some as long as 15. Gri ff s don’t shed a lot and usually have an unkempt look. Th ey need brushing about once week, trimming around their paws and ears as needed, and an occasional stripping of their coat espe- cially as they lose puppy coat. A Gri ff is not fully mature until about 3 years old, when their coats are full and their bodies are fully developed.
Should You Get a Male or Female? This depends upon your personal preference. Their sizes vary with the sex, males are larger 22"-24" at the shoulder and 55-65 pounds; females are 20"-22" and 45-55 pounds. There are some differences in personality, but nothing signif icant. Where can I Find a WPG? Th e WPGs are still relatively rare. If you are fortunate to live near a respect- ed and reputable breeder, or find one in another location, you may find yourself on a waiting list, and it is worth the wait. Do your homework and find the correct breeder for you. Griffons are a delight to live with and Griff owners agree that their lives have NEVER been the same since they introduced the WPG into their house- hold and THEY became beloved by a Griff. Be prepared to answer the ques- tion “What kind of dog is that?” on a daily basis.
Th e Gri ff on is an intelligent, athletic, slower paced, closer working hunter. Grif- fons tend to “check in” with their humans when hunting. With webbed paws and a double coat, they are excellent swimmers. If you ask owners who hunt with them, they are the ultimate all-weather, all-ter- rain hunters. In Europe, they are used to hunt small game, and to track wounded prey. Many Gri ff ons are dual field and show ring champions. Th ey also com- pete in Agility, Obedience, Tracking and Hunt Tests. Gri ff s do it all. Gri ff s can be happy as pets in a non-hunting home, but it needs to be in a very active one, so they are able to exercise as if on a hunt. Th ey very well may hunt birds, rabbits and squirrels in your backyard. (You may have even seen them point birds in the show rings.) Th ey are happiest when work- ing hard. Gri ff s are not good city dwell- ers, nor a kennel dog 24/7. In general, a Gri ff is a good family dog, playful, gentle, faithful and protective of its family. Living With a Griff Gri ff s are easily trained. Th ey want to please their owners, and a light hand is recommended. Many a Gri ff owner knows a Gri ff does not think of itself as a dog, but a person and as such wants to be with its people as much as possible. Th ere are many words that can be applied to this breed: smart, clownish, curious, passion- ate, exuberant, of sound temperament… just ask their owners and you’ll find many more that apply. Gri ff puppies work their way into your heart the first time you hold them. Th ey love to play and often chal- lenge you with their antics.
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