Showsight Presents the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

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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