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The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Temperament, Personality (+More)

It should come as no surprise that the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon temperament is a loving and devoted one. You can see it in his small, soft eyes that positively blaze with love.

A Gentle, Pleasing Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Temperament

The Wirehaired Pointing Griffin Temperament and Personality

Don't let the Wirehaired Pointing Griffin temperament fool you. He has a rough, hardworking side to him too. This side of his personality is a better match for his rugged and naturally bedraggled appearance.

The “Supreme Gundog”

Of all the gundogs in all the world, the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon is the “supreme gundog.” What this means is the Griffon is just as good at being a hunting dog as he is at being the family dog.

The Griffon earned his “supreme gundog” nickname for his energy level and natural intelligence.


The Griffon is one of those dogs whom you can't leave alone for long periods of time. If he starts to feel lonely, he channels his loneliness into destructive chewing and nuisance barking.

If you have a full-time job and no one else is home, or if you have a busy schedule that keeps you out of the house a lot of the time, then the Griffon may not be a good match for your lifestyle.

Protective Wirehaired Pointing Griffin Temperament

The Griffon is great at protecting his humans from anything he feels may be a danger. He is never aggressive toward humans, but he can become aggressive with other dogs whom he feels are encroaching upon his territory.

His protective nature stems from his background as a hunter, which can also make him a natural enemy to small animals, particularly cats. So, if you have cats at home, the Griffon may not be well-suited for your family.


The Griffon is a friendly dog once he gets to know you. However, upon first meeting you, he may seem a bit aloof. This is a defense mechanism that he will realize he no longer needs once you show him how kind and loving you are.

He Can Be a Clown Sometimes

Many Griffons are serious dogs, but some have no problem clowning around from time to time. Every dog is an individual with an individual personality.

Good with Children

When it comes to kids, the Griffon does well enough, though he tends to do better with older children.

Teach your child how to interact properly with the Griffon. In other words, teach the child not to pull the dog's tail, or shove things in his ears. If your child can understand these things, then the Griffon should do well with younger children too.

In any event, you should always supervise your children when they're around the family pet, regardless of their age. Children can be just as unpredictable in these situations as animals, so it's best to keep an eye out to make sure that no one accidentally gets hurt.

A Brief History of the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Breed

There are three separate reasons why the Wirehaired Pointing Griffin has such a long name. The first obviously refers to his coat, the second to his skills as a hunter, and the third is another name for a “Russian setter.”

Most experts agree that the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon originated from the desire to create the quintessential gun dog.

What the experts don't agree on, however, are the breeds used to create the Griffon.

Most believe the Griffon we know today is a combination of an Otterhound with Setters and Spaniels and maybe even a Pointer thrown in.

Training a Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

Most intelligent breeds are a chore to train because with that intelligence comes a fair degree of stubbornness. Not so with the Griffon.

He loves to learn, and more than anything, he wants to please his master.

Many breeds are easily distracted during training or couple their intelligence with a side of pigheadedness. This is yet another area where the Griffon excels as a breed.

Because the Griffon is eager to please and excited to learn, all you really need to do to train him is, as always, remain consistent, and use hand signals and vocal commands. Those are all you really need to keep him focused.

Italian wire-haired pointing dog bathing in the summer

Other breeds can be like high school kids who aren't as interested in learning because they have to be there. The Griffon, on the other hand, is a college student. He wants to be here because he loves to learn.

Helpful Dog Training Resource:

For help with training your Wirehaired Pointing Griffon dog, you should take a look at The Online Dog Trainer by Doggy Dan. Doggy Dan is an expert Dog Trainer based in New Zealand. His online resource contains Hundreds of Excellent Dog Training Videos that will take you step-by-step through the process of developing a healthy, happy well-behaved dog.

The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon's Appearance

It is important to note just how messy an adult Griff can look. This is because they grow up to look wildly different from how they look as puppies.

This can throw off some folks who would rather own a “beautiful” dog. But, as we all know, beauty is in the eye of the beholder – and also in the temperament of the dog.

A healthy adult Wirehaired Pointing Griffon grows to between 20 and 24 inches in height and is between 51 and 60 lb in weight.

The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon colors in include:

  • Liver
  • White with brown or orange
  • Grey with brown or tan
  • Chestnut

Grooming a Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

You may look at the coat of a Griff and think, “where do I start?”, or “how do I brush him without hurting him?”

Beautiful Italian Wire-haired Pointing Dog resting in the garden

The truth is, it looks more difficult to groom a Griff than it is to actually get down to the business of doing it.

He doesn't shed much, and his shorter coat dries fairly quickly after a bath. You may want to brush him weekly anyway, just to free any dirt that his coat may trap.

Because he doesn't shed as much as other breeds, he falls into the “hypoallergenic” group of dogs. While this doesn't mean he is allergen-free, it does mean that people with allergies may be able to have a dog without suffering for it.

You'll also need to pluck out any of the Griff's dead hairs. This is a process known as “rolling” or “stripping” the coat.

As for baths, he doesn't really need the standard dog bath. No soap required.

Just rinse him off with some fresh water, and he's good to go, especially if he's been playing in the ocean or a chlorinated pool. Other than that, his coat is fairly self-cleaning.

The remainder of his care is the same as that of any dog: trim his nails, keep his ears clean, and be sure to brush his teeth regularly.

Health of a Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

You don't have to worry too much about the Griff's health. On average, he is less prone to diseases than other breeds can be.

The only real issues seen commonly in this breed are hip dysplasia, which affects nearly if not all breeds, and eye issues – that's about it.

Of course, don't discount any signs of something being amiss. Just because it isn't common doesn't mean it's not possible.

And as with any breed, take care not to overindulge the Griffon with treats or by overfeeding him. If you allow him to become overweight, this can lead to a host of health problems that you could have otherwise avoided if you had fed him a healthy diet.

A Griff's average lifespan is about 12 to 14 years. This is pretty standard for a dog of this size.

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The Griffon makes a great companion for those who love being active and playing sports. He'll be right there with you, hiking, jogging, or playing fetch.

And because he's a hunting dog, he's pretty good at playing fetch! He may be slow to start, but that's only because he's measuring his time, waiting for the “prey” to land before he points, sets, and retrieves it.

Top Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Mixes

If a mixed breed dog is what you seek, look no further! Here are the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon mixes I am aware of that are out there. While the list is small, there are surely other mixed breeds out there – they just don't have the fancy names yet.

  • Great Wirehaired Gryfenees (Great Pyrenees mix)
  • Wirehaired Pointing Griffiondor (Labrador Retriever mix and yes, you can actually have a dog with “Gryffindor” from the Harry Potter universe in his name – sort of)

Wirehaired Pointing Griffon vs. German Wirehaired Pointer

Because the German Wirehaired Pointer and the Griffin look so much alike, it’s easy to get them confused. But that’s about the only thing that they seem to have in common.

When it comes to temperament, however, the Griffon is more friendly than the German Wirehaired Pointer. The latter takes his job as a hunter very seriously and values protecting his family over making friends with strangers.

Cesky Fousek vs. Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

Another name for the Cesky Fousek is “Bohemian Wirehaired Pointing Griffon”. There’s not as much of a difference between these two as there is between the Griffon and his Germain Wirehaired Pointer counterpart.

The Cesky Fousek’s temperament is identical to that of the Griffon: he’s friendly, loves kids, and is eager to please (and therefore easy to train).

Perhaps the only real difference between the two is their origin. The Cesky Fousek is native to the Czech Republic and is the second most common hunting dog in the area.

Finding the Perfect Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

If you think you know all you need to know now about the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon and you're thinking about bringing one home, you're probably wondering how best to do that.

You should start by weighing your options between buying a Wirehaired Pointing Griffon for sale from a breeder versus adopting one through a rescue or adoption shelter.

Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Puppies for Sale

The average Wirehaired Pointing Griffon price ranges from about $800 to $1,500. It all depends on who you choose to shop with, or adopt with.

Of course, adoption prices are much lower, but that's only for the price of the dog. You must also factor in his regular care, like food and vet visits, as well as potential grooming and obedience training needs that can be added expenses.

Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Adoption and Rescue

If you would like to adopt a Wirehaired Pointing Griffon, visit the website for the American Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Association.

The group specializes in matching people with adoptable Wirehaired Pointing Griffons who would make for good matches for their lifestyles.

Though, if you are set to adopt, you need to understand that most of the Wirehaired Pointing Griffons in rescue and adoption programs are adults. This is because people often surrender dogs when they can no longer take care of them.  

While not an adorable little puppy, an adult rescue dog comes with his own perks. He has usually grown out of his destructive phase, and someone along the way has housebroken him, so you don't have to struggle with training him to go outside.

If the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Rescue group does not have any good matches for you, don't get discouraged. Check out your local animal shelter to see what they have “in stock.”

Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Breeders

Another option you can pursue is to buy a Wirehaired Pointing Griffon for sale from a breeder. However, you must be willing to put in the work to ensure you're not buying a dog from an unscrupulous breeder or puppy mill.

For one thing, you can review the breeder's website and social media profiles. You can also research the breeder's online reputation to determine whether any of her past customers have filed complaints against her.

Breeders in the U.S. must follow a code of ethics, which recommends dogs receive evaluations for common conditions like hip dysplasia and eye exams. This code of ethics also bans breeders from selling puppies to pet stores or online brokers.

However, you can't rely on this alone. The breeder may have done this part right, yet fails in actually raising her dogs. For this reason, you need to perform your own evaluation when you visit her home.

Look for signs that the breeder is not taking proper care of her pups and report her if she is keeping her dogs in dirty, cramped or otherwise unhealthy conditions.

A Final Word about the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon temperament makes him a treat of a dog. He's loving and loyal, and he's a great hunting dog. So if you like to hunt too, then this is definitely the dog for you!

The Griff doesn't require much grooming, and he's great with kids, so long as you make the kids aware of how to properly treat an animal.

The Griff is a joy to train, as he wants nothing more than to make his master happy. A few hand signals and vocal cues, and he's good to go.

The Griff is, on average, a very healthy breed inasmuch as he is not vulnerable to many diseases. And you can expect him to live a long and healthy life, with a life expectancy of between 12 to 14 years.