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Weimaraner

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The Weimaraner was originally bred for hunting in the beginning of the 20th century. The royal family used the Weimaraner for hunting wild boars, bears, deer, and foxes. When big game hunting became less popular the Weimaraner was used for hunting birds and hares. This breed is a skilled hunter, loyal and loving towards its family. Its name derives from the duke of Weimar, Karl August, who loved hunting.

History of the breed
It is thought that the Weimaraner, as we know it today, was developed in the 19th century Germany. However, dogs with similar physique and appearance can be dated back to Louis IX in the 13th century Royal Household in France. Presumably, other pointer breeds like Vizsla and mastiffs are the ancestors of the Weimaraner.

The intention of the first Weimaraners was to develop a noble looking hunting dog that the royal and noble families could use. This breed was highly appreciated and lived along with its owner. This was very rare in that hunting dogs within this period of time usually lived in large packs in kennels. Living along with the owners may be the reason why Weimaraners of today are very social and does not like to be left alone.

Appearance, grooming and health
The Weimaraner is noble, elegant, and athletic. In some countries the tail is docked otherwise it is long. The coat is smooth and grey. The eyes are green, grey, or blue. A Weimaraner is 24-27 inches and weighs 55-70 pounds.

The coat colour can vary from coal-blue to mouse grey to silver grey. The silver grey is uncommon in dogs and a result of deliberate breeding a recessive gene. The coat colour has provided the Weimaraner with the nickname ‘the grey ghost’. The coat requires minimal grooming. There also exists a longhaired variant of the Weimaraner, which is acknowledged in many countries.

Character and behaviour
The Weimaraner is fast and sturdy. It is a fine family dog as long as they are provided with plenty of exercise. The Weimaraner is not as accommodating and friendly towards strangers as other hunting dogs e.g. Labrador or golden retriever. The Weimaraner protects its family and may be territorial.

This breed needs early socialisation in order to avoid aggressiveness towards strangers. The Weimaraner is intelligent, sensitive, and good at solving problems. Even though its hunting instinct is well developed the Weimaraner can live with a cat if they have been introduced in puppyhood. Usually, a Weimaraner chases and kills small animals crossing its path.

Due to the fact that the Weimaraner is a hunting dog it is a very active breed that needs a lot of exercise. It is good with children but may be too energetic with small children as it may knock them over unintentionally.

Famous Weimaraners

  • Ralph Fiennes character, in the movie ’Mad in Manhattan’ from 2002 starring Jennifer Lopez, owns a Weimaraner that is present in several scenes.
  • The former president Dwight D. Eisenhower owned a Weimaraner called Heidi.
  • A Weimaraner had a small part in the movie ‘Daylight’ from 1996 starring Sylvester Stallone.
  • Brad Pitt owns a Weimaraner called Purdy.
  • Grace Kelly (Later princes of Monaco) owned a Weimaraner.

What you should know about the breed

  • Muscular and athletic dog.
  • Needs a lot of exercise.
  • Special appearance due to its coat colour.
  • Loyal breed with an almost aristocratic presence and character.
  • Suspicious of strangers.
  • Good watchdog.
  • Easily becomes excited and jumps up on people.
  • Does not like to be left alone.
  • Distinct hunting instincts.
  • May be stubborn.
  • Heavy shedder despite its short coat.

A whippet is a medium sized dog with a friendly mind. It requires a lot of exercise and thrives when running free. Unfortunately, the breed has a tendency of running far away, which complicates letting it off the leash. Originally, the Whippet derives from England where it was used for dog races.

Character and behaviour
Whippet is a sweet and loyal family dog that is good with children in all ages. However, it is important that the children do not tease the dog or play too roughly with it. The whippet is an intelligent breed that requires a lot of variation in training sessions. Too many repetitions result in the whippet loosing interest and acting reluctant.

In addition, the whippet is an excellent guard dog. It may be reserved towards strangers. The whippet can easily live with other whippets and dogs. If it has to live with a cat it needs to be accustomed while it is still a puppy. In case it sees a cat running it will undoubtedly chase and possibly kill it. Due to its magnificent vision the whippet pick up every movement and pursuits if possible.

History of the breed
The whippet is an English breed that originally was used for chasing and killing rabbits in competitions. It was the poor population that developed the whippet by crossing the popular greyhound with local terriers. In that way a fast and small breed was developed. Later it was crossed with the Italian greyhound thus creating the whippet we know today. When the rabbit killings became prohibited the breed was used in dog races. Besides, a whippet is a perfect pet dog and hunting dog.

Appearance, grooming and health
A whippet is characterised by its somewhat delicate appearance. The head is small and the muzzle pointed. The nose is dark. The oval eyes are also dark. The rose ears are small and thin. The back is broad and the lower back is slightly arched. The front legs are straight and the hind legs are sturdy. The tail is long and curvy at the end.

The whippet is 18-22 inches tall and weighs 24-46 pounds.

The whippet only has a single layered coat that is fine, smooth, and short. Requires minimal grooming. The whippet may be inclined to suffer from stomach problems and skin problems. Life expectancy is 12-15 years.

What you should know about the breed:

  • A loving and friendly dog.
  • Loyal and intelligent breed.
  • Good with children.
  • Requires a lot of exercise.
  • Should not run off the leash.
  • Will chase running cats and other small animals.
  • Suitable for apartment living as long as its gets plenty of exercise.
  • May reserved towards strangers.

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