Although the origin of the Weimaraner is somewhat of a mystery, it is widely accepted that the Grand Duke, Karl August of Weimar developed the breed in the late 19th century.
The German aristocrats wanted a superb hunting dog with the skills of speed, intelligence, sense of smell, tracking, courage and stamina.
Some suggest that the Weimaraner is a mix between a pointer and a bloodhound. In the beginning, ownership was restricted to only the nobles or members of the Weimaraner Club of Germany, making it a rarity to own.
In 1928, a New England sportsman by the name of Howard Knight, applied to become a member of the Weimaraner Club, thus bringing the dog into the United States.
He was not given any breedable dogs though, until 1938. He founded the Weimaraner Club of America in 1942, and later that year the Weimaraner became recognized by the AKC.
The Weimaraner is a medium size dog with polished, aristocratic features. Males range in size from 25-27 inches and 70-90 pounds, whereas females range from 23 -25 inches and 55-70 pounds.
Per AKC standards, the breed should only come in shades of gray, with a fine, short-haired coat. However black, blackish-blue and blue Weimaraners do exist.
Their head is long and aristocratic, with long, lobular ears. Eye color is light amber, gray or blue gray.
The body of a Weimaraner is slender and sleek, with muscular legs and webbed feet, suitable for swimming. The breed should exhibit an air of nobility, grace, speed and athleticism.
Bred originally for hunting, Weimaraners are extremely energetic dogs. Therefore, they need to be exercised regularly. Being a territorial breed, they are very protective of their owners.
In order to prevent aggression, Weimaraners must be socialized early.
They crave companionship with their master and may suffer extreme separation anxiety if left alone too long, leading to destructive behavior, including barking. Starting obedience training young will help to prevent bad behavior.
The Weimaraner is highly intelligent and exuberant. Interacting with them in a variety of ways helps stimulate them mentally and physically.
Playtime should not only include walking or running around, but also playing games with them. The breed has a lot of stamina and a high endurance level, so more than likely the owner will be tired out first.
Proper training will help the dog learn to calm down when its owner becomes tired.
The Weimaraner is good with children. However, it is advisable to be cautious with younger children considering the dog's exuberance. Because of its hunting instincts, the Weimaraner is not good with smaller pets.
If acquired as a puppy it can be trained to socialize with the family cat (or small dog), however, it will chase after other small non-pet animals.
The Weimaraner has also been known to chase down deer and sheep in rural communities.
Social and affectionate dogs, Weimaraners make an excellent addition to an active family. Train them right and treat them like a true member of the family for a loyal, loving companion.