The history of the Weimaraner – aka the ‘grey ghost’ – stretches back to the early 19th century in Germany, when they were bred for hunting.
Weimaraners originally accompanied royalty when hunting large game such as deer, bear and boar, moving to smaller animals – like foxes and rabbits – later on when the hunting of big game started to become less popular.
The name ‘Weimaraner’ actually originates from the Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, Karl August, whose Weimar-based court had a penchant for hunting animals.
Today, this noble-looking gun dog is one of the UK’s most beloved breeds. They make the perfect pet for people with a lot of space and time to cater to their (somewhat demanding) needs.
Weimaraners are loyal, playful, curious and have bags of energy – if you’re thinking about giving one a forever home, you need to be 100% sure you can give them the love, attention and care that they both need and deserve!
Whichever breed of dog you own, you need to prepare for potential illness or injury which may require costly veterinary treatment.
Take out dog insurance with Purely Pets and you can choose from 15 different levels of cover. That way, you can select the policy that suits both your canine and your budget.
Having insurance in place could help you to recoup some of the costs of treating your pooch, so that you can focus on getting them better without worrying about money.
Now, back to Weimaraners.
Here are 14 fun facts about this fantastic breed – how many did you know already?
- Weimaraners sport striking, dark tiger stripes when they’re born, explains Mental Floss, but these don’t last for long. They’re gone in a matter of days!
- Their eyes also change colour – they’re blue at birth but they change to a grey, blue-grey or light amber as they get older.
- They’re referred to as the ‘grey ghost’ partly because of the colour of their coat, but also from their notorious, stealth-like hunting style.
- Weimaraners are clever canines – in fact, they’re sometimes referred to as the 'dog with the human brain’. Owners must channel that intelligence properly from an early age, or they might be outsmarted by their hound. Unlocking fences, stealing treats and craftily escaping crates are some well-known Weimaraner tricks!
- Weimaraners have a habit of doing anything they can in order to mask their scent – and that usually involves rolling in something unpleasant, so watch out when you’re on walks in the countryside!
- Weimaraners are one of the breeds prone to gastric torsion – aka bloat. This is when the stomach fills with air and becomes twisted, requiring emergency care and treatment (as it could be potentially fatal). Feeding several small meals per day rather than large meals can help to limit the risk, and so too can avoiding exercising your dog straight after they’ve eaten.
- Thanks to their great sense of smell, Weimaraners have been used in search and rescue missions, including missing person cases.
- This is a breed entirely devoted to its owners. While this is great on one hand, it also means that they can become easily depressed if they’re left on their own. This can lead to naughty behaviour and separation anxiety – something to think about if you have a full-time job.
- Though far less common, long-haired Weimaraners do actually exist. This variety was originally bred to hunt waterfowl, as the shaggier coat would protect them when plunging into the cold water. The long hair can be smooth and straight or wavy.
- A Weimaraner called Dingo, along with his German shorthair pal Count, was selected to help locate missile parts during the Cold War so that scientists could recover and study them. The pooches wore special jackets loaded with ice cubes in summer in order to keep them cool while they worked!
- Weimaraners are certainly no couch potatoes! They need lots of exercise (two hours a day minimum) and plenty of space indoors to stretch their long legs and move around. These dogs are definitely more suited to active people. That said, the breed does have an ‘off switch’ – most dogs will happily snuggle up with its owner on the sofa after its daily dose of exercise.
- Hollywood icon Grace Kelly owned a Weimaraner. The pooch was given to her as a present before she married Prince Rainier of Monaco in the 1950s.
- Most Weimaraners enjoy a good dip, writes Tree House Puppies. They’re great swimmers too, owing to their webbed feet which makes paddling through water a doddle. It’s thought that their webbed feet were developed intentionally by the people involved in creating the breed, in order to make them better hunters. Of course, you need to allow your hound to get accustomed to the water if taking them for a paddle for the first time.
- As you’d expect, this dog is super speedy. Weimaraners are actually one of the world’s fastest breeds, capable of reaching top speeds of around 35mph. A word of warning, then: you need to be 100% certain your Weimy has good recall when you first let them off the lead, because you definitely won’t catch them if they run off!
Dog insurance from Purely Pets
If you’ve decided to give a wonderful Weimaraner a forever home, you’ll need to get prepared. As well as buying all the necessary doggy gear like beds and chew toys, you’ll also need to think about dog insurance. This really needs to be put in place from the moment you bring your pooch home.
Get covered with Purely Pets and you’ll have access to a 24-Hour Vet Helpline and a Manage My Policy portal so you can manage your policy online, 24 hours a day, at a time that suits you.
We offer multi-pet policies for both cats and dogs, allowing you to keep all of your pet insurance in one place, with policy benefits including things like:
- Lifetime cover from £1,000-£15,000
- Choose your excess level
- 24-hour vet helpline
- Online policy management
Get a quote today!