Interestingly, the concept of the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon emerged in the late 19th century, a period of biological awakening. Breeders sought to produce a rough-coated sporting breed of great swimming and retrieving ability.
Eduard Karel Korthals, born in 1851 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, developed the first breeding stock of the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon, and although the breed is Dutch in origin, it is regarded as a French breed since it was in France that the major portion of the development took place.
The success of the WPG came very early as a result of Korthals competing the dogs in both field trials and conformation events. It is said that the WPG will “invent” birds in the field – they will go places where the other dogs haven’t thought to look. The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon is particularly adapted for swampy country, where its harsh coat provides excellent protection, and it is both an excellent swimmer and retriever.
Eventually in 1951 the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Club of America (WPGA) was established. However, in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s there was a division within the club. Some members believed that the breeding was occurring in a random fashion and was not controlled to improve the breed. As a result the club began an effort to identify good breeding and put litters of pups through hunt-tests with the hope of improving the breed. However, in response to frustration related to a lack of quality WPG’s in America the concept of crossing the breed with another gundog, the Cesky Fousek began.
Another faction of the WPGA did not believe in tainting the bloodlines that were so diligently created by Korthals and made a decision to split from the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Club of America and a new club was developed – the American Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Association (AWPGA).
In 1991 the AKC recognized the American Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Association (AWPGA) as the breed's official parent club.
The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Club of America (WPGA) is not currently recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC), United Kennel Club (UKC), Canadian Kennel Club (CKC), Federation Cynologique International (FCI), North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association (NAVHDA), American Field or the European Griffon and Fousek Organizations.
These listed organizations do not recognize or register the WPG/Fousek cross. As a result the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Club of America developed its own breed standard, registry and began holding WPGA field trials.
Purchasers must take caution to make sure that the puppy they are purchasing is registerable with the AKC, UKC, CKC, FCI, NAVHDA etc., as the dogs represented by the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon Club of America (WPGA) are not registerable with these prestigious organizations.