OwyheeStar’s Succeeding with the Weimaraner.4
The Blue Weimaraner
~Confusion, Controversy, and a Conundrum-part one
An OwyheeStar Weimaraner fancier once said,
“I believe those who love the Blue are more outspoken and adamant than those who are doggedly Gray Ghost lovers.”
Most certainly the blue coat is controversial on several levels. For one, the sudden appearance of a blue pup in a litter of pure breed pups is highly unlikely. Nevertheless, the history and the basic facts are well presented by Leslie Nicole’s Blog Blue Weimaraner Today (BWT). Here is her shortened version of the Blue Weimaraner History in America.
In 1949, a Weimaraner was imported from Germany to the United States. This Weimaraner was named Cäsar Von Gaiberg or “Tell”. He came from excellent German lines. Tell was much darker than a typical Weimaraner and had slightly shorter ears. His coat color caused an uproar amongst many in in the Weimaraner Club of America (WCA). It gets really complicated with letters, testimonials, and investigations trying to establish the validity of his pedigree and determine his purity. Was he pure? Tell was the first historically noted Blue Weimaraner. There is a lot of confusion about whether there have been others in Europe, with intriguing leads but no established facts. We know now that what made Tell different is that genetically, “Blue” is a dilution of black whereas the coat of “Gray” Weimaraners is a dilution of brown. (Blue is a fanciful way of describing a dog coat that is a dilution of Black. It is actually a slate gray with silvery reflections. See the genetics page on the blueweimaraner site for a more thorough description of coat color genetics.) Proponents of the Blue have argued that the anomaly was due to a genetic mutation from a mother/son breeding and there are curious considerations that suggest that there may have been other Blue Weimaraners, but it’s probable that at some point the black was introduced by a cross-breeding. Probably to a Doberman.
Regardless of any “woulda, coulda, shouldas,” the fact is that his pedigree was investigated by the American Kennel Club (AKC) and accepted as valid. Controversy or not, Tell was an excellent Weimaraner. He was well-known for having an incredible nose and was used by the police for tracking. He sired 8 bench champions. He produced so well, that he was much used as a stud. Today, it is likely that he is in the pedigree of most Weimaraners in America and even Germany. There is no denying his place in the history of Weimaraners.
From 1949 to 1972, Blue Weimaraners while maybe not embraced (the controversy was still there) they were at least allowed. There were Blue Champions. In those 23 years, whether intended or not, a variation of the Weimaraner was firmly established in the United States. Twice, it came up for vote in the WCA to disqualify them and twice, it failed. In 1971 it was again placed on the ballot, but this time it was phrased as not allowing the color “Blue or Black”. From what I understand from first-hand accounts is that phrased in this way, where Black would have to be accepted as well as Blue, the ballot finally passed. At the same time, Longhair Weimaraners were also disqualified. (see article on what a disqualification means – coming soon)
When the color was voted a disqualification (DQ), many breeders respected the standard change and stopped breeding their Blues. Regardless of politics, the public still wanted Blue Weimaraners. The puppymill breeders saw an opportunity in the lack of competition and stepped in and started advertising “Rare Blue Weimaraners”. In the hands of unethical breeders, the quality of Blue Weimaraners has suffered. A small handful of passionate, ethical breeders breed in the hopes of a solution to the DQ.
OwyheeStar’s First All Blue Litter
The demand for the Blue Weimaraner is indeed on the rise. That being said, there is no way we see this ending with the Weimaraner Club of America (WCA) embracing the Blue Coat. Not even as a secondary category. Change within a breed standard is a difficult thing; it seems to be important to stick to the original framework and to preserve the breed as it was intended. Regardless, of opinions on both sides of the fence, breeders are going to continue raising the Blue Weimaraner. It is vital that a breeder focuses on quality as well as maintaining ethical breeding practices. This policy is always true; however, it is even more important when the blue coat is considered a disqualification. We will discuss this and other factors surrounding the Blue Weimaraner in part two–coming soon to the OwyheeStar News Blog.
Posted on February 4, 2016, in Companion Weimaraner, Hunt Info, Information and Education, OwyheeStar’s Succeeding with the Weimaraner and tagged Blue Weimar, Blue Weimaraner, Companion Weim, Oregon OwyheeStar, Oregon Weimaraner, OwyheeStar, OwyheeStar Weimaraner, the Weimaraner, Weimaraner. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.