Wetterhoun FCI Standard
Initially the Wetterhoun was used in hunting otters since expanding population of this predator threatens the local fishing industry. When its number had been taken under control the dog was adapted for hunting other species of animals. It turned out that it was able to courageously and persistently challenge such ferocious animals as a polecat and a wild cat. The breed represented a great companion for native hunters because of its intensive prey drive and water-resistant coat. Besides it was also treasured as a «yard dog» and was oftentimes responsible for guarding farmers’ property.
The Second World War terribly affected not only humans it also resulted in drastic reduction of population of numerous European breeds and the Wetterhoun was no exception. With united efforts of breed fans led by Jan Bos, it managed to survive the hardships of the war. In the meantime the preliminary standard was developed and specimens that matched the requirements of this document were registered. In order to reveal purebred dogs various trials and measurements of contenders were conducted in the Leeuwarden town. Best-quality members were enrolled into a Dutch Pedigree book. This kind of verification was persisted until the beginning of the 60s of XX century when the book was finally shut. The specimens that were listed in the appendix made a basis for the line of the pure-blooded Wetterhoun in Netherland.
The breed is recognised by two major dogs organisation namely the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) and the United Kennel Club (UKC). Previously it could be only located in its native Friesland but today one can meet it in other regions of the Netherlands as well as in other countries. Nevertheless it’s still regarded as a rare breed.
The Wetterhoun strives to protect its beloved humans from all possible threats. That’s why it commonly acts wary and reserved in front of unfamiliar people. However the dog warms up rather quickly especially if its master displays its favour towards the new acquaintance. Considering its vigilance and strong territorial instinct the breed will become a fabulous watchdog. The Wetterhoun will also make a highly responsible guard dog, which will do virtually anything to defend its master and his family.
This breed gets on with other canines if it has been introduced to their presence since an early age. Males can rival for dominance position in the pack and this usually leads to cruel fights between them. So the dog’s master should be aware of these behavioural traits and closely supervise the initial meeting of two unfamiliar dogs. The Wetterhoun is an infamous cat chaser so it should be always restrained with a secure leash while on a walk. Well-mannered specimens will accept other species of animal (including a home cat) as a part of its family if they have been brought up together.
• canine hip dysplasia;
• hair loss.
It’s important to keep the lessons short and entertaining since it can be at times rather inattentive and easily distracts by some more appealing occupations. Positive reinforcement and generous praise are most suitable for the Wetterhouns’ motivation and this breed won’t certainly put up with physical abuse and will respond to it with wilful and aggressive behaviour.
Remember that without sufficient amount of physical activity the Wetterhoun will most likely develop some nasty habits like unreasonable barking, destructiveness, nervousness.