Alexis Chism is a third-generation breeder of Afterhours German Wirehaired Pointers in Reddick, Florida. She has spent her entire young life of 17 years with the breed, attending dog shows with her mother from a very young age.
AKC: How did you get started in breeding dogs?
Alexis: My grandparents acquired their first German Wirehaired Pointer after raising Boxers and Brittanys for years. My Grandma and Mom taught me the importance of preserving the breed standard and keeping the breed healthy by performing the health testing recommended by the parent club.
What is the most important thing to know about your breed?
German Wirehaired Pointers are an eager–to–please, loyal, and versatile companion. You can’t help but fall in love with their clownish personality.
How has AKC Marketplace helped you find puppy buyers?
AKC Marketplace helps educate buyers before they make decisions on what breed is the best fit. I have found that the puppy buyers are more knowledgeable and aware of the standard, temperament, and traits of the breed.
What is your favorite question to ask of potential puppy buyers?
“Are you ready to have another child in your life?” I ask this question because GWPs are very similar to children. They love to be a part of the family.
What are the main qualities you look for in potential owners?
Overall, my main priority is that the dog is loved. I want them to have the best possible opportunities in life. Of course, I also encourage participation in events through AKC.
What is the best advice you would give to novice breeders?
Completing health testing is one of the most important things to do before breeding. I highly encourage getting this done to help preserve the future of the breed. Getting to know pedigrees and communicating with other breeders is a great way to gain knowledge of different lines and what would maintain the breed integrity.
Do your dogs participate in AKC sports?
Yes, mostly in conformation. We encourage new owners to find a “job” for their German Wirehaired Pointers such as hunting, dock diving, agility, and obedience. Over the years we have had many of the top agility, obedience, conformation, and hunting GWPs.
What do you like best about breeding dogs?
I love many aspects of breeding. Developing friendships with breeders and puppy owners is definitely one of my favorites. They become family, supporting each other along the way. Watching the dogs grow from the whelping box to the ring and field also is a great feeling.
Do you have a favorite breeding story?
After breeding for many years, it is hard to pick my favorite breeding story, as there have been many wonderful outcomes. Watching dogs I bred successfully compete in venues while making loving companions for their owners is what pushes me to continue. I have bred and owned many phenomenal dogs, that have gone on to win more than I had dreamed of. I’m very lucky to have such dedicated owners who have allowed their dogs to shine. Also, I’ve gained many friends, who share the same love for German Wirehaired Pointers.