William and Courtney Bastian are a successful husband and wife team. They produce truly versatile German Wirehaired Pointers, at a higher standard of excellence. They breed only to produce the best GWP’s, which to them includes: health, temperament, conformation, and hunting abilities. At Claddagh, only dogs with an advanced hunt and show title, as well as sound temperament, and CHIC health tested are bred from. Titles are simply a means to prove the dog’s credibility, they are no substitute for real hunting experiences. William and Courtney personally hunt their dogs over pheasant and ducks on the Horicon Marsh and surrounding areas, grouse in the northern woods of Wisconsin, in addition to hunting trips to ND, SD and out West. While they compete in conformation shows with their dogs, they do not breed for the purpose of having “show dogs”. William and Courtney are one of very few GWP breeder’s that are able to be highly competitive in the ring and field, because they put so much emphasis on a properly structured working dog, and produce this quality consistently.
Claddagh GWP’s are bred for hunters, by hunters.
William takes pride in training and hunting the dogs at Claddagh, as well as being a full time trainer for all personal gun dogs. He believes a GWP should be the ideal hunting companion; a versatile dog, that’ll hunt on both land and water for fur and feather. The dogs at Claddagh are trained using their natural instinct and positive reinforcement to achieve the highest level of hunting performance. William has trained and handled GWP’s through all levels of AKC hunt tests: Junior, Senior, and Master Hunters, as well as all stakes in AKC field trials. He has also trained and handled through all levels of NAVHDA: Natural Ability, Utility, and Versatile Champion. William is a highly sought out AKC Hunt Test and Field Trial judge. He judges locally and all over the midwest, and has had the honor to judge the German Wirehaired Pointer, German Shorthaired Pointer, English Setter, Spinone Italiano, and Bracco Italiano Nationals.
Courtney’s interests reside deeply in the health and performance of their animals. She was a veterinary technician for 10 years specializing in canine reproduction and canine rehab and sports conditioning. Courtney has earned her Bachelor’s degree in Biology and Animal Science with special interest in Canine Nutrition. She handles the dogs in conformation, agility, obedience, rally, along with some field trials, hunt and NAVHDA tests. Courtney is the heart behind Claddagh’s breeding program, studying performance and pedigrees of dogs all over the world. She has an eye for structure and movement, as she believes a structurally sound dog with a correct dense, harsh coat, will be able perform in the field to it’s best ability. Courtney has completed her Canine Sports Medicine certification at the Canine Rehabilitation Institute.
William and Courtney are active members of the German Wirehaired Pointer Club of America (GWPCA) as well as numerous other GWP Clubs in the Midwest. William currently serves as a board member of the GWPCA, representing the Midwest Region. William and Courtney both serve as officers for the GWP Club of WI, and head up the club’s field trials, hunt tests, show specialties, and training days. They volunteer as GWP breed reps at Pheasant’s Forever “Pheasant Fest” and at the Midwest Dog Fair, educating the public about the dual purpose dog, as well as promoting the National GWP Rescue. They also put on seminars and demonstrations for hunter’s safety, Cabela’s Dog Days, and organize youth hunt events. Courtney and William are dedicated NAVHDA members, that utilize the NAVHDA program as an important means of assessing their breeding program. Every Claddagh GWP puppy is, at minimum, Natural Ability tested. They are also active in their local Kettle Moraine NAVHDA Chapter, where they are both avid volunteers for training days and running tests. William and Courtney are also members of several conservation groups including: Ruffed Grouse Society, Pheasant’s Forever, Ducks Unlimited and National Wild Turkey Federation, where Courtney serves as the President of the Marshland Gobbler’s Chapter. William and Courtney welcomed a son in 2014, Burke Robert Bastian. He loves being surrounded by his fuzzy faces, and provides great socialization for all puppies whelped and raised at our house!
After studying, owning, training, and loving the breed, as well as 10 years experience and knowledge in canine reproductive medicine; in June of 2007, William and Courtney whelped their first litter and look forward to continue to produce beautiful wirehairs with exceptional hunting skills. After all……
“Life’s Too Short to Hunt Over An Ugly Dog”
To date William and Courtney have owned, trained, handled or bred 1 Dual Champion, 1 NAVHDA Versatile Champion, 27 Show Champions, 1 multi Best In Show, 55 NAVHDA NA’s, 13 SH’s, 9 MH’s, and 17 NAVHDA Utility Prize holders. As well as the following GWPCA National winning GWP’s:
2005 – Best of Opposite Sex, Best In Sweepstakes
2006 – Winner’s Bitch, Best in Sweeps, Best of Opp Futurity, Winner’s Dog, Best of Breed & Group 1
2007 – Award of Merit
2008 – Award of Merit, Winner’s Bitch, Winner’s Dog/Best of Winner’s
2009 – Reserve Winner’s Dog
2010 – Winner’s Bitch/Best of Winner’s, Best in Sweeps, Best in Futurity, Award of Merit, All Star Invitational Winner
2011 – Winner’s Bitch/Best of Winner’s, Best in Futurity, Best of Opp in Futurity, Best in Maturity
2012 – Best in Maturity (only event entered in)
2013 – Best in Futurity, National Best of Winners, Regional Best of Winners, Regional Best of Opposite, National Best Veteran in Sweeps
2014 – Best of Opposite in Futurity, National Winner’s Dog/Best of Winner’s, National First Award of Merit, National Reserve Winner’s Bitch, Regional Winner’s Bitch, Regional Select Bitch
2015 – Best in Maturity, All Star Invitational Winner
2016 – National Best Puppy in Sweepstakes, Regional Best of Opposite Sex, All Star Invitational People’s Choice Winner, National Field Trial Puppy Stake 1st and 4th place
2017 – National Best of Opposite Sex, National Select Bitch, Regional Best of Opposite Sex, Best Gun Dog in Sweepstakes, Best in Maturity, National Field Trial Derby Stake 1st Place, National Field Futurity 2nd and 3rd Place
*With only breeding 9 litters to date, 4 litters contained GWPCA Futurity Winners (aka Breeder’s Cup)*
More noteworthy breeder accomplishments include:
2011 NAVHDA Natural Ability Breeder’s Award
2012 NAVHDA Natural Ability Breeder’s Award
2013 NAVHDA Natural Ability Breeder’s Award
2012 GWPCA Top Producing Dam
2012 GWPCA Top Producing Sire
2013 Eukanuba Breeder’s Stakes Sporting Group 3 Placement
2013 GWPCA Top Producing Sire
2014 NAVHDA Natural Ability Breeder’s Award
2014 NAVHDA Utility Breeder’s Award
2014 Eukanuba Breeder’s Stakes Sporting Group 4 Placement
2015 NAVHDA Natural Ability Breeder’s Award
2015 Top Producing Sire
2016 NAVHDA Natural Ability Breeder’s Award
2016 Top Producing Sire
2017 NAVHDA Natural Ability Breeder’s Award
Courtney and William are amongst an elite group awarded as an
AKC Breeder Of Merit and Bred with H.E.A.R.T. Breeder