The German shorthaired pointer's idea of heaven is a day hunting in the field and an evening curled up by his family's side. This is an active dog that can become frustrated and "creative" if not given ample daily exercise, both mental and physical. He is a devoted family pet, although at times he is overly boisterous for small children. Because part of his heritage includes hunting mammals, some may not be good with small pets. He is a sensitive breed, responsive to gentle training. Some can whine or bark a lot.
German Shorthaired Pointer Dog Care
Bred to be an active hunting companion, this breed has a good deal of energy and requires a good deal of exercise. He thrives on mental and physical stimulation and can get both by hunting, hiking or playing with his people for a long period, at least an hour, every day. They like water and will swim if given the chance. This is a companionable breed that does best when allowed to live in the house with access to a yard. His grooming needs are minimal, consisting only of occasional brushing to remove dead hair.
German Shorthaired Pointer Dog Health
Major concerns: lymphedema
Minor concerns: CHD, entropion, gastric torsion, vWD, pannus, OCD
Occasionally seen: gastric torsion, ectropion, PRA
Suggested tests: hip, eye, (blood)
Life span: 12-14 years
Interested in the history of the German Shorthaired Pointer dog breed?
The German shorthaired pointer is one of the most versatile of hunting breeds, combining pointing, retrieving, trailing and even game-killing abilities. This versatility arose through the purposeful blending of various breeds beginning as early as the 17th century. Crosses of the Spanish pointer (a heavy type of pointer) with the Hannover hound (a strain of scenthound) resulted in a heavy houndlike dog that could both trail and point and was interested in both birds and mammals. When trailing, these dogs would bay; if needed, they would dispatch wounded game and even fox. Although all the early breeders agreed upon the goal of an all-purpose hunting dog, not all agreed upon how to achieve it. Crosses with the English pointer were controversial but bestowed upon the breed a more stylish look and nose-up hunting mode. He also imparted a dislike of water and an aversion to attacking quarry. Further breeding eliminated these unwanted pointer characteristics. In the early 1800s two Deutsch kurzhaars (as the breed was originally known), Nero and Treff, distinguished themselves against other pointing breeds at the German Derby and, through the success of their descendants, are often credited as the modern shorthaired's foundation. The breed was recognized in the late 1800s in Germany with the first shorthaired coming to America in the 1920s. The German shorthaired pointer gained AKC recognition in 1930. The breed soon attained a reputation as the ideal dog for the hunter who wanted only one dog that could do it all. Besides being a gifted and versatile hunter, he is a handsome dog and obedient companion. These attributes helped the German shorthaired pointer become popular today.