German Shorthaired Pointer
The German Shorthaired Pointer has a short, flat, close fitting coat, which is harsh in texture. The coloring of the German Shorthaired Pointer is usually liver and white, although some can be solid liver, and in some cases can be black instead of liver. These dogs have a sturdy and athletic build, and their expressions are intelligent and alert. The weight of the German Shorthaired Pointer is 45-60 pounds for females and 55-70 pounds for males. The height is 21-23 inches for females and 23-25 inches for males.
German Shorthaired Pointer Temperament
A versatile and good natured dog, the German Shorthaired Pointer is an active and agile dog, and is tolerant, obedient, and intelligent. The German Shorthaired Pointer is quick to learn, and this can make training far easier, although some may have a stubborn or dominant streak that make them best suited to owner with some experience of dog ownership. Others may be overly submissive, and in order to ensure a well balance temperament early socialization in important. These are dogs that have plenty of energy and love to play, which means that you need to ensure that they receive plenty of physical activity as well as mental stimulation, otherwise boredom can set in and this lead to destructive behavior.
The German Shorthaired Pointer get along well with children, although his size can prove a problem if you have very small children, as they could inadvertently knock them over. They also tend to get along okay with other pets when well socialized, although some may chase cats and they can be aggressive with strange dogs. Their reaction around strangers can vary between friendly and reserved depending on the personality of the individual dog. This is a focused, dedicated, and protective breed, and can make a good watchdog. These are dogs that are well suited to family life, and are ideal for active people with confidence and assertiveness.
The grooming requirements for a German Shorthaired Pointer are not demanding, although you may need to step up grooming during times when your dog is shedding more heavily. Occasional brushing of the short coat will help to keep it in good condition. This breed is a medium shedder and sheds more heavily on a seasonal basis, so may not be ideal for those with allergies.
The German Shorthaired Pointer breed was developed in Germany during the 1800's for hunting. They were created by crossing old Spanish pointers with numerous other breeds such as scent hounds and tracking hounds; Foxhounds, Italian Pointers, German Tracking Hounds, German Bird Dogs, and English Pointers. The combination created a responsive, lean, hunting dog with great versatility, being able to retrieve both fur and feather, on land and water. Breeders focused on the basis of function rather than form, in creating the breed.
German Shorthaired Pointers were accepted into the American Kennel Club in 1930, their parent club holding the first specialty show in 1941.
The efforts of nineteenth century German breeders, has created a dog today that is one of the most versatile of all gun dogs and an ideal weekend hunter. They do well in companion hunting as well as field trials, hunt tests, tracking trials, and the show ring.
German Shorthaired Pointers require an owner with an experience with dogs, since they require a lot of formal training. It is in their nature to work in far distances from their handler, and such a dog needs to be trained to know the handler is in charge and to come when called.
These are one of the few hunting breeds that can perform in almost all gundog roles; pointer, retriever, water and upland bird dog, and scent hounds. They are easily trained to do such activities, but it takes time to perfect.
If not being used as a hunter, they still require formal training. Puppy classes, obedience, agility, or other forms of training are all desirable for the breed. A dog left untrained will not be a manageable dog, as his mind will become bored.
German Shorthairs should be taught early on a method called NILIF, Nothing In Life is Free. This means they must work for and earn everything. Before they eat, play, go outside, come inside, go for walks, etc., they should perform a command. The command can be something as simple as sit or down, just as long as they earn what they are getting. This will help the dog realize its place in the pack and know he is not in charge.
The life expectancy of the German Shorthaired Pointer is around 14-16 years, and there are a number of health problems and disorders that have been linked to this breed. This includes HD and elbow dysplasia, thyroid problems, cataracts, epilepsy, WD, and entropion. The parents of the German Shorthaired Pointer puppy should have OFA and CERF certificates.