The German Shorthaired pointer is a descendant of the old Spanish Pointer which came to Germany in the 1600s. It is not exactly known how many different breeds played a role in the development of this one. However, two breeds that are thought to have been used are the Schweisshund (a German hound) and the Foxhound. It is believed that there may also be some French hounds, some dogs from Scandinavia, various German hounds, and a pointer from Italy. Early breeders bred this dog for performance rather than looks. A real studbook for the breed was created around 1870. It was originally bred as a hunting dog.
This dog has a nicely streamlined body with powerful hindquarters that allow it to get about quickly. The ears are soft and floppy, and the jaw is strong, and allows the dog to retrieve bigger game than the average retriever. The nose is large and wide. Eyes should be dark-brown, yellow eyes are usually disqualified. The tail is usually docked. It also has webbed feet.
The coat is thick and rough-textured. The colors can be solid-liver, liver and white, liver ticked or in patches, liver roan, or white ticked or in patches. It is water-resistant and keeps the dog warm while out working during the winter. Saddles can also be present on the coat, and they are accepted. Always check with the kennel club that you are planning on using because different kennel clubs have different standards for the breed.
It is very good with children, and any signs of aggression are not characteristics of the breed. Fearfulness, submissiveness, and aloofness are also undesirable traits. This is the perfect breed for the active family. It can be used in almost any type of hunting, and any other activity that requires energy and stamina.
This breed gets along well with other dogs, but other animals such as cats, pigeons, and any small ones are viewed as prey. It is generally reserved towards other dogs of the same gender. It needs a very capable handler and is not suited for homes that are not very active. It needs good training because it can be destructive if left to its own devices. Also, it needs a lot of human interaction and does not do well if left in a kennel or left alone for a long time.
Health and Maintenance
This breed is prone to health issues such as hip dysplasia, hermaphrodism, epilepsy, lymphedema, OCD, entropion, mast cell tumors, or gastric torsion among some other concerns. Its life expectancy is 12 to 15 years.
This dog requires only regular brushing with a firm brush. Bathing can be done only as per requirement. Simply wiping the coat with a towel or chamois can give it a gleaming look. The dog needs to be thoroughly dried when it comes home after being out, to prevent chilling. Also, ears and feet need to be checked regularly and kept clean and dry.
The German Shorthaired pointer is a good pet for homes. Its loving disposition makes it a wonderful companion.