The German Shorthaired Pointer (GSP) is a medium sized hunter-pointer-retriever (HPR) gundog breed and is the most popular among the hunter-pointer-retrievers. It is an excellent multipurpose gundog with a highly sensitive nose, excellent on point, an effective game hunter and a soft-mouthed retriever that is very well adept on water and on land. The breed’s forefathers include the Spanish Pointer, German bird dogs and the English Pointer. It is closely related to its other German pointing cousins, the German Longhaired Pointer, the German Wirehaired Pointer, and the Large Munsterlander. This perfect hunting machine has an overall general appearance of a noble, fast, alert, energetic, and well-balanced breed. Among the defining features of the German Shorthaired Pointer is its aristocratic head with its broad long ears covered with short soft coat and fairly deep flews. It is also differentiated from its other German pointing cousins by its short, flat and coarse coat. Liver is the most common colour but there are also solid blacks or black and white variations. The ideal height for males is between 58-64 cm at withers and 53-59 cm for females. The average weight is 30 kg for both sexes.
All dog breeds have different levels of intellect. Some dog breeds; working dogs in particular, are very independent thinkers and have been evolved to be very intelligent. Typically, a highly intelligent dog does well in obedience training and other activities. A highly intelligent dog can be very demanding and do require lots of physical and mental stimulation. If you’re looking for a relatively laid-back dog, that doesn’t require lots of mental and physical stimulation, then you must fully understand the level of intelligence of your dog breed of choice.
Before committing to a certain dog breed, you must fully understand their intellect levels and their specific levels of energy. To keep your dog well-balanced and happy, their needs must be met and maintained.
All dog breeds have different needs when it comes to the level of exercise they require. For the high energy dogs; which are your typical working dogs, they have a lot of energy and require lots of daily exercise along with plenty of mental stimulation. A highly energetic dog breed would suit an individual or family that is equally as active and loves the outdoors. There are also breeds that have relatively low exercise needs, such as toy dog breeds. Although they require daily exercise and mental stimulation, they’re just as happy chilling at home with their loved ones. This type of dog breed would suit an individual or family that prefers the peace and quiet and relaxation.
Before deciding on your chosen dog breed, Mypetzilla recommends that you research the exercise needs and whether you’re well equipped before committing to buying or adopting a particular dog breed.
There are several dog breeds that are known and potentially predisposed to developing health related conditions. Sensible breeding can help prevent the onset of health related conditions and this should always be taken into condition when researching your dog breed of choice. Before committing to a dog, you should speak to the breeder about any health related conditions that may affect the dog you’re looking to buy or adopt. You can also request to see any test results from genetic testing.
There are many dog breeds that tolerate children really well and are not affected by the constant noise and need for play-time. However, there are some dog breeds that don’t do very well with children and can become frustrated and snappy. That being said, all children should be shown how to handle and care for a dog in their home and should always be supervised when playing. As much as a dog can become annoyed and snappy with a younger child, the child can also become less tolerant and misbehaved towards the dog.
Mypetzilla recommends that you always supervise play-time between your children and dog. Children need to respect the boundaries and feeding time for the dog and likewise for the child. We also strongly advise that play-time doesn’t get out of control and too rough which can cause injury to both child and dog.
There are lots of dog breeds that are well suited to living in an apartment. It’s worthwhile noting that you need to check that you’re allowed dogs in your building before committing to bringing one home. If you do decide to own a dog and are living in an apartment, then you must make sure that they have plenty of room to roam around and frequent walks outside to prevent them from becoming bored and depressed.
Mypetzilla recommends that you check as to whether you’re allowed dogs in your apartment building and to fully ensure your apartment is dog proof before committing fully to bringing a dog home.
All dog breeds shed to some extent, some more than others. With this, all potential dog owners should be aware of this, as it will be a matter of putting up with some hair or lots of hair being left around the house. Depending on the dog breed, there are certain times during the year where some dog breeds shed the most and this is typically around spring and autumn. However, there are some dog breeds that shed all year round.
If you’re very house-proud, they you may want to choose a dog breed that sheds very little. Mypetzilla strongly recommends that you fully research your dog breed of choice and their shedding levels before committing.
All dog breeds require different levels of grooming. Some dog breeds are easier to maintain than others and only require a weekly brush to help keep their coat in good condition. There are some dog breeds that require regular trips to the grooming parlour and this can come at a huge cost. Either way, all dog breeds require their coat and nails to be maintained and cared for.
Mypetzilla strongly advices that potential owners research the grooming needs and associated costs with their desired dog breed before fully committing.
Barking is a necessity for your dog to communicate. However, it can also be a nuisance to yourself and fellow neighbours if it’s not kept under control. If you live in an apartment, then you’re better off choosing a dog breed that doesn’t bark as much. If you live further out and far from civilisation, then it’s worthwhile looking into a dog breed that does bark and will bark to alert you of any other company on your property.
Mypetzilla advices that you research the behaviours of your dog breed of choice and whether this would work for you and your family. It’s worth noting that dogs can be trained to bark less and this will take a lot of effort and training from the owner.
Majority dog breeds form very close relationships with their owners and as a result can become very stressed when left alone for a period of time. If a dog is suffering with separation anxiety then they’re very likely to become destructive around the home as a way of dealing with their anxieties. Dog breeds that do form strong bonds with their owners are better accustomed to a household where one member of the family remains home, whilst the others are out, this is to help avoid further anxieties and destructive behaviours.
Mypetzilla recommends that all potential owners research their dog breed of choice on their bonding abilities and how well-adjusted they are to being left alone at home. It’s also worth noting that you should never leave your dog for longer than 4 hours alone at home.
There are certain dogs breeds that have very high intellect and therefore easier to train than other dog breeds. There is also a downside to this; as fast as they learn the new trick or command, they can easily pick up bad habits just as quick. Other dog breeds that don’t rank as high on the intellect scale require patience and plenty of reward treats from their owners during training.
Before committing to a certain dog breed, Mypetzilla advices you to fully research your dog breed of choice and their level of training needs.
All dog breeds have different energy levels. The working dog breed has one of the highest energy levels in comparison to the low-energy dog’s breeds such as the Toy dog breed group. To keep a dog truly happy, healthy and well-balanced, their energy levels must be met.
High-energy dog breeds need lots of exercise and mental stimulation. High energy dog breeds would suit an active family or person. Dog breeds that are considered as low-energy, love to spend the majority of their time relaxing and sleeping in their favourite, comfy spot. A low-energy dog breed would suit an individual that equally loves the quiet life and relaxing lifestyle. Of course, low-energy dogs still need their daily walks and mental stimulation, just not as much as a high-energy dog breed.
Mypetzilla recommends that potential owner research fully on the type of dog breed that would suit their existing lifestyle and to also take into consideration the dog breeds energy levels and exercise requirements.
Before you decide on what dog breed would be suitable for you and your family, you must consider whether they’re a friendly dog breed and if you already have other pets within the household. For homes that already have dogs and other domestic pets, then it’s wise to choose a dog breed that has a friendly personality and temperament.
There are some dog breeds that mix well with other dog breeds and there are others that don’t suit one another and this could potentially cause issues later on down the line.
Another important point to consider is whether the dog breed of choice is friendly towards people and children.
Mypetzilla recommends to research fully on the right dog breed for your family and to also consider their temperament and characteristics.
The actual origin and ancestry of the German Shorthaired Pointer is quite unknown but most breed experts theorised that the development of the breed stemmed from the crossing of the old Spanish pointer, the old German pointer and the French pointing dog Braque Francais. However, these pointers weren’t very good in trailing game, water works, and lack ferociousness toward predators. To enhance tracking ability, soften the temperament, and overcome some of the undesirable characters of these traditional pointers, German breeders further crossed the GSP with the German Bloodhound. To add speed and agility to the breed and reduce the “bloodhound look”, early breeders further cross the breed with the English pointer. The resulting breed was a good-looking, highly intelligent, trustworthy and multipurpose gundog that packs a tremendous amount of energy and stamina, an impeccable sense of smell, an excellent pointing instinct, and an enthusiastic ability to retrieve fallen game in and out of the water.
The German Shorthaired Pointer was first registered into the Verband für das Deutsche Hundewesen (German Kennel Club) in 1872 and its popularity soon spread across Europe, with the exception of Great Britain where much of the hunting was done on horseback which required a different type of dog breed. It was not until after the end of the Second World War that the breed eventually became popular in the UK.
This breed is highly affectionate, alert, lively, extremely loyal, playful and highly responsive which makes it a god watch dog. It loves to please its master and is very cooperative and easily trained. The GSP thrives on human companionship and loves being patted on the head which makes it a wonderful family companion. The German Shorthaired Pointer is a dog that will work in all weather conditions. It has a strong natural hunting instinct that it will occasionally bring dead trophies into the house such as rats, birds, and other small animals.
The GSP should be exposed to different situations, people, places, and experiences at an early age. Like most breeds, early socialisation plays a vital role in training the breed to grow up to be a well-balanced dog. Its natural ability to hunt and follow scent means that training to come when called is an absolute necessity. An improperly trained German Shorthaired Pointer can have a tendency to become hyperactive and display destructive behaviour.
The German Shorthaired Pointer has a short, thick, water-resistant coat that requires low maintenance. It sheds very little and only requires once a week brushing with a stiff bristle brush to keep the coat healthy. The toenails tend to wear down naturally because of the dog’s active lifestyle. The ears should be checked regularly for signs of bacterial infection, especially after getting into the water.
It is a generally healthy breed with a median lifespan of 12 to 14 years. It is prone to minor health issues including gastric torsion, hypothyroidism, canine hip dysplasia, and entropion. Some German Shorthaired Pointers have been known to suffer from lymphatic edema caused by a compromised lympathic system and usually involves swelling and fluid retention on the affected area.
The German Shorthaired Pointer is highly energetic that loves doing work which makes it a wonderful pet for an active family that can give him an outlet for his tremendous store of energy. Daily long walks are not sufficient for this breed, whereas a good run or jog alongside a bike for several kilometres on a daily basis are good outlets for his considerable energy. Hiking and trekking are also good outlets of energy for this breed. This tremendous need for exercise makes the dog unsuitable to an owner who typically lives in an apartment or condominium and does not have enough time to take the dog on a walk. The GSP will thrive in an urban setting with a lot of open spaces where it can run and spend its energy.
It is generally good with children because of its friendliness, enthusiasm and natural love for human interaction although adult supervision is required because of its lively attitude especially when it is young. The GSP gets along well with other dogs especially if it is socialised well at an early age. Female GSPs tend to be more dominant during interbreeding. However, some German Shorthaired Pointers don’t go along well with other small pets like birds, cats or rabbits.