German Shorthaired Pointer
The German Shorthaired Pointer is a hunting breed developed in 19th century Germany. It is a descendant of the Spanish Pointer which was brought in the 1600s to Germany. The breed may be a combination of many others including the Schweisshund, Foxhound, German Bird Dog, Italian Pointer, and several other French and Scandinavian breeds. The breed is predominantly bred on function rather than form.
The German Shorthaired Pointer can stand from 21 to 25 inches high and weighs 45 to 70 pounds. The breed is strong yet streamlined. Its coat is double-layered with a flat, short, water-resistant outer coat and a dense undercoat. Its color can range from liver to black, or be either color with white. The coloring of the breed provides camouflage during the winter when dead trees and snow provide the landscape. The breed has long, floppy ears, a long yet strong muzzle, and dark eyes. Its tail is often docked, and its feet are webbed, as are all German Pointers’.
The breed is intelligent and trainable as well as affectionate. It is well suited for family life and thrives on human interaction. The German Shorthaired Pointer needs a good deal of activity in order to be happy. They usually make wonderful watchdogs, and have quite a strong hunting instinct. This instinct may cause the dog to occasionally bring home a hunting “trophy”. Firm-handed training is a necessity with this breed due to its intelligence and instincts. The lack of training and/or exercise can lead to a destructive German Shorthaired Pointer; the breed will work best with an experienced, active owner. The breed is a very versatile hunting dog which can point and retrieve both on land and in water. It can be used to hunt large game and has a nose of a scent hound. The breed is fairly low maintenance due to its short coat.
The German Shorthaired Pointer is generally a healthy breed but is still prone to several genetic problems. These include: hip dysplasia, seizures, skin disorders, dehydration, cancerous lesions, ear infections, and nipple-swelling. The breed can generally live 12 to 14 years, but some have been known to live to age 18.