German Shorthaired Pointer Information

Overview

The German Shorthaired pointer is both a versatile hunter and a loving family companion. They are perfect for active families who like outside activities. The GSP is excellent with children, but must be supervised around toddlers as their playfulness may accidentally knock them down. Excellent watchdogs, they can be counted on to bark when people approach the home. The GSP's bark is more of an alert than a form of aggression. This is a high-energy dog, and must have at least one hour of vigorous outdoor activity each day. Indoor "couch potato" types or apartment dwellers in the city are not a good match for this breed. They needs a fenced yard or must be kept on a leash because they will dart after small animals like cats, squirrels or even birds. Hunting is their favorite activity, and their webbed feet make them good water retrievers. Very little training is required for training the GSP because they are instinctively good hunters.

German Shorthaired Pointer
Basic Info
NameGerman Shorthaired Pointer
Other NameDeutscher kurzhaariger Vorstehhund, Deutsch Kurzhaar, Kurzhaar
OriginGermany
Size Type Large Dog Breeds
Breed Group Hunting Dog Breeds
Life Span12 -14 years
TemperamentTrainable, Boisterous, Bold, Cooperative, Affectionate, Intelligent
HeightFemale: 23–25 inches; Male: 24–26 inches
Weight45 to 70 pounds
ColorsLiver, Brown, Liver & White, Liver Roan, Black & White, Brown & White
Puppy PriceAverage $500 - $600 USD

German Shorthaired Pointer

Physical description

Body Type

The German Shorthaired Pointer is considered to be a medium-sized dog. The height is from 23 to 25 inches and weight is 55 to 70 pounds with female dogs measuring and weighing slightly less. The GSP is by standards square or slightly longer than tall. The bones must be in proper proportion to the body, not too light or too heavy. Additionally, the head should be in proper proportion to the body. Eyes are medium-sized and brown, and shining with intelligence. The ears are broad and high-set. The muscles and jaw of the breed are powerful. The muzzle is not pointed, but just long enough for the dog to carry game.

The neck is the proper length to allow the GSP to reach game for retrieving and slopes downward with beautifully-curved lines. The chest shows depth and reaches to the elbows with the ribs forming the thorax. The back is short and strong, and there is a slight rise from tail base to the withers. The strong loin is of moderate length and proportional to the rest of the body. The broad hips have hip sockets set wide apart. The shoulders are muscular, sloping and movable with shoulder blades that lie flat and laid back at about a 45 degree angle. The thighs are strong and muscular as well.

Color

The acceptable colors for standards are solid liver or white with solid lover. Solid white dogs or ones with another color besides liver combined with white are disqualified by kennel clubs.

Hair on the coat is thick, short and tough-feeling. The hair on the head and ears is shorter, softer and thinner. Hair on the back of the haunches and underneath the tail is a little longer.

Coat

The German Shorthaired Pointer is considered to be a medium-sized dog. The height is from 23 to 25 inches and weight is 55 to 70 pounds with female dogs measuring and weighing slightly less. The GSP is by standards square or slightly longer than tall. The bones must be in proper proportion to the body, not too light or too heavy. Additionally, the head should be in proper proportion to the body. Eyes are medium-sized and brown, and shining with intelligence. The ears are broad and high-set. The muscles and jaw of the breed are powerful. The muzzle is not pointed, but just long enough for the dog to carry game.

The acceptable colors for standards are solid liver or white with solid lover. Solid white dogs or ones with another color besides liver combined with white are disqualified by kennel clubs.

Hair on the coat is thick, short and tough-feeling. The hair on the head and ears is shorter, softer and thinner. Hair on the back of the haunches and underneath the tail is a little longer.

Characteristics
Good with Kids
 
Cat Friendly
 
Dog Friendly
 
Trainability
 
Shedding
 
Watchdog
 
Intelligence
 
Grooming
 
Popularity
 
Adaptability
 
Hypoallergenic  No

Grooming

The smooth coat of the GSP makes it an easy dog to groom. Regular brushing with a firm-bristled brush and a bath when dirty are all that is necessary. Use a mild dog shampoo and rinse well. To help the coat appear shiny, rubbing a piece of chamois over the coat works well. Check the pads after exercising or hunting for cuts or foreign matter stuck in the pads. Keep the ears cleaned and have teeth cleaned professionally once a year.

History

As with many breeds, the origin of the German Shorthaired Pointer is not very clear. The basic foundation stock source appears to have been the German Bird Dog, a relation of the old Spanish Pointer, English Foxhound and crossings with local German scent hounds, trail and track dogs.

When German breeders introduced the fine English Pointers to add elegance to the GSP prototype, the result was a splendid utility dog with clean lines, a sound temperament and good looks. The breed was first admitted to the AKC Stud Book in 1930.

Temperament

Faithful, loving and loyal, the German Shorthaired Pointer attaches itself to family members deeply, and will display signs of separation anxiety when left alone. This will manifest itself through digging, chewing and excessive barking. It is suggested that one family member be a stay-at-home parent or work shorter hours. Otherwise, the dog will need to be exercised enough to tire them out and stave off anxiety.

Training sessions should be short and filled with plenty of positive reinforcement. They are highly distracted by other animals. If the dog senses that it is stronger-minded than the trainer, it will not listen. At the same time, the GSP will not respond to harsh discipline.

Although they are easy-going dogs, they can't be trusted around cats or smaller dogs, even if brought up together. Their desire to chase will eventually overcome them. Some males may exhibit aggression around other males. Any other dog introduced into the home should be a female. They are a little wary of strangers and will need to be socialized. The GSP needs a strong, authoritative owner that provides rules and structure.


Interesting German Shorthaired Pointer Facts

  • A Danish study found the GSP lifespan to be 9 years while a UK study points to 12 years.

 

  • The GSP can perform practically all gundog roles
  • The breed is prone to hip dysplasia, eye disorders and epilepsy.