German Shorthaired Pointer Dog Breed Temperament and Traits

What is the German Shorthaired Pointer dog breed really like? Read on to find out if this breed is right for you.

To begin with, The German Shorthaired Pointer is a gundog that originates from Germany.

They are known as a versatile hunter.

This breed works well in both the field and water.

They were bred to hunt a variety of game, however in the United States they are commonly used for upland bird hunting.

The German shorthaired Pointer is part of the sporting group. Their strong noses and sense of smell allows them to find, and point birds, as well as retrieve birds that have been killed, or wounded.

This dog employs a variety of strategies to find birds. They use their sensitive noses, while running in a zig zag pattern to locate game in the field.

Shorthairs are still prized today as hunting dogs, although many have found popularity among active individuals, and families, and it’s easy to see why!

German shorthaired pointer dog breed 6 months old

German Shorthaired pointers are known as “velcro dogs” because they love nothing more than being with their owners. For this reason, they are also very affectionate, and get along well with children.

Highly intelligent breed

This breed is highly intelligent. They were bred to range out in the field and locate birds, and as a result, they are independent thinkers.

They are a happy breed with a passion for hunting.

GSP’s want to be part of every activity you engage in and they have an “up for anything” attitude.

The German Shorthaired pointer dog is a high energy breed.

GSP’s require at least an hour of high energy activity daily, for this reason, an hour- long stroll around the neighborhood will not cut it.

The German Shorthaired Pointer needs to run. Some examples of great activities for this dog include, playing fetch, swimming, hunting, hiking a challenging trail, or engaging in some other physically demanding activity.

Many distance runners choose this breed as a running partner.

RELATED POST: Best dogs for Runners

German shorthaired pointer dog breed swimming

Provide mental stimulation

German Shorthaired Pointers need plenty of mental stimulation, for this reason, keeping their mind busy is a great way to prevent boredom.

Scent work, obedience training, and food puzzles are a few examples of activities that will engage this dogs mind.

If you can meet the physical and mental needs of this breed, they will reward you with loving, and loyal companionship.

If you don’t meet their needs, a German shorthaired pointer can become very destructive, and exhibit some undesirable behaviors, such as chasing reflections.

owner activities for German shorthaired pointer
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Give your GSP ample exercise before starting a training session. Consequently, this releases pent up energy, and makes it easier for you to train them.

This is a breed that suffers from separation anxiety.

We believe separation anxiety is caused by one of two things.

Firstly, a dog that has always had people around him and has never learned from an early age to adapt to being left alone for reasonable amounts of time.

The second cause is usually a dog that has been left alone too much.

You must develop healthy habits at an early age with this breed.

Black German shorthaired pointer

Does The German shorthaired pointer breed make a good guard dog?

The short answer is No. A German shorthaired pointer does not make a good guard dog.

This breed is not aggressive. Furthermore, they are a people loving breed. However, they do make excellent watch dogs, and will alert you to anything suspicious on your property. My husband, I haven’t had a guest sneak up on us in 9 years, courtesy of our German Shorthairs.

But once we open the door, the barking stops, and the tail wagging, and puppy kisses begin.

The German shorthaired pointer thrives best being an indoor dog, they bond very closely with their people, and love to be part of the daily workings inside the home.

They love to be the center of activity, and make excellent companions. You’ll never, ever be lonely with a Shorthair around!

How big are German Shorthaired Pointers?

The German Shorthaired Pointer dog is considered a medium to large breed. The females range from 45-60 pounds, and measure 21-23 inches at the withers.

*The withers are found at the high point above a dog’s shoulder blade.*

Males will weigh in at around 55-70 pounds, and measure 23-25 inches at the withers.

These measurements are breed standard per GSPCA and AKC.

birddog pointing German shorthaired pointer

Powerful athletes

German Shorthaired Pointers are also known as GSP’s for short. These dogs take athleticism to the next level. As a result, they make wonderful competition dogs.

Moreover, German Shorthaired pointers compete in a wide variety of activities and sports, Hunt Tests, Dock Diving, Agility, Rally, Obedience, and Conformation, to name a few.

Not only are these activities fun, but the end result will be an amazing bond between you and your dog.

NOTE: If you plan to compete in hunt trials or dock diving make sure you purchase from a breeder that has dogs that love the water. Some German Shorthaired pointers are water adverse.

German Shorthaired Pointer breed Health.

By and large,German shorthaired pointers are a healthy breed. After all, a GSP’s average life expectancy ranges from 12-14 years. In addition, I have heard of some GSP’s that have lived as long as 17.

They are considered fully grown at 2 years of age.

Some health issues can arise in this breed.

A few to be aware of are hip dysplasia, cone degeneration, Vom willebrand disease, LD (lupoid dermatosis), cancer, some heart conditions, and epilepsy.

gsp health problems
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owner concerns for a GSP
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Does The German Shorthaired Pointer Breed make a good service dog?

German Shorthaired pointers have some very endearing traits that people like to see in a service dog.

For example, this breed is loving, loyal, and non-aggressive.

However their high energy level, and boisterous nature don’t make GSP’s the best candidate for a service dog.

Many German shorthaired pointers today can be found employed in airports, and with police departments.

Their excellent sense of smell makes them a natural for detecting narcotics, and explosives.

They can have careers in these fields lasting 6-10 years.

Does The German Shorthaired pointer breed shed?

Even though the GSP has a short coat, they are moderate shedders, and tend to shed year round.

This is easy to keep under control with regular grooming, they will shed heavily a few times per year.

During this time it’s helpful to give a few extra baths to wash away loose hair, and brush daily with this bristle brush.

Most of the de-shedding tools don’t work well with this breed due to their short coats.

This tool is great for getting hair off furniture and car seats.

German shorthaired pointer breed puppy

How much does a German shorthaired pointer cost?

A German shorthaired pointer can cost between $800 – $3,000.

This will vary depending on wether or not the parents are health tested, and the extent of the health testing, as well as the dog’s accomplishments and pedigree.

Expect to pay between $1,500 – $3,000 for a quality puppy from a reputable breeder.

Here are a few questions you should be asking your prospective breeder.

I hope this article has given you some insight into the German Shorthaired Pointer breed and temperament.

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