German Shorthaired Pointer Breed: History, Temperament, Care, Training & more

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German Shorthaired Pointer Breed Information

German Shorthaired Pointer
Level of Energy   
Exercise Needs  
Level of Affection   
Climate Tolerance    
Good With Children    
Tolerance of Animals     
Suitable as Guard Dog    

Just The Facts

  • AKC Popularity:  13
  • AKC Breed Group: Sporting
  • Size of Male:  55-70 lbs. 23-25 in.
  • Size of Female:  45-60 lbs. 21-23 in.
  • Color:  Liver, Liver & White
  • Average Lifespan:  14-16 years
  • Breed Origin:  Germany
  • Purpose:  Hunting

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General Description

The German Shorthaired Pointer is an energetic, friendly dog that requires a great deal of physical and mental stimulation. This breed loves the water and enjoys swimming. They are relatively high maintenance, and most tolerant of mild climate.

Origin and History

The German Shorthaired Pointer is a cross of the Spanish Pointer and the Hannover Hound. These dogs are considered one of the most versatile breeds of hunting dog, serving as retrievers, trailers, pointers, and even game killers. The breed was recognized in Germany in the late 1800s and came to America in the 1920s, though they did not gain AKC recognition until 1930.

German Shorthaired Pointer Temperament

The temperament of this hunting dog is somewhat energetic. These dogs require ample exercise in order to prevent frustration. The dogs are excellent and devoted family pets, though because of their nature as game hunters they can be aggressive towards small pets. This dog breed is remarkably sensitive and may bark or whine.

Care, Grooming, Diet & Exercise

Living Environment – German Shorthaired Pointers thrive best in a house that offers access to a yard. They are able to tolerate life in a mild climate, but are generally indoor animals.

Grooming – Grooming needs are not demanding, though the dog will require brushing. This short haired dog breed is a medium shedder, though shedding becomes heavier during season changes. Families with allergy problems should take this into consideration.

Diet & Exercise – The diet should be portioned, as with all breeds. These dogs require a great deal of exercise and are filled with energy. Vigorous exercise is important in this breed as they can become destructive if they are restless. Fenced yards are recommended, as these dogs need a great deal of room to run and play.

Health – There are a number of dog health problems associated with this hunting dog breed. They are prone to thyroid problems, cataracts, epilepsy, entropion and elbow dysplasia. Parents should have both OFA and CERF certificates. The average lifespan for this breed is between 14 and 16 sixteen years.


German Shorthaired Pointers can be stubborn but are relatively easy to train. Trainers must be patient, firm and consistent. This breed has natural guarding instincts.

Because of their hunting and tracking nature, they are preferred among hunters, although they also excel in flyball (a dog sport involving running, jumping, catching a ball, etc.), agility and obedience. This dog breed learns quickly, making training much easier than with many other breeds, though they should be socialized to prevent an overly dominant or submissive temperament.