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About the Breed: German Shorthaired Pointer


Loving, loyal, and packed with non-stop energy, the German Shorthaired Pointer is ready for just about any activity there is.


The German Shorthaired Pointer (GSP) is a member of the sporting group and the American Kennel Club’s (AKC’s) 16th most popular breed in 2009. The GSP was developed by crossing old Spanish pointers with other breeds such as scent hounds and tracking hounds. The combination created a responsive, lean, energetic hunting dog with great versatility; being able to point and retrieve both fur and feather, on land and in the water.


The GSP loves interaction with humans and appreciates an active family who will give them an outlet for their boundless breed energy.


These dogs form very strong attachments with their owners, love interaction with humans, and appreciate active families who will give them an outlet for their energy.

The German Shorthaired Pointer needs plenty of vigorous activity. This need for exercise (preferably off leash in a securely fenced area), coupled with the breed’s natural instinct to hunt, means that training is an absolute necessity.


The GSP’s distinctly independent character and superior intelligence mean that any unused energy will likely result in the dog amusing itself, usually in an undesirable manner.


  • Affectionate.

  • Intelligent.

  • Incredible stamina for activities.


  • High need for exercise, that lessens somewhat after age 3, but not always noticeably. Some can be incredibly boisterous.

  • Escape artists: these dogs can escape from four foot and sometimes six foot enclosures with very little difficulty. Regular running, skijoring, dock diving, agility or other vigorous activity can alleviate this desire to escape.

  • GSPs require space to run.

  • GSPs have a lot of energy and if not given the right amount of attention, can become destructive or appear hyperactive.

  • GSP’s are not meant to be left alone and do not make good kennel dogs.

Best With

  • A loving home that can provide vigorous daily mental and physical exercise, and a regular routine.

  • Owners willing to use positive training only.

  • Homes with a minimum 6 foot solid wooden fence or secure farm fencing.

Not For

  • An inexperienced dog owner

  • An inactive home, apartment, or condo life. GSPs that receive insufficient exercise may feel compelled to exercise themselves by escaping the yard or home.




Between 45 to 65 pounds at maturity. Breed standard is 50-75 pounds, and 23-25 inches tall at the shoulder.



Solid liver or a combination of liver and white such as liver and white ticked, liver patched and white ticked or liver roan.

Energy Level:


High for the AKC Sporting Group, Very high for dogs in general.


German Shorthaired Pointers should be taken out every day to be exercised as they have inbred energy that needs to be released (a typical urban sized backyard is not enough room for this high energy breed to run around).

Life Expectancy:

The German Shorthaired Pointer has a longer life expectancy than many breeds of this size; many living 16 to 18 years old (personally I have seen 14 year olds fetching a ball for hours).



When it comes to everyday family life, the pointer is a recommended addition to the family. They are extremely loyal, friendly and fun. The GSP is usually very good with children, although care should be taken because the breed can be boisterous, especially when young.

Other Animals:


Varies with each GSP. With training, however, the family GSP should be able to discern what is prey and what is not, and they can live quite amicably with other family pets. 

Other Dogs:

Generally good with other dogs that are 10 pounds and larger (females are generally better with male dogs, or as only dog). Not recommended for homes with dogs that weigh less than 10 pounds.



Best with dog-savvy cats. 


Chicken and Rabbits:

Not recommended due to their hunting breed's prey drive, which is not always good for small pets.



All purpose hunting dog (points, retrieves, field trials, hunt tests), tracking trials, Skijoring, dock diving, agility, fly ball, narcotics detection work, search and rescue, and a loving, active family pet.



Although they have a short coat, shedding can be high. However grooming is minimal (ears cleaned, nails trimmed, occasional bath after outdoor play).


Generally healthy as a breed.

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