Have Fun With the German Shorthaired Pointer Temperament
The attractive and intelligent German Shorthaired Pointer was, as the name suggests, first developed in Germany to point out game, and then bring it back to his owner when it was shot. They are active and cheerful, and they make a delightful canine companion.
However, the work that this dog was designed to do has made him not suitable for many households. He needs a lot more exercise than most other breeds. He is also an independent thinker because he needed at times to work independently of his owner. If he doesn't get the opportunity to run every day, and if he doesn't have regular obedience training, you'll notice problems start to develop with your dog's temperament. Their short coat is easy to care for so if you don't want to spend more time on your dog's hair than you do on your own, this will really appeal to you.
Destructiveness and Hyperactivity
If your GSP lacks exercise, it will lead to him being frustrated and restless. This is when he is likely to become destructive. He may also decide to exercise himself, and he can easily jump 6 foot high fences and go for a walk. Your local animal control officer may pick him up for straying, or he may be hit by a car.
Such an active dog temperament needs an active owner. This is not the breed for you if you don't like to go hiking or jogging on a regular basis. If possible, look for retrieving clubs and let your dog get involved in the hunt. This is the best way to not only let him use his brain, but to tire him out physically.
I have seen German Shorthaired Pointers be very successful in obedience and agility competitions. They are quick to learn and their natural speed and agility allow them to complete the obstacle course quickly and accurately. The German Shorthaired Pointer temperament is such that he will form a very strong bond with his owner, and these sports will reinforce that bond.
Watch What To Expect From German Shorthaired Pointers
Watch your Cats
Many hunting dog temperaments aren't compatible with small pets, and this can be the case with the German Shorthaired Pointer. He has a very strong instinct to hunt and chase, and can make life miserable for your pet cat or rabbit. While he can learn to live in harmony with other pets, you can't be complacent. Always keep an eye on your GSP when he is the company of small fluffy animals.
This hunting instinct can also come to the fore if your dog takes himself for a walk. He may bring home trophies such as dead birds, rats and cats. The best way to manage this is to give your German Shorthaired Pointer plenty of exercise, and to keep him secure behind high enough fences.
Disobedience and Stubbornness
The German Shorthaired Pointer temperament makes them one of the cleverest members of the dog world. If they feel that you aren't an effective leader, they will do whatever they want to. This will make them appear to be willful and disobedient. That's not the case; they just don't see you as the one in charge.
This dog naturally has an independent streak because when he hunts with his owner, there are times when he has to work out of sight, and figure things out for himself. If you don't train your dog well and teach him his place in your family pack, then you can expect him to be disobedient and to do what he wants to.
Should you decide to welcome a GSP into your family, you will have to be prepared to invest time and effort into training him, and showing him that you are indeed the pack leader in your home.
Don't let your dog's temperament make life difficult for you. Before you choose your breed, consider your lifestyle and how much time and effort you can put into training, grooming and exercising your dog. This particular breed is best suited to very active people, and if you can't keep up with your GSP, you can expect barking, destructive behavior and hyperactivity.
The German Shorthaired Pointer temperament is a pleasure to live with, for the right owner.
Other Sporting Dogs
The German Shorthaired Pointer belongs to the Sporting Group of dogs. They love the outdoors, make great hunters and require lots of vigorous exercise. Here are some examples of the temperaments, and characteristics of a few other Sporting Dogs: