Acquired: Rescue / shelter organization
Posted October 28, 2015
German Shorthaired Pointers (GSPs) are fantastic, affectionate family dogs, but require TONS of exercise.
GSPs are easy to train, given that you find the right motivating reward for them. They can be stubborn, so setting boundaries early is crucial. Our GSP (Pointer...original name, right?) was slow to learn obedience from us, but a professional helped us realize that our treats weren't "high value" enough.
Pointers are emotionally stable dogs, given that they are properly exercised. GSPs are high-energy dogs, and love to run. I am a marathon runner, and Pointer is one of my favorite training partners. He is very eager to please, and will run multiple times a day with me, even at age 10! He is extremely athletic, and often can be found bounding through the house and jumping over chairs and couches, or off the deck. Keeping a GSPs weight down is crucial, because arthritis is a concern for these active dogs.
GSPs are extremely loving dogs, and become attached to humans easily. Pointer sleeps under the covers and on his own pillow, and would honestly become depressed if he were treated like a real dog. He is very sensitive to the moods/emotions of his people. He is a true watch-dog, and cares more about the safety of others than his own well-being. His previous owner was on oxygen, and he would stay up all night to alert her or her family if her oxygen tank beeped, without having been trained to do so. Pointer is fantastic with children. His previous owners had a total of 87 foster children throughout the time they had Pointer, and we were told he was often put in charge of "babysitting" if someone left the room. I thought this was ridiculous, until one day my great-niece was sleeping in another room, and Pointer frantically came and got us, and led us to her. She was having a bad dream and was crying in her sleep. He would not leave her until she calmed down.
Pointer is extremely protective, and makes an excellent guard dog. He fiercely protects his family from anything he perceives as harmful, yet does not have a mean bone in his body.
Overall, GSPs are excellent companions, but require plenty of exercise, as they are extremely high-energy.