German Long-haired Pointing Dog (Deutsch Langhaar)

Country of origin:
Germany
Height (cm):
58-70
Weight (kg):
27-30
Life span (years):
12-14
Colour:
brown, brown with white or speckled markings, dark or pale roan, mottled, brown & white
Size:
large
Hair length:
average
Recognized by:
FCI, CKC, DRA, NAPR, AKC/FSS
FCI code:
117
Intelligence:
Good with kids:
Trainability:
Shedding:
Watchdog:
Adaptability:
Allergy:
No
Pros Cons
  • wonderful family companion
  • loves children                                           
  • trainable
  • excellent hunter
  • requires a lot of daily exercises
  • doesn't suit for living in a small apartment

Overview
The German Long-Haired Pointing Dog is an extremely tenacious and talented hunting dog native to Germany. This all-purpose dog is praised for its hunting prowess and enjoys a well-deserved popularity among German hunters. Thanks to its docility and biddable nature this breed usually makes a fabulous family pet as well as competes at the highest level in various dog’s sport.

History
The progenitors of the Deutsch Langhaar existed in Germany since at least XVI century, which is proven by depictions of longhaired hunting dogs on various art works of this period. This type of dog was valued for its versatility but it operated at a slow pace. It’s considered that the Setting Spaniel played a certain role in the development of the earliest German Long-Haired Pointing Dog. It was imported to Germany from Spain in the beginning of the XVI century. This Spanish dog was used in hunting partridge and in hawking and used to demonstrate the outmost faithfulness to its master. Gradually it was mixed with population of local hunting dogs and the posterity was granted the name the stober dog (rummage dog).

The Stober Dog was a proud owner of the long lavish coat and was favoured for its incredible capability in locating game on any kind of terrain. German breeders aimed to enhance inherent qualities of this dog and crossed it with other hunting dogs. As a result they created a slow-moving canine with rich long hair, which was later named the Deutsch Langsam. The popularity of this breed reached its peak with the invention of the flintlock. The point is that this type of weaponry was able only to wound the quarry and a dog was assigned to find the shot game.

When vast areas of dense forests in northern regions of Germany were progressively exterminated, open field turned into a true hunting ground. The Deutsch Langsam appeared to be useless in tracking and pointing feathered game. German avid hunters intended to produce a faster version of the Deutsch Langsam, which would also be distinguishable for a superb scenting ability. To achieve this goal they mated the breed with Scottish and English Setters. However, because these breeding attempts were quite chaotic, they led to deterioration of the quality of the Deutsch Langsam, which became extremely variable in sizes, appearance and working characteristics.

With the assistance of some concerned fanciers the situation was improved. In 1879, best specimens of the Long-Haired German Pointers were picked out at an exhibition in Hannover in order to establish the breed’s general traits. At the same year the standard for the Deutsch Langhaar was developed and it hasn’t changed much to this days.

The German Long-Haired Pointing Dog still represents a valuable asset for many German hunters but it’s also kept by quite a few dogs’ enthusiasts as a lovely family dog. However, the breed hasn’t yet gained much recognition outside its native country.

Temperament
The German Long-Haired Pointing Dog is a robust and hard-working hunting dog, which is also perfectly suited for the role of a family pet. The dog expresses an exceptional loyalty to its family and loves to be in the centre of its attention. It tends to become uneasy and upset if left alone for long period of time. It’s usually gentle and careful with children to which it has been correctly introduced.

The Deutsch Langhaar is rather tolerable to the presence of strange people. Actually majority of specimens displays friendliness towards them. However, in some lines excessive shyness may turn out to be a problem. The dog possesses a rather strong territorial instinct, which makes it a pretty good watchdog. It constantly monitors its surroundings and timely signals to its master when someone nears the house door. But this breed lacks necessary aggressiveness to become a reasonable guard dog.

The German Long-Haired Pointing Dog used to work in company of dozens of other dogs so it usually gets along with other canines. This doesn’t mean though that it shouldn’t be introduced to their company since an early age. On the contrary, only extensive socialisation can ensure its problem-free co-habitation with another dog. The breed is extremely dangerous for other animals because of its powerful prey drive. In some cases the Deutsch Langhaar will harass even a home cat with which it has been brought up together.

Health Problems
The most common problems for the breed include:

• canine hip dysplasia;
• ear infections.

Grooming
The German Long-Haired Pointing Dog is regarded as a low-maintenance dog. The owner should brush its coat on a regular basis to keep it healthy-looking and tidy. The dog should be bathed only occasionally because its coat dries very slowly.

The ears of the Deutsch Langhaar tend to be easily infected and require thorough and systematic inspection and cleaning especially after each hunting trip. This breed is an average shedder.

Training
The training of the Deutsch Langhaar won’t pose much difficulty because of its intelligence and nice temperament. This dog is generally eager to please and can be trained to perform very sophisticated tricks. The hunting talents are already in the breeds’ blood so it won’t need any extra lessons to become an outstanding hunting dog.

The German Long-Haired Pointing Dog reacts with wilful and defiant behaviour to harsh treatment, which means that in its training should be used exclusively positive reinforcement and praise. It’s worth to remember that this biddable breed won’t follow commands of a meek or week handler so he/her should become an authoritative leader for the dog in order to earn its respect and compliance.

Exercise
The German Long-Haired Pointing Dog possesses enormous reserves of energy and requires unbelievable amount of exercise to burn its excesses. At a very minimum it should be taken on a long and vigorous walk each and every day. However in order to be fully happy the breed should be provided with a regular opportunity to play and run freely on a securely fenced territory.

This smart dog strives not only for physical but also for mental stimulation. It will lose its sweet temper and become a nasty, disobedient creature if it doesn’t receive enough physical outlets on a daily basis. The Deutsch Langhaar fits best to the countryside where it will have plenty of space to move and play.
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