German Shorthaired Pointer – How Much Exercise Does a GSP Really Need?

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Today we are taking a couple of young German Shorthaired Pointers on a farm adventure training session. We thought this would be a good chance to provide a little insight into the the GSP’s naturally high levels of energy, endurance, and natural inquisitiveness.

If you are thinking about purchasing a German Shorthair Pointer, make sure you understand that you are purchasing a dog that is bred to hunt and run all day long, with very little rest. These dogs are very rewarding companions, but one must be realistic about the effort level required to help them be successful in a suburban environment.

For more information, visit the German Shorthaired Pointer Club of America:

The breed is considered medium in size with the males slightly larger than the females. One should be able to determine the sex of the dog based on general appearance, i.e. males should look masculine and females should look feminine. A fairly healthy breed but the first time buyer should always inquire about health clearances of the sire and dam when looking for a puppy. Breeders should have no problem discussing or answering any health issues being asked. The following are considered as a minimum to ask about: OFA or PennHip – hip dysplasia; Cardiac-echocardiogram for congenital cardiac; CERF – current eye clearance of PRA done each year until age 6 every two years afterward; CD – DNA test for carrier status for cone degeneration (may be cleared by both Parents DNA test indicating “normal” a non-carrier.) Read more about health clearances.

It is important to remember this is primarily a hunting dog, bred for a purpose, and as such will have a high level of activity and/or energy that needs to be channeled. Just like people not all are created equal and while some will learn a task quickly others may take more time and patience. GSPs tend to be eager to please and willing to learn at relatively young ages if the training sessions are not forced and kept short and simple. Even though some may appear physically mature by the time they are six months old their brain may not be engaged until they reach two years of age. Thus you may have an adult size dog with a “teenage” brain.

The coat of a GSP is short but not thin and when one runs their hand across a dog the hair should not feel soft to the touch with exception of the hair found on the head and ears. The GSP head is shaped differently than that found on a Lab or Pointer and its ear is slightly larger and longer, not pointed at the end but slightly rounded. To prevent field injuries the tail is docked, not short like a Boxer or Doberman but should be at least 6 to 8 inches long with some a bit longer and with dewclaws removed. Often confused by some as a Dalmatian because some of the coat patterns of the GSP are bright white with small markings referred to as “ticking” or with Labs because of the solid liver or black versions. Yet if compared side by side it would be readily apparent that none of them look alike.

If interested in a GSP is it important to find a breeder you feel comfortable asking questions or to talk with about health issues, training or any thing that might come to mind.I hope you guys enjoy!

If you would like more information about my services, heres a link to my website:

If you would like to see some cool photos, here’s a link to my instagram:

#puppytraining #germanshorthairedpointer #birddog


Paula T says:

So nice to see old Henry. Thanks for the video Stonnie.

Compa 49 says:

Henry wasn't looking for an old man. I don't think his tail stopped wagging the entire video.

average internet user says:

5 commies dislike this

Valerie Texan says:

Your wife. Please you have arms and legs and could have checked before you left.

Chloe says:

My GWP bitch is like that, never physically tires. We’re lucky we live in the country so that on long walks she gets to hunt to her heart’s content, keeps her brain satisfied!

Riffmuir Kennels says:

I feel it, I forgot my whistles and tripod mount on trips. It happens lol

GEO W says:

ok UNCLE Stonnie it's really not your wife fault just an FYI

Jon Redd says:

I'll save you 20 minutes. As much as you can give them. And then a little more! Best dog I have ever had!

Brooke says:

i raised and competed in hunts with coonhounds all through middle and high school in a secluded rural area, then went to college in a metro city and loved it all except for missing my hounds. but now i am thinking about going to the outer suburbs of the city and getting a gsp as a compromise between a coonhound and a more companionable dog like a golden or lab. i love a hound’s independence and drive, but i need a dog that will mind a little better in a populated area. i will say my coondogs minded better with basic obedience than anyone else’s at the hunts and field trials i went to lol

Darrell Adams says:

Loved seeing Henry again. He was waiting for you to throw or shoot something the whole time.

Ivan Georgiev says:

And I think my Lab is full of energy 😂.

Kendra Caruso says:

sry stny love you but those gsp's are useless as tits on a fish. those are purely pets not hounds. Leave the gun at the house don't play games for the cam and pls keep the dog/hound community real

Andrew Philip says:

Love your videos Stonnie! Great to see Henry out and about with you!

Barbara Alton says:

You never fail a showing a great video!! Love to see the family too!! George looks like this time next year you'll be looking up at him!! Show the best looking camera man around, the boss!! Have a great weekend!! your friend in the Pacific Northwest!! Dennis

stapleboss says:

I live in rural New England and have acres of woods around my house and a 300 acre work campus where I can bring my dogs daily. A Golden Retriever and a Poodle mix rescue mutt. I hike 5-8 miles a day and the dogs probably triple that all off leash. That off leash free roaming in the woods is the only way to go – that's what they want to do. An exercised dog is a good dog. I don't do a lot of training, sit and down but hardly ever use them – they're just tricks. I also train a real stay (forever) and what I call a hard recall (get your ass over here right now) because those are useful and safe. Other than that that we just have a symbiotic relationship.

Bruce says:

hope no grass snakes around !

Pedraza Art says:

Henry loves uncle stonie this was awesome

Service Dog on A Budget says:

Hey I live in Kentucky and would love to come and watch you train when all of this craziness is over. It could really help with my training.

Jumbuck says:

Rescued a 4 year old female short hair from inactive owners with a small suburban yard. Think Rush is full on, you've seen nothing. We live live in the country with very active ridgebacks so thought we were prepared for anything, but these short hairs are something else. She's as crazy as a cut snake but has the sweetest nature you could imagine. Her mood alternates between very happy & ecstatic😆.

Morgan G says:

“That’s why we brought 2 Shorthairs, so we can make sure we go home with 1” As a shorthair owner… this is 100% accurate 😂 my girls love to run and explore.

Andy Guss says:

Hiking with GSPs is a true joy. I appreciate that you are encouraging people to honestly consider whether they can incorporate the amount of time and energy to fully exercise these dogs. For us, it is a daily commitment of at least 90 minutes and that does not include the time to get them someplace they can safely run off leash for that long. Often we are hiking for 2 hours or more. It is the best part of my day, but it is also a serious chunk of daylight. And it is every day.

Digs 1 says:

There's a type of hunting we do in the UK and Ireland you'd love called bushing, Stonnie.
Usually a terrier, spaniel or a hybrid of those types will work cover with a lurcher or some other fast dog staying just out of the thicker cover and watching the action waiting for something to break cover and run out into the open.

The numbers tend to be quite low, but it's great to watch, non-stop action in the right place.

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