Pointing breed

A pointing breed is a type of gundog typically used in finding game. Gundogs are traditionally divided into three classes: retrievers, flushing spaniels, and pointing breeds. The name "pointer" comes from the dog's instinct to "point", by stopping and aiming its muzzle towards game. This demonstrates to the hunter the location of his or her quarry and allows them to move into gun range. Pointers were selectively bred for dogs who had abundant pointing and backing instinct. They typically start to acquire their hunting instincts at about 2 months of age. Many need further training to hold steadily at all appropriate times until released by the hunter.


s to flush game for the raptors. Most continental European pointing breeds are classified as versatile gun dog breeds or sometimes HPR breeds (for hunt, point and retrieve). The distinction is made because versatile breeds were developed to find and point game as all pointing breeds, but were also bred to perform other hunting tasks as well. This distinction likely arose because while the British developed breeds which specialized in tasks such as pointing, flushing and retrieving from land or water, in Continental Europe, the same dog was trained to be able to perform each of these tasks (albeit less effectively). The North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association defines versatility as "the dog that is bred and trained to dependably hunt and point game, to retrieve on both land and water, and to track wounded game on both land and water." As an example, German Shorthair Pointers are often used to retrieve birds duck hunting whereas, calling upon a Pointer to do the same would be less common. Unlike the pure pointing and setting breeds, many versatile dogs were bred for working in dense cover, and traditionally have docked tails.

The Westminster Kennel Club was organized in the early 1870s and the club's early English import, "Sensation", is still used as the club logo.


Pointing breeds come in all varieties of coats, from short-haired dogs, to wire-haired dogs, to silky-coated Setters. Most breeds tend to have some sort of spots on their body, whether the spots are small and round, or a large oval shape.


Pointers are very high energy dogs and constantly think about hunting and tracking. They are also extremely sweet, love to cuddle, play with other pets, and enjoy the company of other humans. They are a very independent, loyal, and responsive breed--they respond well to scolding and are extremely intelligent.

Types of Breeds

Pointers (and setters) include the following breeds:
*English Pointer
*English Setter
*Gordon Setter
*Irish Red and White Setter
*Irish SetterThe following breeds are also considered versatile hunting dogs:
*Ariege Pointer ("Braque de l'Ariege")
*Bracco Italiano
*Braque du Bourbonnais ("Bourbonnais pointer")
*Braque d'Auvergne
*Braque Francais
*Braque Saint-Germain
*Brittany ("Epagneul Breton", formerly known as the Brittany Spaniel)
*French Brittany ("Épagneul Breton", FCI standard)
*Canadian Pointer
*Cesky Fousek
*German Longhaired Pointer
*German Shorthaired Pointer
*German Wirehaired Pointer
*Hungarian Vizsla
*Labrador Retriever
*Large Munsterlander
*Old Danish Pointer
*Old Spanish Pointer ("Perdiguero Navarro")
*Portuguese Pointer
*Slovakian Rough Haired Pointer
*Small Munsterlander
*Spanish Pointer ("Perdiguero de Burgos")
*Spinone Italiano
*Wirehaired Pointing Griffon


* Fergus, Charles. "Gun Dog Breeds, A Guide to Spaniels, Retrievers, and Pointing Dogs", The Lyons Press, 2002. ISBN 1-58574-618-5
* [http://www.5stardog.com/dog-breeds-pointer.asp/ 5 Star Dogs: Pointers]

External links

* [http://www.akc.org/events/field_trials/pointing_breeds/history.cfm AKC pointing breed field trials]
* [http://www.americanpointerclub.org/ American Pointer Club]
* [http://www.americanpointerclub.org/ Pointer Rescue—adopt a pointer]

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