The German Roughhaired Pointer: Everything You Need to Know

The German Roughhaired Pointer is a popular breed among dog lovers due to its unique appearance, loyal personality, and playful nature.

In this article, we will explore the key aspects of the German Roughhaired Pointer, including its history, physical traits, temperament, and health.

History and Origin of the German Roughhaired Pointer

Early Beginnings in Germany

The German Roughhaired Pointer is a hunting dog developed in Germany in the early 19th century. At this time, wealthy German hunters were looking for a versatile hunting dog that could work in various terrain conditions, such as forests, swamps, and lakes.

Development of the Breed

The German Roughhaired Pointer, also known as the Deutsch Stichelhaar, was developed by crossing various breeds with the goal of creating a dog that is tough, agile, and could hunt both game birds and larger prey, such as wild boars and deer. 

The German Roughhaired Pointer quickly became a favorite of German hunters due to its intelligence, loyalty, and versatility. The breed’s popularity grew, and it soon became one of the most sought-after hunting dogs in Germany.

The Breed in Modern Times

Today, the German Roughhaired Pointer is still a popular hunting dog breed, prized for its intelligence, loyalty, and versatility. If you are considering the breed, it is important to research it thoroughly and ensure that you can provide it with the exercise, training, and care it needs to thrive.

Physical Characteristics and Appearance

Size and Weight

The German Roughhaired Pointer is a medium to large-size dog. Males stand between 24 and 28 inches tall at the shoulders, and females between 23 and 27 inches tall. They weigh around 60 to 70 pounds. 

The German Roughhaired Pointer is an energetic and agile breed that loves to explore its surroundings and is always up for a challenge. Its muscular build and athletic ability make it a great companion for those who enjoy outdoor sports and activities.

Coat and Color

The German Roughhaired Pointer has a rough and wiry coat, which is around 1 to 2.5 inches long. The coat is typically brown, brown roan, or light roan. Some breed members can have white and brown patches. 

The rough coat protects the dog from harsh weather, such as cold and wet conditions. Additionally, it requires minimal attention, making it an ideal dog for families who love outdoor activities.

Distinctive Features

The German Roughhaired Pointer has a distinctive long beard and bushy eyebrows that give it a unique look. The breed also has long, droopy ears, which hang close to the face. 

The long beard and bushy eyebrows help protect the dog’s face from brush and debris while hunting, and the long, droopy ears help locate prey by picking up the sounds of rustling leaves and underbrush.

Temperament and Personality Traits

The German Roughhaired Pointer is a friendly, loyal, and affectionate dog that makes a wonderful family pet. It is also highly intelligent and trainable, hence ideal for a variety of tasks and activities.

Intelligence and Trainability

As previously mentioned, the German Roughhaired Pointer is a highly intelligent and trainable breed. They are quick learners and are eager to please their owners.

They are perfect for families who enjoy outdoor activities. Because of their intelligence, breed members are fit for tasks such as search and rescue, therapy work, and even as police or military canines.

Energy Levels and Exercise Needs

The German Roughhaired Pointer requires regular and ample exercise to stay healthy and happy. Daily walks and runs are necessary to keep this breed in good physical condition.

They also enjoy playing games and need a yard with ample space to run around and play. German Roughhaired Pointers are not suited to apartment living where they do not have enough space to move around.

Socialization and Interaction with Other Animals

German Roughhaired Pointers are social dogs that require proper socialization as puppies to help them interact well with other animals, including cats, dogs, and other animals.

It is important to socialize this breed from an early age to ensure that they become well-rounded and good-natured dogs, able to tolerate and get along with everyone in the family. 

Health and Lifespan

Common Health Issues

The German Roughhaired Pointer is generally a healthy breed, but it can be predisposed to certain health issues, such as: 

  • Hip Dysplasia: A genetic, orthopedic condition that affects the hip joint and causes pain, lameness, and arthritis
  • Elbow Dysplasia: A developmental orthopedic condition that affects the elbow joint and causes pain, lameness, and arthritis
  • Hypothyroidism: A condition where the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones, causing weight gain, lethargy, and skin problems 
  • Bloat: A potentially life-threatening condition where the stomach fills with gas and twists on itself, causing vomiting, lethargy, and shock
  • Ear Infections: The breed’s long, floppy ears can trap moisture and debris, making them prone to ear infections

Preventative Care and Regular Checkups

Preventative care is essential to keep the German Roughhaired Pointer healthy. This includes regular check-ups with a veterinarian, vaccinations, and parasite prevention. I

Regular exercise is also crucial for the German Roughhaired Pointer. Owners must provide their dogs with opportunities to run, play, and explore in a safe and secure environment.

Expected Lifespan

When well-cared for, the German Roughhaired Pointer has an expected lifespan of 12 to 14 years. The average lifespan is influenced by factors such as genetics, nutrition, and preventative care.

Owners who provide their dogs with proper nutrition, exercise, and veterinary care can help to ensure that their German Roughhaired Pointer lives a long and healthy life.


In summary, the German Roughhaired Pointer is a wonderful breed that is highly intelligent, trainable, and friendly. It requires regular exercise and ample space to play.

If you are looking for a loyal and affectionate dog that is great for outdoor activities, the German Roughhaired Pointer may be the perfect breed for you.

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