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The English Pointer (or simply “Pointer”) is a large breed of dog originally bred as a gun dog. They are one of the oldest breeds in England, dating back over 3 centuries.
Pointers have a short, smooth, shiny coat which comes in many colours and patterns, such as black, lemon and orange, all with or without white. They are quite low-maintenance dogs, only requiring a quick, soft brush to reduce shedding.
Male Pointers weigh around 25 – 34 kg and stand at 60 – 70 cm tall while females weigh between 20 and 30 kg and stand at 58 – 66 cm tall. The lifespan of the English Pointer is 12 – 15 years.
English Pointers have boundless energy and require rigorous exercise every day to prevent restlessness. Families, unless they have the time and willingness to put in the effort, should not opt for a Pointer. They need an owner who is just as active and energetic as they are. They love to run and walk, and though not water retrievers, some are known to love the water.
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English Pointers are quite easy to housebreak and train as they are very intelligent. They are also affectionate, loyal and patient companions who are very adaptable and in-tune with their owner’s emotions – a happy owner will have a happy dog, but a nervous owner may pass its anxiety onto the dog, especially since the Pointer can occasionally be highly-strung. Pointers love children, and when raised with them, they are very good with other pets too.
Pointers also make great watchdogs as they are protective of their family and property and will let their owners know if anything out of the ordinary is happening.
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The term “pointer” was used to describe any hunting breed that pointed at its prey. While it is believed they originated in Spain, little is known about the Pointer’s origins. Pointer-like dogs have existed in England since as early as 1650. The modern Pointer probably came about as a result of Spanish Pointers being brought to England around 1712 and possibly cross-breeding them with the Foxhound, Greyhound, Bloodhound, and some setters. These breeds (and possibly more) lent their incredible sense of smell, speed, elegance, endurance and temperament to create the breed we see today.
English Pointers were most likely first brought to the USA by early colonists, though they weren’t really documented until the Civil War era. They were first recognised by the AKC in 1884 and the American Pointer Club was established in 1938.
As of 2013, the Pointer ranks as 103rd in the AKC’s 180 registered breeds.
English Pointer Rescue Australia: https://www.facebook.com/English-Pointer-Rescue-Australia-155164284602350/