Written By: Melanie MussonReviewed By: Dr. Pippa Elliott BVMS, MRCVSUPDATED: Nov 17, 2020Fact Checked

The German shorthaired pointer has origins in Germany where it was developed for hunting. The dog grows to medium or large body size but it is streamlined for rapid movement and quick turns. Since the dawn of the 19th century, the German shorthaired pointer has been used in numerous hunting expeditions for its affectionate, intelligent and cooperative nature in the bush.

The smart, friendly and willing to please temperament makes the dog a highly productive partner. The males are generally large than the females in both weight and height. This breed of dogs usually has a lifespan of between 12 to 14 years.

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German Shorthaired Pointer

German Shorthaired Pointer Health Problems

When considering pet insurance coverage for your German Shorthaired Pointer, look for a plan with comprehensive genetic and hereditary coverage like Healthy Paws and avoid accident or illness-only plans with low payout limits.

Just by living with a pet, it is difficult for a pet owner to know what diseases their dog is susceptible to. This information is however readily available with the breeders and even though they might not know how to control an illness, they will tell you how the parent coped with it. The fact that a parent of the German shorthaired pointer had a certain disease does not automatically mean that the offspring will be affected.

It is important to get insurance for your pet but this depends on the predisposing factors that make a dog likely to suffer from an illness. Equally important is the study of the various illnesses associated with the German shorthaired pointer for purposes of choosing the right insurance.

Related: 10 Things You Must Know Before You Buy Pet Insurance

Blood clotting: some of the common diseases associated with the German shorthaired pointer are hemophilia, thrombocytopenia, and von Willebrand’s disease.

Heart diseases: if you own a German shorthaired pointer, you need to be concerned about subaortic stenosis of the heart and also illnesses that manifest as epilepsy (seizures).

Cancer: Although the German shorthaired pointer is prone to getting melanoma, fibrosarcoma, lymphosarcoma, and osteosarcoma this is a very small list as compared to cancers that affect other dog breeds.

Cataracts: the German shorthaired pointer dogs will show signs of a cataracts infection from as early as 6 months of age. Due to other eye infections such as corneal dystrophy, entropion, cherry eye, and progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), there are very many blind German shorthaired pointer dogs.

Hip dysplasia: upon evaluation of the hip X-rays of 11,625 specimens of the German Shorthairs, the Orthopedic Foundation of America discovered less than 5% dysplastic. This is excellent new owing to the fact that it is a disease that largely compromises the quality of life of a dog. German Shorthaired Pointers are however more prone to suffering from elbow panosteitis, osteochondritis, dysplasia, and hypertrophic osteodystrophy.

Hormonal diseases: hypothyroidism and serious Addison’s disease are the major Hormonal/endocrinal diseases in the German Shorthaired Pointers. The Thyroid Database at the Michigan State University indicates that an upwards of 14% of German Shorthairs show low thyroid levels.

Bloat: the German Shorthaired Pointers are deep chested and this puts them at a higher risk of getting bloated. Bloat in dogs is usually an emergency medical condition that could lead to death in a few hours. To prevent occurrences of bloat, a proper diet should be observed at all times from when the dog is born.

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German Shorthaired Pointer pet insurance tips 

It is both costly ad time consuming to take care of a sick dog, so dog owners are always silently hoping that their pets never fall ill. Apart from genetic factors that put a dog at risk of contracting certain diseases, environmental factors also play an important role. Good health for a pet begins from the breeder and owner in selecting a puppy that is free of health issues.

This is further enhanced by proper care of the dog to protect it from the environment. With dog care, pet owners cannot be too careful to avoid diseases in the German shorthaired pointer. Insurance remains the best defense against unforeseen incidents of disease that may affect the dogs of this breed.

To compare coverage, exclusions, benefits, reimbursements and more, refer to our side-by-side comparison chart. Or if you’re interested in learning more about a specific provider’s reputation, visit our company reviews page for updated ratings.

For other types of dogs, check out our full list of dog breeds.


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Melanie Musson is the fourth generation in her family to work in the insurance industry. She grew up with insurance talk as part of her everyday conversation and has studied to gain an in-depth knowledge of state-specific car insurance laws and dynamics as well as a broad understanding of how insurance fits into every person’s life, from budgets to coverage levels. She also specializes in automa...

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Written by Melanie Musson
Published Insurance Expert Melanie Musson

Dr Pippa Elliott BVMS, MRCVS is a veterinarian with over 30 years experience in companion animal practice. In 1987 she graduated from the University of Glasgow, with a degree in veterinary medicine and surgery. A love of the sea meant accepting her first job in the port town of Portsmouth, England. A fter working in private practice for two years, her next position was as a vet at the People’...

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Reviewed by Dr. Pippa Elliott BVMS, MRCVS
Veterinarian Dr. Pippa Elliott BVMS, MRCVS