The German Longhaired Pointer is a very versatile dog and whilst originally bred as a hunting dog, you will find the German Longhaired Pointer participating in many activities.
A field trial should be as near as possible to an ordinary day’s shooting and the task of judges is to find the dog which, on the day, pleases them most by the quality of it’s work from a shooting point of view.
Natural game finding is the most important aspect of field trials. Differing from working tests, this is the ‘serious’ side of working competition where both handler and dog are expected to have reached a certain standard before venturing to their first field trial. Experience (and a good knowledgeable trainer) is essential as field trials involve game and guns.
Gundog working tests are competitions which, by artificially simulating shooting day conditions, seek to assess, the working abilities of the various breeds of Gundog without game being shot
Gundog working tests are run for any of the three sub-groups of Gundogs recognised by the Kennel Club as detailed below:
• Retrievers and Irish Water Spaniels
• Sporting Spaniels other than Irish Water Spaniels
• Breeds which Hunt, Point and Retrieve
The Kennel Club recognise the following competition classes:
• Open, Novice, Puppy and Unclassified
Probably one of the older forms of hunting, falconry over pointing dogs brings a new dimension to working an hunter pointer retriever. The dog needs to ignore flying falcons, hunt with confidence and drive over huge areas of moorland. The dog needs to hold a point until the falcon has been given an opportunity to get overhead.
“Serving the falcons with grouse at the right moment after holding a point for 20 minutes can be quite demanding. The reward of serving a falcon with a wild grouse, highly adept at avoiding ground and winged predators is definitely worth the work. A stupendous flight and occasional kill is worthy of a good walk, and an even longer drive. I can honestly report that German Longhaired Pointers can hold their own on a grouse hunting outing. If you get the opportunity, jump at it.”
– Paul Whittaker
It’s fast, furious and a great favourite with competitors and spectators alike. The aim is to direct your dog over and through certain obstacles testing your dog’s fitness and your ability to train.
If you decide that agility is a suitable activity for you and your dog, your next step is to receive some expert training. Whatever competition you choose, your dog will be a happier pet for being trained.
Canicross is a form of cross country running but with your dog attached to you and was originally developed from the sport of Skijoring, where people ski with their dog pulling out in front of them.
Dogs are great running partners as they are reliable and always ready to run, German Longhaired Pointers are a popular choice for running dogs as Canicross stimulates both mentally and physically.
Ensure your dog is fit and healthy, has no underlying illness and is used to some level of exercise before embarking on any strenuous exercise with your dog, start slowly and build up the distance.
Dog showing or exhibiting is an exciting competitive activity where dogs compete against each other for prizes or awards. It is a competition where a dog’s attributes and conformation are compared against a breed standard for its breed. Whilst it can often be taken very seriously, it can be a fun pursuit that people and their dogs thoroughly enjoy.
Competitive obedience is exactly what you would imagine – obedient and well-trained dogs having their abilities tested.
The first step to having an obedient dog is to train, if you want to give it a try, the Kennel Club has a list of registered dog training clubs or listed status clubs on their website
Pets as therapy is a unique charity which provides therapeutic visits to hospitals, hospices, nursing and care homes, special needs schools and a variety of other venues run by volunteers with their own friendly, temperament tested and vaccinated dogs and cats.
The community led charity currently has over 5,000 active visiting dogs registered with Pets As Therapy. The dogs, having first been examined and passed on health, temperament, suitability and stability grounds, join as Pets As Therapy, give both young and old the pleasure and chance to cuddle and talk to them.