Looking for a Pointer?
A few thoughts...
     If you are looking for a Pointer, there are some basic things to know. Are you looking for a family dog, a show dog, a grouse or pheasant hunting dog? Or all those things in one dog?  Do you want to field trial or do hunt tests?  A good Pointer can fill all these roles, and do it well.

     You should first be aware that there are two common registries, or "types" of Pointers in the U.S. - the AKC and the American Field's FDSB.  Unlike Pointers in every other country in the world, the American Field-type dogs are commonly identified by their high tail sets.

     If you're looking for a great all-around dog, AKC-registered Pointers can be wonderful companions, useful bird dogs, and calm, affectionate family members. They are generally easy to handle in the field and love living in your home. I know that I will never own another breed!     

     That said, with the rise of instant marketing on Facebook and internet sites, check the facts behind words used such as "dual purpose" dogs (meaning, fit for both show and field work) and "great" hunters.  You should ask questions - "Do the parents have any hunting titles? Do they compete in any field events?  Do you hunt over your dogs?" You may hear answers such as "no, but they're just great in the field" or maybe they have a "Junior Hunter".  An AKC Junior Hunter simply requires a Pointer to use their instincts - it's an entry-level title.  Seeing a JH title or hearing someone say their dogs are "really birdy" does not mean that the parents have the ability to produce well-mannered, smart gun dogs with calm temperaments, nor does it tell you much about the trainability needed for a finished performer.  This is one reason that reputable breeders often compete with their dogs.  Others can then assess and agree that they're talented - or not.  Earning ribbons in open competition is one sign of proven, better-than-average working ability.

     If the parents have no field achievements or lack a pedigree with working titles, you should watch them work in the field, and make sure you like what you see. Then again, why not just get a puppy from a breeder who selects for excellent working ability?  Pedigrees with proven field abilities beget more of the same.
     A question you should always ask is "Do you screen hips before breeding?" This can be done by submitting hip x-rays to the OFA (see my link section) or Pennhip. Occasionally, you'll hear a comment that it isn't necessary in Pointers, "the breed doesn't have a problem," et cetera. If dogs aren't being screened for hip dysplasia before they're bred, it will appear. (8.1% of reported Pointer hips are dysplastic; the actual rate is probably higher because not everyone reports them.) So, you can believe what someone tells you, or you can simply check for that OFA or Pennhip certificate.  Many sporting breeds contain a hip-screening provision in their Code of Ethics.

     Another question you may want to ask is "How many litters do you breed a year?" Anyone in Pointers who is breeding several litters a year is most likely not doing it to improve the breed. Or maybe they want to produce title-holders of some sort out of many litters of puppies so they can have "bragging rights" based on the number of titles attained.  Far better to buy from a selective breeder who really cares about producing that one "perfect" litter, not a few good puppies out of many litters.

     Winning lots of shows, or field trials, or having beautiful-looking dogs may appear impressive but does not make a responsible breeder. A responsible breeder is judged by their care and concern for their dogs and their breed as demonstrated by their breeding decisions.

     Enjoy your search. Don't settle for mediocre! Pointers are a terrific breed and in general have very few health problems. If you take the time to ask a few questions, you won't be disappointed.

(Note that these are general observations and are in no way directed at ANY particular people, dogs, clubs, kennels, etc.!!)
Looking for these qualities?
What we breed for:
  • Natural ability, including pointing, backing, AND retrieving
  • Trainability
  • Desire to run and hunt
  • Intelligence
  • Nose
  • Stamina
  • Calm, sensible, sweet disposition
  • Good looks & moderate size
  • Health.  Our dogs have OFA Good (or better hips) and we're trying out other health clearances as well
  • Improvement over the average Pointer
We support AKC field trials, hunt tests, NAVHDA, and shows. (After all, Pointers CAN do everything). We guarantee health, hips, and field ability.