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English Setter

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The English Setter is a large, very elegant pointing dog from England. This is often kept as a family dog because of its beautiful appearance and human-friendly nature. He is recognized by the FCI and can be found under the FCI standard FCI Group 7 Pointers, Section 2.2 British and Irish Pointers, Setters with working trial. It is closely related to the Irish Setter, but the color and pattern of the coat in particular quickly reveal the differences between the two breeds.

Origin and breed history

The English Setter is one of the oldest hunting dog breeds from England. His ancestors were kept and used as so-called bird dogs as early as the Middle Ages. These long-haired hounds were used specifically for hunting poultry. The Spaniards probably brought pointers to England, which also belong to the ancestors of the English Setter.

The bird dogs of the time were so popular for hunting poultry that in the 19th century Sir Edward Laverack decided to start pure breeding with the most beautiful and powerful dogs. Right from the start, this breed of setter was not only about suitability for hunting, the animals should be a decorative accessory for the nobleman and have a stable nature. The English Setter was introduced as a separate breed for the first time in 1860. The forefathers were the male Ponto and the female Old Moll. Starting from this mating, the breeding was pushed further and further.

The English Setter combines concentrated hunting behavior with absolute obedience in an almost inimitable way. Because when hunting, the English Setter first looks for the game with its excellent nose and indicates it silently by pointing. Then, at the hunter’s command, to startle the game and, when it’s shot, to fetch it.

In addition to the hunting success, the beautiful and elegant English Setter also became more and more popular in private households. With its special coat and its markings, it clearly stands out from the other set breeds and at times almost became a fashion dog. It should not be forgotten that he is a hard-working and high-performance hunting dog that needs to be kept in a manner appropriate to the species in order to be balanced and socially acceptable in private hands and as a family dog.

Nature & Temperament of the English Setter

The English Setter is considered to be particularly friendly and good-natured. He is always positive towards people and has no problems with strangers or children. The English Setter is a very social dog that likes other dogs and is very good at communicating with them. He is very playful and can be a real happy person when given the right amount of exercise. Due to its hunting use, it is very alert when walking, which is why its owner should always keep a watchful eye on game. Due to his close contact with his people, he can easily be discouraged from hunting if he has enjoyed a good education.

In general, the English Setter is very eager to learn and gets enthusiastic about training. However, he reacts very sensitively to a hard hand and can develop fears. Otherwise, he is free from aggression and fear if he is well cared for. With physical exertion, he is a very quiet companion who is fun for everyone. When playing, he can even be a real child’s head. In addition to a good workload, he also needs a solid relationship with his family. The bond with its owner is very important for the English Setter, the animals suffer greatly from a long separation.

Is the English Setter right for me?

The English Setter needs an active owner who enjoys exercising and is most knowledgeable about hunting dog behavior. He should adapt to a very happy and playful dog that is up for any activity and still likes to try to let his charm play.

He is not suitable for seniors because his play instinct and his urge to move is too great. Being a people-friendly dog, he can live very well in the city but needs regular trips to the woods and nature.

He is very well suited as a family dog, as he gets along very well with children and other dogs. Its owner must be willing to practice a dog sport because this is the only way for the English Setter to live out its high urge to move and its energy.

German Longhaired Pointer, German Shorthaired Pointer, and German Wirehaired Pointer

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Pointing dogs are dogs of all breeds in which this behavior is particularly pronounced when they are used as hunting dogs. There are many dog breeds worldwide that have the necessary hereditary disposition to point. Quite a few of them even originally come from Germany. Here you can find out what pointing actually is, what a dog needs to be able to do it, and which four German pointing dog breeds we particularly recommend.

What is the prominence?

When we say that a dog points, it means that it shows a very specific behavior. When pointing, a hound smells a wild animal and then stands still and silent. At the same time he lifts a front paw (rarely it can also be a hind paw) and bends it. So its owner knows to prepare for the shot. So when a dog points, not only does it look cute, it also serves an important purpose in its job of hunting.

But not every hunting dog breed is also a pointing dog breed. While there are many breeds that are suitable for training as a gun dog, not every gun dog is capable of being a pointer. For example, a dog like the German Jagdterrier makes a wonderful companion, but it can never learn to lead.

Pointing is an innate ability that can be specifically encouraged. However, this is only possible if the breed of your dog and its specific lineage make it genetically capable. For this reason, the breeds that possess this ability are even classified in their own FCI group (breed nomenclature).

If you want your dog to stand up for you, one quality is particularly important: his nose. Because only if your four-legged friend can sniff out possible prey at a sufficient distance is he also suitable for this very special task. I will briefly introduce you to four dog breeds that originated in Germany and are suitable for this task.

What does a pointing dog do?

The special task of such a dog is to indicate to its owner by a very specific posture when – and where – there is game in the vicinity. This means that these animals are not only helpful to their people, but are almost indispensable for the hunting process. The dog nose can simply do more than ours!

Which dogs are pointing dogs?

Many, but not all, gun dog breeds fall into this FCI group. So if you want to acquire a companion that is capable of doing so, you must choose such a race. In the best case, you should find out beforehand from the person who bred your dog whether his parents or ancestors can or could do it too. So you can be absolutely sure! A few German breeds that make good pointing dogs include the German Shorthaired Pointer, Small Munsterlander, Pudel Pointer, and Weimaraner.

How do I teach my dog ​​to point?

If you bought a dog that has the genetic predisposition for this behavior, you can train it like any other. This is best done with the help of a professional trainer who can show you when your darling is in the right place. As with other behaviors, if you are aware of this, you can reward your dog for pointing correctly. This is how your best friend learns that he does exactly what you want him to do.

Gordon Setter

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Gordon Setters are a little quieter and more lumbering than their fellow Setters. However, this makes them more suitable as family dogs. Gordon Setters are generally very affectionate and good-natured dogs who love their families dearly.


The Gordon Setter is the oldest and heaviest setter species. Breeding began in the 18th century with a certain Duke of Gordon, to whom the breed owes its name. These dogs belong to the classic English pointers and should be particularly suitable for hunting in Scotland. They tracked down the hunted game and reported it to their master. Incidentally, this is also where the name “Setter” comes from, it is derived from “sitting dog”. Exactly which breeds were used in the breeding of the Gordon Setter until it got its current appearance is not entirely comprehensible. Depending on the source, black Labradors, Collies or English Bloodhounds are named. Crossing Irish Setters is relatively likely.


Gordon Setters are a little quieter and more lumbering than their fellow Setters. However, this makes them more suitable as family dogs. They are usually very affectionate and good-natured dogs who love their families dearly. They are a bit reserved towards strangers at first, but warm up quite quickly.

Despite this loving nature, Gordon Setters are better off in the country than in the city. Because nonetheless there is genuine Setter blood in them. That means they want to run, run, run. Likes to rage on the bike or as a companion when jogging. It is also difficult for Gordon Setters to resist bodies of water. If you decide to get a dog of this breed, you should be prepared for long walks in wind and weather.

The hunting instinct is still in the Gordon Setter. Therefore, care should be taken to get this under control from puppyhood onwards.

Health and life expectancy

Gordon Setters are quite robust dogs. As with all large breeds, special attention should be paid to the hips.

In addition, the floppy ears should be gently cleaned regularly to prevent ear infections.

They can live up to 13 years.

Relatives and similar breeds

Irish Setters, English Setters and Pointers


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The dog breed is still an insider tip among hunters and forest rangers, because the Hungarian Magyar Vizsla, also known as the short-haired Hungarian pointer, is considered easy to train and friendly. But its popularity is constantly increasing, and not only in hunting circles. Because the docile Magyar Viszal has an ideal size, is not too big and not too small and all in all uncomplicated. The FCI classified the Magyar Vizsla in Group 7: Pointers, Section 1 Continental Pointers with a working test (field and water test). He is listed under the number 57.

Origin and breed history

The history of the Magyar Vizsla began in the steppes of Asia. In the early Middle Ages, the itinerant horsemen of the Magyars settled on the plain between the crescent-shaped Carpathian mountain range in present-day Hungary. For hunting, they used small pointer dogs, the ancestors of today’s Magyar Vizsla. Guide dogs sniff out game, but do not scare it away once they have spotted it. They remain motionless and raise one foreleg to show the hunter which way the game is heading. The yellowish-brown color of the dogs was ideal for hunting in the steppes.

In the course of the Middle Ages, the dog spread throughout Europe through trade and politics and enjoyed increasing popularity. The Magyar Vizsla were deliberately bred as early as the 17th century. Dogs of this breed were ideal for hunting waterfowl, pheasants, partridges and fallow deer. Unfortunately, in the 19th century, the Hungarian hounds were more and more supplanted by the modern English hounds, such as the pointers, and breeding declined. The short-haired Hungarian pointer was becoming rarer and threatened with extinction. With an appeal in 1916, dedicated lovers tried to revive the breed, which they succeeded in doing. They crossed other breeds, such as the English Pointer or the German Shorthaired Pointer.

The breed was recognized by the FCI as early as 1936 and included in the list. Crossing the German Wirehaired Pointer resulted in the wirehaired variant of the Magyar Vizsla, which was recognized as an independent breed by the FCI in 1956. With the end of the Second World War and the erection of the Iron Curtain, breeding collapsed again, so that the pointing dog is only known to enthusiasts and in hunting circles. In Germany in 1977 the association of Hungarian hunting dogs was founded, which also includes the Magyar Vizsla.

Nature & character of the Magyar Vizsla

The Hungarian Shorthaired Pointer is a hunting dog through and through. And yet he is a sensitive person who immediately notices when the atmosphere in his family is not right. He is closely tied to his family, he would like to be there with them everywhere and follow his mistress or master at every turn. When socialized well, he is a friendly, happy dog who is also great with children.

In his home he gets along with everyone and everyone. It should not be overlooked that he is an intelligent hunting dog that is used to thinking and acting independently. His hunting instinct is strong and his willingness to perform is high. He learns easily and the curious dog wants to learn and be kept busy both physically and mentally.

Magyar Vizsla – activities and training

When it comes to hunting, the Magyar Vizsla is a consummate professional. Dogs of this breed are pointing dogs that want and need to work. If the dog is not challenged in his home, he will quickly show behavioral problems. Fortunately, he is not only satisfied with the hunt. He loves track work and is also in good hands when it comes to mantrailing. He is also well suited as a rescue dog. the pointing dog loves the water and training as a water rescue dog suits him well. Sensitive as he is, he can also be used as a therapy dog or, for example, visit people in retirement homes.

But he will also enjoy other types of dog sports. Whether dummy training, where the dummy can land in the water, agility, flyball, dog dancing, dog frisbee or another sport, the active dog will be enthusiastic. Because the most important thing for him is that he is with his people and does something with them.

Is the Magyar Vizsla right for me?

A Magyar Vizsla is best kept in the hands of a ranger or hunter with gun dog experience. However, the Hungarian pointer is also suitable for active people who have a lot of time for their dog and want to do a lot with them. When it comes to education, his people must be and be able to remain consistent. Above all, they should see the dog as a partner in sports and games. He doesn’t want to be a dog that just follows orders. He wants to spend a lot of time with his people and would like to be with them all the time. This dog breed should not be left alone for long. The Short-Haired Hungarian Pointer is therefore not suitable for working people, unless it has the opportunity to accompany its owner to work, for example as an office dog.

The Hungarian pointing dog will not feel comfortable in the city. He wants to be able to move in the great outdoors. However, it is imperative that he is well trained and comes back on command if you want to let him off leash. The hunting instinct is strong and it often happens that the dog forgets everything it has learned when it sees game, which unfortunately can have bad consequences. In the worst case, the poaching dog is shot. A home with a secure yard where the pointing dog can run around safely is best suited for a Magyar Vizsla.

Above all, before purchasing a puppy, you should be aware that you will be responsible for a living being for 14 to 16 years. A short-haired Hungarian Pointer has a comparatively long lifespan for a dog.

Irish Setter

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How old do Irish Setters get? Life expectancy of 12 to 15 years
When is an Irish Setter fully grown? Up to 12 months of age
Size: Males: 58 to 67 cm; Bitches: 55 to 62 cm
Weight: Males: 27 to 32 kg; Females: 24 to 29 kg
Character: Intelligent, friendly, self-confident, loyal
Origin: Ireland

Character, nature, and characteristics

The Irish Setter is an eager, intelligent, and eager to learn dog:

Irish Setters are full of energy every day and love to spend a lot of time with you and your family.
The loving large dog breed is usually always loyal to you.
The Irish Red Setter is fond of children and friendly, mostly towards strangers.
As a working or hunting dog, it exhibits a high level of energy and works tirelessly and in a disciplined manner.
Despite all attachment, the Irish Setter is a very independent dog that likes to go its own way from time to time.

Education, attitude and temperament

Since the Irish Setter can sometimes be a very idiosyncratic and spirited hunting dog, he needs an experienced and energetic owner who knows how to assert himself against his self-confident nature:

The Irish Red Setter is by no means a beginner’s dog.
If you train your setter consistently and with the necessary empathy, he should obey reliably despite his great self-confidence (exceptions prove the rule).
Irish Setters have a strong need for exercise and need hours of exercise every day. As hunting dogs, they particularly enjoy long walks in the great outdoors, where they can run to their heart’s content and work with their humans.
If you can only spend a little time with your Irish Setter, you will probably only get along with him to a limited extent.
Grooming the Irish Setter doesn’t require any brilliant deeds from you:

If you brush your Irish Setter once a week, you will be able to adequately care for him.
If your setter changes his coat, you should brush him several times a week, preferably daily.

Family or hunting dog?

Today’s use of the Irish Setter varies regionally. While it is still used as a hunting dog in its Irish homeland, it is particularly popular as a show dog in England:

Is an Irish Setter a family pet? Yes, the friendly and child-loving Irish dog breed is well suited as a family and companion dog.
Suitable dog sports for Irish dogs include agility and dummy training.
As a hunting dog, he is extremely resilient, persistent and is characterized by pointing at long distances.
Both in the forest and in the open field, the Irish Setter performs very well and moves very quickly.
The Irish Red Setter not only convinces as a persistent pointing dog with a good sense of smell; you can also use it for prone, retrieving, and water work.


Every dog has its own personality and is unique. Characteristics or behavior typical of the breed can usually be identified despite these individual differences. The common problems that an Irish Setter can present are also breed specific:

The Irish Setter always wants to be close to you and will not cope well if you leave it to its own devices too often.

Some Irish Red Setters have a very strong alert demeanor. If you don’t socialize your setter with strange animals and people in good time, it may develop into a tiring guard dog.
Because of their alert nature, the Irish Setter also looks out for game when not hunting. Don’t let your hound suddenly escape.

Dog food for the Irish Setter

Did you know that your Irish Setter has different nutritional needs than other specimens of the same breed? 9 nutritional factors have a significant impact on this. This includes, among other things, his age and weight, his size and activity level, his state of health, and allergies.

Since your Irish Setter is a very active and sporty dog, you should know exactly how much food to eat in his meals to meet his needs.

Italian Spinone

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Country of origin: Italy
Shoulder height: 58 – 70 cm
Weight: 28 – 37 kg
Age: 12 – 14 years
Colour: White, spotted or streaked with orange or brown
Use: hunting dog, companion dog

The Spinone Italiano is a large, wire-coated Italian Pointer with a calm, gentle, and even-tempered personality. It is suitable for hunting in any terrain and is also a loving, uncomplicated family companion dog when used to capacity.

Origin and history

The ancestors of today’s Spinone Italiano were large, wire-haired dogs that were used as hunting dogs in Italy as early as the Middle Ages. The breed is believed to have originated in Piedmont, Italy, and is one of the oldest pointing dog breeds. Paintings and frescoes by famous Italian masters depicting this type of dog bear witness to the early existence of these hunting dogs. With the Second World War and the spread of other popular pointing dog breeds in Italy (such as pointers or setters), the breed’s population declined sharply. Even today, the Spinone Italiano is a relatively rare dog breed, but the breeding population is stable.


The Spinone Italiano is a large dog with a strong build and well-developed muscles. The body is built roughly square and is suitable for the dog’s preferred gait – the fast trot. The fur is rough, about 5 cm long, hard and dense. It has no undercoat. The pronounced eyebrows, the goatee and the round, amber eyes give the Spinone the typical serious expression.

The ears of the Spinone are set low, long and drooping. The tail is thick and carried horizontally or hanging down. The coat color can be either solid white, white with orange spots (or stitches), or white with brown spots (or stitches). The care of the fur is uncomplicated.

Temperament and nature

The Spinone has a very affable nature, is easy to handle and patient and is suitable for hunting in any terrain. He is persistent to tireless and willingly goes into the thorny undergrowth or throws himself into the cold water. Its areas of application as a hunting dog are the search, pointing and retrieving of game. He proceeds slowly, but highly concentrated and meticulously. The quote “If the English Pointer is the Porsche among the pointing dogs, then the Spinone Italiano is the Jeep”, describes his hunting style very aptly. Due to its excellent sense of smell and its goal-oriented, persistent search work, the spinone is also used to search for traces of missing persons (mantrailing).

The robust wire-haired dog is alert and will report anything strange or suspicious, but is not an outspoken watchdog. He is considered to be very socially compatible, is friendly to strangers and gets along well with other dogs. The Spinone is considered to be very sensitive and forms a close bond with its humans. His upbringing requires a lot of empathy and loving consistency. A Spinone will not forgive unnecessary harshness or rough treatment.

The passionate hunter likes to work and needs a job that does justice to his qualities and skills. In the case of non-hunting leadership, he needs a corresponding alternative job, only then is he also a very pleasant and loving family companion dog. Because of its good-natured nature and its willingness to learn, a Spinone can also be trained to be a guide dog or assistance dog for the disabled.

Korthals Griffon

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The Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals is a dog breed from France classified by the FCI in Group 7 Pointers and Section 1.3 Continental Pointers of the Griffon type. Pointing dogs are hunting dogs that exhibit behavior known as pointing. The Griffon Korthals carries the standard number 107. Translated into English, this dog’s name means “Rough-haired Pointer – Korthals”. In most cases, the breed is just referred to as the Korthals Griffon or Griffon Korthals. The term “Griffon” is the French word for “rough hair”.

Origin and breed history

Pointing dogs, like the Griffon Korthals, were bred primarily to hunt poultry. A classic genus of this type of hunting dog is the English Setter. Setters had the trait of lying down on the ground to display poultry. Other typical pointing dogs, such as the English Pointer, already show the typical behavior of understanding by pointing the direction of the game like an arrow.

The Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals was bred by Eduard Korthals, a Dutchman living in Germany in the late 19th century. It took Korthals 15 years of consistent selection before he could guarantee the performance and appearance of this breed. The ancestors of the Korthals Griffon are various European dog breeds. A close ancestor of the Korthal is said to be the now extinct Boulet. This was a griffon with a woolly coat bred by Emmanuel Boulet. These dogs originally had a white coat but were later crossed with other Griffons as the white coat made them conspicuous to the animals they hunted. In order to darken the coat, shepherd dogs and probably also poodles were crossed.

In 1886, a first standard for the Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals could be set. In 1929, however, this was rescinded. The breeder did not want a division within the breed into Wirehaired, Stingehaired and Griffon Korthals, because the differences in the coat of all these dogs are very difficult to recognize. However, his application failed in 1888. The Korthals Griffon is listed as a French breed, although it was bred in Germany.

Nature and character of Griffon Korthals

The Korthals Griffon shows many typical traits of a hunting dog. On the one hand he is independent and can make his own decisions, on the other hand he is loyal to his owner. Although he has a certain stubbornness, he is also very affectionate and in need of harmony.

This dog shows a somewhat fierce expression, but that doesn’t fit his character at all, because he is good-natured and sensitive and very friendly – especially to children. Sensitive dogs, like the Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals, need clear structures and a regular daily routine in order not to feel insecure. As well as requiring plenty of exercise, the breed also requires adequate mental exercise, although the dogs are alert and quite defensive when it comes to family or territory.

The Griffon Korthals has a very fine nose, is intelligent and usually easy to handle. If the dog is allowed to spend several hours a day outdoors, it is a pleasant and well-balanced family dog. The intelligent dog learns quickly, but gets bored just as quickly.

Upbringing and keeping of the Griffon Korthals – this is important to note

The most important thing for raising and keeping a Korthal is occupation. This dog desperately needs a meaningful job. If he doesn’t get one, he chooses one himself and follows it up extensively. Most of the time, people don’t quite agree with the dog’s self-chosen activity, because it will not seem sensible to them if the dog, for example, dismantles objects in the household.

Keeping a Griffon Korthal requires a lot of time from its human. Training this dog is easy when it is structured and practiced with lots of repetition, as this suits the breed’s sensibility. If the dog reacts stubbornly, which can happen, patience and gentle consistency are needed in training.

A Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals is not suitable for keeping in an apartment in an urban environment. This dog needs a home, preferably with a fenced yard and closeness to nature.

Beginners can get along with the Griffon Korthals if they understand its quirks and are willing to embrace them. The Korthal’s sometimes stubborn nature can make training difficult if humans don’t know the right strategies, and this dog’s high level of intelligence also requires creativity in employment. In addition, owners of a Korthal should be very sporty and active.

The Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals does not like being left alone at home, but is very good with children, other dogs, and other pets. However, he should be carefully accustomed to cats, for example, so that he does not see them as prey. In addition, males of this breed seem to get along with each other rather badly.

Diet of the Griffon Korthals

There are no breed-specific peculiarities in the diet of the rough-haired Korthal. The dog can be fed with a high-quality dry food that is as natural as possible. This is the most uncomplicated way of feeding for the owner. It is important that the dry food contains as little or preferably no additives as these can cause food intolerance in the dog. Unfortunately, most types of dry food in specialist shops contain additives, so it is advisable to look for alternative food on the Internet.

The dry food can certainly be supplemented with wet food. Wet food is easier for the dog to digest and can also have a good nutrient composition. However, it has the disadvantage that it is too soft for dogs in the long run, which can lead to problems with their teeth. It is also important for dental care, no matter what type of food you choose, that the dog regularly gets a chewing bone.

The most natural and healthiest way of feeding is raw feeding. However, it is more complex for the owner, because the feed has to be put together in its individual components, which requires good knowledge of the right composition from the person. The same applies if the dog is to eat home-cooked food. There is nothing wrong with that either, if the food is properly composed and not seasoned.

Griffon Korthals – Activities and Training

Types of activity in which the dog can move around a lot and which are similar to hunting are particularly suitable for the Griffon Korthals. Hounds like to go on the trail because they can use their well-developed sense of smell here. The dog has to sniff out objects and point them out or fetch them. Accordingly, mantrailing is also very suitable for hunting dogs, where they have to find a person with their nose.

Recall training, which should be started early, is particularly important for hunting dogs. Since the Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals is a very docile dog, obedience could also be suitable for him if he is treated gently and the trust between dog and owner is right.

Of course, the breed can also serve well as a companion when jogging, cycling or hiking. CaniCross and Bikejöring are suitable types of employment in this area.

Is the Griffon Korthals right for me?

The Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals suits people who live in the country, spend a lot of time with their four-legged friend and are active in sports. This breed of dog was bred primarily for work and must therefore be well utilized. Then the Korthals is a pleasant companion and also a good family dog, because he is also very sensitive to children.

People who choose a Korthals should bring a certain amount of creativity with them, because the intelligent dog learns quickly and accordingly needs new challenges again and again in order not to get bored.

Because this dog is an excellent hunting dog, great importance should be placed on being able to adequately control its hunting instincts. That’s why the Korthal’s garden should be well fenced in so that the dog doesn’t go its own way. The Korthals is not a particularly good guard dog. Although he is quite territorial, he is always friendly towards most people, even if he does not know them.

The Korthals don’t particularly like being left alone and prefer to keep their people company around the clock. As such, people who spend many hours a day at work should be more likely to choose a breed that requires less attention and time.

The Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals can be suitable for beginners if they use it sufficiently and manage to respond to its sensitive character in the training. A Korthals doesn’t suit most seniors because they might find it difficult to keep them occupied and exercised enough.

If you want to travel a lot with the Korthals, you should socialize them sufficiently when they are puppies. The same applies to living with cats. The Griffon d’Arrêt à Poil dur Korthals must learn that the domestic cat is not prey but a member of the family. Normally, the pointing dog gets along quite well with its conspecifics if it has been in contact with other dogs at an early stage. However, this does not apply to male dogs of his own breed.