After some thorough research, DP and I have finally decided that we would like a German Shorthaired Pointer but I can't seem to find a breeder that doesn't routinely dock their tails. Our dog will be kept as a pet and won't be worked so (without getting into the rights and wrongs of tail docking) I would like a fully tailed version!
I've tried searching for breeders of show lines as they're the least likely to dock but most of these still seem to dock the puppy's tail before ten days old.
Can anyone point (pardon the pun) me in the right direction?
We had (past tense) an undocked GSP. We thought this was fine as we wouldn't be working him, and liked the look of a dog with a tail.
Uh-oh. He's a very active dog, in and out of the bushes. We ended up with a tail tip injury that just did not heal (every time it got close he managed to get to it and open it up again - his tail was so long none of the 'lampshades' worked.Think blood sprays up and down the walls. We ended up having to have his tail amputated. No fun for him or us, and it took an age to heal. The whole palaver amounted to about six weeks of pain and discomfort for the dog.
I have concluded that GSP tails are docked as they're very thin, with little fur or fat (unlike a lab's tail) and thus prone to injury. Plus they are painful when they get wagged against your legs... It must surely hurt the dog as well. I know you didn't want to get into the rights and wrongs of docking, but this experience has changed my views on the issue, and I wouldn't go for an undocked GSP again.
GSPs are fabulous dogs, if high energy. I hope you find one that meets your criteria, and have many happy years.
I have two undocked Gsps and, so far, have to ad a problem with tail damage. I have also had two docked Gsps and have no preference either way. Try looking at the Champdogs website for breeders with current or expected litters. I agree with the pp - fabulous dogs! One is never enough - I currently have 3!
Thanks everyone, it's so nice to hear from GSP owners. Fox red Labs seem to be the working dog of choice around these parts so I don't actually know anyone that owns one.
I was a bit cautious about how active the breed is, especially as we don't plan on working our dog but we had a good chat with a breeder a few weeks ago and he assured us that it would be a good match for our lifestyle - I just hope he's right!
Laughsandgiggles Drip feed alert - We live in Wales so Scotland would be a bit of a trek but still do-able for the right dog.
BeachysSnowyWellieBoots I will definitely take a look at that site, thanks.
Just been having a look online. I can see the point of the working dogs. There's some awful pics promoting having them done. There again many dogs tear in and out of bushes. Ddog certainly does. He's only the size of a girlie. His tail is as thin as a rat's. Will watch out for injury. Also some awful post pics online ☹