The Pointer name comes from the way the dog stands absolutely still with their body showing the direction of sitting game as if they are pointing at it.
They are an elegant, powerful hunting dog with a deep chest, long neck, hanging ears and deep muzzle with slight dip in it. Their coat is short and smooth, with a sheen, and largely white with patches or speckles of other colours.
They were popularly used in England and were developed in the 1600s from crossing a number of other breeds. They work by using their excellent scenting ability to find game and show its location. They can flush out birds but don't normally work in water or cold, neither do they retrieve.
They have enormous energy so need a lot of opportunity to run this off. Given enough exercise, they will be calm in the home. They are intelligent, loyal and affectionate. They are naturally child-friendly, although can be wary of strangers, and are generally good with dogs and other pets. They need a lot of outdoor exercise and can cover large areas at great speed.
The short coat is easy to maintain and they are normally a clean dog but the ears and feet should be checked regularly. They are prone to hip dysplasia, thyroid problems, skin conditions and dwarfism.