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The Golden Retriever has been one of the top five most popular breeds in the United States for years and for good reason. They are extraordinary family dogs that seem to adore everyone they meet and do very well with other small animals in the home. This charismatic breed was developed in the 19th century in Scotland where they were bred to be a steadfast companion to hunters and, as their name suggests, also retrieve downed fowl. The German Shorthaired Pointer was developed in Germany in the 20th century with the goal of creating a breed that excelled in both tracking game on land as well as retrieving downed fowl from the water. The German Shorthaired Pointer is also an excellent companion dog but is warier of strangers than the Golden Retriever.

Goldens are a very high-energy breed since they were bred to have the stamina to run and swim all day retrieving game for hunters. They are considered a working breed and they love having a job to do. Since they are a Golden Retriever, a game of fetch, especially if it involves water, is the favorite playtime activity for this breed. The Pointer is very similar in that it is a very high-energy working breed meant to have the stamina to run all day retrieving and tracking game. The biggest difference you'll see in their energy and space needs is that the Pointer is prone to escaping from fenced yard's and loves to wander the neighborhood. Retrievers tend to stay close to home and their family.

The Golden Retriever is very willing to please and highly intelligent. They are very frequently used in scent roles like drugs, firearms, and search and rescue missions. The Golden Retriever also does extremely well in a service dog setting because of their high trainability. The Pointer is also very willing to please and intelligent but they can easily become bored during training sessions. They will learn new tricks quickly if you can keep their attention but depending on the reward they may also become stubborn.

The Golden Retriever is an average of 55 to 75 pounds so they are about 5 - 10 pounds heavier than the German Shorthaired Pointer. One of the biggest differences between these two breeds is their coat and grooming needs. The Golden Retriever is a magnificent looking dog with a long straight or wavy coat and feathering along there chest and haunches. While this coat is water repellent and absolutely gorgeous when maintained properly, the Golden Retriever sheds quite a bit daily and excessively during spring and fall since they are a double-coated breed. The German Shorthair Pointer, on the other hand, has a short and dense water repellent coat that shows off their sleek and agile body. They have very minimal grooming requirements and will shed seasonally as well but nowhere near to the level that the Golden Retriever does.

The Golden Retriever is in great with children and small animals and doesn't have a mean bone in its body. They are an extremely friendly and affectionate breed which is great when you have children and loss of activity in the home, but it also makes them a terrible guard dog. The Pointer is quite rambunctious so they are better with older children. They are not aggressive but tend to be wary of strangers for short time and may even bark at them. Despite this they are still not an ideal guard dog, but do make a decent watchdog.

The Golden Retriever is very loving and loyal to its family. This breed wants nothing more then to be part of all of the family activities and thrives in homes where there are plenty of people coming and going all the time that'll give them a pat or a belly rub. The Pointer tends to bond closest to the person who works and feeds it most often but they are affectionate with the whole family. They are a loyal breed but very capable of being independent thinkers since most of the work they were originally bred to do was away from their hunters.

And there you have it. While these breeds were both bred to retrieve game for hunters and transition back into household companions in the same day, they have thrived as almost 100% companions. Despite its high energy level and higher grooming requirements the Golden Retriever is a very forgiving breed and does well with an inexperienced canine leader more so than the German Shorthaired Pointer will.


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