Wednesday, October 24, 2007


This is my first German Shorthair Pointer, Thelma. Thelma was an SPCA dog. I actually got her from the Dallas SPCA when picking my cocker spaniel mix Idgie up from her spaying. It was pretty slick - they said "It'll be about 20 minutes, why don't you look around while you're waiting." Talk about a targeted adoption market - dog owner who cares enough to get the dog spayed...

I had Thelma as a member of my family for 10 years. She was a wonderful companion, watchdog, entertainer, supervisor of other dogs, and a generally all around good dog.

I had to put Thelma down in November of 2006 because she had bone cancer. It was very hard and I miss her very much. Since Thelma died, I have been fostering German Shorthair Pointers. I wasn't sure whether the things I loved about Thelma were part of her individual character or if they were part of the breed's characteristics. After having fostered several pointer, my answer is, a little of both.

The high energy intensity, focus, and enthusiasm are definitely characteristic of most pointers. The steadfast loyalty and desire to be with family is also a breed characteristic. Thelma was a very dominant dog however, and I found that this is not universal among pointers. In addition, Thelma was brave beyond measure. No one and no thing could intimidate her if she saw a threat - or prey. Not all pointers are quite as courageous. Thelm was also, unfortunately, not quite as smart as many of her breed. She wasn't an idiot dog by any means, but I have been constantly amazed by the quickness of mind that some of my fosters have displayed. On the other hand, friends used to say about Thelma, "Thank God she's pretty."

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