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Minnesota Dog Breeds: German Shorthaired Pointer Sense of Smell

Updated on February 19, 2017
Bertha on the north side of the house.
Bertha on the north side of the house.


My dogs name is Bertha. She was supposedly the runt of the litter and was a mellow puppy. The seller had brought two dogs along. One was extremely active and this one, well, it just kind of sat there and cuddled.

Perfect for our daughter. The seller had brought it along as an example of a dumb dog, hoping it would encourage the sale of his higher priced dog. It didn't work. We purchased this quieter dog, and on the way home, we were musing about names for it. We joked that we could call the dog Big Bertha, since it was the runt of the litter and would probably grow into a dog the size of our kitchen.

My husband called to find out if we were successful picking out a puppy and when he called and found out we had one in the car and were already heading home, he asked if it had a name. I told him the story of the name that we joked about. Funny how names go, by the time we got home, the name stuck, but we dropped the big part since the dog was little.

So, Bertha she became.

She's Older Now

It's been years since that day. Bertha is starting to change color, adding a gray hair here and there in the colors of liver spots and freckles. She's always been a beautiful dog and her temperament has always been gentle.

She's also always been a hunter. Between chasing squirrels across the yard and barking at them in the trees, keeping an eye on them lest they should slip on a branch and fall into her waiting mouth,- they do actually fall out of trees upon occasion. We've never had a chance to have cats, since she is death on cats, shaking them to death as soon as they touch her mouth. Maybe some day we'll get a cat, but in the meanwhile, we will just have Bertha.

She's always looking for things. Always attentive. If you happen to have a bag of dog treats, she will clown around until you dig one out of the bag. Then, she'll sit down, and look at you in expectation She'll stick her nose on your hand, poking at you. She'll try to talk at you, with a slight slurping of the tongue. A muffled, yelping cry will come out of her throat, almost like she's a ventriloquist.

The Bread Test

I was looking at her out the kitchen window on the north side of the house and decided to take pictures of her as she was poking her nose about the yard. I'm not sure what she was looking for, but I thought I'd take the opportunity to photograph her as she located a piece of bread that I was going to toss out into the back yard for her.

She could not smell me before I opened the porch door on the south side of the house. Well, at least I don't think she could smell me. She was smelling something along the east side of the house when I prepared to open the door on the south side.

I left the screen door closed and waiting with the piece of bread. It was a piece of Brownberry Oatmeal bread. I'm sure the smell, to a waiting dogs nose, was the smell of a small piece of heaven.

I took a few photos of the area before I opened the door. She smelled the bread immediately and came to the closed door. I didn't open the door, so she went and sat on the opposite side of the deck and whined in complaint.

Then. She walked away. As soon as she was around the corner, I opened the screen door and tossed the piece of bread as far as I could, so it was about 20 feet from where the door was.

Then, I waited. It took a few minutes and she was back. Sniffing around. It took her a while to investigate and find the piece of bread, but it was fun to watch her do her investigative work.

triple checking for crumbs
triple checking for crumbs


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    • firstcookbooklady profile image

      Char Milbrett 13 months ago from Minnesota

      Thanks for your comment, SmartandFun. You're welcome.

    • SmartAndFun profile image

      SmartAndFun 13 months ago from Texas

      Me, too... and thanks for all the photos of Bertha! (I love that name by theway). I am a lifelong Texan and enjoy hearing about your life in Minnesota; it is both very similar and very different than mine.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 14 months ago from Oklahoma

      Just love doggies:-)