The Small Munsterlander in Germany, its country of orgin, is now called the Kleiner Munsterlander (formerly the Kleiner Munsterlander Vorstehhund). A variety of other names are used in other countries. In the United States and Canada, the dog is known as the Small Munsterlander or just SM. The Small Munsterlander is one of the latest versatile hunting breeds to gain popularity in the United States. While they may be a newcomer to the US and Canada, the Small Munsterlander has been used in Germany and Europe since the 13th or 14th century. The Small Munsterlander in Europe is used to find, point, track (trail), and retrieve upland birds, waterfowl and fur-bearing animals. The Small Munsterlander has even been used to hunt deer and boar.
The breed is thought to be over 500 years old, having originated from the Munster region of Northern Germany. The breed was not very popular until the 1800's when changes in the legal, social, and governmental structure of Germany created hunting opportunities for common people. The common people generally needed a versatile hunting dog that was capable of handling a variety of game birds and animals. Many versatile breeds were formally developed in the 1800's; including: Pudelpointer, Drathhaar (German Wirehaired Pointer), Kurzhaar (German Shorthaired Pointer), Large Munsterlander (not related to the SM), German Longhaired Pointer, in addition to several other breeds.
When correctly bred, the Small Munsterlander is a very capable hunter and will naturally point, track and retrieve game. Small Munsterlanders make very good family and companion dogs. The Small Munsterlander is generally a very clean dog that is well suited to life indoors with his human companions. Although the Small Munsterlander is a very good housedog they still require daily outdoor exercise and periodic grooming. Most properly bred Small Munsterlanders will exhibit a warm personality and a strong desire to hunt. The Small Munsterlander is an intense water dog and usually shows an excellent nose. Most Small Munsterlanders also show a strong desire to retrieve. Many Small Munsterlanders are vocal on track of furred game and passes outstanding intelligence.
The Small Munsterlander will show a smooth, flat lying coat of brown and white or roan, with fringe hair on the tail, front legs, and the thighs of the rear legs. The fringe hair is known as furnishings. Please review the FCI breed standard for additional information about the conformation of the Small Munsterlander. The Small Munsterlander is an elegant, confident and strong dog. The Small Munsterlander is generally a positive dog that seeks to please. Small Munsterlanders can be intense and stubborn when they believe that they are being treated unfairly. When training a Small Munsterlander , it is important to teach them first, then train before trying to test or proof the dog. The stubbornness is a personality trait that can be developed to make the dog a very persistent hunter. Small Munsterlanders are intelligent and require adequate exercise and mental stimulation. Small Munsterlanders, like many other German breeds are somewhat slow to mature and often start to show their full potential at about 2.5 years of age.
The Small Munsterlander has been bred and developed into an ideal hunting companion for the foot hunter. The Small Munsterlander is well suited for hunting in moderate to heavy cover where the dog doesn't need to show extreme range. The Small Munsterlander is a hard hunter who, when properly conditioned, can hunt for many hours. Falconers have also used the Small Munsterlander.