Answer: Yes. No. It’s complicated.
Dog breeds are made up of individuals that can be placed along a spectrum of personality/character types that range from sensitive/soft/shy dogs to aggressive ‘sharp’ or hard-headed dogs. In most breeds, breeders succeed in keeping the majority in the middle of the spectrum, producing dogs with the kind of balanced temperaments that everyone wants.
But dog breeding is not a perfect science, it doesn’t always work out exactly as we want. So there is always a risk of getting a bit too much of something or not enough of something.
In Germany, their versatile dogs were created and are still bred today to run, hunt, point, fetch game, kill foxes, cats etc. and if push comes to shove, to protect the hunter from bad guys. So guess what issue crops up slightly more often in German breeds than in breeds from other countries?
Aggression, hard mouth, hard headedness etc.
Nevertheless, the vast majority of well-bred German hunting dogs are well balanced dogs that hunt hard and then chill on the couch. It’s is just that when things don’t turn out perfectly in a breeding, the chances are greater that the problem you have will be related to being a bit too hard, too sharp and even aggressive. Sure, they sometimes get shy dogs, sensitive dogs etc., but overall more of their ‘problem dogs’ (again, a small minority) are too sharp or too tough or aggressive.
In France, their pointing breeds were created and are still bred today to be upland bird dogs that are easy to train and easy to live with. The last thing a French hunter wants is his dog to kill a fox or to be used as a guard dog. And the vast majority of well-bred French hunting dogs are well balanced dogs that hunt hard and then chill on the couch. It’s is just that when things don’t turn out perfectly in a breeding, the chances are greater that the problem you have will be related to being a bit too sensitive, too shy. Sure you can find hard headed even aggressive dogs in French breeds, but more
often than not, the ‘problem dogs’ are too soft or too shy.
So with the French pointing breeds, there is a greater risk of producing shy dogs than aggressive dogs, a greater risk of producing super soft dogs than knuckleheads. It is the price you pay for breeding dogs that are easy to train and will not kill every cat in the neighbourhood. With German dogs there is a greater risk of producing ‘sharp’ dog than shy dogs, a greater risk of producing hardheaded, hard-mouthed dogs than push-overs. It is the price you pay when you breed tough as nails, highly driven gundogs that will point a woodcock just as well as they will kill a fox or take on a massive boar.
But when things go right, which fortunately they do more often than not, there is really not much difference in the character/temperament between well-balanced French dogs and well-balanced German dogs. They are good to great dogs that just want to hunt with you and snuggle by the fire afterwards.