The Irish Setter was developed as a gundog it its native land of Ireland. It is a proud, boisterous looking dog with great intelligence. It is probably one of the most beautiful looking dog thanks to its mahogany colored thick coat. They are now used as bird dogs but also work pretty well as family pets. They are lovable and good natured and will be a perfect pet for your family and can also hang around with your children as well. Due to its intelligence and high energy levels, the Irish Setter is also used in canine sports and various related activities.
Irish Setter History & Origins
The Irish Setter of course originates from Ireland, at least the modern version of it. Bu tits early descent is mentioned in the Latin texts as early as 16th century. But the dog mentioned in those texts does not bear any physical resemblance to the modern version that we have today, although they do share a lot of characteristics of a setter dog. In fact, these early breeds were brought to Britain and ultimately made their way to Ireland.
They are already established as setters then and in the 18th century families from Ireland began breeding and establish their own brand of a setter dog. In 1845, the Irish Red Setter Club based in Dublin officially established the and approved how a modern version of an Irish Setter needs to look like. The dog is now primarily used for hunting and pointing towards the prey but does well as a family dog.
Characteristics & Temperament
An Irish Setter is an intelligent and an alert breed. They are described mostly as being “Demonstrably affectionate,” which means that they will obey their master and also form a connection with the family they belong to. They are perfect with children and enjoy the company of other pets and various people. What they do not like are smaller animals and cats. As they are primarily hunting dogs, their instinct will probably get the better of them in those situations.
Nevertheless, it is an excellent companion and is highly trainable. You do not have to be an expert to train this dog but you still have to give it a lot of affection. You have to give various activities and jobs for the dog to do. If you leave it alone for a long period the dog will become bored and will lead to destructive behavior. The Irish Setters likes to play and enjoys long walk. This is important for the dog’s development as it needs to train. Make sure that you provide it with a lot of space so they can run around and exert their energy. It does not fare well as a guard dog but it can be used as a therapy dog in schools and hospitals.
Appearance, Colors, Size
The Irish Setter belongs to a large group of dogs when it comes in size. It can grow up to be 23 to 26.5 inches tall for males and 21.5 to 24.5 inches for females. The males also weight about 65 to 75 lb and the females range between 55 to 65 lb. The look of the dog is characterized by a moderately long and silky coat. The breed has an undercoat which helps him fare pretty well in winter weather. The coats can also feather in areas such as the body, tails, ears and legs. The established color of an Irish Setter is red or chestnut,
Irish Setter Health
The Irish Setter breed is consider as a relatively healthy dog breed. They do have some problems but they do not prevent them of leading long and healthy lives. But what you do have to know is that these dogs gluten intolerant which is a genetic disorder which occurs in a lot of cases. Nevertheless, the lifespan of Irish Setters is between 11 and 12 years. They are prone to certain conditions and disease like:
- hip dysplasia
- patent ductus arteriosus
- progressive retinal atrophy
- Von Willebrand’s disease
- canine Leukocyte adhesion deficiency
- celiac disease
Grooming & Shedding
Keeping an Irish Setter in your home also means that you will have to provide it with certain needs and groom him. First of all they are moderate shedders and will leave fur around the house. You will need to brush them daily so you prevent the hair from getting everywhere. This is very important during shedding season as you will end up with a mess if you don’t. Besides ding brushing you will also need to give your dog a bathe to keep the coat shingly.
Fortunately you openly need to do that only a few times a year or if he really gets dirty. But if you plan to show him you should do it more frequently. As the breed has hanging ears you can also clean their ears as bacteria can get trapped in there. Brushing their teeth periodically is also an important part of their upkeep and also nail trimming which needs to be done depending on how you notice they grow.
Price and Breeders
The most amount of breeders are found in the native home of the Irish Setter, of course that is Ireland. But the brand is so popular that you will find them in Canada and the US. There are many places what you can buy your own puppy and it if you can you will probably do well if you check the background and the parents of the dog. The price ranges between 800 USD to 1,000 USD.
Irish Setter Rescue
Rescuing a dog is a very popular trait nowadays and you can also get your own Irish Setter that way. Various organizations already exist and there are a lot of shelters available or you to help you find the most suitable one. Check out Irish Setter Club of America Rescue, NorCal Irish Setter Rescue, Inc. or Irish Setter Club of Ohio Rescue and you will most likely be able to find a perfect dog for you.