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The Irish Setter Dog Breed Tips You Must Know

Jun 26, 2008
Irish Setter dog breed. Childish, frisky, loud and mischievous. The Red setter will steal your heart!

With its elegant carriage and long, silky chestnut coat, the Irish Setter is a breed that is immediately recognizable in any situation. They are popular pets in both the United States and in Europe and for very good reason.

This breed has been around for at least three hundred years and its many positive traits point to them being around for many years to come.

Despite it's reputation for being a great family pet, the Irish setter has its roots in Ireland as a hunting dog. With its keen nose and sharp self-restraint, an Irish setter could be depended on to "point" at upland game birds.

During the early part of the 19th century, Irish setters were brought to the United States, where the breed was praised for its sharp nose, impressive speed and general sturdiness over every sort of terrain.

By the 1940's however, the breed was dwindling and it was put forth that an out cross with another dog breed could bring some vitality to the failing Irish setter. Through the efforts of a man named Ned LaGrange from Pennsylvania, the breed was preserved.

LeGrange spent a great deal of money to acquire the last pure examples of this breed in America and to import specimens from Europe. The traditional red and white Irish setters were crossbred with English setters. This has resulted in the modern red setter, a dog that is a bit lighter than the original breed.

There is a great deal of debate whether to consider this cross breeding the new type of Irish setter and whether to allow this breed to show.

If you are in a position to think about adopting an Irish setter, there are a few things that you should keep in mind.

First remember that the Irish setter was once praised as a hunting dog. This indicates that this is a breed that requires a fair amount of daily exercise. Irish setters are goal oriented dogs, and they do not take terribly well to being let loose in a small yard.

A certain amount of fenced yard space or a commitment to take the dog out for walks and runs on a daily basis is an important part of ensuring that this breed stays happy.

While its size might lead people to use it as a guard dog, the Irish setter is usually considered too friendly to be a good guard animal, although its loud bark might warn off intruders.

Also, Irish setters are considered to be a moderately healthy breed of dog, although they are prone to genetic disorders including hip dysplasia, hyperthyroidism, and epilepsy.

Many people note that an Irish setter stays a puppy long after he or she has achieved adult size.

These dogs are known to be intelligent and mischievous, a condition that can be a bit tough on new dog owners. Obedience training that is both consistent and interesting is important to keeping this breed behaving properly, and if neglected, can lead to a dog that is more than a little headstrong.

On the other hand, Irish setters are a very gentle breed that is known to be good with children, and if treated well, can be excellent pets and companions.
About the Author
For more information on the irish setter or a complete list of dog breeds visit this Dog Behaviour website.
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