Who is our lucky dog this week? Why the Irish Setter of course!
With Sunday being St. Patrick's Day we thought there would be no better time than now to spotlight the beautiful Irish Setter. A majestic looking dog with lots of energy, this breed is perfect for those with an active lifestyle that the dog can participate in, an avid hunter, or those who enjoy a farm life.
The Irish setter first appeared in Ireland in the 1700's. It was a mix of the Old Spanish Pointer (otherwise know as Setting Spaniels) and the Scottish Setters. The original Irish Setters looked very different from today's standard. They were white with large red spots, where today's champions are solid red in either a rich mahogany or copper coloring. Their coat should be glossy and straight with fine hair that will need regular brushing to keep it from getting matted. If you don't have the time for maintenance you can always keep their hair groomed shorter (but they are so pretty with their full coats!).
The life expectancy of the Irish Setter is from 12 to 15 years and they thankfully tend to be a breed that doesn't have a lot of genetic issues. Some things to watch for with them is possible hip dysplasia and gluten sensitivities (although it is generally a good idea to avoid gluten for any dog breed). According to the breed standard you can expect a fully grown male to be approximately 70 pounds and a fully grown female to be around 60 pounds. They are gentle and usually do well around children.
The Irish Setter was originally bred to be a hunting dog and is classified in the Sporting Group with the AKC. It's keen sense of smell helps it to locate the game birds that the hunter has shot and will "set" to show it's master where to find the prey. The nature of a dog that was bred for hunting means that you will want to give it lots of exercise to burn some of that rambunctious energy. If you are not able to be home a lot or go for long walks, this may not be the breed for you.
Lots of celebrities have enjoyed the love of the Irish Setter. No less than 3 US Presidents have owned them! Harry Truman had Mike, Ronald Regan had Peggy, and Richard Nixon had King Timahoe who they called Tim for short. Carl Wilson from the Beach Boys had an Irish Setter named Shannon who inspired a song of the same name by singer/songwriter Henry Gross after she passed away in the 1970's.
So if you are looking for a sweet-natured, trainable, natural redhead, look no further! You have found your breed. As always, look for responsible breeders or check with rescues in your area. There are many purebreds that can be found waiting for their forever homes. And if you do get a dog, remember that they are for life. Know that you will give them all the love and care they deserve, and they will give you all the love and devotion that they can.
We thank you for following us and sharing our posts. Your support helps us to grow ant to help all dogs live longer, healthier lives. To show our appreciation, click on the 3 little lines in the upper right corner of your screen or go to moochsmunchies.com and when you check out use code IRISH at checkout and receive $5 off your order of $10 or more (limit one offer per email address please)
Peace, love and cookies to all!
Kellie the Cookie Lady (and lover of dogs!)