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Irish Setter – Dog Breed Information About The Energetic GunDog

Irish Setter
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Irish setter as the name depicts is a dog breed that was originated from Ireland where it was mostly bred. It is an exquisite red breed which was bred highly by the Irish hunters.

No companion to have fun and play around with???? No worries!!!! Irish Setter is a boisterous breed which likes to run around and have fun playing. If you are a lazy person and don’t like walking around with your pet, then remember to take Irish setter off your mind as they are not couch potatoes.

The amazing feature of this breed is its appealing mahogany shade that mesmerizes us with every leap and sprint it takes. It is a unique dog which supports the hunters in finding the birds, aims towards the bird and also helps in retrieving it.

Training the Irish setter is an easy job because these dogs wish to please their owners and this makes our job of teaching them simple. Apart from that their energetic character and exuberance also helps in easy training.

Irish Setter Breed Characteristics

  • Origin: Ireland
  • Size: Medium to Large
  • Dog Breed Group: Sporting Group
  • Purebred: Yes
  • Lifespan: 12-15 Years
  • Height: Male: 23-27 inches (58-69 cm), Female: 21-25 inches (53-63 cm)
  • Weight: 60-70 pounds (27-32 kg)
  • Coat Appearance: Long, silky, and either flat or slightly wavy
  • Coat Colors: Rich chestnut or mahogany
  • Temperament: Energetic, outgoing, sweet-natured, friendly, affectionate, playful
  • Good With Children: Yes, excellent with children
  • Intelligence Level: High
  • Good With Pets: Yes, generally good with other dogs and pets
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Grooming: High, requires regular brushing to prevent tangles
  • Barking: Moderate, more likely when excited or alert
  • Suitable For Apartments: No, best with a yard
  • Need For Exercise: High, needs plenty of physical and mental stimulation
  • Easy To Train: Yes, intelligent but can be distractible; responds well to positive reinforcement
  • Good For First Time Owners: Yes, but best for those who can meet its exercise needs
  • Health Issues: Hip dysplasia, osteochondrosis, gastric torsion, epilepsy, PRA (Progressive Retinal Atrophy)
  • Litter Size: 6-8 puppies
  • Average Price: $800 to $1,500 USD

Irish Setter History

Get to know how this majestic breed came into existence!!!!

This setter breed sets back its history at the beginning of 1570 with traces in the literature Caius’s De Canibus Britannicus. It is generally believed that at the beginning of 18thcentury the Irish setter came into existence.

They originated by the way of inter-breeding of the Setter, English Setter, Irish Water Spaniel Pointer, and the Gordon Setter.

Initially, the Red setter came up with just one coat which was in the white shade with red patches over it. But later as time passed the breed developed a coat in the shade of deep oak red or the mahogany shade.

Presently the red setters and white Setters are completely two different species.

The Irish setter was actually bred to assist the hunters in their tasks. They were developed with short legs so that it will be easy for them to settle near the prey bird and to let the hunter cover a net over the bird.

When the Setter finds a good catch, it runs back and forth and alerts the hunter and helps him.



  • Attention required towards Grooming.
  • Prone to a lot of health problems.
  • Requires a good amount of space for running

Dog Breed Group – Gun Dogs

Irish Setter Appearance

The immediate thing anyone would see in an Irish Setter is its deep mahogany shade or which is popularly known as the oak red color. This breed usually has silky hair which is straight and is of medium length.

With featherings over its ears, chest, belly and behind its legs the hair is completely covered over the dog’s body.

They have a narrow body which is lengthier and slim with a deep chest. Its muzzle is deep and ended in a square shape. The legs are structured straight and long with sinewy forelegs and muscular hind legs.

This breed has small feet with toes in arch shape fill with feathering between them.

The topmost part of the skull and the muzzle’s top layer looks parallel and are of the same length. The shape of the eye is of almond and is generally set at a distant. The eye shade is generally hazel or dark brown color.

The color of the nose is dark. The ears are positioned at the back and lay near the head and are quite lengthy that it falls till the nose. The tail is also lengthier and flows down to the level of the line on the back or above it.

Irish Setter Size And Lifespan

Irish Setter Size

Usually, a male Irish Setter is about 27 inches in its shoulder and has a weight of about 70 pounds. The Female breed is of about 25 inches and weighs around 60 pounds.

Irish Setter Lifespan

The average life expectancy of Irish setter will be 13 to 14 years under healthy conditions.

Irish Setter Grooming

Irish Setter takes a lot of attention and effort in grooming its lengthy silky coat. They need brushing to be done on a daily basis to keep up its soft and lustrous hair.

It is very much necessary to keep its coat free from tangles and mats. This species is an average shedder and continuous brushing every day will help in reducing the shedding to a large extent.

A wide tooth comb will be handy if you want to detangle the tangles or mats in the coat and make it look beautiful and lustrous.

A regular brushing session will also help in stimulating follicles which would help in maintaining a healthy coat. The droopy ears in this breed lead to breeding of infections like cauliflower ears; so do keep a check on their ears and underneath part to keep them clean and healthy.

It is advised to clean the ears using the moistened cotton ball at least once a week.

Apart from this, you must also plan a regular grooming schedule. Include brushing teeth as a part of the grooming as it is important to clean the tartar which is built over the pet’s tooth.

The tooth of the Irish Setter needs to be cleaned at least once every week to maintain fresh breath. It is also required to brush regularly to keep the pet away from gum diseases.

The toenails of the Setter need to be clipped on a regular basis to keep it safe and away from any problems because the nails of the dog have veins in it and if they get chipped it may be quite hurting for the pet.

The grooming regime should be practised very early for Irish Setter as it will get used to it and will not feel temperament when somebody is cleaning its feet, mouth or ear.

Irish Setter Temperament

As stated earlier, the Irish Setter is a happy go lucky species which enjoys being around with humans. So, this breed gets along well with everybody.

It mingles well with domestic pets, tiny animals and even strangers. So never be surprised if your Irish Setter wags its tail standing in front of a stranger. In fact, they are not a great choice if you are choosing them for guarding.

This breed is usually known to be very active and definitely requires a good walk and run. This dog has lots of energy which needs to be channelized towards exercising and physical activity otherwise this excessive energy can turn into destructive activity.

They like to be engaged with some task, so it is better to keep them occupied with some task.

Their subtle temperament shapes them as an amazing therapy dog. They do an excellent job with patients and student community who require emotional support.

They are wonderful partners with children and the abundant energy in both the kids and the pet keeps their busy with lots of fun.

The Irish Setter is originally a great breed for the purpose of hunting. It is highly swift with a wonderful sense of smell and is hardy on any type of terrain and in any type of climate and goes well even in wetlands.

Irish Setter Training

The Irish setter is a Clever dog which acts smart and thinks independently. This is a breed which is easy to train and all you need is a little patient to teach. This dogs definitely tests you in line with the phrase “Patience is Virtue”.

This breed requires a patient and soft handling trainer and with that, you can train this breed and teach them anything you want.

The beautiful fact about the Irish Setter is that it likes to work, and it keeps its owners happy, making the teaching and learning process a bit simple and easy.

The best method to train the Irish Setter is to include lots of fun activity in the training session and praise the dog for its accomplishments and reward it with treats.

Training should begin quite early as far as this breed is concerned. So never delay and begin it on Day 1. It will be surprising to note that even an eight-week pup will observe and learn a lot if trained properly.

It is breed which loves running across so if you are looking forward train them exercising without a leash then do train them to respond to their name. If not, it may lead to an unpleasant situation.



Irish Setter Interesting Facts And Names

Interesting Facts

The zig-zag running pattern of the Irish Setter is the most unique feature of this dog. This helps this breed in being very helpful to hunters in catching the bird.

The sense of smell in Irish Setter is amazing as it helps them to track the prey through the scent in the wind like the scent hounds which track the smell from the ground.

This majestic breed bonds well with everyone and develops separation anxiety if separated from its family.

A very common behavior in this breed is that if they are alone or if they feel bored, they immediately start being destructive.

This breed is known across the world for its mahogany color and is one of the dogs which comes just in one coat color which makes them unique from other breeds.

The most prolific role played by the Irish Setter was in a Disney movie titled “Big Red” in the year 1962.

Names For Irish Setter Puppies

• Abby
• Airley
• Auburn
• Blaze
• Cabela
• Cardinal
• Carmine
• Cinnamon
• Clancy
• Clifford
• Dahlia
• Darby
• Erin
• Fallyn
• Hogan
• Hunter
• Jake
• Kells
• Kembla

Recommended Read: Majestic Names For Your Male Dogs, Cute Names For Female Dogs

Irish Setter Price

On average, the price of an Irish setter would range from $550 to a maximum of about $1300.

Like most of the dogs, the price of this breed also based on the parents of the particular dog, its medical background, the breeder selling it, the age of the pup, quality, vaccination details, and the geographical location.

The Irish Setter registered with AKC costs about $800 to $1200, however, an Irish Setter which isn’t purebred will cost around $500 to $700.

Irish Setter Breeders

The Irish Setter is a breed which has a simple breeding process. People prefer them and like them for their lustrous hair and their floppy big ears. This energetic breed has very fewer complications.

The only complication involved is to manage its small balls of fur.

On an average a male or a female Setter generally become sexually mature at an age of about six to nine months. However, at that age, it would be quite small for breeding. It is ideal to breed it only after two years.

The average litter size of an Irish Setter is about six to eight pups in one litter. If you are planning to mate the dogs for the first time it is advisable to have a vet along with you.

Irish Setter Health Problems

Irish Setter is usually a healthy breed but however, like any other dog, these are also prone to diseases and illnesses.

This doesn’t mean that all Irish Setters will be affected by all or any of these illnesses, but it is good to know about the diseases this breed is prone to if you are planning to own one.

Never miss checking for health clearances when you buy a dog from a breeder.

  • Hip Dysplasia

This is a hereditary condition wherein the bone in the thighs doesn’t join properly with the hip joint. Dogs affected with this may suffer from pain and lameness either in one or both the rear legs.

However, if the dog suffers from hip dysplasia there wouldn’t be any discomfort for the dog. As the dog gets older it may lead to arthritis.

Apart from hereditary reasons the dysplasia may occur even due to other environmental reasons such as fast growth in the pet, falling due to jumping or running or high-calorie food.

  • Osteochondrosis Dissecans(OCD)

This is an orthopedic problem that is caused in the joints due to the improper development of cartilage. This issue usually is seen in elbows or at times even in shoulders.

It leads to intense stiffening in the joint area to the extent that the dog suffers even to bend its elbow. This disease can be easily diagnosed in dogs at an early stage of about 4 to 9 months of age.

It is generally caused because of excessive feeding of growth formula puppy diet or high protein diet.

  • Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism, in general, is the low secretion of the hormone which is secreted by the thyroid gland. A small sign of this disease is infertility.

The various other obvious symptoms are obesity, dull mentally, eyelids drooping, fall in energy levels and heat cycles being irregular. Also, the fur on the dogs gets brittle and starts to fall off and the skin of the dog turns dark and rough.

This disorder can be cured by taking medication regularly throughout the dog’s life. A dog that is receiving thyroid treatment on a daily basis can absolutely live a completely happy life.

  • Canine Leukocyte (CAD)

Canine Leukocyte is a disorder that is caused by inheritance. The white blood cells are affected due to this and these cells lose their capacity to fight any infection. This abnormality impairs the immunity of the Irish Setters.

Dogs with this illness tend to have immunological disorders and the infection keeps reoccurring in them. Currently, breeders are checking the dogs using a DNA test to check whether the dog is affected by this disorder so before you pick your Setter pup to ask whether the dog has been screened for CAD.

  • Epilepsy

The Irish Setter is prone to epilepsy and it is an abnormality that leads to mild or serious seizures.

Epilepsy could be hereditary or at times can be caused even due to metabolic disorders, the infectious sickness which affects the brain, tumors, consumption of poison or serious head injury or at times it could also be due to an unknown reason.

Epilepsy can be kept in control by following the regular medication, but it cannot be completely cured. If your Irish Setter at home develops seizures, consult a vet immediately.

  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)

It is a degenerative eye abnormality that leads to blindness due to the damage of photoreceptors behind the eye. PRA can be diagnosed long before the dog loses its sight.

Reputed breeds have the dogs tested and get the pet certified annually by a vet ophthalmologist and do not breed pups with this abnormality.

  • Hypertrophic Osteodystrophy (HOD)

Hypertrophic osteodystrophy leads to lameness in Setters which is caused due to high intake of protein and calcium diet. This disorder affects puppies in the age range of about 4 to 8 months.

Apart from being lame, the other symptoms of this disorder are fever, loss of appetite, swollen joints, lethargy and uneasiness to walk. At times it can lead to fatal loss.

HOD is a bit tough to diagnose however if affected it can be treated using steroids, antibiotics, and pain to relieve tablets.

  • Gastric Torsion(Bloat)

This is a life-threatening disorder that affects huge deep chest dogs such as Irish setter. It is prone to the dogs which are given just one big meal in a day, eat quickly, drinks too much water or exercise too much after eating.

Bloat happens when the gas or air is filled in the pet’s tummy and it twists within. Symptoms of this illness are being tired, depressed, weak, lethargic and weakness in heart rate.

It could be bloat if the pet is drooling very much and retching without throwing out. In the case of bloat, symptoms take your pet to the vet immediately.

  • Panosteitis

It is a disorder that affects the bones of the dog specifically the limb bones. Lameness in one or both the legs could be caused due to the inflammation in the bone.

This is a disorder that generally continues from 1 month to 6 months and the dog suffers from pain at regular intervals.

There is no specific medication or treatment for this illness, it can be treated and controlled with anti-inflammatory capsules and pain-relieving tablets.

Irish Setter Mix Breeds

Irish setter dog can be mixed with various breeds and the result would be stunning designer dog breeds.

There are always positives and negatives while crossing two different breeds. Hence, the breeders are all the time very careful in bringing out the hybrid dogs from healthy purebred parents.

Poodle + Irish setter–> Irish Doodle

Labrador retriever + Irish setter –> Irish setter Lab Mix

German Shepherd + Irish setter–> German Shepherd Irish setter Mix

Doberman Pinscher + Irish setter –> Irish Dobe Setter

Boxer  + Irish setter –> Boxer Irish setter Mix

Border Collie + Irish setter –> Border Collie Irish setter Mix

Australian Shepherd + Irish setter–> Irish setter Australian Shepherd Mix

Rottweiler + Irish setter–> Irish setter Rottweiler Mix

Beagle + Irish setter–> Beagle Irish setter Mix

Springer Spaniel + Irish setter–> Irish setter Springer Spaniel Mix

Golden Retriever + Irish setter–> Golden Irish

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