The Irish Setter is an Irish breed of dog. The correct breed name is Irish Red Setter. The FCI (Fédération Cynologique Internationale) has recognized this pedigree dog. He is under the standard no. 120, Group 7 – Pointers, Section 2 – British and Irish Pointers, 2.2 – Setters, with working trial, registered.
History of the Irish Setter
The Irish Setter is a hunting dog and belongs to the category of pointing dogs. Spaniels and pointers were crossed to create the breed. These specimens were referred to as setting dogs. Her trademark was showing game by laying it down. In the 19th century this type of hunting dog was refined (selection). The Gordon Setter, the English Setter, the Irish red and white and the Irish Setter descend from these dogs. As early as 1874 red and red and white setters were introduced to the Dublin public. Both color variations became known under the term Irish Setter.
The Ulster Irish Red Setter Club had both colors in their breeding program (1876). This changed from 1882 and only the single-colored variant was recognized. The Irish Red Setter Club established the breed standard beginning in 1886. The Irish Setter is an excellent pointer and retriever. In 1998, the Irish Red Setter Club published the usage guidelines for this breed of dog. The combination of appearance and performance is represented by the FCI entry. The VDH and the Irish Setter Club Germany guarantee the continued existence of this graceful breed in Germany.
Essence and character
You can divide the Irish Setter character into two areas. A busy setter is loving, loyal, and devoted to their family in the home. Due to his friendly nature, he gets along well with children. This sensitive four-legged friend requires close human contact and finds it difficult to be alone. The other side is spirited and independent. He needs a lot of exercise and a task. Daily utilization of head and body is vital for him. He is intelligent and docile and masters given tasks without any problems.
Getting an Irish Setter
Before getting an Irish Setter you need to ask yourself two questions:
“Am I sporty enough?”
“Do I have enough time?”
The arrival of a puppy changes the next 14 years. This hunting dog demands the whole person from the start. In addition, the whole family must agree to this “exhausting” addition. Are you sporty and in love with this special breed of dog, but you don’t dare to train the dog? You can sometimes find a “ready” adult Irish Setter at an animal shelter or animal welfare organization. An Irish Setter mix is also an alternative, although this variant is not as common.
What do I need to pay attention to when purchasing?
Buying an Irish Setter is a matter of trust. You can get information about reputable breeders from the VDH (Verband für das Deutsche Hundewesen e. V.). Another option would be to contact the Irish Setter Club in Germany directly. Puppy offers on the Internet are not necessarily to be judged negatively. This medium is also used by serious dog breeders (ads, homepage). In the conversation you can quickly get an idea of the seriousness. Above all, the little ones are being treated by a veterinarian (deworming, chip, initial vaccinations). The parent animals are HD-free and also provided with all necessary vaccinations.
A visit from you is requested by the breeder and the “nursery” including the mother animal is no secret. Experienced breeders not only want to sell dogs, they want to get an idea of the future home. Therefore, you will also be confronted with some questions. The delivery takes place after the 8th week at the earliest, with all documents, usual food ration and a personal blanket. How much does an Irish Setter cost? The purchase price starts at around 1600 to 1800 euros and can vary upwards. Also, there is a difference between the pure hunt line and the show line. In show breeding, even more attention is paid to appearance and the hunting instinct is neglected. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a hunting instinct. The passion for hunting is slightly toned down.
Puppy development and education
Is the Irish Setter a Beginner Dog? Irish Setter puppies have two characteristics that pose major problems for a novice dog owner. One would be the passion for hunting that he was born with and a great deal of stubbornness. Both criteria are insurmountable hurdles for a beginner. You should definitely already have some dog experience. This sensitive dog breed requires consistent training with a “shot” of empathy. With clear guidance (without harshness!) and species-appropriate employment, you will receive a faithful companion. The bond between you is important from an early age. When it comes to training, you should definitely have the help of dog trainers. When looking for the right dog school, experience with setters is an important point.
How do I keep an Irish Setter?
A small city apartment is less suitable. Unless your Irish Setter is with you for hours. A house with a garden is definitely better. You have to make sure that the garden fence is safe from outbreaks. Don’t underestimate the jump volume. Especially if there are cats in the neighborhood. This dog breed does not like to be alone. It is possible on an hourly basis if there is a good workload. This sensitive dog does not survive a complete working day without activity and being spoken to. Is an Irish Setter a family dog? The Irish Setter is a great companion for active families with children. Here you should make sure that your offspring is older and more understanding.
Activities with the Irish Setter
The Irish Setter is a hunting dog with a lot of energy and stamina. He needs a lot of outdoor exercises. It is a good companion for jogging, cycling, and horseback riding. Day hikes can be easily mastered with it. The sporty dog owner should always keep an eye on his hunting qualities in the wild. You are on the safe side with a suitable dog leash that does not restrict his activities but prevents “hunting trips”.
Various canine sports, such as man trailing, agility, fetch, and nose work, are also suited to this breed of dog. In all activities, it is important to challenge the intelligence and the body equally.
Health and care
The Irish Setter is a healthy and hardy breed of dog. A prerequisite for this is serious breeding.
Despite the longer fur, the maintenance effort is not high. Regular brushing is sufficient. During the coat change, the effort increases. In addition, a regular check of the ears, the paws including the dog’s claws is necessary.
Interesting and worth knowing
The Irish Setter is a pointing dog. This means that his posture shows the hunter the presence of game. This physical cue is further emphasized by the raising of one front paw.
A variant of these pointers is the white Irish Setter. The basic color is white with red spots. This Irish Red and White Setter belongs to the ancestors of the Irish Red Setter. It was threatened with extinction and was stabilized again in the middle of the 20th century through backbreeding.
A variant of the Irish Setter Black is the Gordon Setter.
In the case of the Irish Setter Shorthair, the feathering or feathering is hardly or not at all developed.
Irish Water Spaniel
The Irish Water Spaniel is characterized by a great willingness to work – dog lovers who are interested in the agile Irish should already have experience and like to be out and about with their four-legged friend in wind and weather.
Dog with a “rat tail”
The trademark of this dog, which can be up to 59 cm tall, is the long, thick tail at the base, which, in contrast to the curly fur, has short, smooth hair on the rest of the body – and is therefore slightly reminiscent of a rat’s tail. Everywhere else the Irish Water Spaniel is covered with a luxuriant head of curls, which gives him protection from the cool water when swimming and always feels slightly greasy. The Irishman with the extraordinary look has brown fur according to the standard, a rich dark brown is desired. Its muscular body is compact yet elegant, the floppy ears in combination with the long muzzle give it a dignified appearance.
Like so many of today’s water dogs, the Irish Water Spaniel dates back to medieval water-hunting minions used for bird hunting. There were probably similar dogs in his native Ireland around 1,000 years ago. Ultimately, however, one can only speculate about the exact ancestors of the Irish Water Spaniel and its relationship: For example, is the poodle descended from the Irish Water Spaniel or is it the other way around? What about the influence on the Portuguese Water Dog or other Spaniel breeds? Traces are lost in the darkness of history, but numerous races that were used in a similar way are linked by close kinship. What is certain is that the official breed of the Irish Water Spaniel had its origins in the 1830s. In 1862 the breed was presented at a dog show and also recognized by the British Kennel Club. As a versatile hunting companion, the Irish Water Spaniel quickly became popular among hunters. Today he has a small core of followers, but is not widespread.
Water hunter with a mind of his own
Boldness and great stamina have made the Irish Water Spaniel popular as a multi-faceted hunting companion, but it can do much more than that: It is a self-confident, sometimes quite stubborn four-legged friend that can become a loyal companion. Alert and defensive, he protects his loved ones and tends to be distant or dismissive of strangers. His clever head needs work every day to keep him busy. Exercise is important, of course – he particularly likes being in the water. It retrieves its prey with a “soft snout”, i.e. without injuring it. Typical hunting dog, he is very attentive and curious.
Formative: a successful upbringing
The basis of a good upbringing is extensive conditioning and socialization, which is particularly important for a somewhat stubborn four-legged friend like the Irish Water Spaniel. If this does not happen when you are a young dog, you could later have to deal with a shy dog that is insecure or aggressive towards other four-legged friends. The stubborn Irish Water Spaniel needs consistent and knowledgeable leadership to keep this dog from dancing on your nose. If you are not consistent, your four-legged friend will quickly get his own way. He is often very charming and makes his owners laugh with his funny behavior – that’s why he is sometimes called the “clown among spaniels”. In the medium term, however, despite the funny moments, you have the problem of a companion who doesn’t follow the rules and who can quickly get out of control. A good help for early imprinting and socialization can be attending puppy play lessons and a dog school. Even before the puppy arrives, choose one that conforms to your upbringing ideas – loving consistency and positive reinforcement are definitely preferable to tough upbringing.
Health and diseases typical of the breed
Weak point hip
Its original area of application, water hunting, required a robust and hardy dog. This is also true of the healthy Irish Water Spaniel, but the breed does carry some health risks that you can minimize by choosing a responsible breeder. For example, he tests the ancestors of his puppies for hip dysplasia (HD), a risk that dogs of this size are always exposed to. Support the efforts for a joint-healthy dog through appropriate exercise and a healthy body weight. Cancer and thyroid abnormalities are more common in some lines. An Irish Water Spaniel can live an average age of 12 to 15 years.
Irish Water Spaniel Diet
An original diet is required if you want to feed the Irish Water Spaniel appropriate to the species – and you should, because it is good for its health and performance. But don’t worry, you don’t have to go duck hunting for this! Check the meat content of the dog food available for selection, regardless of whether it is dry or wet food: Meat should be the first item on the declaration, because your four-legged friend needs a lot of high-quality proteins. In addition, you should avoid food that contains sugar or grain – these have no place in treats either. Give your four-legged friend dental care snacks or something to chew, such as dried cattle ears or special chewing bones for dogs. If you have now determined that your previous dog food does not meet the requirements, you should not switch over too quickly from one day to the next – give your four-legged friend time to get used to a new food by mixing and adjusting the proportion of higher quality food every day. The adult dog gets by with two rations a day. Adapt the amount of food to his energy consumption and check the scales once a month to see whether your companion is at his ideal weight. Calculate not only the energy content of the rations but also that of any reward snacks – if you adjust both, you don’t need any diet food for a slim line. Make sure your Irish Water Spaniel always has access to freely available drinking water to quench its thirst.
Care, washing & brushing
Regular contact with water not only makes your Irish Water Spaniel happy, it is also good for his coat. So make sure he can swim as often as possible or give him a bath. You only need a mild dog shampoo when it is dirty. However, you can also wash him with a shampoo at regular intervals if necessary, because some Irish Water Spaniels tend to develop a stronger odor than many other breeds. His curly coat should be clipped into shape, which in practice means that the dog should be clipped every two to three months. It also needs a thorough brushing every few days to keep it from becoming matted. After each outing, check his curls for twigs, blossoms and small twigs that the Irish Water Spaniel would otherwise carry for walks. His floppy ears need regular grooming—keep them as hair-free as possible and use a dog ear cleaner if they get dirty. If there are signs of inflammation, you should consult a veterinarian.
Employment for (water) athletes
Irish Water Spaniels are still kept as hunting dogs today – and with good reason. They are versatile and retrieve reliably on water and on land. They are also excellent at browsing and pointing. If you don’t hunt, you should challenge the Irish Water Spaniel’s sensitive nose with hidden object games such as mantrailing. Retrieving and dummy work are fun pastimes for him, but his head also wants to be occupied – the Irish Water Spaniel is therefore suitable for various dog sports and also appreciates intelligence toys. Speaking of toys, please your water-loving companion with water toys for dogs and, weather permitting, take them to swimming spots where they can indulge their passion for the wet element as often as possible.
Is an Irish Water Spaniel right for me?
Anyone who lives in the country and likes to be outside in wind and weather offers the Irish Water Spaniel a suitable habitat. Ideally, you should also provide him with an escape-proof garden in which he can run around as he pleases. The fence should be adequately secured, because if the Irish Water Spaniel spots or sniffs out potential prey, it can be quite adept at freeing itself from the garden. The breed is only suitable for beginners to a limited extent, as the combination of cleverness and stubbornness requires a certain amount of know-how in dog training. The Irish Water Spaniel can get along well with children – yes, they can develop strong friendships for life. However, the children should give the four-legged friend some freedom and should already have internalized a respectful behavior towards animals. If he is to become a family dog, he is more suitable for families with children who are already of school age.
Before you move in an Irish Water Spaniel, you should consider the responsibility that this means for the next 12 to 15 years. This active and sporty dog not only needs a lot of time for joint activities, you will also need care and training in everyday life. Do all family members agree to this? The financial aspect should also be considered, because in addition to the purchase price and the costs for beds, bowls and other basic equipment, regular expenses play a greater role: high-quality food and veterinary costs, which can be higher in the event of illness, as well as dog tax and dog liability insurance to name here. Before you move in, clarify whether the dog will come with you on vacation, or who will look after it during vacation or in the event of illness. When you’re ready for anything, you can set off in search of your new animal companion!
Where can I find my Irish Water Spaniel?
There are hardly any Irish Water Spaniels in most European countries. For example, if you live in Germany or Austria, you will only come across a handful of breeders, meaning you will likely have to wait and travel long distances to find your Irish Water Spaniel. Nevertheless, you should not make any compromises when it comes to choosing a suitable breeder, because this lays the foundation for a healthy dog life. He should definitely belong to a club and will be happy to provide you with information about his breeding goals and health care for the Irish Water Spaniel. If the spatial distances are too great, it is best to be open to other breeds – for example, look at other types of spaniels or consider which characteristics of the spaniel fascinate you the most. For example, if you want a family dog for an active family, you are often better off with less stubborn four-legged friends. Spaniel clubs can be a point of contact for your questions.
Likewise, you should be open-minded if you are looking for an adult Irish Water Spaniel as these are hard to find outside of Ireland. Check out local animal shelters or contact special spaniel clubs that may be able to help you adopt a dog with a similar personality. Give older mixed breeds a chance too! Because when looking for a “second-hand” animal companion, it is not the pedigree that is decisive, but rather the history of the dog and the extent to which its character harmonizes with you and your living conditions. After all, somewhat stubborn four-legged friends can be a real surprise package in this respect, but they thrive wonderfully in the right hands and with consistent training.
Sporty and in a good mood. His friendly nature and reliability make the Labrador Retriever one of the most popular family dogs in the world. Here you will find everything you always wanted to know about the popular dog breed.
History of the Labrador Retriever
Today, the Labrador is one of the most popular family dogs and is best known for its bright and friendly nature. He is one of the six retriever breeds and is therefore also known as a Labrador Retriever.
But how long has the Labrador Retriever existed as we know it?
Originally, the Labrador Retriever descended from St.John’s dog. This is a small version of Newfoundland. In the 15th century, its main task was to support Canadian fishermen. He retrieved fish that had jumped out of the nets. In the 19th century, a number of Labradors were brought to Britain by the English Lord Malmesbury and were very popular with the nobility. The British began breeding Labradors and raising them to be obedient hunting dogs. The name Labrador Retriever was first used in 1870. The term “Labrador” can be traced back to the island of the same name in Canada and “retrieve” comes from English and means “to fetch”.
It was bred specifically for finding and bringing back the killed animal. That is why dogs with a tendency to fetch were in demand. A “soft mouth” was also particularly important in order to bring the prey to its owner as undamaged as possible. All of today’s Labradors can be traced back to these English hounds and from the 1930s onwards they became increasingly popular outside of hunting. He was further bred in two lines. A distinction was now made between the slim and small Field Trial line for hunting and the massive Show line for exhibitions and as a family dog. The breed is classified by the FCI in the first section of the eighth FCI group and is therefore one of the retrievers.
A friendly and intelligent dog with a great will to work, the Labrador Retriever is rarely considered dangerous. Nothing can faze him that easily and he is always open-minded and good-natured. He always encounters both strangers and other dogs without aggression, which is why he is hardly suitable as a guard dog. The Labbi is extremely docile and can also be trained by beginners. Some dogs even show a strong will-to-please, meaning they want to please their owner with all their might. He is also extremely intelligent and learns new commands and games with great motivation.
The sporty Labrador Retriever loves long walks and needs exercise in any weather. A Labrador Retriever is therefore particularly suitable for active families who like to take them everywhere and do a lot of sport. He is very people-oriented and feels most comfortable in a family with a lot of social contacts.
How do I keep a Labrador Retriever?
Considerations before purchasing
Before you buy a Labrador puppy, you should be aware of the responsibility that comes with it. Although training is relatively easy compared to other breeds, the breed places high demands on its owners. You should be very confident that you can commit to a dog for that long. The Labrador Retriever has a relatively long life expectancy of 10-14 years. During this period you should go for a walk every day and never leave the dog alone for longer. Because of the strong bond with his two-legged friend, the Labbi is absolutely not suitable for kennel keeping and does not particularly like being left alone at home.
All about labrador puppies
The price of a Labrador puppy varies greatly depending on whether it is purebred, a puppy or an adult. You should budget between €1000 and €1600 for a purebred puppy from a breeder. But why is the Labrador so expensive? Reputable breeders invest a lot of money in their dogs. They want to preserve the health and purity of the breed. You have the choice between three different coat colors: chocolate brown, black and yellow. Brown retrievers are the most expensive. If you don’t want to buy a puppy, you should take a look at the “Retriever in Not e.V.” association. We are looking for people with dog experience who can take in a badly kept retriever and give it a new home. Many confuse the Labrador with a Golden Retriever. The two dog breeds are very similar in appearance and character.
Puppy education and development
When you pick up your puppy from the breeder, it is usually 8-12 weeks old. Although he is still small and cute, you should start training your Labrador at a young age. Eventually, every puppy grows into a big, strong dog. This one will be happy to test their limits if they haven’t been brought up properly. The dogs are only fully grown physically when they are about two to two and a half years old. However, they reach sexual maturity in the 6th to 10th month of life.
The Labrador Retriever is extremely inquisitive and learns at a rapid pace. But reacts just as quickly to inconsistencies. It often takes a lot of work to break the habit of greeting every stranger and every strange dog. Many people and other dog breeds have a problem with the Labrador’s exuberant and distant nature.
Activities with the Labrador Retriever
A Labrador Retriever is very energetic and needs a lot of exercise. It is therefore important to challenge him physically and mentally. The active dog needs at least a few hours a day of physical activity and mental exercise. Long walks and varied training are part of everyday life with a Labrador Retriever. Since the Labrador was bred to fetch, he is always enthusiastic about throwing sticks or playing ball. The Labbis especially like to fetch anything from the water and swim a few laps to do so. If you want to use the daily retrieval right away for training, you should try professional dummy training. The breed is particularly suitable for all short, intensive movement games that promote its dexterity and intelligence. Of course you can also take them with you for hiking or jogging.
Exciting intelligence and skill games are also particularly important for the intelligent dog. Where he can also earn a treat every now and then. You can find a wide range of intelligence toys in specialist shops or you can simply build them yourself. These games require brains and the Labrador uses its nose, opens drawers, operates levers or lifts a hat to get a treat.
Health and Grooming – This is what you need to look out for in a Labrador Retriever
The Labrador is generally a very easy-care dog. Due to its short fur, brushing it from time to time is enough to remove loose hair. Likewise, the breed isn’t exactly picky about their diet. For this reason you should be careful that the dog does not get overweight. In fact, many members of the breed have a tendency to gorge on anything that looks edible. This can be very dangerous, especially when going for a walk, which is why you should teach the dog early on what it can and cannot eat. It also makes sense to provide a special anti-snaking food bowl when feeding. Eating too fast can cause stomach torsion. Basically, the Labrador Retriever is a robust and healthy breed. However, like other large dog breeds, the Labrador is prone to joint problems. That’s why you should make sure that the puppy doesn’t climb too many stairs.
Labrador retrievers as everyday helpers
Because of its friendly and compassionate nature, the Labrador is also suitable as a companion dog for the physically challenged or blind. The Labrador not only cuts a fine figure as an assistance dog, but is also highly valued as a therapy dog, especially for children and the elderly. Since the breed is very human and intelligent, they are also popular representatives for the rescue dog squadron and help the lifeguard or avalanche rescue. Labradors are also particularly popular as diabetic alert dogs. Armstrong was the first dog to smell low blood sugar in a human and has been in the Guinness Book of World Records since 2015. They are also the most commonly used dogs internationally when it comes to police and military operations.
Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
A complicated name doesn’t mean a complicated dog: the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever (“Toller” for short) is a rare breed. Thanks to her clever head and a lot of charm, she still has the potential to have a large fan base.
The appearance of the Toller: What Characterizes the Smallest Retriever Breed?
The medium-sized breed weighs around 17 to 23 kilograms over a height of up to 51 centimeters at the withers. Males are larger and heavier than females. This makes her the smallest of the six retriever breeds, which also include the famous Labrador Retriever and Golden Retriever.
The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is often confused with the “Goldie”. However, the toller is more nimble and agile than its larger relatives.
Its coat is optimally designed for working in the water. The double coat is of medium length and soft. The undercoat is even softer and very dense. These are optimal, water-repellent properties.
Thus, the toller is also protected when used in cold waters. In addition, the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is adorned with “feathering”. Experts understand this to mean the long hair on the throat, behind the ears, on the tail, and on the back of the upper and lower legs.
The fox among the dogs
The fur color varies from an orange-red to a strong shade of red. It is often complemented by white markings on the paw, blaze, chest or tip of the tail. A Toller usually appears very alert and not only has the coat color in common with the fox.
The character of the Toller: Smart and friendly
The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever likes to spend his time playing. He is cheerful and very attentive. In addition, he is always careful not to miss the assignment for his next task. Retrieving on land and water is his great passion.
The breed is considered intelligent and docile. They are affectionate and friendly towards their owners. Towards strangers, Tollers can also be indifferent to reserved.
The toller is not aggressive but can defend its territory by barking. The playful dogs tend neither to stray nor to poach.
Are Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers Good for Beginners?
Anyone who owns a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever has a dog with a big will-to-please by their side. That means: The dog wants to please his human. This is a huge plus for training the dog, who enjoys following commands.
Even beginners can teach their toller obedience without any problems. But you should have the basic vocabulary of the dog language and consistency. The clever dog also likes to learn tricks.
With a clean line and no harshness, the Toller is easy to train. Of course, optimal support is provided by a dog school from puppyhood onwards.
Acquisition: Is the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever a family pet?
A Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever needs to be part of the pack. He is quite suitable as a family dog.
However, this presupposes that the members are sporty people. With easy-going people, the red imp quickly preoccupies itself.
Other animals are also allowed to live in the household because the breed is easy to socialize with them.