The Irish Setter is a very energetic, intelligent, good-natured dog. Their adventurous spirit makes for a loving, loyal and entertaining yet stable companion.Irish Setters were originally bred in Ireland as gundogs. Today, they are fun-loving, enthusiastic, and athletic dogs. They love to go new places and do new things – especially if it involves birds.
Because of their extreme energy, Irish Setters require at least an hour of exercise daily. They enjoy being included in family activities and could develop separation anxiety and become destructive if they are left alone for long periods of time.
Though they are extremely intelligent, Irish Setters can be independent and mischievous. They are also slow to mature, exhibiting puppy-like behavior well into their adult years. They make great companions for older children thanks to that trait but can be overwhelming to smaller children. They are also known to do well with other animals if socialized properly.
Major Health Concerns: The Irish Setter are progressive retinal atrophy (a hereditary eye problem that causes vision loss and blindness), Canine Hip Dysplasia (a hip condition that can lead that can lead to lameness and arthritis) and gastric torsion (a bloating and twisting of the stomach that can result in pain and death). Irish Setters are also susceptible to epilepsy, megaesophagus, as well as a variety of bone diseases.
Interesting Fact: Irish Setters were developed from a mix of Irish Terrier, Irish Water Spaniel and English Setter—among other breeds—to be the ideal birding dog.
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