Considered to be one of the most reliable bird dogs in the sporting group, the Gordon Setter can run and hunt for an entire day if left up to him. With seemingly endless energy and always on the looking for a bird, this breed needs constant time outside in large, open land to roam and hunt.
The Gordon Setter not only makes an excellent hunter, they also make fun, enthusiastic pets that thrive on the company of people. This breed may at times be a bit more protective than other setters when it comes to its “pack”, but because of this trait the Gordon Setter makes an excellent watch dog.
A Brief History Of The Gordon Setter
As early as the 1600s, the Black and Tan Setter was in existence in Scotland. Then, sometime during the late 1800s, we see that the breed established itself as the Gordon Castle Setter. The reason for the name reference was due to the Fourth Duke of Gordon, who was a big fan of the dog and had many of them living in his Castle.
Even after the passing of the Fourth Duke of Gordon, continuous efforts were made to breed only the finest of setters at the Gordon Castle. The breed’s name was soon changed back to its original name, the Black and Tan Setter, at around the year 1900, but the English Kennel Club restored the name Gordon Setter when it made the breed an official member of the organization.
The Gordon Setter first made its way to the United States sometime during the middle 1800s. In fact, they were among one of the first breeds to become recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1892, and remains one of the favorites of the sporting group with hunters that desire a talented, one-man shooting partner.
Upkeep Requirements For The Gordon Setter
Like all sporting dogs, the Gordon Setter must have plenty of daily exercise. Strenuous activity is preferred as this is one dog with an insatiable appetite for action. Gordon Setters also may become overweight quickly if kept cooped up all day. For this reason alone they are not suited for small apartment living.
These dogs are able to live outside if need be, so long as the climate is temperate, but like all loving family pets, they should have ample time to spend with the family; sleeping indoors at night is ideal. And with its long, lustrous coat, the Gordon Setter needs regular brushing every two to three days.
Major health problems that seem to run common with the Gordon Setter are CHD and gastric torsion. Minor concerns include elbow dysplasia, hypothyroidism, cerebellar abiotrophy, and PRA. Veterinarians suggest that this breed be specifically tested for possible elbow, hip, eye, and thyroid problems. The average lifespan for a healthy Gordon Setter is approximately ten to twelve years.