The English Setter was originally known as Setting Spaniel, because they naturally crouch when tracking. And the word setter refers to seated position which is dog doing when they find game. They have pretty long history that traces back to 14th century. Their ancestors were various Spaniels, but most importantly Spanish and French Pointer.
The most distinctive feature of the English Setter is definitely its coat. It is very attractive coat with feathering on the chest, ears, belly, legs and tail. The base colour of the coat is white with differing coloured ticking. You can find them in blue belton, which is white with black flecks, orange belton, which is white with orange flecks, lemon belton, which is white with orange flecks and lighter nose, liver belton and tricolor. Puppies are very often born all white and they develop the markings as they grow.
3) Two types
There is quite a difference between the English Setters field dogs and show dogs. The show dogs are larger and they also have a more luxurious coat and differ slightly in coat pattern. Patches of color are often seen in field English Setters, but they aren't desirable for show dogs.
4) Novice dog owner
Unlike most of the hunting dog breeds, who are poor choices for novice dog owners, the English Setter is managable even for people with only little experience with dogs. Of course there are some better choices, but English Setter is intelligent and most importantly eager to please dog, which is very important. They can have independent streaks and you should keep the trainin sessions short and always give them praise and treat when they are doing good job.
This is highly active breed, especially when it is younger. English Setters need plenty of exercise and they are great companions for hikers and joggers. They definitely needs daily longer walks. Regular training sessions or task oriented play time is also needed to stimulate not only their body, but also their mind.
English Setter is elegant and slim dog breed with average height between 23-27 inches, which is 58-68 cm and weight between 45-80 pounds, which is 20-36 kg. Naturally, the females are little bit smaller than males.
7) Great memory
This dog breed has amazing memory and it can be both – good thing or bad thing. The good thing is, that once they teach some command they do not need much repetition, because they will just remember it. On the other hand, they will also remember all the bad habits and it will be twice as hard to break them.
The English Setter has bright and very expressive oval hazel or dark brown eyes, moderately long ears set low on a dog's head, dark nose. They have strong mouth and jaws with perfect scissor bite. The English Setter has a long, lean and muscular neck which dogs hold slightly arched. Overall, when you look into English Setter eyes, you will see an intelligent and curious dog.
Just look at the coat and feathering, of course that this is high maintenance breed. English Setter needs to be combed and brushed several times a week. You should untangle the mats and use metal comb or slicker brush to remove dead fur and keep the coat in top condition. Just like with all dogs you should regularly check their eyes ears and nails and clip them or clean them if needed.
This is relatively healthy dog breed with average lifespan between 10-12 years. Just like all the dogs they do suffer from some health issues, most commonly from hip dysplasia, deafness, hypothyroidism and dermatitis.