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Hello everybody!
First of all thank you for this great site. As I see here is so many experienced breeders, so I would really like to hear your opinion about mixing american and english type in breeding. We must admit that there is different types of Irish setters (FT, American, English) and specially in England they really are worried about keeping the type at the same time for 7 years our special show judges were from England and american type setters usually get very high places (this year best bitch, dogs champion class winner etc). Our entry is about 80 Irish setters and most of them English type and not bad quality. So, at least here and already in Sweden and Finland I see people are mixing two different types and are more open to new things!

best regards,

Piret

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What a discussion! :) Well done Piret.... And quite many interesting opinions here.

Firstly - I haven`t been in setters for very long.
But what was already said in this topic and some long time breeders have said is that we fall in love with the type we have first. SURPRISE - what I had (and still have) is a bitch with mixed pedigree having some dogs in Europe/Australia/America in her pedigree. And what I see in her is what I want to see in my breeding in the future; the temperament, character, health, style, structure...

I´ve used dogs having Austrlian lines in their pedigree and I´ve used Loma`s Abbott from USA.
What comes to the size is that every single puppy fits in to the FCI standard. The bitch herself is in the upper limit. What comes to the coat is that I´ve seen dogs from European/Brittish lines having way much coat than these dogs of mine.

It is so sad to make opinions in one particular line just by taking a look at the photos. And if we are thinking of American Irish Setters - they do have quite a lot of variety there and what we see here far away is just some of them. There are things to consider in American as well as in what we call Eruopean lines - trying to catch the strenghts in mixes - well that`s not an easy mission is it... And it surely doesn`t hurt to try and get some variety in the gene pool. We`ve seen these mixes in Finland for quite some time and in other countries too. We`ve seen some very lovely setters fitting into FCI standards very well.

My picture of the dogs in America is very limited and I cannot wait until I get to see some of them live at 2008 nationals. I`m waiting that to be an eye opener for me.
Loma, thank You for not taking it personally! And I'm glad we can talk like this, with no hard feelings involved in this very interesting topic, there's a lot to say about it!

I know there is no perfect dog or any other animal! But as a breeder or even as a person who just adores this wonderful animals, we should do our best do get the animals as similar to perfection as we can!
And yes, the health is absolutely the most important thing we have to think about! But I believe that the looks or character isn't more important than their working abilities! We should do our best to get the perfect dog - the dog that would be a combination of these 4 qualities... I'm not saying that the working type is "the right one", but the truth is somewhere in the middle - the way I see it: an Irish is a beautiful dog, with good working abilities! You don't have to be a hunter to breed working show dogs, but hunting is one of the aspects I see in Irish, and after all, that is what they were "made" for, so I would like to see the passion for hunting in ANY Irish - whether we're talking about a working dog, a show dog or simply a pet...

I don't know is it genetically possible or not, but I've seen some am type - one of my friends had a dog like that and believe me, looking at him was like looking at a red Afgan... and I didn't like what I saw...

Someone asked, what would be our vision of a good eu type... well, these "old-timers" are a great example... There are also some breeders on this site I've met in person (and their dogs), but also those whose dogs I've seen only on this site... and I just love their dogs! But I won't name anyone, I don't think it would be a fair thing to use someone elses dog as an example.
I'll put a picture of my bitch Saga, Ch. Free Love Red Nokomis. I like her head very much, she is very similar to her father Vicary's Young Love and grandmother Vicary's Ufton. But as I said before, no dog is perfect...
[IMG]http://i95.photobucket.com/albums/l128/hunters-enigma/saga/saga_1.jpg[/IMG]

And since Ana is already involved in this discussion, take a look at her dogs too, they are also wonderful dogs, with fantastic heads!

Just because I really don't see much difference myself, I wonder if someone could tell me what "type" my Red dog was. I don't have a stacked photo of him, so maybe you can't say, but I'd like an opinion if you can. I know he was a smaller build than most of the males around at the time (which was about 30 years ago).
Mavis
Well Mavis that sure is a beautiful picture.

Your remarks on "smaller build than most of the males around at the time" fits well into this topic. It is height & weight that makes the biggest difference between the AKC standard and FCI.

There is good material on that right since the days of America's "Adam" of Irish setters, Elcho. His shoulder height 24, chest girth 28, length of head 11, nose to eyes 5 1/4, length of stern 13 3/4.

As there is also a lot of exact info on other USA champions, it is easy to follow the development into a much bigger, heavier setters - simply look at the differences in both standards.

For coat is also quite easy to follow the development, simply by studying pictures since beginning of photography until now. Today I did that for both USA and UK plus analysing differences in both plus timelines and comments of experts in those times.

The head of your Red is very traditional - FCI.

Say a decade before you owned this dog, there were a few Irish setters scoring in both field and show (even unbeatable!!!) on the European continent, who were a mix of....American and UK-lines! They were seen as THE perfect example of the FCI-standard. So you can see what changed in say four decades. It was the AKC-standard and above all interpretation of that.

Henk ten Klooster.
Thanks for the reply Henk.

I don't remember ever taking Red's measurements, but he was the same height as his much bigger boned brother (I think about 27"), but just a smaller build. Red's weight was around 70 lbs and his brother was closer to 80 lbs.

Chester my current field setter is about 50 lbs and 24" at the shoulder.

Mavis
Hope you've enjoyed a small insight in trends of height & weight, Mavis.

Heres a few who are in most nowadays American pedigrees but do not look like them anymore:-)) Kinvarra Craig (dog) 26-62 = height at shoulders inches, weight lbs, Kinvarra Portia (bitch) 26,5-68, Kinvarra Son of a Redcoat (dog) 27, 70. The average of 42 dogs was in those times in the USA: 27, 70.

Your field setter 50-24 is about what I'm used to in field/dual Irish here for dogs, bitches a lot less.

Theres ia a lot in height & weight for movement so enabling a setter to gallop for a long time. Irish setters were described as by far the fastest and most enduring kind of setter in sources I've read yesterday covering a century. This is said to be on average no longer the case.

Trend in the UK is also more height and weight. It will be intresting to see if the UK will adopt the youngest version of the Irish so FCI-standard, like they did in 1930.

There seems to be a correlation in height & weight statistics and average age. In the sixties, it was not unusual to see Irish setters becoming 14-18 years of age (all types). Recently someone active in statistics on that for nowadays IS said it dropped to 10-12 years and relatively more weight-correlated health problems.

So it seems sticking to the more traditional Irish setter has more advantages for a healthy future of the breed. For sure people who only want to get fresh noses from being active with a redcoat without entering competion scenes like shows and trials, could benefit from that.

Henk ten Klooster.
Hi,
When I look at amarican dogs ("generaly") They look realy nice for me but if I look at part of their body I see only the vices (too big, bad angulated, ears too long, no stop in head, tail to high etc)

In october (i hope) I'll have irish setter kennel too. When I was looking for stud dog for Havana i found realy good dogs in mixed type. My friends-breeders make my aware of how strong are american genes. If I matched Havana with mixed typs dog I will have problems with this in far future. I'm starting breeder this baeutiful breed and I don't want all my live correct this vice.

Dear Loma, I don't hunt too but I don't think only about myself. I think about my girl too. I can't hunting but I go with her on the fidels and she run and look for the birds. I have never seen her as happy as on the fidel. Setters have hunting in genes!
In my country bitches and dogs must pass hunting test (min. 3 prize) to be broth bitch/stud dog and her/his puppies will have pedigree.
sorry for my english, it isn't very well
I found funny picture of irish gentelman :D -> http://fc02.deviantart.com/fs10/i/2006/101/1/8/Feeling_Lucky__by_va...
:) Your english is fine Agnieszka and I love the picture of the Irish gentleman :)

I agree that the Irish Setter sure loves to run. You can almost see the smiles on their faces as they race around a field.

Mavis
First, I want to thank everyone for changing the tone of this discussion. I assume that some of you received my Week 5 update, even though I didn't for some reason. The discussion reads a lot more civil today and I think as Irish Setter lovers we all appreciate that.

Aga, you are like a lot of our members. I agree with Mavis - your English is very good! It is much better than you give yourself credit for. Please continue to post. They are welcomed...

One of the differences I see from a casual dog owner's perspective is that I think Europe has higher expectations for their Setters (this is not a bad thing, in fact, it is commendable), almost like a decathlon athlete. European owners seem to expect a dog to excel in the ring and the field. Whereas people in the States typically look for just one thing - good in the ring, good at agility, good in the field, or leaves you at least a quarter of the bed to sleep on.

Mavis - that is a great looking dog. I would say it looks more like an American bred Setter than English bred Setter based on what I have read, but I will defer to people who know more than me, which is pretty much everyone else in this discussion..:-)
Hello Gene, I think that there are plenty of "casual" dogowners in Europe as well. In fact most dogowners are just like that! I have bred setters since the early 80`s and the absolute majority of buyers want nothing more than a friend to love. And quite frankly, Im happy with that. Im happy that my dogs will spend all of their life in one home and not be discarded becourse they dont do well enough in the field or ring. Becourse THAT is the downside of ambition! If you want to make it to the top, halfway is not good enough. Particually when it comes to working the dogs I have seen far too many examples of owners having one dog after the other...until finally one is found that will be good enough.
I feel stongly that when it comes to training, a good trainer adjusts to the dog...not the other way around.
Im going of the track here, but its all related.
Its nice that you live in Poland and are close to open fields where your dogs can hunt. In my town in the USA I live in the low desert. Flat desert land with cactus, no running streams and lush fields. We have farm land but they don't like our dogs to run thru their fields.

I see you are only 15 years old so you have a lot to learn, lucky you with youth on your side, so I hope you will study the Irish Setter breed for several years, learn all you can learn and buy the best brood bitch you can to start your kennel.

Its a big committment to bring a litter of puppies in to the world and you will be responsible for them from birth till death. That's what a good breeder does. From the Womb to the Tomb is what we say and we mean it. You have to be prepared to take a dog back , no matter its age, if need be or help to rehome it.

Thanks for that cute cute picture of the Irish Setter STUD. Its wonderful,
Loma, USA
I used my Milo as example as I think he is quite handsome! I too prefer a bit more muzzle especially on a male.
As far as I am aware the FCI standard and Irish are one and the same(country of origin is used for breed standards in FCI)Correct me anyone if I got this wrong!! The height for dogs and bitches is smaller than US but bigger than a lot of the hunting dogs here. Dogs will have to be betwen 23" and 26.5" and bitches will be between 21.5" and 24.5" My Rua is close to 25" and is considered a tall bitch. Megan is around 24" and Milo is 26" I think holding the tail too high when standing them looks wrong! You dont seem to do that! The bitch in your photo is very balanced and not too small!! I am attaching photo of Megan who is very feminine(quite different than her brother Milo!)
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