Exclusively Setters

Home for Irish Setter Lovers Around the World

I get the impression that some here think the perfect Irish setter is either kennel specific/country specific/inbred or outbred specific/beauty versus function specific/or just some nebulous specific.  If it is not out of an English pure kennel, then somehow it has  been contaminated.  If it has been bred to a US Irish setter - most of which go back to English kennels-   then somehow AKC has influenced and contaminated their line.  If it has too much or too little coat-straight or wavy, what to do or apologize for?  So what do most of you look for when breeding and how open is your mind to other kennels/other types/other countries and types when you consider breeding?  Are most here willing to go out of the box and take a chance or stay with what they think they know and continue on as they always have?      

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Hi Vivian

I took a look at the link you posted (hope you don't mind!) and would say that, in that photo, your boy looks quite dissimilar from other American dogs I've seen. What is his breeding?

I flicked through a few more of your photos, too, and saw one with two dogs standing by a sprinkler - one which is more like what we have described about the "Afghan look." Hard to tell from a photo, I realise, but it does appear as if the dog has a high-set, curled-over tail? Is that dog from the same lines? He/she looks completely different. None of my dogs have a tail that could even bend in that manner :)

You are of course allowed to say that you would never breed from UK lines. No one here has disputed that - or even hinted at it. That is what you have taken from the discussion yourself. You are also welcome to your opinion - as are we all. I also don't think John was calling you ignorant, either; I think he was making a general statement.

As for hard expressions, light eyes, etc - these are most certainly present in many of the show type of US Irish Setters, and not just the field type. Joanne knows the difference between the two, and knows what she's talking about. The head shape of most American dogs is different to that of the UK type. Since you prefer the American type yourself, then you must also agree? This changes the typical soft, "melting" expression we UK-type lovers are used to seeing into a more aloof look - a look which lovers of the UK type would call "hard." The eyes seem to be set further apart, the head overall is smoother and longer, and the muzzles often snipey, with the nostrils set beneath the level of the upper plain. We are certainly not insulting you or your dogs by saying so. It is fact, and it is something breeders of US type dogs have obviously done over several generations to create the look they see as correct and beautiful. It is just that according to the standards we show under, a hard expression and a smooth, flatter head isn't correct. And I personally don't think it is beautiful, either.

As for the chest-beating...well, I guess we who do withhold the right. Movement in many breeds has changed over the years, almost entirely due to show judges putting up dogs with massive, incorrect movement which may well look amazing in the ring, but which is simply incorrect for the breed. As guardians of the breed, and therefore advocates for the health and soundness for those dogs we breed, we bloody well SHOULD be up in arms and beating our chests!! Those who aren't, aren't doing enough - and I for one will not stop simply because someone doesn't feel like hearing it.

The upright fronts and steep rears which cause that awful movement are faults - by ANY standard - and what many people don't seem to realise is that the flashy movement so prized in the ring, and being bred into litter after litter of puppies, is the beginnings of the next wave of HD, or ED, or god forbid some other crumbling of the dog's internal structure as yet unknown...and for what? The price of a piece of ribbon?

The Irish Setter was descended from the IRWS, yes. The IRWS was itself created from several breeds which are today extinct, or absorbed into other breeds (eg spaniels). I was referring to short-term purity, not long-term :)
Vivian this is most interesting. If you say there are several lines breeding the same style setters as your boy in the link, then why do we not see them in Australia, NZ etc etc ?. Are certain countries and breeders only looking for coat maybe. As you say the judging can be political in the US and sadly most places I feel, how often in all honesty do this style of setter get placed. Interestingly the judge in the photo I have seen judge before and she most certainly did not put a setter up best of breed anything like your boy:(. Now this is meant in the best context so please do not go mad, the boy in the link is a good style Irish not a Hollywood dog and I know what I would prefer if I was the person in the middle of the ring. I also notice you say that are sometimes moans amongst people regarding bad movement in the US, in all honesty do you and maybe other breeders see and realise that some of the lines in the US do carry bad movement etc etc, I get the feeling from the above comment that maybe this is acknowledged and if so Vivian you must realise that myself and others are not damning every line in the US.
Vivian I for one never said that I would never breed from American lines. How can I?. I have a girl sitting in my kennel that is from American lines. I became so angry because I felt that you are the one being derogatory towards the Europen style :(. Yes I do know what I am talking about and you for one are in the perfect situation to be able to see the difference in some of the American lines. I have looked at your profile and did not realise that you are the lady, that I actually made a comment to my husband a while back now, about one of your boys. He is very nice, not overdone and I quite liked him. Very different although to the other boy that you have who is a different style altogether and not so typey. But that is where that comment will end as I have said before on here regardless of what others think every Irish Setter is loved by someone:) However, Vivian you must realise that you are not the only one to feel their lines are beaten down to the ground. It was not a walk in the park for me either when I started showing my lines there were several rude and disouraging comments from individuals and the behaviour from one individual was so bad when I won at a show that the judge actually came to talk to myself and my husband. Do you think that is fair? As I have said before there are some lines in the US and other coutries in the world that are not to the Irish standard and you can claim that you are being beaten into the ground but at the end of the day some of the US and indeed other breeders need to look at the type of dogs they are breeding.
You are taking this forum far too seriously. Read Ricky Youngs reply he had a category for us all which I am sure made us all smile, me included.
John started this forum in good spirits. He is a lovely man who is always open to different lines and will listen to other peoples opinions, mine included. He enjoys the site and as he says learning as I do too, after all I found your boy on this site when I would never had believed if someone told me his line would be found in the US. He is a dog you should be proud to improve on.
May I ask are the differences in the types of setter in the US regional? When I was in the States (early 80's) I was told that type varied greatly from west to east and that the western breeders had the better and more typical dogs. Is this still the case?
Vivian I think you need to read my other comments too :) The examply I gave was to try to make you realise that you are not the only one who has suffered their lines being down trodden, although that is not the intention of this forum at all. But as you say "You don't care" you seem to say that a lot when you are getting hot under the collar but as Melinda said in their comment what is the point of doing this we are just people having a discussion on a forum. Others too have given their opinions from within the states too and you have taken a dislike to that too. Obviusly you have singled me out and twisted what I have been saying, read only what maybe what you wanted to see in the comments and what is sad is they most certainly were not meant with the intention that you have taken them, you have even taken offence to the nice comments I made about your boy which were sincere. I was simply asking more about the lines as I too have learnt something but it is a shame that you are not prepared to disclose more information about the lines you may prefer or the show scene in the US as we too suffer with politics and many good dogs do not get their just rewards. As for you leaving ES, that is your choice but in your comment you make it sound as though I am the reason. I have been on ES for a few years now and have placed many comments in regards to many other peoples dogs of many different lines. As for your perception of me being rude well that is your view but I feel I just expressed my opinion like you said you did. Take care and have a great day
Hi Joanne,
You are quite right-no need for rudeness on either side. The best thing that I have gained from ES is an exposure to quality Irish Setters from many countries and the elimination of many previously preconceived misconceptions that I had about lines that I really had no knowledge or exposure to. Generalizing about any particular group or area is truly ignorance at its best- something many of us were guilty of in the 70's. With the advent of the internet and an open mind and world communication hopefully today many of our past misconceptions will fade away opening up multiple possibilities. It's a choice! John
Hi John
Thanks for your comment. As you will know from our e mails I like a good setter and don't give a STUFF where it is from as long as its good. You are right in what you say ignornace is not good. Take care and look forward to hearing from you soon. JO.XX
I thought we were actually all behaving ourselves for once LOL I certainly habour no animocity towards anyone here (or any Irish Setter, for that matter). Whether or not the same is reciprocated, I don't really mind, as I stand by the belief that everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I love this site, because we all do get the chance to talk to people who might not have the same opinions. It's good to hear all sides.

Trouble starts when someone chooses to take other people's opinions on what they love in Irish Setters as a personal insult - as if somehow you're suddenly not justified in loving what you love, just because someone else is passionate about something different. Battle lines are drawn and loins girded lol... And for what? All that happens is a few people get hot under the collar, and the discussion shuts down.

People love what they love, and no one can dispute that. Be respectful of the separation between what you love, and what others say they love. No one can take anything away from you here, and if you read something that makes you feel personally upset, perhaps you should explore that in your own time and try to understand the reasons behind why you have chosen to let it hurt you.

If someone posts something you don't agree with - why take it personally? You still love what you love. Simply say so, and move on. Otherwise, it always because more us versus them and no one ever learns anything. I'm here to learn and share - nothing more, nothing less. I love participating in these discussions, and I enjoy hearing others' opinions also. That's the great thing about ES.

Anyway, enough of me :)
I agree with what you are saying Melinda. However, I was not prepared to let some of the unecessary comments go unchallenged. As you know I have both lines and like some dogs from both of these lines. A healthy good natured discussion is great but this forum was becoming a them versus us and a big no no in my books, not on a site that was designed supposedly for some fun. Take care and I am now off to cuddle some puppies :) which are adorable in any shape or form :))))
Yep! Was making a general observation - not aimed at you at all :) :)
Vivian I think you really do need to watch your mannerism on this site. As I have said too many times which you are quite obviously now choosing to ignore. What Challenge?. Practice what I preach. For goodness sake I have the two lines in my kennel or are you stating that because I hold my views on some of the US lines that I should not have any US lines at all?. As I have said before this is a fun site but becoming utterley silly now. Why are you taking everything so personally and you are now turning your comments into a personal attack against myself. For goodness sake enjoy the site as I most certainly do :)
Well done Joanna that is exactly how i think. I have had a quick look at the American ones and the coat is far to long for the job they are supposed to be for.




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