English Setter: Dog Breed Information and Characteristics

Country of origin: Great Britain
Shoulder: 58 – 69 cm
Weight: 20 – 35 kg
Age: 10 – 12 years
Colour: white with black, orange or brown, spotted or spotted, tricolor
Use: hunting dog

The English Setter is an extremely agile and active dog with a pronounced passion for hunting. He has a friendly and gentle nature, is easy to get along with other dogs, and bonds strongly with his people. However, he needs a lot of exercise and an occupation that suits his disposition.

Origin and history

The English Setter is a descendant of medieval bird dogs believed to be the result of crosses between Spanish Pointers, Large Water Spaniels, and Springer Spaniels. The foundation for today’s modern breed was laid by the breeder Edward Laverack, who mated two bicolor setters who were related by blood in the early 19th century. His breeding goal was to create setters with outstanding hunting characteristics and a special appearance. He also coined the term Belton, which describes the breed-typical spotting or spotting of the coat. The English Setter is far less common than the more popular Irish Red Setter.


The English Setter is a medium to large, well-proportioned hunting dog with an elegant appearance. Its fur is fine, silky soft, and slightly wavy. Its head is long and slender, the eyes are expressive and dark, and the ears are set low and hang close to the head. The tail is medium-length, saber-shaped, and heavily fringed.

The most obvious difference between the English Setter and other setter breeds is the coat coloration. The basic color of the fur is always white with more or less strong proportions of the colors orange, brown, or black. The typical, slightly running stippling is called Belton.


The English Setter is an extremely friendly, gentle, and good-natured dog, but at the same time a highly passionate hunting dog. The agile and fast nature boy with an excellent sense of smell needs work in the field and free rein. It is a good leader when hunting game birds, but is also suitable for many other hunting tasks. The main thing is that it is busy and can live out its passion for hunting; otherwise, it will go off on its own.

With loving consistency and clear leadership, the English Setter is easy to train. It is extremely affectionate forms a strong bond with its people and needs close contact with its family. When dealing with other dogs, the English Setter is usually very well tolerated.

Keeping an English Setter is demanding because the intelligent and agile dog needs a lot of exercises and an occupation that suits its disposition – be it as a hunting dog or in the context of retrieval or tracking work. The English Setter is only a pleasant and cuddly house and family dog ​​if it is exercised accordingly.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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