English Setter: Temperament, Price, and Puppies For Sale


Sensitivity to strangers
Affection for family
Suitable for first-time owners
Ease of grooming
Energy level

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The English Setter was born as a hunting dog, but today it is mostly adored for its elegance, and it has become one of the best companion dogs in the world.

London, 16th century. During this period, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, adopted the first specimens that would become, 3 centuries later, the English Setter we know today. In the 19th century, Sir Edward Laverack, an orphan and rich heir, perfected and developed the breed’s precise standard.

English Setter: Origin

Laverack was very interested in a particular trait belonging to this dog: its ability to get its prey out of its den (it was a particular skill). Actually, the English Setter’s instinct is to hunt, but this aspect had to be improved, and Laverack achieved it, since he did not intend to work in its rich uncle’s factory from Manchester.

He established in the countryside, and started to develop the breed we know today: it was in 1825 when he bought Ponto, and later, Old Moll, the first English Setter couple, and then some more. He began to do a series of crossings until he developed a less nervous than its ancestor’s breed.

In 1865 in England, the Setter was already a big hit, and then it started to be popular in other countries. In fact, in 1878 the first English Setter specimen arrived in the United States for an exposition, and at the beginning of the 20th century, the first breeding establishment dedicated to this British breed was born. It was recognized by the AKC (American Kennel Club) in 1884.

English Setter: Characteristics

Therefore, having gone over the main points of its origins, we should also observe its etymological meaning. “Setter” refers to the dog’s hunting ability, the dog “sets” or crouches low to get its prey. The Setter name comes from the position it takes.

Circling back to its appearance, we first must say that the English Setter is a medium-sized dog. In fact, at its withers it is 22-24 inches (56-63 cm), and its weight oscillates between 44-66 lb (20-30 kg), not more than that. Although beauty may be a relative factor, we should acknowledge this breed for its truly gorgeous traits: it is elegant, symmetrical, with natural features and it excels in speed and agility.

It exhibits a very muscular build, ideal for hunting. However, its sweetness, along with many other positive attributes we will see below, make it one of the most loved dogs in the world and a favorite for many owners. When it comes to its appearance, you will immediately be captivated by its dark hazel eyes (though the standard also allows light hazel eye color).

Another reason to fall in love with the English Setter is its coat. The shades are various and imaginative.

We may find them in many colors:

  • Selton Blue (white and blueish black),
  • Belton Orange (white and orange),
  • Lemon Belton (white and brown).

There even exists a 3-color English Setter, consisting of a white shade with dark and reddish markings.

English Setter: Temperament

As a matter of fact, the English Setter has a splendid character. It is sweet, affectionate, calm, enjoys company, but it is not obsessive over it.

However, it is not adequate for a lazy owner, since it loves to go out a lot, and being outdoors. This attribute, with good reason, makes it a dog that wants to spend time with its human friend doing plenty of exercise.

There is no doubt that having a backyard is beneficial, although this breed may very well adapt to apartment living. Nevertheless, you should remember to take it for a walk at least 3 times a day. It is an active and sociable dog, and does not really enjoy being alone.

In sum, it is a dog that demands commitment and dedication, like all dog breeds.

Of course, due to its gundog ancestry, that was bred to hunt, it needs to go out and smell everything.

English Setter: Health and Nutrition

We have already mentioned that the English Setter is a dynamic and athletic breed that loves to move. They are the ultimate example of agility, and they shine in training and pet therapy.

In general, it is a healthy dog, but it tends to develop certain diseases in some cases. Not all Setters suffer from these diseases but their occurrence is not infrequent. Most diagnosed disorders include:

  • Hip Dysplasia,
  • Hypothyroidism,
  • Deafness.

Its diet must be carefully observed. An animal this athletic cannot, and should not, gain weight. The best is to alternate dry and moist foods. Healthy homemade meals are an awesome idea.

What must a English Setter eat? Proteins, that is, beef and white meat, carbs (especially rice, pasta and cereals); and also fish, eggs, and low-fat cheese. All of these must be properly cooked.

English Setter: Price

As we have described above in regard to its health, the English Setter may develop certain disorders. Therefore, it is better to provide a detailed program of its health state and history, which may guarantee a certified breeding.

But, how much does an English Setter cost? On average, a specimen of this breed may cost around 900 dollars, or 800 English pounds. Do not trust cheaper options or lower priced offers.

English Setter: Puppies For Sale, and Breeders

It is fundamental to buy from a reliable breeder so you can be sure your puppy has been:

  • Bred to have good health and temperament;
  • Well selected (its parents were chosen without any hereditary diseases),
  • Properly socialized, so it does not become too fearful or aggressive;
  • Vaccinated and well-cared for.

If you adopt a puppy, a reliable breeder will give you a veterinary certificate, which specifies the animal has been dewormed and is completely healthy when delivered.

You can always ask for the pedigree papers, which are essential, since they allow you to check the purity of your dog’s breed. An animal with pedigree has certain traits pertaining to its breed that make it different from the others.

Now that we have clarified all main aspects, you may go and search for your new 4-legged friend, who is surely waiting for you.


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