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Gordon Setter

 Photo of Gordon Setter
Photo: courtesy of Steven Sheppard

Gordon Setter Books

Group: Gundog - Breed Standard


Height: dogs: 66 cms (26 ins); bitches: 62 cms (24½ ins). Weight: dogs: 29.5 kgs (65 lbs); bitches: 25.5 kgs (56 lbs).

Gordon setters are coal-black with tan features, in comparison to Irish Setters, which are red, and English Setters, which are white with speckles. Gordons have tan on their feet and lower legs, vents, and muzzles, two spots above the eyes and two distinctive tan spots on their chests. Some white is allowed on the chest but the smaller the better. Red Gordons, while uncommon, occasionally show up in litters due to the expression of a recessive red gene. Their coat is long and silky on chest, ears, stomach, and leg feathering, and slightly wavy. They are the heaviest of the setter breeds, with males reaching 27 in at the withers. Rather than being built for speed, they move with determination and stamina.


This breed is intensely loyal to their owners but can take a few minutes to warm to strangers. They are good family dogs, laid-back and loving, though not recommended with small children as they can be boisterous.

They are usually quite passive and seem happy lying around sleeping all day. However, when out on a walk they are frisky and in the countryside seem to be able to run for hours. Gordons in particular are sensitive but kindly, and need gentle but firm handling. Any nervous tendencies can be cured by early socialization, which is very important.

Breed Health

They are prone to hip dysplasia and eye diseases such as progressive retinal atrophy, and cataracts, as most dogs are. This breed generally lives about 10 to 12 years


They require 60 to 80 minutes of exercise a day, though care must be taken not to over-exercise young dogs (under 18 months) to avoid joint problems in later life.


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Last link added: 07 Apr, 2008