The Irish Setter – Big Red

Side view of standing male red irish Setter

Dog of the Month!

How ya! Irish Setter is the name. Wow, Dog of the Month. Must be the luck of the Irish! My father always told me, “If you’re enough lucky to be Irish…you’re lucky enough!”. I sure feel that way now!. 

Scenic view of Gap of Dunloe, County Kerry, Ireland.

My Story

It was a long time ago in Ireland. I don’t quite remember how long since I wasn’t around back then. But I’ve heard stories passed down from generation to generation. I’ve heard that we all came from the Old Spanish Pointer or some type of Spaniel, and Scottish Setters. That the original Irish Setters with white coats and red patches descended from them. Then us Red Setters descended from the white coats and red patches. But then I heard that our kind did exist as early as the 1600s. In the 1800s, they found old paintings of a red dog that looked just like me. But some would say selective breeding created the Red Setter in modern times. Depending on which relatives I ask, I get mixed stories so I don’t know. I’m just happy to be me! But one thing I do know is, my ancestors were aristocrats. Popular with the upper ruling class. A respectable line of hunters. Excelling in the show ring and in the field in the 1850s. Brought to the United States in the early 19th century, our name became known to most of the world. After the movie, ‘Big Red,’ our claim to fame soared in the United States in the 1970s. No relation. Also, President Nixon had one of us in the White House! I bet they had a whale of a time.

Two Bird dog resting after the hunt beside a shotguns and pheasants in front of a hay, horizontal

Purpose – Aristocratic Bird Dog

Awful good at hunting, we were built to handle hunting all day and still is. I have an excellent scent skill that can sniff out a bird from a distance by sniffing the air. I can easily track its location, and then freeze still for the hunter to follow and bag the bird. I can locate and carry games big and small. The four S’s help me accomplish my task: Sleek. Slender. Swift. Stamina. Working alongside my hunting partner all day is my forte. I sniff, run, track, crawl, swim, freeze, all in quiet confidence and with class. Loyal to the cause and highly dignified. I am an aristocratic hunter and companion.

Gun dog irish setter near to trophies, horizontal, outdoors

Four Leaf Character 

“A dog owns nothing, yet is seldom dissatisfied.” Is what my mum used to say. An old Irish Proverb that holds for me today. Four main things I need to thrive are companionship with family and friends, an active job, basic shelter and food, and lastly, mutual respect. That is my good luck charm. And with that, I am high-spirited, joyous, carefree, boisterous, charming, loyal, outgoing, obedient, agile, and athletic. I am good-natured and friendly around people, children and pets. I do not care to be left alone for too long and can be prone to separation anxiety. I do admit; I can exhibit a little amount of stubbornness. I do have a slower maturity rate than some canines, but if I can get through my awkward teenage years, well, so might you. But once I learn something, it sticks! And when I say it sticks, I mean like crazy glue. So make sure you only teach me the things you can live with for the rest of my life.

Two irish setter puppies are sitting and waiting

Size and Maintenance

Height 26-28 Inches. Weight 65-80 pounds. I need active exercise, long walks, and large spaces to run around. Regular brushing and occasional trimming will be required. Yes, the luck runs out at some point. Very cold climates are not my friend. 

Don’t be fooled! I may be a good size, but if you’re looking for a guard dog, count me out. I am alert to what is going on around me, but I love people too much to want to scare them or keep them away. The more, the merrier is what I say!


Well, this was fun! I’ve got to go now. Wherever you go and whatever you do, may the luck of the Irish be there with you.

One thought

  1. Loyal to the cause. The Four S’s, if only more people listened to their mum like the Irish Settler! What a great pup the Irish Settler is! Keep up the GREAT work Angie!! Samson and The Cubicle 5 are proud of YOU!


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