Red and White Setter
(aka: Irish Red and White Setter, IRWS)
Red and White Setter Description
Well-proportioned and athletic, Irish Red and White Setters are powerful and good-natured. They are more heavily built than the Irish Setter, with more sturdiness, as well as likeliness to injure themselves. Aristocratic, keen and intelligent, the Irish Red and White Setter has fairly recently grown in numbers.
They are strong, powerful, well-balanced and proportioned without lumber. They have a square, tapering muzzle and strong hind and forelegs. They have a tail that has feathering, though they feather less than their cousin the Irish Setter.
They display a kindly, friendly attitude, behind which is discernible determination, courage and a high spirit. The Irish Red and White Setter may first appear aloof, but warms to companionship quickly. Irish Red and White Setters are more wary of strangers than the Red Setter, but still hold onto the lively, active spirit of the Setters. They are practical gundogs, and are a "thinking dog." Having an exciting zest for life, the Irish Red and White Setter makes a perfectly reliable family pet.
Irish Red and White Setters are active, affectionate and fun. They are playful and excited around their family, giving them a spirit of happiness. They are cheerful dogs, eager to do things. They are affectionate, outgoing and lively. They are intelligent, trainable and get along well with children and other dogs. Some may be mischievous if not trained.
Daily brushing and combing of the soft, flat, medium-length coat is all that is required to keep it in excellent condition. Keep it free from burrs and tangles, brushing extra when the coat is shedding. Bathe and dry shampoo only when necessary. This breed is an average shedder.
Originally all Irish Setters were mostly red, or red and white, but from around 1880 breeders began to prefer the solid red variety. Consequently, the breed came close to extinction. Thanks to the efforts of an early 20th century Northern Irish clergyman, Noble Huston, the breed survived but only in small numbers in the island of Ireland.
From around 1970 there was a planned revival of the breed, and the numbers began to increase slowly. By the 1980s IRWS were being imported into Great Britain, where the breed was developed more as a show dog. In contrast to these British IRWS, the breed has continued to be primarily a working and field trial dog in Ireland.
The Red and White Setter is a highly intelligent breed that is very responsive to training at a young age. They do tend to be somewhat independent but with firm, consistent expectations they are fast learners.
Red and White Setters will not respond well to negative training or even loud or raised voices and may become rather timid or likely to avoid people if harshly punished even verbally. The Red and White Setter quickly learns what owners want and will also learn quickly what they can get away with. Most people, even if this is a first dog, will have little trouble in working with the Red and White Setter provided they use a consistent, firm and loving training style.
Occasionally Red and White Setters can be habitual cat chasers so socializing the breed with a cat is important as a puppy if you have cats in the house. They also tend to be highly distractible as puppies but once trained they can attend to the owner with the exclusion of other things in the environment. They can be trained to respond to hand signal or whistles relatively easily.
The Red and White Setter, probably because it has not been indiscriminately bred, has few genetic problems or Health issues. They are prone to Cataracts that form in the back of the eye called Posterior Polar Cataracts but these are not severe and are not typically associated with blindness. hip dysplasia is not often seen in the breed but does occasionally occur. Always ask about any health conditions that may have occurred in the Breeding line and have puppies checked by your vet.