English Setter


With a history going back 400 years, the English Setter is one of the oldest gundog breeds. Likely developed from Spaniels, the breed would find birds and crouch down or “set,” allowing the hunter to (before guns) throw a net over the catch. Breeders developed the English Setter into two types: the Laverack (show setters) and the Llewellin (field setters). An elegant and accomplished Sporting dog, the English Setter is also a fine show dog, agility competitor, therapy dog, and companion.


Medium to large; females 24 inches, 50 to 55 pounds; males 25 inches, 60 to 65 pounds.


Orange, blue, lemon, or liver belton (white background with colored flecks or roan shading), tricolor.


Athletic and energetic; a calm housedog with enough exercise. Gentle, affectionate, and laid back; exuberant, but good with children. Thrives on human contact, though not a good obedience student.

Energy level:


Best owner:

Active owner or family with a suburban or rural home.


Vigorous daily exercise (hard runs), fenced yard, companionship, brushing every two to three days (with occasional clipping and trimming).

Life expectancy:

10 to 12 years.