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Is an Irish Setter the right dog for me?

If you are wondering what is the right dog for you, this is the place to be. In this introductory forum we talk about topics such as breed vs. mix, size, age, grooming, breeders, shelters, rescues as well as requirements for exercise, space and care. No question is too silly here. This particular forum is for getting and giving helpful, nice advice. It is definitely not a forum for criticizing someone else's opinion, knowledge or advice. This forum is all about tail wagging and learning.

  


Member Since
03/18/2013
 
 
Barked: Mon Mar 18, '13 3:21pm PST 
Hey everyone, I'm a first time poster. My wife and I plan on getting an Irish Setter this summer. I've done a lot of research on the breed and have really fallen in love with them. I know they require a lot of exercise. That won't be a problem, because I love to be outdoors and I'm very active.

Here's my question for Irish Setter owners or anyone else that has experience with dogs that require a lot of exercise. Will they be ok if left alone during normal working hours?

I will be a teacher, so I'll have summers off, and have even more time to devote to the dog. I love to go hiking, and out here near Seattle, there are endless opportunities for hiking.

I'm an early riser, so I won't have a problem exercising the dog before work (and after work too). I just want to be a responsible owner.

So yeah, will they be ok being left home alone if their exercise needs are met or exceeded? Thanks!
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Shiver Me- Timbers- "Charlie"

My Little Dog, a- heartbeat at my- feet.<3
 
 
Barked: Mon Mar 18, '13 9:05pm PST 
If exercise needs are met or exceeded, it's definitely possible. But I wouldn't recommend it with a very young, or puppy Setter.

Why? They're boisterous and clownish and get bored easily, and when they get bored, they get into things, and they REALLY need an owner that can laugh at their antics. They're exuberant and a little stubborn and aren't afraid to cause chaos, lol.. At least in my experience with the ones I've had in my family or close knit friends lives.

I have friends who really shouldn't own this breed.. But they do all the same. Their dog is just over a year, and if left to her own devices, causes destruction everywhere, whether inadvertently, or on purpose. On purpose is when she's bored. Inadvertently is just because she has no sense of boundaries, bol. She's everything that's typical of an Irish Setter and without her exercise needs met, definitely gets worse and more stubborn and less eager-to-please. She's sensitive, but basically has her own agenda on what she wants to do and when she wants to do it and she'll gladly make it known. She's vocal, energetic, and always wants to go, go, go, play, play, play. There have been numerous occasions when they've come home and found boots chewed, paper towel rolls destroyed, garbage everywhere, diapers shredded all because she was bored and left to her own devices. They're now investing in a kennel and are starting a clicker training regime I helped them learn, and signing her up for obedience classes. Not that those will do much without proper exercise to begin with. You walk in the door and that puppy is all over you. She feels the need to be in everyone's face, at all times, and she's extremely curious and nosy, pushy about what she wants too.

If done right, if all their needs are met, these dogs are fantastic, but they're definitely not for every owner. have you ever met any, or checked out local dog shows to meet some and talk to owners/breeders about them?
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Member Since
03/18/2013
 
 
Barked: Tue Mar 19, '13 6:49am PST 
Thanks for the response Shiver Me Timber! Yeah, I've ran into them a couple of time before, and I think they are awesome dogs. After doing more research on them, I fell in love with them even more so. They're supposed to be great family dogs and also great with children. I have a lot of nieces and nephews that will be around a fair amount, so I wanted a dog that loved kids. I also live right on the water, so there will be a lot of opportunities for the dog to go swimming. It's just always been a dream of mine to have an awesome, friendly dog that could go on adventures with me.

I like that you said they can be boisterous and clownish and how they need an owner that can laugh at their antics. I would definitely be prepared for that! I'm going to be a first grade teacher, so I'd like to think I have patience and a good sense of humor! smile

I just want to be a responsible owner. I also wanted peoples opinions on whether or not it was doable to have them home alone during normal work hours as long as they get plenty of exercise and attention. Thanks for the response!
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Shiver Me- Timbers- "Charlie"

My Little Dog, a- heartbeat at my- feet.<3
 
 
Barked: Tue Mar 19, '13 1:15pm PST 
You're very welcome! Glad you spotted Tiller's response in another thread as well! As per changing your name when you post, that would require making an account on Dogster and setting up a profile. smile

Here's the link to register an account!: Register!

Don't worry if you don't have a dog just yet. This community is great for gathering information too, and overall, fairly friendly as well.

I'm fairly sure if you can handle grade one children, you should be able to handle the clownish antics of an Irish, lol. They can be good with children, but sometimes can be a bit too much for very young children too. Not so much 'too much' in the sense of not good with them, as simply with the way they throw their weight around as youngsters and have no sense of personal boundaries, haha. There have been numerous times both my friends children(two and eight months) have been trampled by this pup because she wanted something and didn't care to try to go around them. laugh out loud That said, I grew up with an Irish Setter that WAS well trained and well exercised, and she was an excellent old nanny dog. She was the dog that would lay down and the babies of the family could curl up with their heads on her tummy to drink their bottles and go to sleep. I'll always remember that beautiful Setter and she was truly the dog to pave my love for the breed.

I'd definitely recommend talking to Tiller(if you make an account, you can pawmail her when you go to her profile) as she knows a lot about Setters and can really lead you in the right direction, a breeder, or rescue even to gather more personal information on these wonderful dogs too. Knowledge is power when it comes to picking out a breed and the right fit for your lifestyle, so I definitely recommend doing that. If you have any dog shows nearby that you can go to, and possibly see some and talk to their owners/handlers, that's always great too. The more you know, the more you're setting yourself and your future dog up for success, but so far, you sound like you'd have a great family to add a dog to. smile
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Lucy

1288922
 
 
Barked: Tue Mar 19, '13 2:17pm PST 
Shiver Me Timber,

I did make an account on Dogster. I found how to upload a picture (no puppy yet), but it's not showing up. confused Hmm... I'm sure it'll work itself out soon enough. It would just be nice to have the picture and name show up.

Thanks for the recommendation of talking to Tiller. I do have a breeder picked out that is in Southern Oregon. They've been awesome as far as answering questions, and have also asked questions about me, which shows they actually care about their pups.

Thanks!
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Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
 
 
Barked: Tue Mar 19, '13 6:37pm PST 
For your breeder, PRA, CLAD and hips should all be done on the dogs producing the litter....very important. Look at their contract to see if they have a return clause also. Are all those things there? It is very easy for a not so good breeder to look excellent these days, and this forum is a good place to come to sort things through smile
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Lucy

1288922
 
 
Barked: Wed Mar 20, '13 7:29pm PST 
Tiller, yes, all of those things are there! I talked to the breeder today and there is a return clause, so all things seem to be checking out! Thanks for your help!
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Sandy

tiny...but fast!
 
 
Barked: Wed Mar 27, '13 7:09pm PST 
You may try looking into a doggie day care, or having some1 come walk the dog once a day while u r gone. Crate training may be your best friend with a setter. The is a vet in the town where I live who breeds English and Irish setters she said having 10 is easier than 1. They really do well with a buddy. U might consider that.
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