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Bracco Italiano: Dog Breed Info, Pictures, Traits & Care

Written by: Sarah Psaradelis

Last Updated on June 24, 2024 by Dogster Team

Bracco Italiano: Dog Breed Info, Pictures, Traits & Care

The Bracco Italiano, also called the Italian Pointer, is one of the oldest pointing dog breeds. These noble dogs have all the desirable traits of a hunting and working dog while making loyal companions.

Bracco Italianos always seem to have their noses pressed to the ground, as smell is one of their strongest senses. They make great family dogs and get along well with children and other dogs. If all of this sounds like a dog breed you are intrigued by, keep reading to learn more.

Breed Overview

Height:

21–27 inches

Weight:

55–90 pounds

Lifespan:

10–14 years

Colors:

White, orange, chestnut, and roan

Suitable for:

Active families, farmers, hunters, and families with children

Temperament:

Loyal, reliable, easy to train, intelligent, and docile

Bracco Italianos have a muscular appearance with a defined head and long body. Their coat colors range from white and orange to chestnut, or roan markings. If you are a fan of gun dog breeds, you won’t regret welcoming a Bracco Italiano into your home.

Although they enjoy hunting and tracking using their powerful noses, these dogs are gentle in the home. They are not difficult to train and enjoy working alongside their owners for a training session or playtime in the living room.

The breed was originally used as a versatile gun dog to hunt and retrieve game. However, they are commonly kept as pets nowadays rather than working dogs.

Bracco Italiano Characteristics

Energy
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High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Trainability
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Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Health
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Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Lifespan
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Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Sociability
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Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.

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Bracco Italiano Puppies

three purebred puppy dogs, Italian Bracco.
Image Credit: Ricantimages, Shutterstock

Bracco Italianos are a rare breed, so you are unlikely to find them up for adoption. The only exception would be in Italy, where this breed originates from. They are popular in Italy but rare in other parts of the world. It is still worth checking your local rescues and shelters to see if they have a Bracco Italiano puppy up for adoption. If you don’t come right, your next option would be to find a reputable breeder.

Bracco Italiano puppies are adorable with long, droopy ears and wrinkled bodies. They are very playful and affectionate and enjoy taking naps throughout the day. Bracco Italiano puppies don’t mind cuddling with you or taking a nap in your lap on the couch.

It’s easy to get caught up in these puppies’ cuteness and playfulness. However, it’s important to prioritize training and socialization just as much as playtime.

Temperament & Intelligence of the Bracco Italiano 🧠

Bracco Italianos are intelligent dogs with a docile, reliable, and loyal temperament. Their intelligence and temperament are the reason they are easy to train and make ideal family dogs. Bracco Italianos have been bred to work alongside humans, which is probably why they easily fit into various environments.

They don’t seem to have many aggressive tendencies, which is why owners of this breed fondly describe them as gentle and loving. Bracco Italianos are not usually fazed by strangers, and it doesn’t take them long to get comfortable around other people.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

Bracco Italianos are some of the best family dogs out there. They have all the desirable traits you would look for in a family dog. Furthermore, Bracco Italianos are highly sociable and get along with children in the home.

Regardless of how friendly a Bracco Italiano is, it’s still important to teach the children how to interact with them properly. Bracco Italianos might easily trust people, but they don’t enjoy being bothered by children who don’t know how to interact with dogs yet.

Aside from being a family-friendly breed, Bracco Italianos are the perfect canines for farm owners and active individuals too.

Bracco Italiano puppy spinning
Image by: Ksenia Raykova, Shutterstock

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets? 🐶 😽

Bracco Italianos seem to get along great with other cats and dogs. This is possible with proper socialization of these animals from a young age. These dogs seem to connect better with other dogs and may need more training and desensitization toward cats before they are kept in the same home.

As a gun dog, Bracco Italianos do not get along well with small animals such as birds, rodents, and rabbits. Their hunting instincts are too strong for small animals to be safe around them.

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Things to Know When Owning a Bracco Italiano

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

The easiest way to ensure your Bracco Italiano is happy and healthy is by providing them with a proper diet. Most of their diet should consist of plant and animal-based foods. They can thrive on various types of diets, whether it’s kibble, wet, or raw foods.

It’s important to ensure that their food contains all the necessary vitamins and minerals they need to be healthy. You don’t want to feed these dogs an unbalanced diet and risk them becoming deficient in certain nutrients.

There is no one specific diet that is perfect for every Bracco Italiano. You should consult with a veterinarian or certified canine nutritionist about which diet will be right for your dog. Their diet can be influenced by factors such as exercise, overall health, weight, and age.

Bracco Italiano running at the beach
Image by: naturschnecke, Pixabay

Exercise 🐕

Bracco Italianos thrive with exercise which has several benefits. These benefits include weight management, preventing boredom, and mental and physical stimulation. Bracco Italianos don’t enjoy being cooped up all day in the home. This could make them bored and result in destructive behaviors from a lack of proper stimulation. Bracco Italianos should be exercised for at least 30 minutes a day but can benefit from more exercise too.

They enjoy long walks, short runs with you, a game of fetch, or playtime in the yard. When a Bracco Italiano isn’t exercising, they enjoy chewing their toys or interacting with other dogs.

Training 🦮

Bracco Italianos are fairly easy to train thanks to their high intelligence. Despite being easy to train, these dogs can be stubborn to train as adults if they haven’t been properly trained from a young age.

You can begin training and socializing with them from as young as 8 weeks old. Their training will be basic at first and consist of commands like sit or stay. Soon their training will progress to obedience, potty, or crate training. Positive reinforcement is a good training method to use with Bracco Italianos.

Grooming ✂️

Bracco Italianos have undemanding grooming requirements thanks to their short, sleek coats. You can use a short bristle brush on your Bracco Italiano to keep their coat manageable. Brushing doesn’t need to be often, as once or twice a week is usually fine. Teeth cleaning, nail trims, and ear cleaning are just as important as brushing for this breed.

Their droopy ears tend to hold dirt and moisture which may lead to ear infections, so be sure to keep their ears clean.

Health and Conditions ❤️

Let’s look below at the several health conditions commonly seen in Bracco Italianos.

Minor Conditions
  • Cataracts
  • Ear infections
  • Ear mites
Serious Conditions

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Male vs Female

Male and female Bracco Italianos differ in anatomy, hormones, and health. Male Bracco Italianos are usually sexually mature at 12 to 18 months old. This is around the time you may notice changes in their behavior related to male hormones (testosterone). Female Bracco Italianos reach sexual maturity between 6 to 9 months old.

Once mature, they will experience estrus cycles and the hormonal behaviors that occur during it. If your Bracco Italiano is unneutered, they may be more susceptible to certain reproductive health problems.

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3 Little-Known Facts About the Bracco Italiano

1. The history of Bracco Italianos dates back to the Renaissance period.

While this breed was the first dog registered by the Italian Kennel Club, almost 140 years later, the American Kennel Club followed and recognized the Bracco Italiano as an official breed.


2. Bracco Italianos nearly faced extinction in the late 1800s, but dedicated breeders preserved the breed.

Since this breed was only officially recognized by the AKC in 2022, there are only a handful of reputable breeders for the Bracco Italiano. However, this number might increase over the next decade.


3. The Bracco Italiano was the first dog registered by the Kennel Club Italiano in the 1880s.

Dog breeds risk extinction for a few reasons, but the Bracco Italiano was greatly affected because of poor crossbreeding, thus leading to health issues. dogster face divider

Final Thoughts

The Bracco Italiano is one of the oldest pointing dog breeds that originate from Italy. They are characterized by their muscular bodies, sculpted heads, and droopy ears. They were originally developed to be gun dogs and were used to hunt and retrieve games for their masters.

Although their hunting instincts remain strong even today, these dogs are gentle and loving companions. Bracco Italianos are popular in Italy, but they are rare in other parts of the world.

Once you understand the breed and how you can meet all their care requirements, you will have a faithful companion by your side. They are always happy to interact with their owners and never turn down an opportunity to tag along with you during a walk or hike.


Featured Image Credit: olgagorovenko, Shutterstock

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