Dog Breeds

Gordon setter

An elegant, eye-catching, fairly large hunting dog – this is the Scottish Gordon setter. An intelligent and efficient helper of the hunter, while a nice household member and a unique exhibition dog.


The Scottish Gordon Setter is a dog with a complicated personality. He is very attached to the owners, he is very nice to his family, but he keeps a great distance towards strangers. Definitely not the type of friend of the whole human world. Rather, we do not have the chance that our Gordon on walks would catch passers-by and lick them on the hands … As it barely barking, it would be difficult to make it a guard dog.

Gordon has a strong hunting instinct, so from a small age you have to work on summoning in distractions – especially those related to the tempting smell of animals. The dog of this breed badly tolerates brutality or strong psychological pressure, and at the same time – spoiled – can become really tiring due to the high spontaneity and hunting drives in it.

This dog matures slowly, which is worth considering. He does not tolerate seclusion and detachment from his family, especially from his beloved master or lady.


Scottish Setter Gordon is a hunting dog, able to work both in the upper and lower wind (although it is rather the upper wind that is innate in him). He is intelligent and non-aggressive, so he can be trained as a hunting-search or sport dog in olfactory work. Because it is harmoniously built and quite fast, sometimes the owners try to teach it to one of the numerous sports fields, e.g. agility, although due to the heavyweight and quite “rigid” construction, it is unlikely to become a world champion here.

Gordon setter

Training and education

The clever, though sometimes having their own view of the issue of carrying out the instructions of Scots, badly tolerates the brutality and lack of consistency of the guide. It closes in on itself and tries to withdraw. Once abused, the trust of this dog is difficult to regain later.

There is a perception that the Scottish Gordon Setter is a “stubborn” dog. In fact, this is a misinterpretation of a specific behavior when the dog does not fully understand what man is about. The vulnerable Gordon then tends to back out of the situation. He may also try to offer behaviors that he thinks should appeal to the guide, although he did not expect them at all.

Who is this race for?

Rather, it is not a dog for beginner dogs. In his upbringing, it is necessary to maintain a perfect balance between requirements and relaxation, which is more easily achieved by experienced people.

The Scottish Gordon Setter is suitable for a family, home with children, but you must remember to meet his large running needs – this dog must discharge the accumulated energy. Therefore, it cannot be recommended to the elderly who have difficulty moving. However, hunters will appreciate the high work ethics of this dog. In general, the breed will appeal to active people who like contact with nature and long walks.

Advantages and disadvantages

Scottish Gordon Setter – what is it like? Learn its pros and cons!


  • intelligent
  • balanced
  • brave
  • loyal
  • sunny
  • forgiving children


  • distrustful of strangers
  • he doesn’t feel well in big cities
  • very lively, needs an extremely large amount of traffic
  • strong hunting instinct means that it is not easy to keep up with the Gordon
  • tends to quickly catch excess weight


Gordons have trouble dermatological nature – sometimes they suffer from juvenile deep dermatitis (a hereditary ailment) and dermatosis.

The breed has hip dysplasia and eye problems (entropion, i.e. the third eyelid, medial angle pocket syndrome, and later cataracts).

Gordon setter


Working dogs should receive high-quality food with high protein content. In periods of inactivity, you need to be careful about the dosage of food, because Gordon easily gains weight … If we want to feed our dog naturally, some authors recommend preparing meals consisting of half meat and a half – filler.


Semi-long, thick hair often seems to implement the principle “if it is removed, it crumbles” and in a way … cleans itself. However, you will need to make friends with the comb to brush out small branches, clods of soil and other similar objects after walking or exercising, which are very often clung to Gordon’s hair. You also need to check your dog’s ears from time to time. It is also good to trim sometimes growing long hair on the feet of gordon, forming the so-called “Cat’s paw”.

Gordon setter


With a fairly large range, which gordon achieve in a very short time, it is worth investing in a portable GPS attached to the collar and paired with a smartphone or tablet (locator). However, before we reach for technology, let’s try traditional methods and get a long (15-20 m) training rope for learning to recall. Without it – to the forest – don’t move!


Setters come from the medieval “dogs for birds”, but the creation of the breed as such is a matter of many later times. At first, simply called “black and tan dogs”, they changed their name to “gordon setter”, adopting – as the official name for the breed – the name of Alexander, the fourth Lord Gordon, a person very distinguished for the creation and development of this variety of setter.

Gordon setter

At the beginning of the 19th century, the Lord created – in the area of ​​his castle Gordon – well-known breeding of working dogs. At that time, these setters were more valued for their work in the field, not for appearance, so no one was worried that next to black and tan dogs there were also three-color (black and white and tan) and black and white. Only Lord Alexander, who liked the black and tan variety the most, tried to systematize this issue, although in his kennel there was a place for dogs of various colors. Apparently, the planned appearance of bloodhound contributed to the final appearance and behavior of the breed.

Utilities setters attracted their supporters and by the end of the nineteenth century, the population of the breed was already large. In 1891 the final Gordon pattern was adopted. At that time, Gordon Setter’s Club was founded in America.


Scottish Gordon Setter – Group VII FCI, Section 2, Model No. 6

  • Country of origin: Great Britain
  • Size: dogs – 66 cm, bitches – 62 cm
  • Weight: dogs – 29.5 kg, bitches – 25.5 kg
  • Coat:  on the head and on the outer edges of the paws, the coat is short and delicate; on the other parts of the body, the gordons have a longer, close-fitting fur that forms on the chest and limbs, especially the hind ones, into a kind of fringes – dense and quite long.
  • Color:  black and tan
  • Lifespan: 10-12 years
  • Weather resistance:  high

Interesting facts

The Scottish Gordon Setter, as a utilitarian breed, is put to the test of work. Gordon is the most built of all setters. His close cousins ​​are: Irish setter and English setter .

The breed standard, usually very restrictive, allows a tiny white spot on the chest. There is a legend saying that this spot is a remnant of the time when the race was created. Lord Gordon was supposed to use … his favorite Scottish Shepherd bitch in breeding.

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