Gordon Setter

Group 3: Gun dogs
Male: 66 cm
Female: 62 cm
Male: 29.5 kg
Female: 25.5 kg

Energy Level: High
Original Function: Setting, retrieving
Lifespan: 10 – 13 yrs

Recommended for: Active people & families.

Gorder Setter

About This Breed

The Gorden Setter is from Scotland and it is due to the Duke of Gordon’s efforts that they are here today. Originally they were used to herd sheep, the Gorden Setter was then developed as a gundog, capable of working over a variety of terrain in any type of weather. Possessing great stamina, with eagerness to work all day long, hunting, flushing & retrieving game. A conscientious & intelligent worker, they have a keen nose & a gentle mouth.

This a gentle and sensitive dog which makes a lovely family pet if it gets its daily dose of exercise, otherwise it can become rather hyperactive and may inadvertently knock over small children.

Sociable and friendly, the Gordon will be devoted to its owner but may take a few minutes to acknowledge strangers. However you cannot rely on the Gordon to guard your property as it may decide that a burglar is a great playmate.

The Gordon will get along well with other dogs and may even tolerate cats if trained to do so at an early age. As with all breeds, early socialisation is essential for a well balanced dog. It should be remembered that a Gordon is more strong willed than other hunting breeds and will need firm and consistent training.

General Characteristics

Appearance: Large sized body. Dark eyes. Long ears that hang to the side of the head. Medium length tail. They have an overall look of elegance & dignity, coupled with strength and the obvious ability to hunt for long hours.

Temperament: Bold, outgoing, of a kindly even disposition.

Characteristics: Intelligent, able and dignified.

Colour: Deep shining coal black, without rustiness, with markings of chestnut red, i.e. lustrous tan. Black pencilling on toes and black streak under jaw permissible. ‘Tan markings’: two clear spots over eyes not over three-quarters of an inch in diameter.

On sides of muzzle, tan not reaching above base of nose, resembling a stripe around clearly defined end of muzzle from one side to other. Also on throat, two large, clear spots on chest.

On inside hindlegs and inside thighs, showing down front of stifle and broadening out to outside of hindlegs from hock to toes. On forelegs, up to elbows behind, and to knees or little above, in front. Around vent. Very small white spot on chest permissible. No other colour permissible.

Coat: On head, front of legs, tips of ears short and fine, moderate length, flat and free from curl or wave on all other parts of body. Feather on upper portion of ears long and silky, on backs of legs long, fine, flat and straight, fringes on belly may extend to chest and throat. As free as possible from curl or wave.


Grooming: As a semi-long coated dog, the Gordon needs to be brushed and combed regularly, at least twice a week. The ears should also be cleaned on a regular basis since they are long and pendulous, – the type that traps in air and can lead to infections.

Excess hair under the ear can be trimmed away to allow more air circulation into the ear canal. The outside of the ear should never be trimmed though, although it is trimmed with other setter breeds.

Hair between the pads on the feet needs regular trimming and the feet should be inspected after walks for trapped grass seeds and burrs.

Exercise: This dog was bred for strength and endurance and has the reputation of being the hardest and longest working gundog. As a result, the pet version needs a great deal of exercise to keep it healthy and happy.

This breed needs a large, well-fenced garden and extremely long walks and runs twice a day. It is probably a lot easier to keep this breed in the country where it can find more wide open space to stretch its legs.

Health: This breed, some can be prone to bloat, hip dysplasia and eye problems.