Spinone Italiano, regarded as an ancient gun dog, is a sturdy breed with strong bones, square built and a robust nature. Its adorable appearance mostly conveyed through its human-like expressive eyes coupled with its affectionate and alert disposition makes it an effective companion and watch dog.
|Other Names||Spinone, Italian Spinone, Italian Griffon, Italian Coarsehaired Pointer, Italian Wire-haired Pointer|
|Pronunciation||spiˈnoːne itaˈljaːno (Italian pronunciation)|
|Coat||Little wiry, short or medium, dense, tough-textured and close lying coat that is weather resistant|
|Color||Solid white, white and brown, white and orange|
|Group||Gun dog, sporting dog, companion dog|
|Height||Male: 23.5-27.5 inches, Female: 23.2-25.5 inches|
|Weight||Male: 75-86 lbs, Female: 64-75 lbs|
|Litter Size||1-13 puppies, (average 8)|
|Temperament||Docile, social, gentle, loyal, friendly, intelligent, affectionate|
|Good with Children||Yes|
|Good with Pets||Yes|
|Drooling||Salivates around food and water|
|Competitive Registration Qualification/Information||KC(UK), UKC, AKC, CKC, ANKC, NZKC, APRI, ACR, ACA, DRA, KCGB, FCI, NAPR, SCA, NKC|
|Country of Origin||Italy|
The Spinone Italiano was developed in the Piedmont region, originating as early as 500 BC.
While there is no concrete proof as to where the breed actually originated, there are a number of sources which have their own theory regarding its genesis.
For instance, it is believed by some that it may have descended from the Russian Setter while some trace its roots to the extinct Spanish Pointer.
They were also thought to originate from the coarse-haired dogs that were brought to Rome by the Greek traders and crossed with other breeds.
The French, on the other hand, claimed their pointing breeds to be the Spinone Italiano’s ancestors.
Though popular as a hunting and pointer dog, they reached the verge of extinction because of the Second World War as well as the changing preference of Italian hunters, who switched to other hunting breeds.
However, the breed was reconstructed and had its purity enhanced by a set of good breeders in 1950. In 2000, the American Kennel Club recognized the all-purpose hunting dog from Italy.
Often called ‘the friendly grouch’ among its other hunting-dog counterparts, this highly sociable breed thrives in a harmonious environment. They are intelligent, steady and dependable dogs with a composed nature never exhibiting any signs of aggression.
These cordial hounds get along well with other pets and children as long as their patience isn’t unduly tested. They are generally reserved and cautious around strangers but never act out if they are made to develop a habit of mingling with new people.
The breed has certain very endearing and human-like habits. Whenever they don’t get their way, they voice their displeasure through sighs and woofs. Often after a drink, they can’t help but leave a trail of water dripping from their beards. Interestingly, they have a tendency to often sit on the sofa with their forearms dangling on the floor. Their fervent expressions and goofiness make them highly adorable pets.
However, these dogs tend to experience separation anxiety if left alone for long periods of time, resorting to destructive traits like excessive chewing and barking.
Their fast growing nails must be clipped regularly. Check their ears frequently for infections and wax build-up. Regular teeth-cleaning is important to keep teeth issues at bay in the future.
The Spinone Italiano is clever and is generally eager to learn and please. They respond well to positive reinforcements while overly strict behavior dampens the spirit of this gentle, emotionally sensitive dog.
Socialization Training: Spinone Italiano puppies should be socialized extensively with strangers and other animals or else they may grow timid.
Obedience: Start teaching them to obey the five simple commands like ‘Sit’, ‘Come’, ‘Stay, ‘Down’ and ‘Walk’ right from puppy-hood for best results.
Destructive Habits: It is advisable to provide these dogs with a sufficient amount of exercise alongside engaging them in a host of interesting games.
Leash Training: They must be given leash training from the outset due to their natural tendency to hunt rodents, birds and other small animals.
Nutritious food that is low in fat is necessary for this dog from puppy-hood to old age as it has a tendency to gain weight. Consult your vet regarding the size of the food portions you should give your dog.
Keep bowls full of fresh, clean water to keep them hydrated at all times.