The Gordon Setter was oiginally used to scent and find game, today they are used as gundogs and as companions.
This dog grows at an extremely slow rate so it can not be fed like other gundogs. It is best to consult with the breeder regarding feeding specifics. Meals should never be given directly before or after exercise. These measures must be taken to prevent gastric torsion, aka 'bloat' as deep chested dogs are prone to this problem.
The average puppy costs about £350. A show quality puppy would be considerably more expensive.
Of the setter breeds, the Gordon Setter is the sturdiest and most heavily boned. They have an overall look of elegance and dignity, coupled with strength and the obvious ability to hunt for long hours. Their coats are silky and straight, of a black and tan colour with heavy feathering on the legs, chest, stomach, ears and tail. These are large dogs with deep chests and muscular legs. They should exude stamina.
All deep chested dogs are prone to bloat or gastric torsion. Precautions should be taken with feeding regimes in order to prevent the sudden onset of this disorder. Most large dogs also suffer from hip dysplasia which can sometimes be kept at bay with good quality nutrition and controlled exercise. Setters in general tend to have a problem with Progressive retinal atrophy which can lead to blindness. This is a genetic disorder and carriers can be identified so they are not bred from. Prospective buyers should ask to see hip scores and eye certification of the sire and dam.
The Gordon Setter can be traced back to 1620 when it was known as the "black and fallow setting dog." It owes its origins to the Spanish pointer and various early spaniel breeds. The breed owes its name to the 4th Duke of Gordon who set out to establish the breed officially at his castle in Banffshire, Scotland in 1827. The Gordon is the only native Scottish gundog and was bred specifically to hunt gamebirds, especially grouse. With more stamina than other hunting breeds, Gordons do well hunting on the moors and are reputed to bring home more birds than the other gundogs, though they may take longer in the field.