Bracco Italiano

Type: Gun Dog

Height: 22 - 26.5 inches.

Weight: 55 - 90 lbs.

Life Span: 12 - 13 years.

Litter Size:

Country of Origin: Italy

Activity: Medium to high. Bracci do like to work and play, but aren't extremely energetic like some other breeds.

Watch-dog: Medium. They excel at hunting skills and are known as pointers, but aren't particularly alert unless it is time to work.

Guard-dog: Low. Bracco Italianos are friendly to nearly everyone.

Description: The Bracco Italiano is a large, tall canine that has striking coloring features. They can be brown and white or orange and white, with freckles all around. They are muscular with a thin face, and wrinkled hanging skin around the chin and neck. Their noses can be from brown to pink, and they have a smooth, fine coat of fur. The dog is squarely built, with a tapering tail (that is often docked at half its length) and a deep wide chest. Their ears are long and drooping, but perk up a bit when they are listening. Bracco Italianos were originally considered two separate breeds based on whether they were brown and white or orange and white, but are now considered the same breed. They are affectionate and easygoing, easily distinguishing work from play. They can be avid workers, and peaceful home pets.

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Other Names: Italian Pointer, Italian Setter, Bracci (plural)

Colors: Colors come in two distinctions: brown and white, or orange and white. The brown and white was originally known as the Lombardy, and the orange and white known as the Piedmont. Most commonly, the colors are white with orange, having chestnut or amber patches on the face, ears, and base of tail.

Coat: Their coats are short, dense and fine. The fur can be glossy as well. It should be hard to the touch, but softer on the head, ears, legs and feet.

Temperament: These dogs are known to be affectionate, easygoing, and intelligent. They can be stubborn and sensitive, but are athletic and powerful in appearance. They are able to make strong distinctions between work and play, and know when each is needed. The Bracco Italiano can be a strong worker in the field, but rest easy with a docile temperament at home. Italian Pointers are also obedient and loyal, doubling from easygoing pet to avid worker in an instant. They are very much 'people dogs', as they love to be around them. They enjoy a strong bond with their owners, and are more satisfied the closer the are to them.

With Children: Yes. Good with children, loves to play.

With Pets: Yes. Loves to play with other animals and gets along well.

Care and Training: Harsh or deterrence training is not suggested for this breed. They do not respond well to negative treatment.

Learning Rate: Medium

Special Needs: An activity or job to do, attention, and training.

Living Environment: Braccos enjoy the hunt, and need enough space to explore. A job or activity to do would be best for this breed, as they are apt to working. The best owner for this breed would be a dog-experienced, active owner who can provide a job in a rural or suburban home.

Health Issues: Possible health concerns for the Bracco include entropion, hip dysplasia, kidney disease and bloat. Bloat is a health issue to most dogs, being the second largest killer of dogs other than cancer, but Bracco Italianos can be particularly susceptible to it because of their deep chests.

History: Italy Based on fourteenth century frescoes made in that era, the Bracco Italiano is thought to have been around since then. These artworks depicted a similar looking dog to the Bracco, and the Bracco is thought to be a very old breed. Some say the breed evolved from crosses with the Segugio Italiano and Asiatic Mastiff, while others say it is a descendant of the St. Hubert Hound, so famously the ancestor of hounds such as the Bloodhound and Beagle. The breed originated in two different place, thus creating the names Piedmont and Lombardy for the different colorings. One originated in Piedmont, known as the Piedmontese Pointer, while the other came from Lombardy, known as the Lombard Pointer. The Bracco Italiano sufficiently thrived during the Renaissance era, bred by the Medici and Gonzaga families. They lived mostly among the wealthy, as hunting dogs. But their popularity soon slowed down in the 18 and 1900s, when they almost became extinct. But thanks to the efforts of Italian Breeder Ferdinando Delor de Ferrabouc, the breed lived on. The standard was creating in 1949, and finally made its way to England in 1988. The breed is hardly known outside its home country, though a few supporters reside elsewhere.

First Registered by the AKC: FSS (AKC Foundation Stock Service - not yet eligible for the AKC)

AKC Group: FSS

Class: Gun Dog

Registries: FCI, UKC, KC (UK)