Breed: Spinone Italiano
Country of Origin: Italy
Color: White, Brown Roan, Orange Roan, Orange & White
Life Expectancy: 12-14 years
Height: Female: 59-65 cm, Male: 60-70 cm
Weight: Female: 29-34 kg, Male: 34-39 kg
Litter Size: 4-8 puppies
Ad ID: 110
Although not common in the U.S.A, this breed has a long history of service to man. The breed is known as Italy all-purpose hunting dog. Some say it is a cross between White Mastiff, French Griffon and the coarse-haired Italian Setter, bred with the dogs that were left by Greek traders and others from the Adriatic coast.
However this is not proven and the dog's rather uncertain heritage centers around Europe and its gun dogs of long ago.
Whether he was the basis for bringing forth other gun breeds, or whether they simply sprang from common stock is not known. Like all Italian breeds it is ancient. In Renaissance Italy a pointer with wiry hair was already present.
After 1950 the breed was reconstructed by a few great breeders. The dogs have a great sense of smell, setting, retrieving, recovering, and very close ties with the hunter. The breed has excelled as a pointer and retriever for centuries. Today he is still a popular hunting dog in other countries, as well as a pet.
The Spinone Italiano, also known as the Spinone, Italian Spinone or Italian Griffon, is a large, rugged looking dog with a long head. The muzzle is square when viewed from the side and is the same length as the backside of the skull. The stop is very slight. The nose has large, wide open nostrils and is flesh colored in white dogs, darker in white and orange dogs and brown in brown or brown roan dogs. The teeth meet in a scissors or level bite.
The ears are triangular in shape and hang. The chest is broad and deep, extending at least to the elbow. The topline slopes slighty from the front of the back to the rump. Dewclaws are sometimes removed. The wiry coat is dense and thick and comes in solid white, white and orange, orange roan with or without orange markings, white with brown markings and brown roan with or without brown markings.
Temperament: Docile, Affectionate, Loyal, Gentle, Patient, Friendly
Health Problems: Little data has been accumulated for the Spinone breed in general. Hip dysplasia does exist, as in other comparably sized dogs. Sometimes bloating does occur, though it is not a huge problem. Some are prone to an inherited disease, which manifests itself as a Cerebellar Ataxia, or abnormal gait originating from a problem in a part of the brain. For more information, go to the Spinone Club of America.