Gordon Setter

Published: Last updated: by Gordon Setter running

The Gordon Setter is bold and confident, but can be stubborn at times. They're sweet and affectionate with family members.

Average size and lifespan

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Height: 1ft 11in - 2ft 3in
Weight: 45-80lbs
Lifespan: 10 - 12 Years


  • Affection5/5
  • Kid-Friendly3/5
  • Stranger-Friendly2/5
  • Dog-Friendly2/5
  • Barking Amount4/5


  • Grooming Difficulty2/5
  • Shedding Amount3/5
  • Easy to Train2/5
  • Can Be Alone3/5
  • Exercise Need5/5


  • Cold Tolerance4/5
  • Heat Tolerance3/5
  • Apartment-Friendly1/5

Gordon Setter Information

The largest of the Setters, the Gordon weighs up to 80 pounds and stands 27 inches in the shoulder. The breed hails from Scotland and has a tough coat to withstand the tough climate. They’ve been used as hunting dogs for more than 200 years.


The Gordon Setter is a majestic and regal breed, known for its striking black and tan coat and intelligent and loyal disposition. With a history dating back to the 1700s in Scotland, this breed was originally bred as a hunting dog, used for tracking and retrieving game birds.

Gordon Setter face close up side view

Training and Temperament

As with any breed, the Gordon Setter requires proper training and socialization to reach its full potential. These dogs are highly intelligent and eager to please, making them responsive to positive reinforcement training techniques. However, they can also be stubborn at times, so patience and consistency are key when training. Exercise can help improve their behavior.

When it comes to temperament, the Gordon Setter is known for being a loving and affectionate breed. They are devoted to their families and make excellent companion dogs, but they can also be aloof and independent, a trait they inherited from their hunting roots. They are generally good with children and other pets, but it’s important to socialize them early to ensure they are well-adjusted and friendly.


Grooming can be a bit of a commitment, as they have a long, thick coat that requires regular brushing and bathing to keep it in top condition. Their coat is prone to tangles and mats, so it’s important to brush it thoroughly and regularly to prevent any issues. They also need their nails trimmed, their ears checked for infections, and regular dental care to keep their teeth and gums healthy.

Overall, the Gordon Setter is a beautiful and noble breed that makes a wonderful addition to any family. With proper training, socialization, and grooming, these intelligent and loyal dogs can thrive in various settings and bring joy and companionship to their human companions for years to come.

All dogs have their own personality and unique training, causing them to differ slightly from these breed stats. However, please let us know if we made an error in the stats, we appreciate your help!

Breed FAQs

Can Gordon Setters be apartment dogs?

Gordon Setters don't do very well in apartments. It's recommended to look at another breed better suited to apartment-living.

Can Gordon Setters be left alone?

While Gordon Setters prefer to be around their owners, they can do fairly well when left alone if necessary.

Are Gordon Setters good with kids?

Gordon Setters can do fine with kids. They will require some monitoring and training to make sure they get along and react well to unpredictable behavior.

Are Gordon Setters friendly with strangers?

Gordon Setters tend to be uncomfortable with strangers. They will require extra training effort to socialize them with those outside their family.

Do Gordon Setters get along with other dogs?

Gordon Setters aren't usually friendly with other dogs. They tend to not get along unless carefully socialized.

Do Gordon Setters bark a lot?

Most Gordon Setters bark fairly often, which can be a nuisance. Some steps can be taken to limit this, but is part of their nature.

Do Gordon Setters shed a lot?

Gordon Setters shed a medium amount. They will have seasonal shedding, but aren't terrible to clean up after.

Do Gordon Setters need a lot of grooming?

Gordon Setters don't require very much effort for grooming. You'll just need to provide typical maintenance and baths.

Do Gordon Setters need a lot of exercise?

Expect Gordon Setters to have high energy levels and need a lot of exercise. You'll need to find options to release this energy or they may exibit bad behavior.

Are Gordon Setters easy to train?

Most Gordon Setters are stubborn and will take extra work to train. They can still learn trained behaviors, but will take more effort.

Can Gordon Setters handle cold weather?

Gordon Setters do well in cold weather. You may need to protect their paws, but they'll do well in colder climates.

Can Gordon Setters handle hot weather?

Although Gordon Setters can tolerate hot conditions, be careful not to expose them for too long.

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