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Italian Spinone

Large, shaggy and friendly, the Italian Spinone is a solid and robust member of the Gundog group. They come in a white coat of medium length, that’s coarse and dense. The Spinone has an attractive, characterful face with expressive eyebrows and a dense beard and moustache.

12 – 14 years
Adult males 34-39kg and females 29-34kg
Adult males 60-70cm, females 58-65cm
White with orange, orange roan, brown or brown roan
UK Kennel Club Groups
The need-to-know
  • Dogs suitable for experienced owners
  • Extra training required
  • Generally healthy breed
  • Enjoys vigorous walks
  • Enjoys more than two hours of walking a day
  • Large dog
  • Some drool
  • Requires grooming every other day
  • Chatty and vocal dog
  • Welcomes everyone happily
  • Generally friendly with other dogs
  • Gets along with other pets with training
  • Great family dog
  • Needs a large garden
  • Best suited to countryside
  • Can be left occasionally with training
Generally healthy breed

The Italian Spinone is generally a robust breed but they can be prone to: 
- Hip dysplasia
- Gastric dilatation volvulus
- Panosteitis 
- Cerebellar ataxia which is a disease where the brain is not functioning properly and this can affect gait.
- Hypothyroidism¹ where the thyroid gland is underactive and does not product enough thyroid hormone. This can result in low energy levels, weight gain and skin problems. 
- Epilepsy¹ which is a condition where abnormal brain function can lead to seizures which damage the brain. 
- Ear and skin infections¹

Priority Kennel Club health schemes and testing: 
- Hip dysplasia screening scheme
- DNA testing for cerebellar ataxia which tests whether or not a dog has the potential to be affected by this condition.

¹C. Hill, 'Primary epilepsy in the Italian spinone', Sept 2006,  Vet Record


Work hard – play hard is the Spinone’s ethic. As happy in water as they are on land and capable of working all day, yet playful and friendly at home, it is easy to see why this breed is still popular as a working dog, and as a companion. As with all larger dog breeds, particularly those of a slower, gentler nature, the Spinone is a slow maturing breed, but very much worth the wait! As puppies they are endlessly endearing and comical, and adults become somewhat more dignified but still retain a humorous and affable nature. 

Vet Rating

History and Origins

Ideal Owner

Exercise Needs

Space Requirements

Nutrition and Feeding

Grooming Italian Spinone

Training Italian Spinone

Best Family Dog Breeds

Did You Know?

Their name is derived from an older name for the breed, ‘Bracco Spinoso’ and refers both to the wiry, prickly texture of the coat and also the prickly undergrowth they would hunt game through.

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