Temperament: Affectionate, Intelligent, Enthusiastic
- Height: 21-27 inches
- Weight: 55-90 pounds
- Life Expectancy: 10-14 years
- Group: Miscellaneous Class
The Bracco Italiano is one of the oldest of the pointing breeds. It was introduced into the United States in the 1990s and has remained true to its heritage as a versatile gun dog. It is gentle in the home and tireless in the field.
About the Bracco Italiano
Tough and adapted to all types of hunting, the Bracco Italiano is reliable, intelligent, docile and easy to train. He has a powerful appearance, with lean limbs, well-developed muscles and a sculpted head. In English, he is the Italian Pointing Dog.
NUTRITION The Bracco Italiano should do well on a high-quality dog food, whether commercially manufactured or home-prepared with your veterinarian’s supervision and approval. Any diet should be appropriate to the dog’s age (puppy, adult, or senior). Some dogs are prone to getting overweight, so watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Treats can be an important aid in training, but giving too many can cause obesity. Learn about which human foods are safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.
GROOMING Bracchi Italiani are easy to groom. Their short coats require minimal care and their long ears require routine cleaning to minimise the risk of ear infections. Beyond that, the occasional bath will keep them clean and looking their best. Their nails should be trimmed regularly with a nail clipper or grinder to avoid overgrowth, splitting and cracking. Teeth should be brushed regularly.
EXERCISE The Bracco is a moderate- to high-energy breed that requires daily exercise and mental stimulation. This can be accomplished by running free in a safe, enclosed space or by scheduled exercises such as daily jogs. At least 30 minutes of exercise per day is needed, but more is preferred. Furthermore, to be happy, they need time each day spent with their family doing organised training or playing.
TRAINING A Bracco needs a calm, patient trainer who is gentle but firm. This breed may be slightly independent, but for the most part, they are eager to please and are thrilled when they see they’ve made you happy. They are most suited to a home that will use their hunting ability and give them a job to do. However, in lieu of hunting, training for dog sports like agility, obedience and rally can also be a great way to give your dog the physical and mental stimulation he needs.
HEALTH The Bracco is an overall healthy breed, and responsible breeders screen their stock for health conditions such as hip and elbow dysplasia, eye anomalies such as entropion, ectropion, and cataracts, and kidney disorders such as renal amyloidosis. To avoid orthopedic stresses on their fast-growing bodies, Bracco puppies should be fed a balanced food and should not be run on hard surfaces such as on concrete or perform repeated high-impact exercises until at least one year of age. Check the Bracco’s long, pendulous ears for ear infections, and use a veterinarian-recommended ear cleaner once or twice weekly to keep the ear clean and dry to prevent infections.