The Spinone Italiano, also known as the Bracco Spinone (in its country of origin), the Italian Spinone (in Great Britain), the Italian Coarsehaired Pointer, the Italian Pointer, the Italia Wire-Haired Pointing Dog, the Italian Griffon and simply the Spinone, is a versatile dog that was developed to hunt game in the Piedmont region of Italy long ago. It got its name from the phrase Bracco Spinoso, which means “prickly pointer.” Some speculate that the term refers to the thorny brush into which only a Spinone would enter fearlessly during a hunt. Others are certain that the name refers to the “prickly” harsh nature of the Spinone’s coat.
Either way, this dog is known for being one of the most talented of all the hunting dogs with a big, rowdy disposition and well-rounded skills. It is also known for its distinctive shaggy and somewhat rough appearance, with sprouting eyebrows, a beard and a mustache that according to some give it a “comical” look, but according to others a somewhat “grouchy” look. Its eyes, however, have been described as almost humanlike, and impossible to resist. The Spinone Italiano can be funny, friendly and frustratingly stubborn. They are especially vocal with their family and “talk” in a wide range of sounds. The Spinone Italiano was accepted for full registration into the Sporting Group of the American Kennel Club in 2000.
The mature male of this breed should stand 23 to 27 inches at the withers; the adult female should be 22 to 25 inches in height. Weight should be in proportion to size and structure – typically ranging between 60 and 80 pounds. The Spinone Italiano’s dense coat can be white, white with orange patches or white with brown patches and is resistant to both water and extreme temperature variations. Its tail is typically docked and not carried above the horizontal.