Bracco Italiano is a large dog native to Italy. It is one of the oldest dog breeds in Europe with over 2,000 years of existence. While it is primarily used as a hunting dog in its native Italy, many people are now taking it up as a show and companion dog because of its pleasant personality, noble appearance and attractiveness.
Physical Appearance and Size
The male height ranges from 22 to 25 inches while the female one from 21 to 23 inches at the shoulder. It is this height that determines its weight. On average, the weight ranges from 60 to 90 pounds.
This large size, coupled with their deep chest and powerful muscles gives them a powerful and athletic figure. Their tail is docked to reduce chances of from getting injured while running in difficult terrains. These qualities make them excellent hunters.
With its soulful expression, droopy lips and log ears, Branco Italiano can be an affectionate and sweet companion to members of their human families especially children. In fact, they are known to crave for human companionship. Apart from humans, they also get along well with other pets and dogs.
However, they are not as sociable with strangers. They are always alert and ready to bark whenever they spot an unfamiliar person at home. This makes them excellent watchdogs, but they cannot be used as guard dogs because they are very gentle.
Brancci are very intelligent dogs and need more mental stimulation than physical exercise. However, this does not mean that there should not have any form of physical exercise. It is important they get enough time for free running and long regular walks. When young, the walks should be made short because too much exercising is detrimental to their health at this stage.
They also hate idleness. It is, therefore, important that you create for them an environment where they can channel their vast energies into exercises and regular activities like canine sports and fieldwork. This involves a lot of free space. That is why they are not suited for city and apartment dwelling because it is hard to get such kind of space for their running and other exercises. It is also important that you purchase insurance cover for them for public liability and vet fees.
Brancci are fast learners because of their great intelligence. However, the teaching should be done gently and consistently. When handled gently, they will always try to please the owner and do whatever is told to do. At all costs avoid harsh reprimands as they make them to stop trying.
Even though strong and powerful, Brancci are prone to numerous health issues. One of the health problems common to them is hip dysplasia. This is the dislocation of hips. Since this problem can be passed down from parents to their young ones, make sure the parents of Branco Italiano you buy are dysplasia-free. In addition to this, it is also important that the dog is hip scored.
Apart from hip dysplasia, Brancci are also prone to joint and musculo-skeletal problems. This is mainly because of their large size. For this reason, it is important that the number and intensity of exercises they do while still in their first year be reduced. For example, while still young, keep them from jumping stairs and distances. In addition to this, avoid long walks with them at this stage.
Lastly, have their ears cleared often. This is something they hate but with correct training they learn to be calm during the process. Ear cleaning plays a significant role in reducing infections.