HISTORY  OF THE BREED

A hunt point retrieve (hpr) gundog the Bracco Italiano is of an ancient and noble lineage, he is mentioned in writings of the 4th and 5th centuries. The Bracco has been accepted as a distinct breed in Italy since the Middle Ages. He was bred by noble families such as the Medici and the Gonzaga; dogs from their kennels were much sought after. So highly prized was the breed they were deemed suitable gifts for royalty, records show the Court of France was given chestnut Bracchi as a gift in 1527. The breed became widespread during the Renaissance period when hunting feathered game was a highly regarded and exclusive sport of the Italian aristocracy.

The late 19th early 20th century saw a decline in numbers but due to the enthusiasm of breeder Ferdinand Delour de Ferrabouc (1838-1913) the Bracco was saved from extinction, he was also responsible for the first drafts of the breed standard. The definitive breed standard was approved by ENCI in February 1949 and nine months later, in November, the Societa Amatori Bracco Italiano, SABI, was founded.

The origins of the breed are unclear but it is believed to have been developed from the Egyptian hound and the Mollosus or Persian Mastiff. The white and orange is thought to originate from the Piedmont region ‘Piedmontese Pointer’ and was a lighter smaller dog thus enabling it to work more easily this mountainous region. The white and chestnut came from the Lombardy region ‘Lombard Pointer’ and was a heavier taller dog. Over time the two types were combined to create a breed of more uniform size although you will still see today dogs of a heavier and a lighter construction.

Originally the breed was used to drive birds into nets but as hunting methods changed and with the development of guns the Bracco’s working style has adapted. In 1937 the Working or ‘Pastrone’ Standard was drawn up describes beautifully the physical and mental working style of the Bracco. The Breed can be found behind many of today’s gundogs.

In Italy the Bracco is held in high regard as a working gundog and today the breed enters more field trials than any other breed and is the most popular of the Italian gundogs.

The Bracco is the most hound like of all the gundog breeds and facially more akin to the bloodhound or basset hound however he is a true gundog; a stylish and enthusiastic hunter, has a superb nose, will hold a staunch point and retrieve keenly to hand. We must never lose sight that it was work that gave us the Bracco and although Bracchi are wonderful companion dogs, they are at their most happiest when doing a job!

 

Breed Standard – FCI

A Breed Standard is the guideline which describes the ideal characteristics, temperament and appearance including the correct colour of a breed and ensures that the breed is fit for function. Absolute soundness is essential. Breeders and judges should at all times be careful to avoid obvious conditions or exaggerations which would be detrimental in any way to the health, welfare or soundness of this breed. From time to time certain conditions or exaggerations may be considered to have the potential to affect dogs in some breeds adversely, and judges and breeders are requested to refer to the Breed Watch section of the Kennel Club website here http://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/services/public/breed/watch for details of any such current issues. If a feature or quality is desirable it should only be present in the right measure. However if a dog possesses a feature, characteristic or colour described as undesirable or highly undesirable it is strongly recommended that it should not be rewarded in the show ring.

Last updated May 2016

A Breed Standard is the guideline which describes the ideal characteristics, temperament and appearance including the correct colour of a breed and ensures that the breed is fit for function. Absolute soundness is essential. Breeders and judges should at all times be careful to avoid obvious conditions or exaggerations which would be detrimental in any way to the health, welfare or soundness of this breed. From time to time certain conditions or exaggerations may be considered to have the potential to affect dogs in some breeds adversely, and judges and breeders are requested to refer to the Breed Watch section of the Kennel Club website here http://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/services/public/breed/watch for details of any such current issues. If a feature or quality is desirable it should only be present in the right measure. However if a dog possesses a feature, characteristic or colour described as undesirable or highly undesirable it is strongly recommended that it should not be rewarded in the show ring.

General Appearance

Strong, well-balanced, powerful hunting dog, of noble appearance. Almost square, well muscled, with deep chest. Distinctive, sculpted head with chiselling under eyes.
Characteristics
Strong and untiring, working in all types of terrain. Excellent scenting abilities. Dignified and intelligent.

Temperament

Hardy and adaptable, gentle and even tempered.
Head and Skull
Long, angular and narrow at the zygomatic arches. Cheeks lean. Seen from the front, sides of muzzle converge slightly. Foreface of good width. Pronounced occiput and slight stop. Median line visible to mid skull. Measurement from nose to stop equal to that from stop to occiput. In profile, muzzle deep, straight or slightly arched. Well chiselled below the eyes. Viewed from side, the planes of the muzzle and skull are divergent. Nose large and spongy, protruding slightly over thin lips. Corners of lips marked but not pendulous.

Eyes

Soft expression, fairly large, oval, with close fitting eyelids. Neither protruding nor too deep set. Dark ochre or brown, depending on coat colour.

Ears

Set on level with corner of eyes. Leathers extend to tip of nose. Supple and folded inwards. Base rather narrow, widening out but lying close to cheeks. Slightly rounded tips.

Mouth

Jaws strong, with perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaws.

Neck

Powerful, well-rounded, moderately short, widening towards the shoulders, with unexaggerated dewlap.
Forequarters
Strong. Shoulders long, well muscled and well laid back. Well defined withers. Top of shoulder blades well separated. Forelegs strong and straight with good, oval bone and well defined tendons. Pasterns of good length, slightly sloping. Point of elbow lies directly below top of withers.

Body

Overall appearance almost square. Length of body, measured from point of shoulder to point of buttock, equal to or very slightly longer than height at withers. Chest broad, deep, reaching to the level of elbows. Well sprung ribs. Loin wide and slightly arched, short and well muscled. Top line slopes very slightly down from raised withers to middle of back, without dipping, rising slightly to broad, muscular croup. Slight tuck-up.

Hindquarters

Thighs long, parallel, muscular with rear edge almost straight. Good bend of stifles. Rear pasterns relatively short and lean with good width between the hocks.

Feet

Strong, slightly oval, tight and well arched. Nails tone with coat colour. Dewclaws acceptable and double dewclaws tolerated.

Tail

Strong, slightly oval, tight and well arched. Nails tone with coat colour. Dewclaws acceptable and double dewclaws tolerated.

Gait/Movement

True moving with powerful drive from hindquarters. Capable of untiring, extended fast trot. Head carried raised above top line.

Coat

Short, dense and glossy. Shorter and finer on head, ears and front part of legs and feet. Skin tough, but elastic. Pigment of skin, eyelids, nose, lips and pads – pale pink to dark brown, depending on coat colour, but never black.

Colour

White. White with orange, amber or chestnut markings. White may be speckled. Roan with solid markings. If chestnut, a warm shade with a metallic sheen is preferred. Symmetrical facial mask preferred, absence tolerated. Tricolour highly undesirable.

Size

Height at withers: Dogs 58-67 cms (223/4-26¼ ins), Bitches 55-62 cms (213/4 -241/2 ins). Weight 25-40 kgs (55-88 Ibs), in proportion to height.

Faults

Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work.

Note

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

Following many requests carry the morphological STD Bracco Italian into force from January 2016 with significant…

Posted by Mauro Nerviani on Friday, 12 August 2016