The Calm, Gentle Spinone Italiano
Italian Griffon

descriptive textDog breed info
Spinone Italiano
Italian Spinone / Italian Griffon
Weight Male 71 — 82 lbs
Weight Female 62 — 71 lbs
Height:Male 23” — 27”
Height Female 22” — 25”
AKC Rank 2008 #112
Lifespan 12—14 yrs
Group Sporting

Dog Breed Info - The Spinone Italiano

descriptive text

Breed Overview

Origin Italy. Original function: Pointing, retrieving. Today: Pointing, retrieving. Colors: All white or white with orange or chestnut markings.

The Spinone is one of the earliest pointer breeds, dating back possibly to 500 b.c. The exact origin is unknown, as many records no longer exist, although, some believe it came from Celtic wirehaired stock. Others place the origin with Greek traders who may have brought the dogs to Italy during the time of the Roman Empire. Present day Spinone go back mainly to Italy's Piedmont region The dogs are very good at penetrating difficult, thorny ground cover with their thick coat to flush out game hiding in the underbrush. During WWII, the Spinone was used to track German troops. This breed has an excellent nose for scents and works closely with the hunter in a diagonal fashion to locate the game and is known as a versatile hunting breed. This is a popular dog in Italy and some other European countries but not America. The Spinone Italiano was registered by the AKC in 2000.

Italian Spinone puppy
descriptive text


The Spinone Italiano is usually fairly easy to train. They are intelligent, patient and ready to learn. However, some have a stubborn streak. The best method is by clicker training and positive reinforcement. Dogs like this method and do well with it. Pick up an inexpensive click at a pet store.

This breed needs to be heavily socialized starting at a very young age of 4 or 5 weeks. That will help shape the adult personality.

Crate Training

Want to crate train your Spinone puppy? It's easy and if you're interested, take a look and you'll see what to do. Crate training your puppy will save many headaches and problems.

Potty Training

The Spinone Italiano puppy is generally easy to house train, potty train, toilet train, housebreak or whatever you want to call it. If you have a puppy, decide if you want to crate or paper potty train it. For the best results, we have a page at Crate vs Paper Potty Training which will help you decide and from there you can get all the information you need to get the job done. Always praise the pup profusely when she goes potty in the RIGHT PLACE so she knows she has done a good thing. Either method will work for this breed.

If you have an older dog, take the dog outside every two hours until she gets the idea which door leads to her potty area. Older dogs catch on to the potty or housebreaking pretty fast once they are shown what to do.


The Spinone Italiano is a devoted, calm and gentle breed that is an easy-going companion, excellent house pet, and friend to children, other dogs and pets. She is also a superb gundog, pointer and retriever for the sporting enthusiast. The Spinone is affectionate, playful, loves to run and jog, is enthusiastic about everything and enjoys life. Some have a stubborn streak. The Spinone needs to be kept under control and subordinated in the family so she doesn't get the idea she’s an alpha pack leader, but once you have established her as the submissive member, all will be fine. This dog is not a guard dog. She’s too friendly, A great family pet.

If you happen to get a Spinone with a separation anxiety problem, that can be dealt with by investing a few hours of work on your part and some "tough love."

Spinone puppy face closeup
descriptive text

Friendly Toward Other Dogs

Generally likes other dogs and likes to have one other dog as a “buddy” to play with. This is not an aggressive breed.


Friendly Toward Other Pets

.Ok. Gets along well with other house pets.

Friendly Toward Strangers

People friendly.


Quite playful, especially with older, responsible kids.


Very affectionate, loving, friendly breed.

Good with children?

Yes. Good with children. Spinone Italiano's get along well with and is tolerant with kids. Seems to enjoy their company and likes to run and romp with them. Very small children such as toddlers need close sui0pervision as this dog is quite heavy.

Good with Seniors over 65?

Yes, the Spinone Italiano is a good match for seniors. They are loyal, affectionate, a bit playful, love to walk and are friendly with kids (grandchildren) so this would work well for the senior.

Living environment

Apartment, condo, farm or ranch living is all okay for the Italian Spinone.
The apartment if fine as long as the Spinone Italiano gets out for daily exercise and mind-stimulating walks.
This is a family dog and needs to spend time indoors with her family of humans. She should not be tied up in the back yard.


Energy level

Moderate energy. Rate her 5 bars out of 10.

Exercise needs, daily

Moderate. A long walk and maybe some jogging or a game of fetch will keep the dog healthy. The jogging alone would do it, except dogs need to WALK for mental stimulation so we need some of both.


Good watchdog. Will usually alert to strange activities around the house.

Guard dog

Not a guard dog. Too friendly . Likes robbers.


Very little.



Use a stiff bristle brush from the pet store and brush weekly to remove dead hair. Hand stripping is done now and then to shape around the face and feet.

Dog Health Issues For The Spinone Italiano
Below are the dog illness / illnesses or medical problems as listed for the Spinone Italiano by various vets.

This is basically a healthy breed. Don’t let the list below scare you! Your own dog will probably never have ANY of these problems. These are dog illness and medical issues this breed is prone to that have been listed by various veterinarians at different times over the past decade or so and some pertain to puppies and very young dogs that a breeder would deal with.

The information contained herein has been gathered from numerous books by veterinarians and is intended as general information only. Every dog and situation is different. You must see your vet. Our information is for general interest only and not intended to replace the advice provided by your own veterinarian.

Other health problems could occur with your Spinone Italiano. If you notice any problems with your dog, take it to the vet immediately. This website is for general information only and is not intended to, in any way, be a medical guide


Return From Spinone Italiano To Dog Breeds

Return From Spinone Italiano To Sporting Breed Group