Spinoni Italiani are slower paced hunting dogs with a great deal of stamina and an adventurous spirit. They tend to have fairly sure footing, a trait developed to help them hunt in the rocky mountains of Italy’s Piedmont region, and their thick skin and wiry coat were developed in order to protect them from the thorny undergrowth of the area. These traits, combined with a happy-go-lucky attitude, make these dogs pleasant and capable hiking partners. Their high prey drive means that these dogs should remain on a lead if not actively hunting, however, in order to protect both them and the wildlife in the area.
This breed is often utilized as a retriever of waterfowl and is typically a very good natural swimmer. Swimming on a regular basis can help improve both cardiovascular health and muscle tone, all while protecting the joints and the skeletal system from undue wear and tear, an important consideration for dogs like the Spinone Italiano, who is somewhat more prone to hip dysplasia than many other breeds. If you are planning to employ your dog as a hunting dog, swimming outside is a natural choice, if your dog is not destined to be a gun dog, you can avoid hazards like hidden wildlife, contamination of the water, and unexpected currents by taking your dog to a canine swimming pool instead, where they can swim safely for approximately ten to twenty dollars per thirty minute swim session.
The Spinone Italiano is not only a fantastic tracking and retrieving dog but they are also natural pointing dogs. Although the act of pointing may come naturally to dogs that were bred for pointing, freezing in place until the hunter is able to take the shot is not typically as instinctual. The whoa command, a command that tells your dog to freeze in place, is useful in other situations too, sometimes even helping to protect your dog from serious injury. Training your dog the whoa command is not particularly difficult, but it does take time and patience to create a nearly bulletproof response to the whoa command. Teaching the whoa command to your pup as early as three or four months old and taking your time when teaching it will help to ensure that it stays well- cemented in their minds, but even a more mature dog can and should learn this command. The whoa command should be mastered prior to taking your dog out into the field to work with game birds.