The Irish Setter is happy, affectionate, and eager to please. He is full of energy and will appreciate having a job to do. Keep training methods consistent but sessions fun and interesting to be sure he does not become bored. He responds best to positive, reward-based training methods, and not well to heavy-handed or harsh corrections. Early socialization and puppy training classes are recommended. Irish Setters excel in canine sports such as hunting, agility, dock diving, rally, tracking, and flyball, and their sensitive nature makes them a natural as therapy and assistance dogs.
The breed’s high spirits can make them a challenge to train. A key is to keep training sessions short, interesting, and upbeat. The IRWS is very eager to please and reacts well to a positive training approach involving lots of praise. Early socialization and puppy training classes are recommended. His intelligence, energy, and devotion to his human make him a natural at obedience, hunting, tracking, and agility.