Some believe it to be Europe’s oldest pointer, and yet a mere 300-500 Bracco Italianos are in the entire United States. This is probably not all that surprising since Italy was the only country to have had them until the mid 1990s (but Italy already had had them for a long time. Really long. Since the fourth century long).
Most cynologists agree that the Bracco Italiano was created from a pairing of the Segugio Italiano and the Asiatic Mastiff (now extinct). During the Renaissance, however, the breed reached grand heights of popularity. The Medicis of Florence bred them, as did the Gonzaga family in Mantua. During this period, hunters captured birds by throwing a large net over a covey of birds, and for that reason, the Bracco Italiano was known as the “bracchi of the net.”
The Bracco Italiano is believed to figure in the ancestries of the English Pointer, Brittany, German Shorthaired Pointer, and Portuguese Pointer.
Image: Bracco Italiano puppy by Dottie Dracos