Breed Standard

Last updated October 2009

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

Noble and dignified expression, characterised by solemnity, wisdom and power.

Characteristics

Possesses in a most marked degree every point and characteristic of those dogs which hunt together by scent (Sagaces). Very powerful, standing over more ground than is usual with hounds of other breeds. Skin relatively loose.

Temperament

Affectionate, neither quarrelsome with companions nor with other dogs. Somewhat reserved and sensitive.

Head and Skull

Head narrow in proportion to length and long in proportion to body, tapering slightly from temples to muzzle, thus when viewed from above and in front having appearance of being flattened at sides and of being nearly equal in width throughout entire length. In profile upper outline of skull is nearly in same plane as that of foreface. Length from end of nose to stop not less than that from stop to back of occipital protuberance. Entire length of head from posterior part of occipital protuberance to end of muzzle 30 cms (12 ins) or more in dogs and 28 cms (11 ins) or more in bitches. Skull is long and narrow, with occipital peak pronounced. Brows not prominent. Sufficient stop. Foreface long, deep and of even width throughout, with square outlines when seen in profile. Head furnished with only a small amount of loose skin. Nostrils large and open. In front, lips fall squarely making a right angle with upper line of foreface.

Eyes

Medium size, dark brown or hazel, neither sunken nor prominent, the lids being oval in shape and meeting the cornea – front window of the eye – perfectly without any irregularity in their contour. Eyes should be free from any interference from the eyelashes. Any obvious signs of eye irritation must be heavily penalised. The eyesight of the hound should be unimpeded.

Ears

Thin and soft to the touch, long, set on low and falling in graceful folds, lower parts curling inwards and backwards.

Mouth

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

Neck

Long

Forequarters

Shoulders muscular and well sloped. Forelegs straight, large, round in bone with elbows well set in. Pasterns strong.

Body

Ribs well sprung, chest well let down between forelegs forming a deep keel. Back and loins strong, the latter deep and slightly arched.

Hindquarters

Thighs and second thighs very muscular. Hocks well let down, bent and squarely set.

Feet

Strong and well knuckled up.

Tail

(Stern) Long, thick, tapering to a point, set high with moderate amount of hair underneath. Carried scimitar-fashion, but not curled over back or corkscrew any time. When moving carried high.

Gait/Movement

Elastic, swinging free.

Coat

Smooth, short and weatherproof.

Colour

Black and tan, liver and tan (red and tan) and red. Darker colours sometimes interspersed with lighter or badger-coloured hair and sometimes flecked with white. Small amount of white permissible on chest, feet and tip of tail.

Size

Height of adult dogs: 66 cms (26 ins); bitches: 61 cms (24 ins). Dogs usually vary from 63-69 cms (25-27 ins); bitches from 58-63 cms (23-25 ins). Mean average weight of adult dogs in fair condition 41 kgs (90 lbs); bitches: 36 kgs (80 lbs). Dogs attain the weight of 50 kgs (110 lbs); bitches: 45.5 kgs (100 lbs). Hounds of the maximum height and weight preferred, providing that quality, proportion and balance combine.

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.

*Note for prospective puppy buyers

Size – the Kennel Club Breed Standard is a guide and description of the ideal for the breed; the Size as described does not imply that a dog will match the measurements given (height or weight). A dog might be larger or smaller than the Size measurements stated in the Breed Standard.


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