Breed Standard

Last updated September 2007

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

Well balanced, noble, upstanding sporting Spaniel built for activity and endurance.

Characteristics

Ideal for rough shooting or companion for the country dweller. Not suitable for city.

Temperament

Unusually docile, active, sensitive, independent.

Head and Skull

Conveys the impression of high breeding, character and nobility. Well chiselled, occiput well defined, lean beneath eyes. A thickness here gives coarseness to whole head. Slightly raised eyebrows. Moderate stop. Nose well developed with good open nostrils. Muzzle long and lean neither snipy nor squarely cut. In profile curving gradually from nose to throat.

Eyes

Wide open but almond-shaped with tight lids showing no haw. Grave and gentle in expression. Dark hazel in colour.

Ears

Moderately long and wide, set low and well feathered.

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, strong and muscular enabling dog to retrieve his game without undue fatigue.

Forequarters

Shoulders long and sloping and well laid back. Legs of moderate length. Straight, flat bone.

Body

Chest deep and well developed. Ribs moderately well sprung. Length of rib cage is 2two-thirds of the body length. Back and loin strong, level and muscular.

Hindquarters

Strong, muscular; stifles moderately bent. Hocks well let down.

Feet

Tight, round with strong pads and not too small.

Tail

Previously customarily docked. Docked: Docked by one third. Set on low. Never carried above level of back. Nicely feathered, with lively action. Undocked: Set low. Never carried above level of back. Nicely feathered with lively action. Reaches approximately to the hocks. Of moderate length in balance with the rest of the dog.

Gait/Movement

Long, unhurried stride with great drive from the rear. Short, stumping action undesirable.

Coat

Long, flat, glossy and silky in texture. Never curly, short or wiry. Dense and weatherproof. Abundant feathering on chest, under body and behind legs, but clean from hock to ground.

Colour

Black, black and tan, blue roan, blue roan and tan, liver, liver and tan, liver roan, liver roan and tan. In self coloured dogs, white or roan on chest is permissible. Clear black and white, liver and white, orange, red or golden unacceptable.

Size

Height: approximately 46 cms (18 ins) at the shoulders. Weight: between 18-25 kgs (40-55 lbs).

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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