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 information related to this breed 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.
Medium size, sturdy, muscular, with moderately fine bone. Square in outline. Head carried proudly. Upright ears, with the top third bending forwards are a breed feature. Coat of medium length, wavy and curly. Bushy tail curling high over the croup.
Herding dog, with terrier traits. Well-developed scenting ability. Excellent companion and active sporting dog.
Lively, expressive, bold, a little suspicious of strangers, but never aggressive or overly shy. Somewhat vocal and always ready for action.
Head and skull
Comparatively long, narrow head characterised by elongated muzzle. Muzzle must not be less than 40% of the total length of head: ideally 45%. When viewed from the front, the top of the skull is relatively broad and slightly domed. The long forehead is only slightly domed and flat seen from the side.
Skull and foreface in an almost straight line with a barely perceptible stop. Fairly narrow foreface, tapering towards nose and finishing bluntly. Bridge of the nose is straight. Nose black in all coat colours.
Set moderately wide apart and slightly oblique. Medium size, oval, dark brown with lively, intelligent expression. Eyelids tight fitting with dark pigment.
Set on high, upper third bending forward. Well coated, medium sized, erect, triangular and pointed. Mobile, showing alertness and sensitivity.
Jaws and teeth strong with perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth. Roof uniformly dark or variegated with deep pigmented spots on dark base. Lips tight fitting and darkly pigmented.
Medium length, slightly arched and well muscled. The skin of the throat is tight, without loose skin.
Shoulders long and well laid. Withers prominent, positioned directly above deepest point of brisket. Upper arm sloping well back to close fitting elbows, with long, lean forearm and fairly straight pasterns. Forelegs straight, long and lean, and set well under body, not too wide apart.
Lean with well-developed muscles. Top line level. Back short, straight and taut. Loin short, straight and firmly coupled. Croup short and slightly sloping. Fore chest not broad, and rather deep, reaching to the elbows. Belly tight and tucked up towards rear. Ribs only slightly rounded, tending to flat. Body length, measured from point of shoulder to point of buttock equal to height at the withers.
Hind legs strong and powerful. Moderately angulated, without exaggeration. Seen from the side they extend slightly beyond the point of buttock. Viewed from behind, they are parallel, straight and stand neither too wide nor too narrow. Muscular upper thigh. Long, dry lower thigh. Lean, well-defined, low set hocks.
Rounded cat feet with well-knit toes and well-cushioned pads. Nails strong, black or slate grey.
Set on high, upright, and curls forming a circle towards the croup. Not hanging or lying across the croup. Hair on underside of tail is long [7-12 cms (3-5 ins)], wiry, standing off with little undercoat.
Light, lively and spirited. Short-striding, energetic and balanced. Places the hindfeet into the footprints of the forefeet.
Wavy and curly. Elastic, shaggy and dense, consisting of a strong, crisp but not coarse top coat, and a soft undercoat. Length 4-7 cms (1½ - 3 ins). Never smooth, corded or matted.
Dense, wiry, slightly longer protective hairs on the ears. Eyes and foreface free from longer hair. Coat prepared by hand on the back; some scissoring on rest of body, head and legs. Coat must retain its natural appearance and not be overtrimmed.
Grey – in various shades (normally born black and fading with age).
White – must be intense and solid
Fawn – (known as fako in its country of origin). Primary colours of red, yellow, cream (a trace of black or grey and a distinct mask are desirable).
A white mark on the chest, less than 3 cm (1¼ inches) in diameter and / or white hairs on the toes are permissible. Skin, in all coat colours, should be well pigmented and black or slate grey.
Dogs: Height 43–45 cms (17–17¾ ins) with a tolerance of 2 cms (¾ in) either side; Weight: 12–13 kgs (26½–28¾ lbs) with a tolerance of 2 kgs (4½ lbs) either side.
Bitches: Height 40–42 cms (15¾–16½ ins) with a tolerance of 2 cms (¾ in) either side; Weight 10–11 kgs (22–24¼ lbs) with a tolerance of 2 kgs (4½ lbs) either side.
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.
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.