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 highly undesirable, it must not be rewarded in the show ring.
Lightly built, square outline with a compact body, fairly smooth-lying coat, erect pointed ears, curled tail carried over back.
Well balanced, medium size, free from exaggeration, and capable of arduous work.
Fearless, brave and energetic.
Head and skull
Head – lean, light, rather broad between ears, wedge shaped, narrowing towards point of nose. Skull and back of head almost flat; marked but not sharp stop; muzzle medium length, tapering evenly from above and side, straight bridge, lips tightly closed. Nose black.
Not protruding, dark brown, lively with fearless expression.
Placed high, erect, height greater than base; sharply pointed, very mobile.
Jaws strong with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaws. Complete dentition.
Medium length, lean without loose skin, moderately arched.
Legs lean, straight and strong, elbows tightly placed.
Strong, short, but light, chest deep with good ribs; straight line of back, level topline, firm loins, short couplings, slightly drawn up.
Legs strong and moderately angulated, straight when viewed from behind.
Rather small, oval in shape, toes tightly closed.
Set on high, short, thick, and hair longer on underside, tightly curled and carried over back.
Without exaggeration, straight coming and going. From side; light active, with good stride.
Outer coat close, harsh, but smooth; undercoat soft and woolly. On head and front legs, short, close and smooth; longer on chest, neck and shoulders, back of legs and underside of tail.
Wheaten, black, red, (red not too dark), wolf-sable. Self-coloured but small symmetrical markings e.g. white on chest and legs, blaze on head and narrow ring on neck, black mask and ears and black tips to tail permissible.
Ideal height: dogs: 45 cms (18 ins); bitches somewhat less. Weight in proportion to size.
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.