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.
Elegant and aristocratic, smart, compact with profuse coat.
Intelligent, happy, lively little dog who has look of astonishment, peculiar to this breed.
Gay, happy, gentle and good natured.
Head and skull
Fairly large in proportion to size of dog, moderately broad skull, rounded in front, and between ears, but never domed. Nose large with open nostrils, black, except in red and whites where the colour can be appropriate to markings. Muzzle short, wide, well cushioned, i.e. upper lips rounded on each side of nostrils, jaws level.
Moderately large, dark, set far apart. Size should be in proportion to size of skull. Small amount of white shows in the inner corners, giving characteristic look of astonishment. Eyes should be forward facing, not set on side of head.
Small, set wide apart, high on head, carried slightly forward, V-shaped, well feathered.
Bite preferably level or slightly undershot; wry mouth or tongue showing highly undesirable.
Moderate length, carried proudly.
Legs straight with strong fine bone, giving slender appearance, well feathered down to the feet.
Square and compactly built, wide in chest, ‘cobby’. Length of body equal to height at withers.
Straight, viewed from behind, good turn of stifle, profusely feathered from the back of thighs.
Slender, hare footed, feathered at tips, pointing neither in nor out.
Set high on level back, profusely feathered, closely curved or plumed over back.
Stylish, straight in movement, with good reach and elevation when in motion, no plaiting, and showing no weakness in hind movement.
Profuse, long, soft, straight, of silky texture. Absolutely free from curl or wave, not too flat, having a tendency to stand out especially at frill of neck.
Black and white or red and white. Never tricolour. Red includes all shades of sable, lemon or orange. The brighter and clearer the red the better. Colour evenly distributed on cheeks and ears and as patches on body. White should be clear, not flecked.
Daintier the better, providing type, quality and soundness are not sacrificed. Ideal weight 1.8-3.2 kgs (4-7 lbs).
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.