Russian Toy (Imp)

Last updated Dec 2019

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.

General appearance

A small, elegant dog; lively, long legged, with fine bone and lean muscles.


Squarely built. Length of leg is slightly greater than the depth of body. Two coat types – smooth coated and long coated. Large ears carried erect, with fringing on the long haired variety.


Active, lively, neither timid nor aggressive

Head and skull

Head small compared to the body. Skull slightly rounded, not too wide. Cheeks only slightly pronounced. Clearly defined stop. Muzzle lean and pointed, slightly shorter than the skull. Lips thin, tight-fitting and dark, or matching coat colour.


Quite large, rounded, dark. Lighter eyes permitted in self-coloured dogs. Set well apart and looking straight ahead. Eye rims dark or matching coat colour.


Large, thin, set high, erect. Fringed in long haired dogs.


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


Black or self coloured.


Long, lean, slightly arched. Head carried high.


Front legs fine boned, straight and parallel. Shoulders moderate in length, only slightly sloping and forming a rather open angle with the upper arm. Shoulders and upper arms of approximately equal length. Elbows set close to body.


Topline slopes gently from low withers to slightly rounded croup. Back strong and straight with short, slightly arched loin. Chest oval and not too wide. Tucked up belly and drawn up flanks, forming a curved underline.


Moderately angulated. Seen from the rear, the hind legs are straight and parallel, but standing slightly wider than the forelegs.


Small, oval, compact, turning neither in nor out.


Previously customarily docked.

Docked: short, carried high.

Undocked: sickle tail, carried high when moving


Brisk, positive action, maintaining topline on the move.


Two types.

Smooth haired: single coated, short, close-lying, glossy. Without bald patches.

Long haired: moderately long (3-5 cms), straight or slightly wavy. Close lying, not obscuring the natural outline of the body. Hair on the head and on the front part of limbs is short and smooth. Distinct feathering on rear side of limbs. The feet have long, silky hair which completely hides the nails. Ears fringed with thick, long hair. Tail well feathered.


Black and tan, brown and tan, blue and tan, lilac and tan. Red of any shade, with or without black, brown, blue or lilac overlay. Fawn, cream. Richer shades in all colours preferred. White markings not permitted.


Height at withers: dogs and bitches: 20–28cms (8-11 ins), (tolerance +/- 1 cm)

Weight: dogs and bitches: up to 3 kgs (6½ 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.