Judges Education Seminar the Italian Greyhound Cecilia Resnick
Judges Education Seminar the Italian Greyhound Cecilia Resnick Judges Education Coordinator [email protected] Prepared by the Education Committee 2006
TYPE TO EMBODY THE DISTINCT CHARACTERISTICS OF THAT BREED Breed History Smallest of the family of gazehounds. Believed to have originated more than 2,000 years ago in the Mediterranean basin. By the Middle Ages distributed throughout Southern Europe. Due to its popularity in Italy it became known as the Italian
Greyhound. Spread through Europe arriving in England in the 17 th Century. Many artists, particularly from the Renaissance, have portrayed them in paintings. Foundation Stock (Other Breeds Used) A true greyhound in miniature. His small size is the result of selective breeding. There is a difference of opinion whether the Italian greyhound was actually bred down from the greyhound.
No evidence that other breeds were used in the creation of the Italian greyhound. The Italian greyhound was used in the creation and refinement of: Whippet Miniature Pinscher Some refer to a now extinct white toy terrier and others to the black and tan Manchester terrier. These crosses would have occurred during the latter half of the 1800s and early 1900s. This is the reason for the black and tan and brindle disqualifications.
Breed Characteristics (Purpose or Function) Difference of Opinion (likely he filled both roles) Bred for hunting small game Pet and companion A Talented Multi-Purpose Dog Conformation Obedience Agility
Lure Coursing Amateur Racing (Straight Line and Oval Track) Fly Ball Therapy Dogs An Air of Fragility Hides the Breeds Hardiness Breed Characteristics (Purpose or Function) An Air of Fragility Hides the Breeds Hardiness
Anatomy, Temperament & Gait (Features Essential to Breed Type) Basic Structure is That of a Sighthound Should appear square (withers to ground and point of forechest to buttock). Balanced, moderate angulation front and rear. The silhouette should be a series of smooth S curves. The underline of the chest through the tuck-up of the loin is the most pronounced S curve. The topline forms a gentle curve over the loin The line from the croup down the rear leg to the hock is the final S curve.
Prized for their sweet dispositions. As adults they reserve their most affectionate and playful behavior for family and friends. They are bright intelligent and active. Should never be snappy or aggressive. Will tolerate touch from a stranger, but not welcome it. Cold hands are strongly disliked and may cause a dog to pull away. Can occasionally be moody and reluctant to give ears. Anatomy, Temperament & Gait
(Features Essential to Breed Type) contd Movement A synchronous gait. Rhythmic and has a cadence. High stepping and free. Front and rear feet move forward in a straight line. Propulsion from behind. Front and rear legs move on a parallel track, converging towards a center line as speed increases. Legs and feet should never cross or interfere with each other.
Normal show ring speed is a trotting gait not necessary to run with an IG. Moving an IG too fast is often used to cover up faulty movement ask the handler to slow down. Judging the Italian Greyhound How to Examine With the dog on the table, stand a few feet away to check the outline. Then approach the IG from the front. Use hands gently but decisively, not tentatively, to feel the structure.
The IG does not need or like to be manhandled on the table. Judging the Italian Greyhound Description The Italian Greyhound is very similar to the Greyhound but much smaller and more slender in all proportions and of ideal elegance and grace. Think symmetrical. Series of smooth S curves. Underline of chest and tuck-up most pronounced S
curve. Neck fits smoothly into the shoulder. Topline has a gentle curve over the loin Line from the croup down the rear leg to the hock being the final S curve. Judging the Italian Greyhound Description Pictorial Correct Breed Type Series of smooth S curves.
Think Symmetrical Judging the Italian Greyhound Description Pictorial Correct Breed Type 2nd S Curve 3rd S Curve
1st S Curve Series of smooth S curves. Think Symmetrical Judging the Italian Greyhound Description Pictorial Incorrect Breed Type Judging the Italian Greyhound
Size Height at withers ideally 13 to 15 inches. Often we see dogs and bitches that are 15-16 inches tall. On occasion dogs and bitches that are 17 plus inches tall. Judges often have difficulty gauging the size of an IG. Seeing larger IGs as being smaller than they actually are. Seeing smaller IGs as being tiny or puppies The IG is not a small whippet. The IG is a toy breed.
It is important to note that size is NOT a DQ but a fault to be considered when judging the overall quality of a dog. Do not discount a larger dog that is the better overall specimen. Judging the Italian Greyhound Size Pictorial Judging the Italian Greyhound Head Narrow and long, tapering to nose, with a slight
suggestion of stop. Examine the stop by running your thumb between the eyes from the muzzle to the skull. Slight suggestion does not mean NO stop. Slight suggestion does not mean downfaced. Length of head should compliment the size of the IG. Head from nose to occiput should be the same length as the neck from occiput to wither. Judging the Italian Greyhound Head Pictorial
Toy Type Heads Judging the Italian Greyhound Head Pictorial Moderate Heads Judging the Italian Greyhound Head Pictorial Houndy Heads Judging the Italian Greyhound
Skull Rather long, almost flat. Think soft rounded edges. Should not appear chiseled. No flat surfaces or planes. Coarse, wide back skulls are not correct. Judging the Italian Greyhound Skull Pictorial Incorrect, Coarse Skulls
Judging the Italian Greyhound Skull Pictorial Correct Skulls Judging the Italian Greyhound Muzzle Long and fine. Sculptured under the eye. Fits smoothly onto the head. No coarseness or cheekiness. Should not appear as if stuck on as an afterthought.
Lips fit smoothly over the teeth. Lack of underjaw is a problem in the breed. Judging the Italian Greyhound Muzzles Pictorial Incorrect Judging the Italian Greyhound Muzzles Pictorial Correct
Judging the Italian Greyhound Nose Dark. It may be black or brown or in keeping with the color of the dog. A lightly or partly pigmented nose is a fault. A black , brown or blue pigmented nose, or a nose that is keeping with the coat color of the dog is acceptable. A light or partly pigmented nose is a fault. Judging the Italian Greyhound
Noses Pictorial Incorrect. Nose is not completely filled in. Correct. Dilute dogs will have dilute noses. Judging the Italian Greyhound Teeth Scissors bite. A badly undershot or overshot
mouth is a fault. The majority of IGs do not like having a hand over their face to examine teeth. A better approach is to use both hands from underneath to push the lips up next to the canines to examine the bite. Do not try to lift the upper lip by pushing up under the nose. It is painful for the dog. Overshot, small crowded, crooked teeth, often with poor or rough enamel are breed problems. Dentition problems detract from a dogs viability as a good companion.
Judging the Italian Greyhound Eyes Dark, bright, intelligent, medium in size. Very light eyes are a fault. Expression is important. Pretty expression appears doe-like. Eyes should be bright and alert, but soft and medium in size. Deer in the headlights look is incorrect. Small eyes give a hard mean expression. Light eyes of pale brown, blue or gray tones cause a staring,
hollow-eyed look, detracting from breed type due to harsh expression. The golden fawn IG will have golden to medium brown eyes. This is acceptable as long as the eye color is not lighter than the coat color. Judging the Italian Greyhound Eyes Pictorial Incorrect. Blue eyes.
Incorrect. One blue eye, One light brown eye. Correct. Dark eyes. Correct. Coat color eyes. Judging the Italian Greyhound Ears Small, fine in texture; thrown back and folded except when alerted, then carried folded at right angles to the
head. Erect or button ears severely penalized. Examine the ear leather by running the ears through your thumb and fingers to feel the texture. Feel for glue or scarring on the ears. Should feel like a fine glove leather. Heavy ear leather will not fold properly. Erect and button ears still occur in the breed. Alert the ears by using sound. Do NOT drop keys or other objects that will cause the dog to lower its head and the ears to open up and you might
frighten the dog. Judging the Italian Greyhound Ears Pictorial Large, low set ears. Erect ears. Correct ears
Button ears. Judging the Italian Greyhound Neck Long, slender and gracefully arched. Should fit smoothly into the shoulder. Short, thick necks or ewe-necks lack elegance and are undesirable. When the IG is moving the neck is carried more upright than a whippet or greyhound.
Judging the Italian Greyhound Necks Pictorial Short, ewe neck. Correct neck. Judging the Italian Greyhound Body Of medium length, short coupled; high at withers, back curved and drooping at hindquarters, the highest point of curve at start of loin,
creating a definite tuck-up at flanks. The eye should be drawn to the withers as a measuring point for height and as a measuring point for proper topline. Highest point of the topline curve (at start of the loin) should be only slightly lower than the withers. Hip bones should be significantly lower than the withers. Think curves, not straight lines, flat surfaces or sharp angles. Camel humps, wheel backs or extreme drop-offs are exaggerations and are not proper toplines.
Never make final judgment of the topline while the dog is on the table. Topline should be judged when the dog is moving and free stacking on the ground. Judging the Italian Greyhound Body Pictorial Incorrect. Dog looks like he is leaning down
hill. Incorrect. Dog is high in the rear. Correct. Judging the Italian Greyhound Shoulder Long and sloping.
Shoulder layback should be moderate. Angle of shoulder and upper-arm must match rear angulation. Difference between the Italian greyhound shoulder and greyhound shoulder is that the greyhound standard calls for a shoulder placed as obliquely as possible. Italian greyhound shoulder layback and placement is responsible for its unique gait. Judging the Italian Greyhound
Shoulders Pictorial Straight shoulders. Good moderate shoulder angulation. Judging the Italian Greyhound Chest Deep and narrow.
Viewed from the front the chest is oval. Narrow, but not so narrow that it appears both legs are coming out of the same socket. Chest should be well muscled. Not wide or barrel-chested. From the side, point of forechest should be seen and felt between the shoulder points. The rib cage is long and carried well back in the body.
Lowest point of brisket should be as close as possible to the elbow. Judging the Italian Greyhound Chest Pictorial Incorrect. Too wide. Incorrect. Too narrow.
Correct. Judging the Italian Greyhound Forelegs Long, straight, set well under shoulder; strong pasterns, fine bone. Elegance is the key. Think Fine Bone. Bone should be correct for size of the dog.
Round heavy bone is a problem in the breed. Legs should exhibit oval bone. Strong pasterns that must be flexible. Does not mean rigid and completely upright and knuckling over. Flexible pasterns are a must. Judging the Italian Greyhound Forelegs Pictorial
Incorrect. Poorly healed leg fracture. Incorrect. East-West Front Correct front and forelegs. Judging the Italian Greyhound Hindquarters
Long, well-muscled thigh; hind legs parallel when viewed from behind, hocks well let down, well-bent stifle. Rear angulation must match front. Thigh muscles should be well-defined, but not bulging (Am Staff muscling is incorrect). Coursing and racing dogs will have very developed muscles. A weak rear can be easily hidden on the table. Check for weak rear when the handler is baiting the dog
free stacked on the line, or when the dog has been moving and comes to a stop. Judging the Italian Greyhound Hindquarters Pictorial Incorrect. Rear angulation too straight. Correct.
Good rear angulation with well let down hocks. Judging the Italian Greyhound Tail Slender and tapering to a curved end, long enough to reach the hock; set low, carried low. Ring tail a serious fault, gay tail a fault. Examine by holding the tail down along the rear leg to see if it reaches the hock. Do not fault a bump due to a break, this is almost universal.
Tails set too high and/or carried too high destroy type. Many puppies under a year old, will move with a high or happy tail. Look to see where tail is set on. Ring tails which form a loop over the back, should never be forgiven. Judging the Italian Greyhound Tails Pictorial
Incorrect. Ring tail, a serious fault. Incorrect. Gay tail, a fault. Correct tail carriage and placement.
Judging the Italian Greyhound Feet Feet Harefoot with well-arched toes. Removal of dewclaws optional. Does not mean a tight cat foot. Typically the two middle toes will be longer than the outside toes. Judging the Italian Greyhound Feet Pictorial
Incorrect. Flat feet. Incorrect. Cat feet. Correct. Hare feet. Judging the Italian Greyhound
Coat and Color Coat Skin fine and supple, hair short, glossy like satin and soft to the touch. Color Any color and markings are acceptable except that a dog with brindle markings and a dog with tan markings normally found on black and tan dogs of other breeds must be disqualified. There is NO preferred color and no undesirable color other than the disqualifying ones.
Judging the Italian Greyhound Coat and Color The Disqualifying Colors Judging the Italian Greyhound Coat and Color Pictorial A dog with CDA. Judging the Italian Greyhound Action
Action High stepping and free, front and hind legs to move forward in a straight line. Proper ring gait is a trot. Do not confuse fast movement with good movement. Not hackney like a min pin, nor a goose step or terrier-like movement. Proper gait is essential to type. Judging the Italian Greyhound Action
Lacks lift. Downhill appearance on move. Correct movement. Not enough lift or drive. Correct movement. Judging the Italian Greyhound Areas of Concern not in any order
Topline flattens too much during movement or low in the withers. Size 13 15 inches is ideal. Tail ring tails or tails set too high/carried too high. Ears heavy leather and erect ears. Eyes very light eyes are a fault. Movement loss of characteristic high stepping gait. Front may have lift, but many lack reach. Goose stepping and hackney gaits are wrong. Feet harefoot with well arched toes, not cat feet. Head slight suggestion of a stop, does not mean no stop or downfaced. Teeth overshot, lack of underjaw, small, crowded, crooked teeth or no enamel on teeth.
Slip stifles. Judging the Italian Greyhound Acknowledgements The following individuals are gratefully acknowledged for their contributions to this project, without them this effort would not have been possible: Lilian Barber, Breeder/Judge, Author, the Italian Greyhound 21 st Century and Judging the Italian Greyhound, by Lilian S. Barber Kim Brinker, Breeder/Judge Stacy Mason, Breeder/Judge William Monohon, Past President IGCA
And all who contributed photographs for this effort.
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