Abdomen –The body cavity between the chest and pelvis.
Action – Movement. The way a dog walks, trots or runs.
Albino – Lacking in pigmentation, usually with pink eyes.
Angulation – The angles formed at a joint by the meeting of bones e.g. shoulder or stifle, when dog is standing erect.
Apple Head – Very domed, rounded skull.
Back – Region between withers and root of tail, but in some standards may refer to region between withers and loin.
Balance – Consistent whole; symmetrical; typically proportioned as a whole or as regards its separate parts; i.e. balance of head, balance of body, or balance of head and body.
Bandy Legs – Bowed legs.
Barrel Ribs . Rounded, well-sprung ribs.
Beefy – Overweight, over muscled.
Belly – Underpart of abdomen.
Bitchy – Feminine looking.
Bite – The relative position of the upper and lower front [incisor] teeth when the mouth is closed.
Irregular Bite – Some or all of the incisors have erupted in abnormal fashion.
Level, Even, Pincer or Vice-Like Bite – The front teeth meet exactly edge to edge.
Overshot Bite – The upper front teeth overlap and do not touch the lower front teeth when the mouth is closed. Usually a fault.
Scissor Bite – The upper front teeth closely overlapping the lower teeth and set square to the jaws.
Undershot Bite –The lower front teeth project beyond the upper front teeth when the mouth is closed.
Reverse Scissor Bite – The upper incisors close just inside the lower.
Blanket – Solid colour of coat on back and upper part of sides between neck and tail.
Blaze – White stripe running up the centre of the face .
Bloom – The sheen of a coat in prime condition.
Blown –When the coat is moulting or casting.
Bodied Up – Mature, well developed.
Body –Anatomical section between fore and hind quarters.
Body Length – In some breeds taken as the distance from point of shoulder to point of buttock, in others, taken from top of withers to set on of tail.
Bone – The thickness, quality, and strength of bone as seen in the legs, especially forelegs.
Bone Shape – Shape of bone in cross-section (foreleg). May be flat (e.g Gordon Setter), oval (e.g. Pointer) or round (e.g. Australian Cattle Dog).
Bossy in Shoulder – Over development of the shoulder muscles.
Bowed Forelegs –curved outward
Breastbone –Series of bones and cartilages which form the floor of the chest. Also known as sternum or keel.
Breed Standard –“Blueprint” of the ideal specimen in each breed approved by a governing body e.g. The Kennel Club, the FCI and the American Kennel Club. Following agreement at the 1981 World Congress of Kennel Clubs, The Kennel Club changed all its Breed Standards into a standard format to enable easy comparison.
Breed Standard (Interim) As above for a breed not granted Kennel Club Challenge Certificate status.
Brisket –Forepart of body below the chest, between the forelegs.
Bull Neck – Short, thick heavy neck.
Butterfly Nose –Parti-coloured nose;
Characteristics –Combination of type, appearance, disposition and behaviour.
Cheek –Fleshy part of the head below eyes and above mouth.
Cheeky – Cheeks prominently rounded; thick, protruding.
Chest – The forepart of the body enclosed by the ribs.
Chiselled –Clean cut, showing bone structure of face .
Chop – Jowls or pendulous flesh of the lips and jaw.
Cloddy –Thickset, comparatively heavy.
Coarse –Lacking refinement.
Coat –The hairy outer covering of the skin. Many breeds have two coats; an outer coat and an undercoat.
Curly Coat – A mass of thick tight curls, which traps air, protecting the dog against water and cold
Smooth Coat – Short smooth, close-lying hair
Stand-off Coat Long, harsh jacket with hair standing out from the body supported by shorter, soft, dense undercoat
Wire (Broken) Coat – Consists of a harsh and often wiry outer jacket with a softer dense undercoat
Cobby –Short-bodied, compact.
Collar –Marking around the neck, usually white
Compact – Closely put together; not rangy. Neat.
Condition –Health as shown by the body, coat, general appearance and deportment. Denoting overall fitness.
Conformation –The form and structure; physique.
Conical Head –Head that is circular in section and tapers uniformly from skull to nose
Conjunctiva –Thin membrane lining the inner surface of eyelids and reflected over eyeball.
Coupling –The part of the body between the last rib and the start of the hindquarter section; the loin region.
Short-Coupled/Close-Coupled –The situation when this distance is short and relatively strong.
Long-Coupled –The converse to short-coupled.
Open Couplings –Long loins and flanks insufficiently well muscled
Cow-Hocked –Hock joints turned or pointed towards each other, causing the feet to turn out.
Crest 1.- Upper, arched portion of the neck.
2. Hair starting at stop on head and tapering off down neck
Croup (Rump) – Part of the back from the front of the pelvis to root of the tail.
Cryptorchid – Male dog without testicles fully descended into the scrotum.
Daylight- The light showing underneath the body.
Dentition – The number and arrangement of teeth. The total number of teeth is forty two, made up of:-
Upper jaw – six incisors, two canines (eye teeth), eight premolars and four molars.
Lower jaw – six incisors, two canines, eight premolars and six molars.
Dewclaw – Fifth digit on the inside of pastern. Most breeds do not have rear dewclaws but some breeds require double rear dew claws
Dewlap –Loose, pendulous skin under the throat.
Dock –To shorten the tail.
Doggy –Masculine looking.
Domed –Evenly rounded in skull
Down-Face –The muzzle inclining downwards in an unbroken outward arc from the top of the skull to the tip of the nose
Down on Pastern –Weak or faulty pastern set at an exaggerated angle from the vertical.
Drive –Powerful thrusting of the hindquarters denoting sound locomotion.
Dry –The skin smooth; neither loose nor wrinkled.
Dudley –Nose Nose lacking in pigment.
Ear –Consists of three parts: the external ear, the middle ear and the inner ear. Standards refer to the outer ear (ear lobe or leather). There are three main types of ear shape:
Bat Ear –Erect ear, rather broad at the base, rounded in outline at the top, and with opening directly to the front
Button Ear –The ear flap folding forward, the tip lying close to the skull so as to cover the opening, and pointing toward the eye.
Cropping –The cutting or trimming of the ear leather to make the ears stand erect. No dog with cropped ears is eligible to take part in any Kennel Club Licensed activity in the U.K.
Flying Ears –Any characteristically drop ears or semi-prick ears that stand or “fly”.
Ectropion –Condition in which the eyelids are turned outwards.
Elbow –The joint between the upper arm and the forearm.
Elbows, out at –Turning out or away from body; not held close.
Elongated Skull –Long, slender, tapering skull.
Entire Dog –Dog with two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.
Entropion –Condition in which the eyelids are turned inwards causing irritation.
Expression –The general appearance of all features of the head as viewed from the front.
Eye –All standards include an eye clause which usually comments on shape, size and eye colour. Shape and size are due to the shape of the area exposed by the eye rims i.e. orbital aperture. (The eyeball is round.) Eye types include:-
Almond Eyes –Aperture basically of oval shape, bluntly pointed at both ends
Globular Eye –Round, slightly prominent, not bulging
Goggle Eye Protruding eye
Oval Eyes –The most common eye shape. Egg-shaped aperture
Round Eyes Eyes set in circular-shaped apertures
Triangular Eyes More angular in contours than oval eyes
Obliquely Set Eyes- Eyes where the outer corners are higher in the skull than the inner corners
Eye Colour –This is due to the presence of the pigment melanin in the iris. The more melanin the darker the eye.
China Eye –Both eyes clear blue.
Merle Eye Iris flecked with brown and blue.
Wall Eyes –One blue and one brown eye
Eyebrows –The skin and hair above
Fallaway –Slope of the croup.
Fallow –Light reddish or yellowish brown.
Feet –These are made up of four separate toes (digits). The toes are joined by a fold of skin termed the web. Feet vary in shape:-
Cat (like) Foot –Short, round, compact foot like that of a cat
Hare Foot –Foot with the two centre toes appreciably longer than the outside toes. The toes should be close together with arching.
Oval (spoon shaped) –Feet Both centre toes are slightly longer than in cat feet
Flag Feathering on tail
Flange –Projecting edge of last rib
Flank –Fleshy side of the body between the last rib and the front of thigh.
Flat Sided –Central section of the ribs insufficiently rounded.
Flecked Colour –Coat or eye lightly ticked with another colour.
Flews Pendulous upper lips – chops
Floating Rib –The last (thirteenth) rib which is attached only to the spinal column.
Flocked –Coat of cottonwool texture
Forechest –Front part of the chest
Foreface –Head in front of the eyes, nasal bone, nostrils and jaws.
Forehand Front –part of dog, including head, neck, shoulders, upper arm, legs and feet.
Foreign Expression –Expression not typical of the breed.
Foreleg Front –leg from elbow to foot.
Forequarters Front part of dog excluding head and neck.
Foxy Expression –Sharp expression; pointed foreface and upright ears as in head shape of a fox
Front –Forepart of the body as viewed head on.
Frontal Bone Skull bone above the eyes.
Furnishings –Longer hair on head, legs and tail of certain breeds.
Furrow –Slight indentation on the median line from stop to occiput.
Gait –The pattern of footsteps at various rates of speed, each pattern distinguished by a particular rhythm and footfall.
Amble –A relaxed, easy gait in which the legs on either side move in unison or in some breeds almost, but
not quite, as a pair. Often seen as the transition movement between the walk and faster gaits.
Extended Trot –Trotting gait in which the limbs reach far forward.
Flying (Suspended) Trot –A fast trotting gait in which all four feet are off the ground for a brief moment during each stride. Because of the long reach, the oncoming hind feet step beyond the imprint left by the front.
Gallop –Fastest of the dog gaits, has a four beat rhythm and often an extra period of suspension during which the body is propelled through the air with all four feet off the ground.
Hackney Action –High stepping front action with exaggerated flexion of the pasterns
Pacing- Movement where fore and hindlegs on the same side move in parallel. Some breeds typically pace at slow speeds. Many breeds pace slowly as an energy conserving measure.
Rolling Gait –Distinctive roll from side to side when moving.
Trot –A rhythmic two-beat diagonal gait in which the feet at diagonally opposite ends of the body strike the ground together; i.e. right hind with left front and left hind with right front. Correctly, the hind feet fall immediately behind the front feet.
Walk Gaiting pattern in which three legs are in support of the body at all times, each foot lifting from the ground one at a time in regular sequence.
Gay Tail –The tail carried very high or over dog’s back. Often indicates that the tail carriage is higher than approved in the breed standard. Some standards do ask for tails to be carried gaily.
Hard Expression Harsh, staring expression.
Haw –Third eyelid at the inner corner of the eye; more obvious in certain breeds (e.g. Spaniel (Clumber)).
Heart Room –Deep and capacious chest.
Height Vertical measurement from the withers to the ground; referred to usually as shoulder height. See Diagram Page 22 & Appendix Page 23 on Measuring for list of breeds which have to be measured before receiving a class award.
Hind Leg Leg from pelvis to foot.
Hindquarters Rear part of dog from loin.
Hocks well let down Hocks set low.
Hound-Marked Colouration –composed of white, black and tan, but sometimes lemon and/or blue. The ground colour, usually white, may be marked with coloured patches on the head, back, legs and tail. The extent and the exact location of such markings, however, differ in breeds and individuals.
Iris –Flat, circular, coloured membrane within the eye. The inner boundary forms pupil, which adjusts to control amount of light entering eye.
Jaws –The bones forming the framework of the mouth.
Jowls –Flesh of lips and jaws.
Knee Joint Stifle joint.
Knuckling Over –Faulty structure of carpal (wrist) joint allowing it to protrude when dog is standing.
Layback Angle of the shoulder blade, when viewed from the side.
Leather See ear.
Leggy Too long in the leg for correct balance.
Lippy Pendulous lip or lips that do not fit tightly.
Liver –Light to dark shades of brown, always with a liver nose sometimes with a purplish bloom Also known as chocolate.
Loaded Shoulders –Excess weight in shoulder area.
Loin –Region of the body on either side of vertebral column between the last ribs and hindquarters.
Low Set 1. –Tail set below level of topline.
2. Ears set below line of correct placement for the breed.
Markings Arrangement of coat colour, normally a lighter or darker colour as a contrast to the ground colour.
Mask Dark shading on the foreface .
Mismarked Incorrectly marked dog.
Monorchid –A dog which has only one testicle.
Mouth –See bite.
Movement –See gait.
Moving Close –When front or hind limbs move close to each other..
Muzzle –The head in front of the eyes; foreface.
Nape of the Neck –Top of the neck adjacent to the base of the skull.
Neck well set on –Good neckline, merging gradually with strong withers, forming a pleasing transition into topline.
Oblique Shoulders –Shoulders well laid back.
Occipital Protuberance –A prominently raised occiput characteristic of some breeds.
Occiput Upper, back point of skull.
Otter Tail –Very thick towards base, gradually tapering towards rounded tip, medium length, free from feathering, but clothed thickly all round with short, dense coat giving a rounded appearance.
Out at Elbow –Elbows loose or turning out from the body.
Out at Shoulder –Shoulders loosely attached to the body, causing them to jut out, increasing width of front.
Overreaching –Fault in the trot often caused by more angulation and drive from behind than in front, so the rear feet are forced to step to one side of the forefeet to avoid interference or clipping.
Overshot –See bite.
Paddling –The front feet during movement thrown out sideways in a loose, uncontrolled manner.
Pads –Tough, thickened skin on the underside of the feet.
Pastern –The part of the foreleg between the wrist and the foot.
Patella –The knee-cap – a small bone at lower end of femur which forms a part of the stifle-joint.
Pelvis –Girdle of bones fused together. Each half being composed of the ilium, ischium and pubis; the whole attached to the spine at the sacrum. On the lower sides are the hip-joints.
Pencilled –Type of coat lying in pencils caused by harder hair coming through softer undercoat.
Pied –Unequally proportioned patches of white and another colour.
Pigeon-Chest –Chest with a short protruding breastbone.
Pigmentation –Natural colouring of skin and other tissues.
Pin Bones –Upper bony protuberances of pelvis.
Pinning –Forefeet pointing in when moving.
Plaiting –Walking or trotting crossing the front legs.
Point of Buttock –Rearmost projection of the upper thigh at the point of the ischium. See Anatomical Diagram on Page i.
Point of Shoulder –The front of the joint where upper arm and shoulder blade meet. See Measurement Diagram on Page 22..
Pounding Gaiting – fault resultant of dog’s stride being shorter in front than in the rear; forefeet strike the ground hard before the rear stride is expended.
Profile –Side view of the whole dog or of the head.
Proud Held –high, usually head or tail.
Quality –Excellence of type and bearing giving close adherence to the Breed Standard, the indefinable attribute denoting refinement and nobility. Also, the absence of coarseness giving strength to a dog and refinement to a bitch without weakness.
Quarters –The upper portion of the hindquarters – the pelvic and thigh regions.
Racy –Giving an impression of speed, without loss of substance .
Rangy –Dog of long, thin build, often lacking maturity.
Reach –Distance covered in a forward stride.
Ribbed Up –Ribs extended well back.
Roach Back –Convex curvature of the back toward the loin.
Ruff –Dense, harsh hair around neck which frames face.
Saddle –Variation in colour over back..
Second Thigh –The part of the hind leg from stifle to hock.
Set On 1.- Placement of tail on body.
2. –Position of ears on skull.
Shelly –Weakly formed, shallow and narrow in body; lacking substance.
Short Coupled –Short distance between last rib and the beginning of the hindquarters.
Shoulder Height –Height of dog’s body as measured from withers to ground. See Diagram Page 22.
Shoulder Joint –Joint between the shoulder blade (scapula) and the upper arm (humerus).
Sickle Hocked –Inability to extend the hock joint on the backward drive of the hind leg. Exaggerated narrow angle of hock when standing.
Single Tracking –All footprints falling on a single line of travel. Many breeds single track at fast paces.
Skull –Bones of the head. Breed Standards refer to that part from stop to occiput.
Skully –Thick and coarse through skull.
Slab-Sided –Flat ribs with too little spring from spinal column.
Sloping Shoulder –The shoulder blade set obliquely or “laid back”.
Snatching Hocks –A gaiting fault indicated by a quick outward snatching of the hock as it passes the supporting leg and twists the rear pastern far in beneath the body. The action causes noticeable rocking in hindquarters.
Snipy Muzzle –Pointed, weak muzzle.
Soundness –A term particularly applied to movement. The normal state of mental and physical well being.
Spectacles –Light shadings around the eyes and dark marking from outer corner of eye to ear
moderate turn of stifle and tails –usually carried over back.
Splayfoot –Flatfooted with toes spreading.
Spring of Rib –Degree of curvature of rib cage.
Stifle –The joint of the hind leg between the thigh and second thigh equivalent to the knee.
Stilted –Characteristic gait of Chow Chow due to minimum hind angulation.
Stop –The step up from muzzle to skull; indentation between the eyes where the nasal-bone and skull meet.
Straight Shoulders –Insufficient lay back of shoulder; upright shoulder.
Straight Stifle –Lack of angulation; straight behind.
Substance Correct bone, muscularity and condition.
Swayback –Concave curvature of the back line between the withers and the hip bones.