German Spitz Breed Magazine - Showsight

S PITZ G ERMAN

Let’s Talk Breed Education!

FEDERATION CYNOLOGIQUE INTERNATIONALE (AISBL) SECRETARIAT GENERAL: 13, Place Albert 1 er B – 6530 Thuin (Belgique) ______________________________________________________________________________

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12.11.2019/ EN

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FCI-Standard N° 97

DEUTSCHE SPITZE (German Spitz)

1. WOLFSSPITZ/KEESHOND

2. GIANT SPITZ – MEDIUM SIZE SPITZ – MINIATURE SPITZ

3. TOY SPITZ/POMERANIAN

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TRANSLATION : C. Seidler / Gabriele Dulling / Official language (DE).

ORIGIN : Germany

DATE OF PUBLICATION OF THE OFFICIAL VALID STANDARD : 04/09/2019.

UTILIZATION : Watch and Companion dog.

FCI-CLASSIFICATION : Group 5 Spitz and primitive types. Section 4 European Spitz. Without working trial.

1. GERMAN WOLFSSPITZ / KEESHOND

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BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY : German Spitz dogs are descendants of the stoneage «Peat Dogs» (Torfhunde) « Canis familiaris palustris Rütimeyer» and the later Lake Dwelling Spitz (Pfahlbauspitz); it is the oldest breed of dog in Central Europe. Numerous other breeds have been developed from them. In non- German speaking countries Wolfsspitz dogs are known as Keeshonds. GENERAL APPEARANCE : Spitz breeds are captivating on account of their beautiful coats, made to stand off by plentiful undercoat. Particularly impressive are the strong, mane-like collar round the neck (ruff) and the bushy tail carried boldly over the back. The foxy head with alert eyes and the small pointed, closely set ears give the Spitz its unique characteristic, cheeky appearance. IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS : The ratio of height at withers to body length is 1 : 1. The ratio length of the muzzle to length of the skull is approximately 2 : 3. German Wolfsspitz/Keeshond is always attentive, lively and extraordinarily attached to its owner. It is very teachable and easy to train. Its natural distrust of strangers and lack of hunting instinct make it the ideal companion and family dog and watch dog for home and farm. It is neither timid nor aggressive. Indifference to weather, robustness and longevity are its most outstanding attributes. BEHAVIOUR AND CHARACTER : The

HEAD :

CRANIAL REGION : The Spitz’s medium-sized head, seen from above, appears broadest at the back and tapers wedge-shaped to the tip of the nose. Stop: Moderate to marked, never abrupt. FACIAL REGION : Nose: The nose is round, small and pure black. Muzzle: The muzzle is not overlong and stands in pleasing proportion to the skull (approximately 2:3).

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Lips: The lips are not exaggerated, close fitting to the jaws and do not form any folds to the corner of the mouth. They are completely black. Jaws/Teeth: The jaws are normally developed and show a complete scissor bite with 42 teeth, corresponding to the dental formula of the dog, i. e. the upper incisors closely overlapping the lower ones and set square to the jaws. Strong canines fitting exactly into each other. Pincer bite is permissible. Cheeks: The cheeks are gently rounded, not protruding.

EYES : The eyes are of medium size, almond-shaped, slightly slanting and dark. The eyelids are black.

EARS : The small ears are set high and relatively close to each other, triangular pointed; they are always carried upright, stiff at the tips.

NECK : The medium length neck is set broadly on the shoulders, slightly arched without dewlap and covered by a thick, profuse coat, forming a large ruff. BODY : Topline: Merges in a gentle curve with the short, straight back. The bushy, sweeping tail, which partially covers the back, rounds off the silhouette.

Withers: The high withers drops imperceptibly. Back: As short as possible, straight, firm. Loin: Short, broad and strong. Croup: The croup is broad and short, not falling away.

Chest: The deep chest is well sprung, the forechest well developed. Underline and belly: The chest reaches back as far as possible; the belly has only a slight tuck up. TAIL : The tail is set on high and of medium length. It reaches upwards and rolls forward over the back, straight from the root. It lies firmly over the back and is covered with very bushy hair. A double curl at tip of tail is tolerated.

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LIMBS

FOREQUARTERS : General appearance: Straight, rather broad front with well-developed bone strength. Shoulder: The shoulder is well muscled and firmly connected to the chest. The shoulder blade is long and well laid back. Upper arm: The upper arm, which is approximately the same length as the shoulder blade, forms an angle of 90 degrees to the shoulder blade. Elbow: The elbow joint is strong, close fitting to the chest and turns neither in nor out. Forearm: The forearm is of medium length in relation to the body, sturdy and completely straight. The back of the forearm is well feathered. Metacarpus (Pastern): The strong, medium length front pastern stands at an angle of 20 degrees from the vertical. Forefeet: The forefeet are as small as possible, round and closed, with well arched and tight nails, so called cat feet. The colour of nails and pads is as dark as possible. HINDQUARTERS: General appearance: The hindquarters are very muscular and abundantly feathered to the hocks. The hind legs stand straight and parallel. Thigh and lower leg: Thigh and lower leg are of about equal length. Stifle (knee): The stifle joint is strong with only moderate angulation and is turned neither in nor out in movement. Hock/hock joint: The hock is of medium length, very strong and vertical to the ground. Hindfeet: The hindfeet are as small as possible, round and closed, with well arched and tight nails, so called cat feet. The pads are coarse. The colour of nails and pads is as dark as possible.

GAIT/MOVEMENT : The German Wolfsspitz/Keeshond moves straight ahead with good drive, fluidly and springy.

SKIN : The skin covers the body tightly without any wrinkles.

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COAT : Hair: German Wolfsspitz/Keeshond has a double coat: Long, straight and firm standing off top coat and short, thick, cotton-wool- like undercoat. Head, ears, front side of front and hind legs and the paws are covered by short, thick (velvety) hair. The rest of the body has a long, rich, hairy coat. Not wavy, curly or shaggy, not parted along the back. Neck and shoulders are covered by a thick mane. The backside of the front legs is well feathered, the hind legs have ample feathering from croup to hocks. The tail is bushy. Hair must not look like being modelled. Colour: Wolfsspitz/Keeshond: Grey-shaded. Grey-shaded is a silver-grey with black hair-tips. Muzzle and ears are dark in colour, round the eyes well defined <spectacles> shown as a delicately pencilled black line slanting from outer corner of eye to lower corner of ear, coupled with distinct markings and shading forming short but expressive eyebrows; mane and ring on shoulder lighter; fore- and hind legs silver-grey without any black markings under the elbows or stifles, except slight pencilling on the toes; black tip of tail; underside of tail and trousers pale silver-grey.

SIZE AND WEIGHT : Height at the withers: Wolfsspitz/Keeshond : 49 ± 6 cm .

The Wolfsspitz dog/Keeshond should have a weight corresponding to its size.

FAULTS : 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.

SEVERE FAULTS : •

Faults in construction.

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• • • • • • • •

Head too flat.

Distinct apple head.

Flesh-coloured nose, eyelids and lips. Dentition faults, missing teeth.

Too large and too bright eyes.

Protruding eyes.

Missing of distinct markings of the face.

Faults in movement.

DISQUALIFYING FAULTS : •

Aggressive or overly shy dogs.

• Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities. • Gap in fontanel. • Overbite, underbite, crossbite. • Ectropion or entropion. • Ears not fully erected. • Definite white markings or spots.

N.B : •

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum. • Only functionally and clinically healthy dogs, with breed typical conformation should be used for breeding.

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2. GERMAN GIANT SPITZ

GERMAN MEDIUM SIZE SPITZ

GERMAN MINIATURE SPITZ

BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY : German Spitz dogs are descendants of the stoneage «Peat Dogs» (Torfhunde) « Canis familiaris palustris Rütimeyer» and the later Lake Dwelling Spitz (Pfahlbauspitz); it is the oldest breed of dog in Central Europe. Numerous other breeds have been developed from them. GENERAL APPEARANCE : Spitz breeds are captivating on account of their beautiful coats, made to stand off by plentiful undercoat. Particularly impressive are the strong, mane-like collar round the neck (ruff) and the bushy tail carried boldly over the back.

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The foxy head with alert eyes and the small pointed, closely set ears give the Spitz its unique characteristic, cheeky appearance.

IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS : The ratio of height at withers to body length is 1: 1. The ratio length of the muzzle to length of the skull of Giant Spitz, Medium Size Spitz and Miniature Spitz is approximately 2 : 3. BEHAVIOUR AND CHARACTER : The German Spitz is always attentive, lively and extraordinarily attached to its owner. It is very teachable and easy to train. Its natural distrust of strangers and lack of hunting instinct make it the ideal companion and family dog and watch dog for home and farm. It is neither timid nor aggressive. Indifference to weather, robustness and longevity are its most outstanding attributes.

HEAD :

CRANIAL REGION : The Spitz’s medium -sized head, seen from above, appears broadest at the back and tapers wedge-shaped to the tip of the nose. Stop : Moderate to marked, never abrupt. FACIAL REGION : Nose: The nose is round, small and pure black. The nose of brown Spitz dogs is dark brown. Muzzle: The muzzle is not overlong and stands in pleasing proportion to the skull (approximately 2:3). Lips: The lips are not exaggerated, close fitting to the jaws and do not form any folds to the corner of the mouth. They are completely black. The lips of brown Spitz dogs are brown. Jaws/Teeth: The jaws are normally developed and show a complete scissor bite with 42 teeth, corresponding to the dental formula of the dog, i. e. the upper incisors closely overlapping the lower ones and set square to the jaws. Strong canines fitting exactly into each other. The lack of a few premolars shall be tolerated in Medium Size Spitz and Miniature Spitz. Pincer bite is permissible.

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Cheeks: The cheeks are gently rounded, not protruding.

EYES : The eyes are of medium size, almond-shaped, slightly slanting and dark. The eyelids are black. Brown Spitz dogs have dark brown eyelids.

EARS : The small ears are set high and relatively close to each other, triangular pointed; they are always carried upright, stiff at the tips.

NECK : The medium length neck is set broadly on the shoulders, slightly arched without dewlap and covered by a thick, profuse coat, forming a large ruff. BODY : Topline: Merges in a gentle curve with the short, straight back. The bushy, sweeping tail, which partially covers the back, rounds off the silhouette.

Withers: The high withers drops imperceptibly. Back: As short as possible, straight, firm. Loin: Short, broad and strong. Croup: The croup is broad and short, not falling away.

Chest: The deep chest is well sprung, the forechest well developed. Underline and belly: The chest reaches back as far as possible; the belly has only a slight tuck up. TAIL : The tail is set on high and of medium length. It reaches upwards and rolls forward over the back, straight from the root. It lies firmly over the back and is covered with very bushy hair. A double curl at tip of tail is tolerated.

LIMBS

FOREQUARTERS : General appearance: Straight, rather broad front with well-developed bone strength. Shoulder: The shoulder is well muscled and firmly connected to the chest. The shoulder blade is long and well laid back.

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Upper arm: The upper arm, which is approximately the same length as the shoulder blade, forms an angle of 90 degrees to the shoulder blade. Elbow: The elbow joint is strong, close fitting to the chest and turns neither in nor out. Forearm: The forearm is of medium length in relation to the body, sturdy and completely straight. The back of the forearm is well feathered. Metacarpus (Pastern): The strong, medium length front pastern stands at an angle of 20 degrees from the vertical. Forefeet: The forefeet are as small as possible, round and closed, with well arched and tight nails, so called cat feet. The colour of nails and pads is as dark as possible. HINDQUARTERS : General appearance: The hindquarters are very muscular and abundantly feathered to the hocks. The hind legs stand straight and parallel. Thigh and lower leg: Thigh and lower leg are of about equal length. Stifle (knee): The stifle joint is strong with only moderate angulation and is turned neither in nor out in movement. Hock/hock joint: The hock is of medium length, very strong and vertical to the ground. Hindfeet: The hindfeet are as small as possible, round and closed, with well arched and tight nails, so called cat feet. The pads are coarse. The colour of nails and pads is as dark as possible.

GAIT/MOVEMENT : German Spitz dogs move straight ahead with good drive, fluidly and springy.

SKIN : The skin covers the body tightly without any wrinkles.

COAT : Hair: German Giant Spitz, Medium Size Spitz and Miniature Spitz dogs have a double coat: Long, straight and firm standing off top coat and short, thick, cotton-wool-like undercoat.

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Head, ears, front side of front and hind legs and the paws are covered by short, thick (velvety) hair. The rest of the body has a long, rich, hairy coat. Not wavy, curly or shaggy, not parted along the back. Neck and shoulders are covered by a thick mane. The backside of the front legs is well feathered, the hind legs have ample feathering from croup to hocks. The tail is bushy. Hair must not look like being modelled. Colours: German Giant Spitz: White, black, brown. In black and brown Spitz dogs, white spots on the chest, the paws and the tip of the tail are permissible.

German Medium Spitz: White, black, brown, orange, grey-shaded, other colours.

German Miniature Spitz: White, black, brown, orange, grey-shaded, other colours.

White Spitz: The coat should be pure white. Little trace of yellow, which often occurs, especially on the ears, is tolerated.

Black Spitz: Black Spitz dogs must have a black undercoat and a black skin. The colour on top must be a shining black without any white or other markings.

Brown Spitz: The brown Spitz should be uniformly dark brown.

Orange Spitz: The orange Spitz should be evenly coloured in the medium colour range. Lightening up of the orange colour on the chest, the tail and the trousers is permitted.

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Grey-shaded Spitz: Grey-shaded is a silver-grey with black hair-tips. Muzzle and ears are dark in colour, round the eyes well defined <spectacles> shown as a delicately pencilled black line slanting from outer corner of eye to lower corner of ear, coupled with distinct markings and shading forming short but expressive eyebrows; mane and ring on shoulder lighter; fore- and hind legs silver-grey without any black markings under the elbows or stifles, except slight pencilling on the toes; black tip of tail; underside of tail and trousers pale silver-grey. Other coloured Spitz: The term <other colours> applies to the following colours: cream, cream-sable, orange-sable, black and tan and particolour. Particoloured dogs must have white always as basic colour. The patches must be uniformly in one colour either black or brown or grey-shaded or orange or orange-sable or cream or cream-sable. They should preferably be distributed over the whole body.

SIZE AND WEIGHT : Height at the withers:

German Giant Spitz: 45 cm ± 5 cm.

German Medium Size Spitz: 35 cm ± 5 cm.

German Miniature Spitz: 27 cm ± 3 cm.

Each variety of the German Spitz should have a weight corresponding to its size.

FAULTS : 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.

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SEVERE FAULTS : •

Faults in construction.

• • • • • •

Head too flat.

Distinct apple head.

Flesh-coloured nose, eyelids and lips. Dentition faults, missing incisors.

Too large and too bright eyes.

Protruding eyes.

• In grey-shaded Medium Size Spitz and Miniature Spitz missing of distinct markings of the face. • Faults in movement.

DISQUALIFYING FAULTS : •

Aggressive or overly shy dogs.

• Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities. • Gap in fontanel. • Overbite, underbite, crossbite. • Ectropion or entropion. • Ears not fully erected. • Definite white markings or spots in all non-white Spitz dogs. Giant Spitz dogs are excepted. • Any colour not mentioned in section “Colours”.

N.B. : •

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum. • Only functionally and clinically healthy dogs, with breed typical conformation should be used for breeding.

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3. GERMAN TOY SPITZ / POMERANIAN

BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY : German Spitz dogs are descendants of the stoneage «Peat Dogs» (Torfhunde) « Canis familiaris palustris Rütimeyer» and the later Lake Dwelling Spitz (Pfahlbauspitz); it is the oldest breed of dog in Central Europe. Numerous other breeds have been developed from them. In non- German speaking countries Toy Spitz dogs (Zwergspitze ) are known as Pomeranians. GENERAL APPEARANCE : Spitz breeds are captivating on account of their beautiful coats, made to stand off by plentiful undercoat. Particularly impressive are the strong, mane-like collar round the neck (ruff) and the bushy tail carried boldly over the back.

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The foxy head with alert eyes and the small pointed, closely set ears give the Spitz its unique characteristic, cheeky appearance.

IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS : The ratio of height at withers to body length is 1:1. The ratio length of the muzzle to length of the skull of Toy Spitz/Pomeranian is approximately 2:4.

BEHAVIOUR AND CHARACTER : German Toy Spitz/Pomeranian is always attentive, lively and extraordinarily attached to its owner. It is very teachable and easy to train . Its companionable and cheerful character makes it the ideal companion and family dog and watch dog for house and apartment. It is neither timid nor aggressive. Indifference to weather, robustness and longevity are its most outstanding attributes. The

HEAD :

CRANIAL REGION : The Spitz’s medium-sized head, seen from above, appears broadest at the back and tapers wedge-shaped to the tip of the nose. Stop : Moderate to marked, never abrupt. FACIAL REGION : Nose: The nose is round, small and pure black. The nose of brown Spitz dogs is dark brown. Muzzle: The muzzle is not overlong and stands in pleasing proportion to the skull (approximately 2 : 4). Lips: The lips are not exaggerated, close fitting to the jaws and do not form any folds to the corner of the mouth. They are completely black. The lips of brown Spitz dogs are brown. Jaws/Teeth: The jaws are normally developed and show a complete scissor bite with 42 teeth, corresponding to the dental formula of the dog, i. e. the upper incisors closely overlapping the lower ones and set square to the jaws. Strong canines fitting exactly into each other. The lack of a few premolars shall be tolerated in Toy Spitz/Pomeranian. Pincer bite is permissible. Cheeks: The cheeks are gently rounded, not protruding.

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EYES : The eyes are of medium size, almond-shaped, slightly slanting and dark. The eyelids are black. Brown Spitz dogs have dark brown eyelids.

EARS : The small ears are set high and relatively close to each other, triangular pointed; they are always carried upright, stiff at the tips.

NECK : The medium length neck is set broadly on the shoulders, slightly arched without dewlap and covered by a thick, profuse coat, forming a large ruff. BODY : Topline: Merges in a gentle curve with the short, straight back. The bushy, sweeping tail, which partially covers the back, rounds off the silhouette.

Withers: The high withers drops imperceptibly. Back: As short as possible, straight, firm. Loin: Short, broad and strong. Croup: The croup is broad and short, not falling away.

Chest: The deep chest is well sprung, the forechest well developed. Underline and belly: The chest reaches back as far as possible; the belly has only a slight tuck up. TAIL : The tail is set on high and of medium length. It reaches upwards and rolls forward over the back, straight from the root. It lies firmly over the back and is covered with very bushy hair. A double curl at tip of tail is tolerated.

LIMBS

FOREQUARTERS : General appearance: Straight, rather broad front with well-developed bone strength. Shoulder: The shoulder is well muscled and firmly connected to the chest. The shoulder blade is long and well laid back. Upper arm: The upper arm, which is approximately the same length as the shoulder blade, forms an angle of 90 degrees to the shoulder blade.

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Elbow: The elbow joint is strong, close fitting to the chest and turns neither in nor out. Forearm: The forearm is of medium length in relation to the body, sturdy and completely straight. The back of the forearm is well feathered. Metacarpus (Pastern): The strong, medium length front pastern stands at an angle of 20 degrees from the vertical. Forefeet: The forefeet are as small as possible, round and closed, with well arched and tight nails, so called cat feet. The colour of nails and pads is as dark as possible. HINDQUARTERS : General appearance: The hindquarters are very muscular and abundantly feathered to the hocks. The hind legs stand straight and parallel. Thigh and lower leg: Thigh and lower leg are of about equal length. Stifle (knee): The stifle joint is strong with only moderate angulation and is turned neither in nor out in movement. Hock/hock joint: The hock is of medium length, very strong and vertical to the ground. Hindfeet: The hindfeet are as small as possible, round and closed, with well arched and tight nails, so called cat feet. The pads are coarse. The colour of nails and pads is as dark as possible.

GAIT/MOVEMENT : German Toy Spitz dogs / Pomeranians move straight ahead with good drive, fluidly and springy.

SKIN : The skin covers the body tightly without any wrinkles.

COAT : Hair: German Toy Spitz dogs / Pomeranians have a double coat: Long, straight and firm standing off top coat and short, thick, cotton- wool-like undercoat. Head, ears, front side of front and hind legs and the paws are covered by short, thick (velvety) hair. The rest of the body has a long, rich, hairy coat. Not wavy, curly or shaggy, not parted along the back. Neck and shoulders are covered by a thick mane.

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The backside of the front legs is well feathered, the hind legs have ample feathering from croup to hocks. The tail is bushy. Hair must not look like being modelled.

Colour : German Toy Spitz/Pomeranian: White, black, brown, orange, grey-shaded, other colours.

White Spitz: The coat should be pure white. Little trace of yellow, which often occurs, especially on the ears, is tolerated.

Black Spitz: Black Spitz dogs must have a black undercoat and a black skin. The colour on top must be a shining black without any white or other markings.

Brown Spitz: The brown Spitz should be uniformly dark brown.

Orange Spitz: The orange Spitz should be evenly coloured in the medium colour range. Lightening up of the orange colour on the chest, the tail and the trousers is permitted. Grey-shaded Spitz : Grey-shaded is a silver-grey with black hair-tips. Muzzle and ears are dark in colour, round the eyes well defined <spectacles> shown as a delicately pencilled black line slanting from outer corner of eye to lower corner of ear, coupled with distinct markings and shading forming short but expressive eyebrows; mane and ring on shoulder lighter; fore- and hind legs silver-grey without any black markings under the elbows or stifles, except slight pencilling on the toes; black tip of tail; underside of tail and trousers pale silver-grey. Other coloured Spitz: The term <other colours> applies to the following colours: cream, cream-sable, orange-sable, black and tan and particolour. Particoloured dogs must have white always as basic colour. The patches must be uniformly in one colour either black or brown or grey-shaded or orange or orange-sable or cream or cream-sable. They should preferably be distributed over the whole body.

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SIZE AND WEIGHT : Height at the withers: German Toy Spitz/Pomeranian: 21 cm ± 3 cm.

The German Toy Spitz/Pomeranian should have a weight corresponding to its size .

FAULTS : 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.

SEVERE FAULTS : •

Faults in construction.

• • • • • •

Head too flat.

Distinct apple head.

Flesh-coloured nose, eyelids and lips. Dentition faults, missing incisors.

Too large and too bright eyes.

Protruding eyes.

• In grey-shaded German Toy Spitz dog/Pomeranian missing of distinct markings of the face. • Faults in movement.

DISQUALIFYING FAULTS : •

Aggressive or overly shy dogs.

• Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities. • Gap in fontanel. • Overbite, underbite, crossbite. • Ectropion or entropion. • Ears not fully erected. • Definite white markings or spots in all non-white Toy Spitz dogs/Pomeranians. • Any colour not mentioned in section “Colours”.

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N.B : •

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum. • Only functionally and clinically healthy dogs, with breed typical conformation should be used for breeding.

(The latest amendments are in bold characters.)

FCI-St. N° 97/ 12.11.2019

The German Spitz in the U.S.

HISTORY OF THE GERMAN SPITZ FROM EARLY TIMES TO THE MIDDLE AGES

BY PATREA PABST

T he Spitz is the oldest breed of dog in Central Europe and served as the progenitor of many European breeds. Well-preserved specimens of Stone Age “Peat Dogs,” known as the “Torfhund” ( Canis familiaris palustris Rüthimeyer) and dating back 6,000 years, have been found in the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, England, and Ireland, and closely resemble modern European Spitz dogs. The term “Spitz” is derived from the Old Dutch language and literally translates as “pointed peaks,” referring explicitly to the image of snowcapped mountain peaks that span the northern European and sub-Arctic regions. The pointed ears and wedge- shaped muzzle of the Spitz looked like snow-swept peaks. Even now, the Germans refer to them as “tips” or “peaks.” During the Viking era, circa 800-1100 AD, Norsemen from Denmark, Sweden, and Norway built superior ships and engraved their mark in history as explorers and warriors. Vikings are famous for their conquests of coastal and river towns throughout Europe (raiding, rampaging, pillaging, and worse), but they also estab- lished colonies, engaged in trade, and fortified the military and naval strength of their regions. They brought the basic elements of their culture with them, most significantly, introducing a small furry dog with a curly tail and foxy face to the heart of continental Europe. There is a tale from around one thousand years ago of a Viking ship that foundered off the coast of Friesland. The crew perished except for one man saved by a local fisherman in his cog (the style of fishing boat) with his dog. The two men and the little white dog were caught in the storm and forced southward until they eventually managed to land on a small area of higher ground. On that site, they built a small chapel to give thanks for their deliverance. This is the place where Amsterdam slowly grew to become an important town. The Great Seal of Amsterdam illus- trates this event, depicting a white Keeshond (Dutch for Spitz dog) standing guard at the railing of a boat, on watch. In 1790, an

Stamp of the City of Amsterdam. The white Keeshond also appears on this reading board.

unknown writer in the Netherlands wrote the first book showing the large white German Spitz (aka “Keeshond”): Cases of a Kees- hond in the Netherlands . The German Spitz was primarily a watchdog, selected for its territorial behavior and lack of hunting drive; therefore, he did not leave the territory assigned to him and, if necessary, defended it. This lack of hunting behavior of the German Spitz played an important role, especially in the Middle Ages. At that time, the nobles attached particular importance to preserving their game. The hunting-capable dogs of the farmers were usually destroyed. In many cases, the feudal lords decided to give the peasants a Ger- man Spitz because they did not hunt game animals such as deer. A good watchdog must be willing to submit to his master, of course, but in the absence of his master, he must make independent decisions in his own interest. As a result, the Spitz is very affec- tionate, but they are also self-confident and sometimes obstinate. Intruders are immediately reported loudly and are usually guarded until the dog owner decides how to proceed. (From Economic Ency- clopedia , JG Krünitz, published 1773-1858.) In earlier times, major concerns on the farms included rodents, weasels, and stray dogs and cats, which had to be driven off or killed. So, the German Spitz was useful for its excellence in vermin control.

276 | SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE, OCTOBER 2022

THE GERMAN SPITZ IN THE US

• In 1959, the sizes were further divided into four different sizes: Zwergspitz (Pomeranian), Klein spitz (toy), Mittel spitz (miniature), and Gross spitz (large or giant). • In 1969, the size variant of the Mittel spitz was added to the Breed Standard. • In 1974, the Zwergspitz/Pomeranian was included in the FCI Breed Standard, with the same colors as the Mittel spitz, but it continued to be separately recognized by the AKC. The “different color” was recognized in 1990. While the color of the small Spitz (klein, mittel) had no special meaning, the large Spitz (Gross spitz) had different areas of distri- bution and characteristics, depending on the color. This was not because certain properties are genetically linked to the color, but because of the different uses of the dogs. The white Gross spitz was mainly found in northern and central Germany. He was a typical guardian of the farm and was very heavily used for herding sheep (pommerscher Hütespitz). The white color is of particular impor- tance to a herding dog because it is so easy to distinguish it from the wolf over long distances and in the dark. The black Gross spitz were especially widespread in the southern German wine-growing regions. During the day, they guarded the yard, and at night, they were sent to the vineyards. This is why the black Gross spitz was once often referred to as vineyard or vine spitz. The most impor- tant robbers in vineyards, however, include wild boar. Especially in vineyards, the Gross spitz can quickly scurry through and between the vines. The size and the thick black coat provided protection from the dangerous tusks of wild boars. The black Gross spitz is probably the most dashing because of his work in the vineyards. As he was especially bred around Mannheim, Germany, he was also called “Mannheimer Spitz.” The brown Gross spitz was also com- mon in southern Germany. He was considered extinct for a long time. In 2011, the first brown Gross spitz was bred by backcrossing from the black Spitz. White, black, and brown are now bred and shown, although white is most common.

Photos shown are from old postcards and a picture book, and a photo of a working dog (lower right).

REGISTRATION AND SEPARATION INTO COLORS AND SIZES The Association for German Lace (Spitz) was founded in 1899 for large Spitz (“Großspitz” or “Gross spitz”). At the time, only the colors white, black, and wolf-grey were recognized. Although the white Spitz were usually only paired with each other, they were crossed every few generations to a black Spitz to strengthen the pigmentation. • In 1906, all colors were allowed for small Spitz, but not for large Spitz. • In 1958, colors for the small Spitz were limited to white, black, brown, orange, and other colors, including parti-col- ors. The large Spitz were still only registered as the wolf-grey (called the Keeshond by the AKC), white, black, and brown. Merle is not an acceptable color. • From 1958, colors were separated for breed exhibition, with one exception: Black can be paired with brown, and as of 2019, the black and brown can have white toes, chest patch, and tail tip.

The Early Black and White Spitz

Very Old Photo of a Brown Spitz

THE SPITZ IN THE 20TH AND 21ST CENTURIES IN THE US Many of the German Spitz were brought to the US in the late 1800s and early 1900s by German immigrants. Due to the negative perception of immigrants as poor, uneducated people, the breed was denigrated as sneaky, bad tempered, and difficult. Early New York Times articles disparaged the breed, but can now be understood as not being directed against the dogs but against the people who imported them. They were not associated with a wealthy class that could seek out AKC recognition. Instead, begin- ning in 1911-1913, the white German Spitz were registered by the

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THE GERMAN SPITZ IN THE US

Of course, no history of the German Spitz would be complete without mentioning their long history as circus dogs. Currently, the brother of Linn von Millus (Edward Kalkreuter’s “Theia”) is actively performing with Sirkus Finlandia.

Due to their skill and quick comprehension, German Spitz excel in obedience, dog-dancing, rally, agility, and barn hunt, and in Europe, they have proven themselves in tracking and been used successfully as guide dogs.

Circus Antoni

Circus Liliput

Mary Champagne’s ‘Spitz’

Kathy Harris’ ‘Bear’

Sirkus Finlandi

Competing in Obedience

And, not to be left out, we have those German Spitz that just love meeting people, providing comfort and joy.

Cindy Lett-Little and ‘Tonka’

BIO Patrea Pabst started showing dogs in 1976 with her American Eskimos. She is an “almost” Gold Breeder of Merit for American Eskimos and is privileged to share her cattle farm in Northeast Georgia with two AKC grand champion Anatolian Shepherds. She has judged, shown in conformation and performance, and bred for over 45 years. In 2017,

Patrea went in search of options to increase the genetic diversity of the standard American Eskimo and, instead, became enamored with the “original American Eskimo,” the German Spitz as recognized by the FCI. She has been fortunate to find many other experienced dog show people, as well as “newbies,” who share her enthusiasm in promoting and enjoying their German Spitz in the US.

280 | SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE, OCTOBER 2022

THE GERMAN SPITZ

GROOMING 101 BY CASSANDRA BRITT

GROOMING IS NOT AS HEAVY FOR THE GERMAN SPITZ AS YOU MIGHT THINK, DESPITE IT BEING A DOUBLE-COATED BREED. M ost Spitz can be kept neat and tidy by giving the dog a brushing twice a week and a thorough, deep, groom once a week. The most important thing about grooming is what you use and how you do it! Firstly, you must not use the usual grooming brushes that can be bought from pet shops and stalls. Most of these are far too harsh for the Spitz coat and will either pull out the undercoat and/or shred the outer coat; splitting it and breaking the hair shaft. Secondly, and probably the most important point, is how you groom your Spitz. The standard in the UK calls for a coat that stands away from the dog's body. This is quite easily achieved if you groom in the right direction, i.e., against the lie of the coat. (See diagram above.) Grooming in this direction encourages the coat to be off-standing and allows you to get to the soft undercoat underneath the outer coat. It's the undercoat that makes the outer coat stand away from the body. But if brushed with the lie of the coat, you do not get underneath and the undercoat eventually matts or felts up. This causes huge knots to form, espe- cially behind the ears and at the back of the legs, and it is pretty painful for the dog when they have to be removed. The diagram above is numbered for each main area of attention. Following this routine when brushing helps to keep the coat tangle-free and also stimulates the dog's circulation, making the coat glossy, healthy, and encouraging new growth after a shed/coat blow. Speaking of shedding, German Spitz generally shed twice a year. They can (and most generally do) resemble an exploding thistle! If you are a person who definitely can't get used to hair on everything, then please reconsider before getting a Spitz (grin)! You cannot say that you haven’t been warned!! Seriously though, when Spitz decides it's time to lose their coat, there's nothing that will stop them!! A Spitz shed/coat blow is a sight you must not miss. Unlike most dogs, they do not lose their hair one hair at a time. The undercoat generally lifts away from the skin in small clumps and rises out of the outer coat where it is either caught on passing brambles when out walking or cast off on the nearest chair, carpeting or bedding. If you are brushing regularly, however, this is not a problem, provided you keep a small rubbish bag close by for the discarded hair as you groom. Grooming very quickly fills up the brush, so the hair has to be removed every minute or so. Once a major shed is in progress, I generally brush morning and night. This saves the furnishings and ensures that the old coat is taken out as quickly as possible to prevent tatting. I generally use grooming time to check ears, eyes, toenails, and teeth too. If started while very young, Spitz puppies learn that this is a routine and they accept it very quickly. It is good bonding time too. Giving a small treat once you have completed the routine will ensure that you have a Spitz willing for it to happen again in a few days’ time. Spitz are very food-orientated!

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