THE DOBERMAN MOUTH
by FAYE STRAUSS
S ome judges have trouble with the Doberman mouth. The Doberman has 42 cor- rectly placed teeth. Correctly placed teeth mesh like pinking shears. Disqualify if four more teeth are miss- ing and more than 3/16 " under shot and ¼ " overshot. AKC asks that the handler show the mouth. The DPCA Judges Education committee wants you to use the follow- ing method in viewing our dog’s mouth. First, view the incisors with the mouth closed to view the scissors bite then count teeth, six upper and six lower incisors. Note that missing incisors do not leave a space so you need to count them. With the mouth closed, you can see the correct scissors bite. Then ask the handler to show the sides, look at each side with the mouth closed. Lift the lips on one side and see if the teeth mesh or have a gap from top to bottom. Occlusion is becoming a problem. We see many Dobes with teeth that do not mesh. You can see this on the sides of the mouth when it is closed. Handlers, in their quest to be helpful, make it impossible to see occlu- sion. Most handlers show the teeth like an alligator with the mouth wide open. Of course, you can’t see side occlusion that way. At the same time, you view occlu- sion, you can see the premolars and see if there are any missing. There should be four premolars upper and lower. Many Dobermans have extra first premolars, so be aware. In addition, an extra tooth does not make up for a missing tooth
“YOU CANNOT CHECK FOR THE TEETH DISQUALIFICATION WITHOUT OPENING THE MOUTH AND VIEWING THE SMALL BACK MOLARS.”
somewhere else. We ask for 42 correct- ly placed teeth. Premolars leave a space if they are missing. The third and fourth premolars leave a big hole. A missing premolar is only one missing tooth, no matter how big the hole. Then ask the handler to open the mouth to view the molars. All you are looking for are the molars. There are two upper molars and three lower molars. The small last molars are a fre- quent site of missing teeth, so you must open the mouth to observe. The small last molars are also a site of extra teeth.
You cannot check for the teeth disqualification without opening the mouth and viewing the small back molars. Remember the Doberman has 42 correctly placed teeth like pink- ing shears. Four or more missing teeth and more than 3/16 " under shot and ¼ " overshot is a disqualification. Evaluate the occlusion to the extent of the deviation. The Doberman is a Working dog who uses his mouth; you must know how to evaluate it. The procedure is front, side, side then open. “Please show me the front incisors (six upper and lower). With mouth closed show each side to see the four premolars and then please open the mouth so I can see the molars (two upper and three lower).” You can view the procedure on YouTube.com in the seven-minute video, “How to Judge the Doberman.” If you are having trouble with the Doberman mouth just let us know and we will help you further.
S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , J UNE 2017 • 243
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