THE CHARMING DANISH-SWEDISH FARMDOG BY THE DANISH-SWEDISH FARMDOG CLUB OF AMERICA W hen the American Kennel Club accepts a new breed into its registry, it is with the expectation that the breed will have general appeal. The Danish-Swedish Farmdog Club of America has done a phenomenal job represent- ing the breed, encouraging health testing, and striving toward producing a consistent quality of conformation within the breed. To learn more about Farmdogs, I thought we might go through the Breed Standard, which adheres as closely as possible to the standards of their countries of origin. Commentary is interspersed between sections of the Standard.
DANISH-SWEDISH FARMDOG BREED STANDARD
INTRODUCTION The Danish-Swedish Farmdog is a cheerful, small, compact, smooth- coated, and multipurpose barnyard dog. It originated in Denmark and Southern Sweden and was commonly found on small farms up until the Industrial Revolution when many of those farms closed down. While its specialty was vermin control, it could occasionally be found hunting or helping to bring the cows in. Hunting and herding were not originally among its main purposes and are, therefore, not required abili- ties. Its skill and drive to chase mice, rats, and other vermin continues to be a characteristic of the breed. It is coordinated, agile, and blazingly fast—important abilities for a vermin catcher! The Danish-Swedish Farmdog is a friendly, outgoing, attentive, and lively companion. Frequently a playmate to the farmer’s children, it is well suited as a companion. Its open-minded, quick-to-learn style earned it a place in old-time circuses as a performer, and now endears it to dog sport enthusiasts and families alike. The Farmdog served as an able little watchdog, alerting its owners to the presence of strangers approaching the farm. Its warning bark serves a strictly “doorbell” function. It must never show aggression, quieting as soon as the owner has accepted the visitor. It must be friendly, greeting visitors with a wagging tail. A reserved and shy Farmdog has a completely undesirable temperament. While the origins of the breed were intended to produce an all-around working dog for small farms, the qualities they embody make them perfect for every sport AKC has to offer. Farmdogs literally excel at everything! As a “pinscher type” dog that will eventually enter the Working Group with AKC, their positive attributes are innumerable. They are generally quite healthy and long-lived, many reaching 16 to 18 years of age. GENERAL APPEARANCE A small, compact, lively, smooth coated, and slightly rectangular dog. Known to mature late. The Danish-Swedish Farmdog is not to appear refined or elegant. Clear differentiation between the genders is important. Diminutive in size, Farmdogs sport a solid, athletic frame. Fast and agile, they are built for the speed needed to herd or “rat.” Size may be the only thing small about them.
276 | SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE, NOVEMBER 2021
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