“THE TAIL IS FAIRLY HEAVY, REACHING TO THE HOCKS, PENDULOUS IN REPOSE. WHEN ALERT AND WHEN MOVING THE TAIL IS CARRIED AT THE LEVEL OF THE BACK OR HIGHER, AND MAY BE SLIGHTLY CURVED UPWARD BUT SHOULD NOT CURL OR TILT OVER THE BACK.”
chest should be half the total height of the dog at the withers. The topline is level from withers to croup with the croup smoothly rounded to the tail insertion. The tail is fairly heavy, reach- ing to the hocks, pendulous in repose. When alert and when moving the tail is carried at the level of the back or high- er, and may be slightly curved upward but should not curl or tilt over the back. A gay tail is undesirable. A tucked tail is an indication of temperament and as temperament is the only trait to be severely penalized a dog with a tucked tail should not be rewarded on that day. The bones of the tail should feel straight. You must run your hand down the tail to determine if this is a fact. Kinks are not always visible to the eye. The GSMD is moderately angled front and rear. Balance is the most important attribute. They have well let down hocks. The feet are round and compact with well arched toes. Splayed feet or cat feet are unde-
sirable. Dewclaws in the rear should be removed. Front dewclaws are optional. The GSMD has a double coat. The topcoat is dense and varies in length from 1 ¼ " to 2". That is the length of coat found on the neck and possibly on the rear. The length of coat on the head and legs is much shorter. Undercoat must be present and may be showing. It varies in color from the preferred dark gray to tawny often with a variation in color on a single dog. It is usually lightest around the neck and dark- est throughout the body. The best place to check for undercoat is on the shoulder, neck or thigh. Some GSMD have an agouti coat with band- ed hairs. As long as this does not detract from the “striking tri-colored” appearance of the breed it should not be faulted. Blue and red GSMDs are DQed. These are obvious as the blue is the color of a Weimaraner and the red is the color of a St. Bernard. These DQs are not referring to a red tinge in
the coat or agouti hairs or undercoat visible through the black topcoat. The GSMD standard goes to exten- sive length in describing the tri-colored black, white and rich rust markings that are characteristic of all of the Sen- nenhunds. Unlike their Sennenhund cousins white patches or white collars on the neck are permitted. Symmetry of markings is desired but if a judge is agonizing over markings that would mean that there is a ring full of excep- tional dogs to judge. Markings are considered cosmetic and should be considered of lesser importance than temperament, structure and movement. Markings that detract from the striking tri-colored dog would be penalized to the extent of the deviation. Proper GSMD movement is nei- ther exaggerated nor cumbersome. They should move with good reach and powerful drive. The back should remain level. On the down and back the front and rear legs tend to converge. The GSMD is a bold, faithful, will- ing worker. They should never display vicious behavior nor should they be shy. The only traits to be severely penalized are shyness or aggressiveness. Judges are admonished to severely penalize these behaviors in their ring. In summary, when judging the GSMD, judges are asked to look for the large, powerful, confident dog which is most suited to its draft and drover duties. Once again, size alone is not an attribute. The dogs should be well con- ditioned. Temperament is extremely important and incorrect temperament should be severely penalized. Markings are of lesser importance and in most cases should be used as a tie-breaker. Any other fault that detracts from the described working dog should be penal- ized to the extent of the deviation.
“UNDERCOAT MUST BE PRESENT AND MAY BE SHOWING. IT VARIES IN COLOR FROM THE PREFERRED DARK GRAY TO TAWNY OFTEN WITH A VARIATION IN COLOR ON A SINGLE DOG. IT IS USUALLY LIGHTEST AROUND THE NECK AND DARKEST THROUGHOUT THE BODY.”
176 • S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , J ANUARY 2017
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