Field Spaniel Breed Magazine - Showsight

typically adorns the chest, underbody, backs of the legs, buttocks, and may also be present on the second thigh and underside of the tail. Overabundance of coat, or cottony texture, impractical for field work should be penalized. Colors are black, liver, and golden liver. Golden liver is generally considered the color of a Sus- sex Spaniel. Tan-points acceptable on any of the aforementioned colors and are the same as any tan-pointed breed (Gordon Setters, Dobermans, etc.). Th e breed is either a self-colored or bi- colored dog. Bi-colored dogs MUST be roaned and/or ticked in white areas. White is allowed on the throat, chest, and/or bris- ket, and may be clear, ticked, or roaned on a self-color dog. Always remember that this is a sturdy hunting companion. Symmetry, gait, atti- tude and purpose are more important than any of the parts. Look at the whole dog in this light. Fault judging does a disservice to the breed. Applying personal preference above all else to one area of the dog is also not in the breed’s interests. Look at the whole dog and then weigh each dog’s faults and attributes from there in order to make your selections. Type and purpose should go hand in hand. Th ere are no disqaulifications in the Field Spaniel standard. Remember that the breed has had only a few decades of to hone conformation here in the United States, and your selections can either help or inhibit a breeds’ path in the future. Th e search for breed type and proper structure, one that can stand up to the requirements of a day in the field should always be at the forefront of your judging process.

“...‘SOLIDLY BUILT, with moderate bone, and firm smooth muscles.’”

jaw. Th e nasal bone should be straight and slightly divergent from parallel with the plane of the top skull. While the breed should have a distinctive head we are NOT A HEAD BREED. Please do not judge the head first and foremost and put primary importance on the head. Movement & Gaiting When moving your entry together or individually it is important to ensure they are gaited at the proper speed for the breed. Th e breed standard reads, “ Th e Field Span- iel should be show at its own natural speed in an endurance trot, preferably on a loose lead, in order to evaluate its movement.” A natural speed in an endurance trot is appropriate for the breed. Th ey should not be shown charging out and pulling at the end of the lead or zipping around the ring at top speeds. While there is good forward reach from the shoulder, coupled with strong drive, proper Field Spaniel move- ment should remain e ff ortless in a long and low majestic stride. Fast, tight, and strict movement is incorrect. A loose lead is best to appropriately evaluate movement. While the standard allows for some con- vergence in front at higher speeds, there should not be extreme toeing in. When gaiting a dog to assess front and rear movement, elbows and hocks should move parallel, just as they should be when standing still. Pay attention to this. You will be hard pressed to find a specimen that moves in parallel that does not stand in parallel, especially the rear. Dogs that are cow-hocked but move straight may- be reflective of weakness in the second thigh. Th e legs move straight, with slight convergence at increased speed, however single tracking is incorrect. Please watch for toeing on frontward movement this may reflect lack of forechest or depth of chest. Lifting from the pastern is common in younger dogs; however mature dogs should be reaching beginning at the shoul- der if moving correctly. Energy wasting movement is incorrect. Specimens should

not be throwing out elbows or hocks and the down and back exercise is the best opportunity to judge this. Movement in this breed should be very clean and fluid. Substance “Substance—Solidly built, with mod- erate bone, and firm smooth muscles.” Upon examination, the bite is to be scis- sors or level, with scissors preferred. While a good dog should not be totally over- looked for an incorrect bite, correct bite is not insignificant to type. Th e forelegs are straight and well-boned to the feet. As you move along this is your opportunity to let your hands be your eyes. Th e neck should be well set into the shoulder. Th e proster- num should be prominent and well fleshed. Elbows are closed-set directly below the withers and turned neither in nor out. Th e ribcage should be long and extending into a short loin. ( Th e 7:6 length in this breed is to be picked up in the rib, not the loin.) Ribs should oval and well-sprung, but not overly round or barrel chested. Th ese dogs should not be narrow from any angle. Th e loin should be deep with little to no tuck up. Th e croup should be short and gently rounded. Hocks should be well let down and should be parallel when viewed from the rear. Tail should be set on low, in line with the croup, just below the level of the back with a natural downward inclination. Docked tails are preferred, but natural tails are allowed.


Th e coat should be single and moderately long, flat or slightly wavy and silky. It should be dense and water- repellent. “Amount of coat or absence of coat should not be faulted as much as structural faults” according to the breed standard. Moder- ate setter-like feathering

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