LARGE, RUGGED, POWERFUL AND IMPRESSIVE THIS IS THE ESSENCE OF THE ANATOLIAN SHEPHERD DOG
These dogs have a job to do, and they must be built to do the job. The old “form follows function” applies here. • Head: Expression should be intelligent. • Eyes: Are almond in shape, set apart, brown to light amber in color without sag or looseness of haw. Pigmentation of the eye rims will be black or brown. Blue eyes or two different color eyes are a disqualification. • Skull: In proportion with the body, containing a slight centerline furrow, fore and aft, from apparent stop to moderate occiput. With a powerful, squared muzzle. • Neck: Slightly arched, powerful, well-muscled, mod- erate in length with more skin and fur than elsewhere on the body, forming a protective ruff. • Topline: There is a slight nick behind the withers. The back portion of the topline is powerful, muscu- lar, and level, leading to a gradual arch over the loin, sloping slightly downward at the croup. • Body: Well proportioned, functional, without exaggeration, never fat or soft. Chest is deep (to the elbow) and well-sprung, with a distinct tuck up at the loin. • Tail: Should be long and reaching to the hocks. Do not uncurl the tail to measure it to the hock, unless you see it as being very short. (And, for heaven’s sake, do not pull on it.) Set on rather high. When relaxed, it is carried low, with the end curled upwards. When alert, the tail is carried high, making a “wheel.” “Wheel” carriage is preferred. • Coat: According to the standard, all coat colors and markings are acceptable. The coat is a double coat and is anywhere from one inch to four inches in length; somewhat longer and thicker at the neck, forming that protective ruff. A thick undercoat is common to all! Remember the function of the breed: The coat protects from the elements and the predators. • Gait: The gait is powerful yet fluid. When viewed from the front or rear, the legs turn neither in nor out, nor do feet cross or interfere with each other. With increased speed, footfall converges toward the centerline of gravity. When viewed from the side, the front legs reach out smoothly with no obvious pounding. The withers and backline should stay nearly level, with little rise or fall. The rear assembly should push out smoothly, with hocks flexing well and doing their share of the work. SOME NOTABLE PHENOTYPICAL AND STANDARD REQUIREMENTS TO KEEP IN MIND (This is not to be considered a complete listing, just some of the highlights.)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR Having grown up with dogs, Laura Edstrom-Smith purchased her first Anatolian Shepherd, named Early Warning, in 1990. The Anatolian Shepherd's unique abilities as a livestock guardian whose strong maternal instincts make it an excellent companion dog are the characteristics that drew her attention to the breed. ASDCA CH Clearlake’s Early Warning soon became the love of Laura's life. Her life-changing journey with the Anatolian Shepherd Dog had begun. Laura joined the national parent club, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog Club of America (ASDCA) in 1990. Over the years, Laura has owned several male and female Anatolian Shepherds. In 1992, Laura began exhibiting dogs. Since 2002, Laura has been successful in the show ring. Her lovely Anatolian Shepherd bitch, with Laura as owner-handler, has won many top honors, including: Best of Breed at the ASDCA National Specialty twice, once owner-handled, Best of Opposite Sex at the ASDCA National Specialty twice, once owner-handled; Best of Breed at the AKC/ Eukanuba National Championship twice, once owner- handled; Best of Breed at the Westminster Kennel Club in New York; and multiple Best of Breeds and Group Placements at all-breed shows, mainly throughout the Southeast. In the past 30+ years, Laura has devoted most of her free time to involvement with her dogs. This commitment has included: Researching the origin and history of the Anatolian Shepherd Dog; learning obedience training techniques, proper handling, and ringside etiquette; and in-depth studying of the Anatolian Shepherd Breed Standard. In 2001, the Board of Directors of the Anatolian Shepherd Dog Club of America appointed Laura Education Coordinator. Laura's extensive knowledge and understanding of the Anatolian Breed Standard and her professional career as an intensive-care pediatric nurse (now nurse practitioner), requiring a thorough background in anatomy, made her the most qualified club member to coordinate the ASDCA'S national judge’s education seminars, general education seminars, Meet the Breed educational materials, and other educational programs as requested. She had served in that capacity for about nine years. At the current time, Laura is once again a member of the ASDCA BOD, and again Chairman of the Judge’s Education Coordination Committee as well as Public Education. Laura also writes articles relevant to the Breed Standard for the ASDCA's national publication, the Anatolian Times, and other dog-related magazines. Laura has found it a very satisfying experience coordinating educational programs for the ASDCA as well as for the public. She enjoys being actively involved in a wide variety of AKC educational and conformation events. "My education will never be over, and I am committed to the protection of the integrity of the Anatolian Shepherd Dog Breed Standard of Excellence.” Laura’s goal is "preservation not innovation."
254 | SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE, MAY 2021
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