Pekingese Breed Magazine - Showsight

Pekingese Breed Magazine features information, expert articles, and stunning photos from AKC judges, breeders, and owners.


Let’s Talk Breed Education!

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Official Standard of the Pekingese General Appearance: The Pekingese is a well-balanced, compact dog of Chinese origin with a heavy front and lighter hindquarters. Its temperament is one of directness, independence and individuality. Its image is lionlike, implying courage, dignity, boldness and self-esteem rather than daintiness or delicacy. Size, Substance, Proportion: Size/Substance - The Pekingese, when lifted, is surprisingly heavy for its size. It has a stocky, muscular body. All weights are correct within the limit of 14 pounds. Disqualification - Weight over 14 pounds. Proportion - Overall balance is of utmost importance. The head is large in proportion to the body. The Pekingese is slightly longer than tall when measured from the forechest to the buttocks. The overall outline is an approximate ratio of 3 high to 5 long. Head: Face - The topskull is massive, broad and flat and, when combined with the wide set eyes, cheekbones and broad lower jaw, forms the correctly shaped face. When viewed from the front, the skull is wider than deep, which contributes to the desired rectangular, envelope-shaped appearance of the head. In profile, the face is flat. When viewed from the side, the chin, nose leather and brow all lie in one plane, which slants very slightly backward from chin to forehead. Ears - They are heart-shaped, set on the front corners of the topskull, and lie flat against the head. The leather does not extend below the jaw. Correctly placed ears, with their heavy feathering and long fringing, frame the sides of the face and add to the appearance of a wide, rectangular head. Eyes - They are large, very dark, round, lustrous and set wide apart. The look is bold, not bulging. The eye rims are black and the white of the eye does not show when the dog is looking straight ahead. Nose - It is broad, short and black. Nostrils are wide and open rather than pinched. A line drawn horizontally over the top of the nose intersects slightly above the center of the eyes. Wrinkle - It effectively separates the upper and lower areas of the face. It is a hair-covered fold of skin extending from one cheek over the bridge of the nose in a wide inverted V to the other cheek. It is never so prominent or heavy as to crowd the facial features, obscure more than a small portion of the eyes, or fall forward over any portion of the nose leather. Stop - It is obscured from view by the over-nose wrinkle. Muzzle - It is very flat, broad, and well filled-in below the eyes. The skin is black on all colors. Whiskers add to the desired expression. Mouth - The lower jaw is undershot and broad. The black lips meet neatly and neither teeth nor tongue show when the mouth is closed. Neck, Body, Tail: Neck - It is very short and thick. Body - It is pear-shaped, compact and low to the ground. It is heavy in front with well-sprung ribs slung between the forelegs. The forechest is broad and full without a protruding breastbone. The underline rises from the deep chest to the lighter loin, thus forming a narrow waist. The topline is straight and the loin is short. Tail - The high set tail is slightly arched and carried well over the back, free of kinks or curls. Long, profuse, straight fringing may fall to either side. Forequarters: They are short, thick and heavy-boned. The bones of the forelegs are moderately bowed between the pastern and elbow. The broad chest, wide set forelegs and the closer rear legs all contribute to the correct rolling gait. The distance from the point of the shoulder to the tip of the withers is approximately equal to the distance from the point of the shoulder to the elbow. Shoulders are well laid back and fit smoothly onto the body. The elbows are always close to the body. Front feet are turned out slightly when standing or moving. The pasterns slope gently. Hindquarters: They are lighter in bone than the forequarters. There is moderate angulation of stifle and hock. When viewed from behind, the rear legs are reasonably close and parallel, and the feet point straight ahead when standing or moving.

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Coat & Presentation: Coat - It is a long, coarse-textured, straight, stand-off outer coat, with thick, soft undercoat. The coat forms a noticeable mane on the neck and shoulder area with the coat on the remainder of the body somewhat shorter in length. A long and profuse coat is desirable providing it does not obscure the shape of the body. Long feathering is found on toes, backs of the thighs and forelegs, with longer fringing on the ears and tail. Presentation - Presentation should accentuate the natural outline of the Pekingese. Any obvious trimming or sculpting of the coat, detracting from its natural appearance, should be severely penalized. Color: All coat colors and markings are allowable and of equal merit. A black mask or a self-colored face is equally acceptable. Regardless of coat color the exposed skin of the muzzle, nose, lips and eye rims is black. Gait: It is unhurried, dignified, free and strong, with a slight roll over the shoulders. This motion is smooth and effortless and is as free as possible from bouncing, prancing or jarring. The rolling gait results from a combination of the bowed forelegs, well laid back shoulders, full broad chest and narrow light rear, all of which produce adequate reach and moderate drive. Temperament: A combination of regal dignity, intelligence and self-importance make for a good natured, opinionated and affectionate companion to those who have earned its respect. Disqualification: Weight over 14 pounds. The foregoing is a description of the ideal Pekingese. Any deviation should be penalized in direct proportion to the extent of that deviation.

Approved: January 13, 2004 Effective: March 2, 2004



I n judging the Pekingese breed, the outcome can vary with individuals because judges di ff er in their inter- pretation of the written Standard. In writing this article, it is my opinion and is not, in any way, a document of how the breed must be judged. Pekingese is my original breed, having studied and learned this breed from more than 20 years of studying, breeding and showing and now judging for 18 years. When I adjudicate over the Pekingese breed, I look for dogs that most nearly reflect per- fection as set down in the breed Standard. Many people tell me they find the Peking- ese confusing and a little di ffi cult to judge due to their complicated structure and small stature. Th e Pekingese Standard is very well written, explanatory—a full discussion of the standard is not included in this article. Instead, I will attempt to highlight some check points to look for and make several suggestions and judging technique. Th e breed originates from China and is one of the oldest recognized toy breeds. It must suggest its Chinese origin and lion- like image, since the Chinese often referred to the Pekingese as the “Lion Dog”. When a Pekingese class enters the ring, the first things you will look at are the over- all proportion, balance and outline of each dog, ascertaining in your own mind, the question…which is correct type? At the pres- ent time, and in all sections of the country, the desired compact outline is harder to find, than we wish. You will more often see dogs with rounded and dome-shaped heads, lon- ger necks, longer loin, too much leg and low tail sets. It is easy to judge a class of outstand- ing dogs, but di ffi cult to judge poor quality or mediocre specimens. Often times, I find that when a class of dogs enters the ring, I can generally pick my placements before examining them on the table. Sometimes those choices change after examination and individual gaiting, but generally, you will get a quality assessment on the first go- around. Th e temperament may be assessed at this time, and you will hopefully see a bal- ance-moving specimen with an attitude of

independence, courage and self-esteem. Overall balance of body and mind are of utmost importance in your assessment of this breed, as well as any breed. As a judge, you are continually processing all of these criteria prior to your table examination. Many breeders, exhibitors and judges refer to the Pekingese as a head breed, but like every other breed, the head is very important. If you don’t have the proper head, then you lose the type. Again, type is what judging is all about. In your examination, the following check points P should be covered: P Check the head for a broad, and flat top skull, large, dark eyes, short, broad muz- zle with wide cheek bones, broader lower jaw and wide chin. You will note that these features contribute to the desired rectangular enveloped-shaped appear- ance of the head. You will further see that the ears are set on the front corners of the skull and with their feathering, create an illusion of additional width of the head. P Check the forelegs which are slightly bowed between the pastern and elbow. Th e elbows are always close to the body. P Check the fit and placement of the short, thick neck which is set into the shoulder. Moving to the body, you should check for the correct pear-shaped (heavier and broader in front, tapering o ff at the rear) and compact body. P Check the level top line, high tail set, lighter boned hindquarters than fore- quarters with moderate angulations. You must lift the coat on the hindquar- ters to observe the rear angulations. P Now, check the final check point— movement. Th e movement is unhurried with a slight roll over the shoulder, a result of the properly bowed front legs and heavy, wide forequarters. Th e gait should be free of any bounce; it should exhibit e ff ortless movement, reflecting a smooth fit of all the parts. Th ere are a few examination issues that I have seen breeder and non-breeder judges perform that I do not feel are necessary in judging this breed:

1. Do not try to open the Pekingese mouth, unless a problem such as a wry mouth exists, and you want to check for this fault. In the Standard, there is no mention to teeth in the reference to the bite. Th is was purposely excluded. Th e Standard states that the lower jaw is slightly undershot and the lips meet on a level plane. It is not appealing to the dogs, judge or exhibitor to wrestle a Pekingese to the floor from the table to pry the mouth open. If you insist on taking a peek into the mouth, place your hands on each side of the face, with your thumbs and index fingers, gen- tly lift the upper lip. 2. If you wish to check the weight on a Pekingese, a simple two inch lift from the table will tell you if the dog is heavy for the size. You should feel a heavy dog in a small package, with the majority of weight in the front proportion of the body. Please do not lift the dog high o ff the table, “twirl” the dog in the air, attempting to feel for bone in the fore- quarters and to ascertain weight. Th is is not a practice with the Standard Man- chester Terrier who has a weight dis- qualification or for the French Bulldog, so why for the Pekingese? If you feel an exhibit is over the 14 pound limit, please call for the scales. 3. In addition, do not ask exhibitors to hoist the dogs into the air so you can compare heads with the dog’s head above or level to your own. Th is is not a good practice and is not acceptable in other breeds, so why in Pekingese? It seems one judge will do this prior to the final decision and other follow suit with this procedure. Please do not do this, instead, use the table again, remembering to examine on the table and judge on the floor. Remember, you are not judging on head alone and you must consider the whole dog. Please learn to examine our Pekingese breed. Many breeders will welcome you to ask them questions. Th ey will gladly mentor and teach you about the extremely stubborn, sometimes exasperating, but yet appealing Pekingese.



By Diane Burvee Breeder/Judge and Pekingese Club of America’s Judges’ Education Chair


often hear the laments of judges on how di ffi cult the Pekingese is to comprehend, and quoting the late, great Mr. Nigel Aubrey Jones of St. Aubrey-Elson fame, “Peking-

Every examination should include a brief evaluation of both the dog’s heavi- ness for his size, and his heavier front as compared to his rear. Judges should gently, but fi rmly, lift the Pekingese just an inch or so o ff the table to con fi rm these desired characteristics. A Pekingese should not be dainty, or delicate, as body, substance and bone are much sought after by breeders. Th is desired substance must be housed in a compact package because Pekingese can- not be over its 14lb. weight limit – the only disquali fi cation in the breed standard. HEAD – The Crowning Glory Th e old standard allocated 40 points to head properties alone, and most will agree the Pekingese headpiece is one of the hallmarks of the breed. Th e head should be large with a broad, fl at and massive topskull (domey and round topskulls are incorrect), it should be rectangular-shaped (not square and deep with a high forehead), and open. Th e ears should sit neatly on the front corners of the topskull, and together with their thick fringing, should serve to frame the face, and accentuate the rectan- gular shape. Ears set too high, too far back, and/or too low can spoil the illusion of the “wider than tall” shape of the head. Th e eyes, that must be wide-set apart, and show no white when the Pekingese is looking straight ahead, should be large, dark, round and lustrous. Th e nose must be black and short, with open nostrils. Th e nose should be positioned between the eyes, where a horizontal line extended across the top of the nose should intersect slightly above the center of the eyes. A low-placed nose can give the impression of a ‘down face.’ Th e facial features should be well-spaced and pleasing - never crowded nor obscured by the over-nose wrinkle. Th e wrinkle should serve merely to enhance the di ff erent facial

ese are by no means an easy breed to understand.” Th us, I can appreciate that the intricate Pekingese can indeed be a di ffi cult breed for most to master. Hopefully, after reading this article you will have a better understanding of this ancient Chinese breed, but this in no way negates the importance of either the (continuing) education materials avail- able through the Pekingese Club Amer- ica’s Judges’ Education program, or the many excellent mentors/breeders avail- able through this program. Because the Pekingese is categorized as a brachycephalic achondrodysplastic (i.e. dwarf) breed, its desired attributes are a far cry from what is considered the norm in dogdom. Known as the Lion Dog of Imperial China, with DNA con- fi rming it to have existed in China some 2,000 years ago, Pekingese were the com- panions of the nobles and royalty of the Imperial family only. Commoners were known to kowtow to them, so it should be no surprise that Pekingese should present themselves as bold, digni fi ed and full of cocky self-importance. Th e typical Pekingese is a well-balanced and compact dog (not meaning square), with a much heavier front and a slighter hindquarters. Its head (the crowning glory of the breed) should be massive, shallow, rectangular, and framed by luscious thick ear fringes. Th e body is pear-shaped, deep, thick, short-loined, and waisted. A key breed characteristic is that a well-made Peke should be ‘surprisingly heavy for its size, when lifted.’ Density is key.

Essence of Pekingese: Low-to-ground with large head, substantial deep compact body, broad front, high-set tail, and harsh standoffish coat.

features, rather than to obscure or crowd them. A thick wrinkle, sometimes termed a ‘sausage roll,’ as well as a wrinkle that covers any portion of the nose is highly undesirable. A Pekingese whose muzzle is not well-cushioned, but which falls away under the eyes, and lacks width of cheeks spells plain commoner, and not royalty. Th e underjaw should be wide, and under- shot. It should show no teeth nor tongue when the mouth is closed. A fi rm chin, with clean level lipline, is desired. Breeders consider a wry mouth a very objectionable fault. Th is glorious headpiece should be set on its body by means of a very short and thick neck. Possessing a neck “like a swan” is NOT a thing of beauty in a Pekingese. BODY – The Imperial Palace Like the Imperial Palace where Empress Dowager reigned, the Pekingese front and body is the headquarters of its structure. A pear-shaped, thick, compact and heavy body should be slung between the short and thick front legs. Remember that the Pekingese is a low set dog with its body slung between its legs, and not sitting above the legs. Th e forelegs should be bowed, the shoulders must be well laid back, the elbows tight/close to the body, and front feet turning out both when standing and

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movement is incorrect. Th e rear action should be sound, clean, free from the roll- ing action of the front and narrower. Rear action should also be free from exagger- ated swishing (fondly termed as gold fi sh- tailing), weakness or skipping. You may also fi nd common “ fl at” trotting gait with- out of the above mentioned characteristics, but the coveted ideal movement to strive for is the rolling gait that is SMOOTH, FLUID and EFFORTLESS.

aged to get away with fl aws in front assem- bly in the ring. It is a shame. I urge all judges to become familiar with the correct Pekingese front structure, which should be a broad chest with tight elbows that supports a deep and substantial body with a deep barrel chest that is slung between its bowed front legs that are wide set apart. When you place your hands on the front assembly, feel if the elbows are tight against the ribcage, check for the bow of the forelegs, examine the shoulder layback, return of upperarm, and feel for width of underbody of chest (at least 2 to 3 fi ngers). Th e Pekingese front should never be narrow, and its front feet should be slightly turned out, not point- ing forward, or toeing in. To ascertain the body is truly slung between its front legs, the elbow should be fi tted above the bot- tom of the ribcage. Th e Pekingese front is not a Dachshund front, as it does not have a protruding prosternum. Checking for good spring of ribs, a level topline, high set tail, and sound muscular hindquarters should complete your examination. When looking at gait, always allow the Pekingese to move at its own comfortable and unhurried speed, even in the Group and BIS rings. All Pekingese should be shown on a loose lead, and never on a tight strung-up lead! Balance and carriage can be also assessed when the dog is moving round the ring. Stubbornness, with a mind of its own, is part of the Pekingese charm, so do not penalize a dog for not trotting along readily. It may just need some per- suasive coaxing. A dog that skips, or limps, should not be rewarded. One of the delights of the breed is the occasional sleeve Pekingese that are not intentionally bred for. In this country, Sleeve Pekingese are considered to be those weighing less than 6 lbs., while Minia- ture Pekingese weigh between 6 and 8 lbs. When you encounter a sleeve or miniature, you should judge it, as you would dogs of a larger size. It should have exactly the same attributes as its larger relatives, but in a diminutive package. Th ere are no de fi ned speci fi c second- ary sexual characteristics or preferences, though the old British Standard preferred a larger and heavier bitch comparative- ly, assuming that the larger size would


When you are judging the Pekingese, your fi rst impression should be that of a well-balanced, low-to-the-ground dog with a massive envelope-shaped shal- low head, short neck, compact body, and high set tail. Th e wide mane, tail plume and skirts/trousers should add to its dra- matic appearance. Th e outer coat should be harsh, straight and stand-o ffi sh, sup- ported by an abundance of thick softer undercoat. A long and profuse coat of correct texture is desirable, but it should never obscure the true shape of the dog. Excessive coat, especially of cottony and wooly feel, does not make a better dog! In some cases, it only obscures the true leo- nine appearance, or hides a multitude of sins! Rewarding dogs solely on the basis of the most coat is ignorant judging; there is so much more to the Pekingese than its coat, which should just be the icing. Approach a Pekingese con fi dently, and when you go over the exhibit, there is no need to dishevel the coat in order to e ff ec- tively examine the dog. Look for a big rect- angular headpiece (framed by profuse ear fringes) that houses well-set round dark eyes, well-placed nose, correct wrinkle, well-cushioned broad cheeks, wide under- jaw, good pigmentation, and mouth fi nish that all contribute to open features that form a pleasing expression. We are los- ing head size in the breed, and it is also imperative to look for a thick short neck that fi ts nicely into the shoulder. Save the long necks for the Manchurian mummy. Th e correct front construction de fi nes an important part of type, and because the Pekingese front is somewhat complicated, dogs with less than ideal fronts have man-

A shaved down Pekingese bitch displaying an ideal loZset front. %road chest correctl\ slXng EetZeen EoZed forelegs and tight elEoZ.

moving. An over-bowed front that is out at the elbows is as incorrect as the straighter front. Th e hindquarters are only moderate- ly angulated, and slighter in construction, but should be well-muscled. Th e topline is level. Do not mistake thinner dogs with skeletal ‘spiney’ topline as roached back. A nervous Peke can also sometimes ‘hunch’ on the table. An ideal back should be strong, well-padded over the vertebrae and level. Th e tail should be preferably straight (free of kinks and curls), high set, and car- ried well over its back, with long and pro- fuse fringing falling to either side. MOVEMENT – The Poetry In Motion A beautiful Pekingese with the desired shape and correct make, topped with its e ff ortless rolling gait is truly a piece of fi ne poetry in motion. Many people, includ- ing long-time judges and breeders, have a di ffi cult time grasping correct movement. Th e quintessential Pekingese roll is multi- driven by the broad heavy front assembly, correct shoulder layback, bowed front legs, and slighter narrow rear. Th e Pekingese “waist” serves basically as a neutral zone and the rolling action should not continue past the waist to the rear of the dog. Th is very aristocratic digni fi ed gait should be SMOOTH, and EFFORTLESS, but nev- er laborious. A dog that exhibits rocking, prancing, bouncing, lurching, or jarring

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facilitate easier maternal duties. All breed- ers can appreciate a bigger strapping bitch, with short tree-trunk legs, that is built like a solid brick house, and I am certainly very guilty of it. COMMON FAULTS TODAY Listed here are some of the more com- mon faults and shortcomings you may see in today’s show rings. Th ey include, but not are not limited to: 1. Smaller head size with smaller/lighter eyes, and narrower underjaw 2. Lacking in bone, body and substance (weedy and shelly specimens) 3. Bad toplines – roached back, sway back or high in the rear 4. Flat, or bouncing actions and unsound (crippled) rear movement 5. Longer neck, longer legs with bodies that sit on top of the legs, instead of slung between them 6. Exaggerated wrinkles that give a crowded appearance to facial features in general. 7. Eyes set too close together, giving an atypically non-arrogant appearance 8. Tongue tipping, or teeth showing when mouth is closed. PROCEDURAL FAUX PAS Th ere are a few things that you should never do as a Pekingese judge. First and foremost, never try to pry open the mouth of any Pekingese. It is preferred that you open the mouth only when you are suspi- cious of a bad bite or wry mouth. Study the mouth alignment, fi nish and struc- ture. Look at the lip-line, and symmetry. If anything looks out of balance, ask the handler to show you the bite. A Peke with an exaggerated undershot jaw will usually have a stronger lower jaw and a “trout” fi n- ish, while a Peke with the undesired even or overshot bite, will tend to lean toward a very weak receding chin that falls away with the “Andy Gump” expression. What you want is the happy medium of a fi rm chin and wide underjaw that completes and supports the facial features beautifully. Kindly do not ask a handler to lift a Peke up from the fl oor, so you can closer study its head, facial features or expres- sion. Additionally, never lift a dog high up from the table, and swing it around to

check expression. Neither of these “theat- rics” is necessary, nor the proper procedure to examine the head and the Pekingese in question may so resent the procedure that it can a ff ect its attitude after it is put back down on the fl oor for individual move- ment. If you need a second or closer look, ask the handler to put the dog on the table. In terms of prioritizing when judg- ing, head properties should come fi rst, followed by body and shape, then move- ment and carriage. While the head is an integral part of the breed, always judge and consider the whole package. Overall soundness is of utmost importance. IN CONCLUSION Always award breed type, and in Pekingese, this refers to a large (not medi- um nor moderate sized) shallow headpiece with the correct facial features, a compact, substantial, thick pear-shaped body, level topline, high set tail, correct coat, sound- ness and the desirable e ff ortless roll over the shoulders when the Pekingese is moved at a trot. Base your placements on these criteria, and do not get overly hung-up on any single item. Seek and appreciate breed type and virtues, instead of fault judge. Th e Lion Dog, and its many pecu- liarities, is near and dear to many. Yet, it is indeed somewhat an intricate breed to study, and one you may never master completely. Even the dedicated and expe- rienced breeders that breathe and live Pekingese on a daily basis, are still learn- ing, so feel free to question, analyze, and explore the breed. As Mr. Nigel Aubrey Jones said, “ Th ere is nothing wrong with not knowing, but a lot wrong with think- ing you know when you don’t.” Welcome to the Imperial Palace reserved only for nobles and royalty – Th e Pekingese!

Afghan Hound, when she immigrated to California, USA, to pursue her tertiary studies at the prestigious University Of California Los Angeles UCLA. Pekingese was her next breed. Diane’s first Pekingese, BISS Ch TuTa Moon’s Royal Rose, became the Number One Pekingese Bitch for two consecutive years in America, and a Pedigree Chum Top Producer, like many of her other Qazara Pekingese, which includes several Nation- al, and Regional Specialty winners. Diane became the very first breeder in America to have successfully bred litters from imported semen, apart from being the first foreigner to travel to the UK on the inaugural Pet Passport scheme to show her homebred, BISS Ch Qazara Th e American Gigolo, at Th e British Pekingese Club’s Championship Show. Breeding on a very limited basis, Ms. Burvee has bred/owned over 50 Champions in Afghans, Peking- ese, and French Bulldogs combined, plus a top-winning Toy Poodle, and the current Number One Brussels Gri ff on Bitch. Apart from her success as a breeder, exhibitor and judge, Ms.. Burvee also con- ducts special interest research in Veterinary Science, specifically Th eriogenology plus Chondrodystrophoid and Bracheycephalic symptoms, as she is a registered attendee of the annual CVC Veterinary Conference. A past Editor of the Lion Dog News maga- zine, Ms. Burvee is currently the Chair for the Judges‘ Education Committee of the Pekingese Club Of America, Inc. She is also the Honorary Patron of the Red Rose Pekingese Club in England, where she is adjudicating at their championship show this year. Diane has also judged in Europe, Mexico, and Australia. Her attention to details and type, together with her acute awareness of canine health, and anatomy, have no doubt played a major role in her keen eyes to seek out the best dogs, Diane enjoys judging and travelling immensely, and is honored for every opportunity to judge, and meet the local fanciers to exchange knowledge. Ms. Burvee is currently licensed by the American Kennel Club to judge Pekingese, Afghan Hounds, French Bulldogs and all Poodles at champion- ship show level.


Although Diane started attending dog shows at a tender age, it was not until the early 90s when she acquired her very own first dog, an Burvee

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Because the Pekingese is a heavy coat- ed dog, it is essential to examine beneath the coat, but keep in mind it is a toy dog so gentle light hands are required dur- ing the examination. Th e judge should approach the front of the dog on the table and place their hands behind the ears cupping them to frame the face. Th e head of a Pekingese is one of the hallmarks of the breed—a large head in proportion to the body is essential. Nigel Aubrey Jones said, “ Th e Peking- ese head is the stamp of the breed.” Th e head should be massive, broad with a flat topskull combined with wide set, large dark eyes and a shallow rectan- gular, envelope-shaped head. Th e type of envelope shape required here is a nor- mal business size envelope—not a square birthday card envelope. Th is is impor- tant to remember because a Pekingese should NOT have a square head. Th e judge should be able to see a line drawn horizontally over the top of the broad short black nose that intersects slightly above the center of the eyes. The wrinkle separates the upper and lower areas of the face and frames the nose. Th e ears are set on the front cor- ners with long heavy fringing that frames the face. Th e muzzle and the mouth should be broad with an under- shot lower jaw. Since dentition is not part of the Pekingese standard, it is not necessary to open a Pekingese mouth. Pekingese are not trained or used to hav- ing their mouth pried open. If the judge suspects a wry mouth, ask the exhibitor to show the bite as the teeth or tongue must not show when the mouth is closed. Th e judge will then gently move their hands down the short thick neck and feel the well laid back shoulders and tight elbows as well as the short heavy boned forelegs that are moderately bowed between the pastern and elbow. Th is is accompanied by a broad chest with well-sprung ribs slung between the forelegs. Th e toes on the forefeet are slightly turn out.

Moving around to the side of the table, the judge will examine the body and topline and determine that the topline is straight and level and with both hands will feel the pear shape and lighter loin with lighter boned hindquarters and moderate angulation. Th e tail should be high-set with long profuse fringing. In examining the rear, the judge may move to the end of the table to determine the rear legs are reasonably close and par- allel with feet pointing straight ahead. Th e hind legs are lighter than the front but are firm with moderate angulation. Because the Pekingese has a long, coarse- textured, straight, stand-o ff outer coat, with thick, soft undercoat, it is necessary to gently hand examine beneath the coat to determine the correct body shape. Because the standard is very specific in stating that the Pekingese, when lifted is surprisingly heavy for its size, it is necessary to determine this by properly lifting the dog. Lifting the dog two inches o ff the table will determine this without causing undue stress to the dog. Th e correct way to lift the dog is to wrap your hand and forearm around the dog behind the shoulders and under the body. Th e other hand and arm must support the chest between the front legs. Slowly and gently lift the dog two inches above the table. Since the majority of the weight should be in the chest, it is necessary to have your hand support the chest between the front legs. Remember always that the Pekingese should feel solid and heavy for its size. Remember—the Pekingese is not lift- ed to ascertain whether it is within the permissible weight of 14 pounds per the breed standard. Th e AKC judging policy is very specific in that the only way a judge may determine the weight of the dog is through the use of an AKC approved scale. If the judge suspects the dog is over 14 pounds, the correct procedure is to call for the scales. Correct movement on the Pekingese is only possible when the body is correct.

Quotes from the Pekingese Standard appear in bold. “ P ekingese in the ring” is a familiar call from the steward indicating it is time to enter the ring in catalog order and set the dog up for a preliminary look and evaluation by the judge. Th e first thing the judge will look at is the overall balance and outline of every dog. The Pekingese is a well- balanced compact dog of Chinese origin with a heavy front and lighter hindquarters. Its temperament Is one of directness, independence and indi- viduality. Its image is lion-like, imply- ing courage, dignity and self-esteem rather than daintiness or delicacy. Following this preliminary look at all the exhibits, the judge will ask the dogs to go around the ring to the table and put the first dog on the table for examination. If the show is inside, it’s important to walk the dog on the mat at all times—if the show is outside, the judge will indi- cate whether to walk in a large or small circle around to the table. “Examine on the table, judge on the ground” is a familiar phrase referring to toy dogs or any breed that is examined on the table. In fact, the judge should return the dog to the table if a later examination is required or if a comparison to another dog is necessary. AKC has allowed the judge to compare two dogs at a time on the table. Th e judge will first consider the profile of the dog on the table from the center of the ring and then proceed to the front of the dog. While considering the profile, overall balance is of utmost importance. Th e head is large in proportion to the body which is slightly longer than tall. Th e overall outline Is an approximate ratio of 3 high to 5 long when measured from the forechest to the buttocks. Th e well known scholar of the breed, Nigel Aubrey Jones stated, “Correct body shape is vital if correct balance and movement are to be achieved.”


ABOUT THE AUTHOR Carol Kniebusch Noe lives in Virginia and has been involved with breeding and exhibiting Pekingese since 1972. She judges the Toy and Non Sporting Groups, SIS and Juniors and is the editor/author of The Pekingese Study Guide. She is a professional flutist and conductor and is Professor Emeritus of Music at James Madison University.

Th e characteristic movement is unhurried, digni fi ed, free and strong with a slight roll over the shoulders. Th e motion is smooth and e ff ortless and is as free as possible from bouncing, prancing or jarring. Th e rolling gait results from a combination of the bowed forelegs, well laid back shoulders, full broad chest and narrow light rear, all of which produce adequate reach and moderate drive.

Rose Marie Katz, one of the prominent American breeder-exhibitors of Pekingese in the 1950s and 60s said, “ Th e Pekingese dog should be judged as a whole. It must present a picture of balance and type. It must be evaluated for its good points rath- er than torn apart for its faults. In evalu- ating a Pekingese, one must keep in mind that it is a toy dog of great substance and character for its small size.”


T he Pekingese Standard was revised in 1995, and the state- ment regarding color now reads, “All coat colors and markings, including parti-colors, are allowable and of equal merit.” Obviously, this includes whites, creams, and blacks as well as the parti-colors. Whites and creams have long been thought to be inferior to the other colors. Most of us have seen “white pet store Pekingese” that leave a lot to be desired and this has negatively influenced judges appreciation of this color. Likewise, partis and blacks have taken a backseat in the past. A parti color should have equal amounts of both colors on the body. Th ere- fore, a dog with a shawl over the shoulders and white on the chest is NOT a parti color. A crème Pekingese is one that has only one color on the coat and face. A pale fawn with some color on the ears or face is NOT a crème. Whites come in various shades but are a shade of white, not crème. Lootie, one of the first Pekingese we see in prints, was a parti color. Th is is a color that is very seldom seen in the show ring today. Th e same can be said for black and tan, a color that we seldom see. Blacks have made headway in the last ten years due to the e ff orts of several dedicated breeders, and are now more accepted in the ring. How about white? Up until the past sev- eral years this is a color that has not often been seen in the ring, or if it was, it was quite inferior to the other colors. Is it pos- sible to breed a white that is on an even par with the other colors? I think it is.

I have been breeding for over 45 years, and have produced over 125 Champions, including at least 30 whites. As you can tell, I am addicted to the white Pekingese and it has become my goal for the past 15 years to breed them of quality equal to the other colors. What does this entail? First of all you must realize that the gene pool for whites, or blacks or partis, is much smaller than that of the “normal” colors. Because of this, we will probably have to be more careful about how we breed and my emphasis has always been on improving quality. Where do you go to get started on this venture? Since I had several nice creamy white bitches in my kennel, thanks to a strong white gene that one of my best males carried, I pro- ceeded to search for the best white male I could find to mate them to. I decided that I was not going to find that is this country but managed to find one in Eng- land. Th is is the key that I needed to seri- ously get started on this project. I might add that I have dabbled in this project at least twice prior to this, but never had the right key! Th is was the starting point that pointed me in the right direction towards success. Th e same goes if blacks, black and tans or partis are your passion. Find the best, and breed to the best, and keep studying. Now, getting back to the small gene pool, it is going to be necessary to bring in quality from the very best of the other colors. Doing it this way is going to take a little longer, but the outcome will be

much more pleasing. To breed only for color is a mistake. What is it going to take to get the Judges to acknowledge that a white, or black, or parti can be comparable to the other colors? Th at’s easy. We must show them only quality exhibits. It is necessary to be able to stand back and objectively say, “Is this a dog that I would show if it were any other color?” If the answer is “yes”, then go for it! I don’t ever want to hear the statement again: “Its pretty good—for a white.” We are all used to seeing a “normal” colored Pekingese with a black mask so we find it easier to analyze their facial structure. Color on the face, or lack of it, can be very deceiving. A black mask can often accentuate desired features which can be more di ffi cult to appreciate in a self masked dog. Th ere is also quite a dif- ference between dogs with full black faces and black muzzles. Coat color also plays a part in how you perceive the total pack- age. Your eye will be immediately drawn to the clear colors with black on the face. You must learn to look past color and consider what is beneath the coat. I would like to ask all the people who judge Pekingese to keep an open mind and not discount any dog just because of its color. Try to get past the color, judge according to the Pekingese Stan- dard, and judge the dog on the day. Sooner or later the hard colors will take their place along with the other colors as quality exhibits.


Pekingese Forever! A Century of King fAmily PeKingese 1943 Mary King with two

equAls A life greAtly imProved by PeKingese AssoCiAtes SEVENTY PLUS TWELVE

by Louise W. King

1913 David W. King with his sister’s Pekingese “Sir Toady Lion” in England

Pekingese and friend with a propable poodle Washington, Connecticut

“Sarah Stoutly-Bigg” nee Manticore Sarabande… the first of the Manticore Pekes to call Tiny Toad Hall home. Photo by James Balaban Deutschmann

A clearer view of Mary King’s Pekes “Georgina” and “Toadette”(and anonymous intrusive Dachshund) Washington, Connecticut

B efore the first Peke at our house, there were Aunt Mary’s Alderbourne Pekes, Georgina and Toadette at her house in Con- necticut where she lived during WWII. Aunt Mary was my favorite aunt, and the Sumacs was the best of all places to visit… undoubtedly because of the Peke presence. Living in Washington DC with my mother, I went to camp in 1946 and came home with the admirable Taffy Topaz, a marmalade Persian kitten. Taffy’s life ended prema- turely… fatal encounter with a dog in 1949. Mother and I concluded that no cat would be as wonderful as Taffy. What next? A Pekingese puppy. Mother had always wanted a Pekingese; my authoritative god- mother had Pekingese in England and I remembered Georgina and Toadette. Off to a breeder in… Virginia?… Maryland?… was his name Harry Silfies (spelling?) who had two puppies for sale. He gave good advice about which puppy would be best for me. The pret- tiest puppy stayed close to her mother. The larger, darker, puppy was interested in meeting new- comers and did indeed prove to be the right puppy. Squeekie (she never actually barked) had a heav- ily Orchard Hill pedigree and lived a long life. Truth to tell, she was more mother’s dog than mine… I went to

boarding school and then to col- lege… but Squeekie was the vital Pekingese Presence at home for years! We learned the classic Peking- ese “Joke at Human Expense” from her. Staying at a Richmond house with a securely fenced yard one autumn, where leaves had been raked into large heaps… Squeekie went out into the yard and vanished. Mother called, but there was no sign of Squeekie. Looking about, mother concluded that Squeekie couldn’t have gotten out of the yard. Had she been stolen? More and louder calls of “Squeekie”! Nothing… until deep in one of the leaf piles a tail wagged, and there was Squeekie. Eventually I was living in San Francisco, sharing a house with several people… without a Peking- ese. Seeing an ad for Pekingese puppies, I ventured to Petaluma… where the advertiser proved to be the wife of an out-of-work construc- tion worker. Living in one trailer, a second, smaller trailer was the home of Pekingese… including four or five assorted puppies… not one of which I wanted. Having politely refused to buy a puppy, a brief contretemps ensued when I tried to leave without being given all the puppies free of charge. Con- cluding that the situation was des- perate, I bought the least objection- able puppy, hoping the cash would


Georgina and Toadette at my father’s house 1943

Aunt Mary with Georgina… Connecticut 1944


I intended to name the puppy. I said Cecily Parsley. “That’s not a very Chinese name,” objected that Miss Ashton-Cross. I said neither was Coffeecup of Yaffle or Ciga- rette of Alderbourne. Parsley was to board with the married sister until I left London to stay with War- wickshire cousins for Christmas. I called two days in advance to say I’d collect Parsley the morning of December 23. The other Miss Ashton-Cross was in charge when I appeared. A ken- nelmaid was sent downstairs and returned holding a medium-sized black puppy. “There he is, a darling little baby boy, and I do hope you will be happy with him!” said Miss Ash- ton-Cross, overlooking my dismay. “But I bought a very small, parti- coloured bitch,” I squeaked when I recovered my voice. “Oh well,” said the unconcerned Miss Ashton-Cross, “It was another American.” It took the rest of the day to sort out the mistake. Cecily Parsley went to War- wickshire and then back to New York City with me. On New York walks, we some- times saw a handsome pale golden Peke “Buddha” with a young man. I was warned not to pat Buddha, because he bit. Soon after Parsley’s death in 1973, I saw the young man. He said Buddha’s actual owner had died and Buddha needed a home. The young man insisted that Bud- dha was valuable… having cost a lot in New Orleans nine years ago. The young man intended to take Buddha to the ASPCA. I objected and pointed out that if Buddha was about ten years old and biting… he’d probably endure several days in unfamiliar surroundings while the ASPCA waited to see whether the person who’d consigned Buddha changed his mind… if not, Buddha would be euthanized. It would be kinder to take Buddha to his usual vet where he could be quietly put to sleep. The young man said he couldn’t possibly do that… Bud- dha was so valuable he was bound to find a home. Exasperated, I found myself say- ing I’d take Buddha the next day. If he bit me, he’d find himself at Dr. Wasserman’s. I spent the night thinking the whole idea was idiotic

help feed the others and returned to San Francisco with Georgina… who would be my responsibility I imagined for the next ten or twelve years. She was nice but hoydenish and the people sharing the house made matters worse because her bad behavior amused them. At the time there was a horror movie filmed in Diamond Heights (where the house with Georgina and friends was located)… it featured a killer who made peculiar noises on the phone. One morning when I was settled at my desk failing to write the great American novel (which has eluded me to this day), when suddenly there were… pecu- liar, serial killer noises in the room. Horrors! It proved to be Georgina II snoring under the desk. Off to the vet we went, and Georgina’s nose was slightly pared. Georgina II returned to New York with me and proved to be a cheerful little dog. I spent more time in England and Georgina II stayed with a kind friend (Barbara) when I was gone. Barba- ra’s first love was Afghans, and she had a nice one “Sheba”… who was very beautiful and very dignified. Possibly too dignified, because one winter morning, Barbara stepped out of her house on Riv- erside Drive and fell flat on the icy front steps. Sheba was morti- fied… taking herself as far from Barbara as the lead permitted and gazing northward. However, Georgina II was all concern… checking for vital life signs and breathing in Barbara’s face until she was able to get up. When I moved to England, Georgina II had a permanent home with Barbara and lived to be seventeen. In London… early for lunch at the English Speaking Union… I found the Alderbourne London establishment (was it Lansdowne Row?) presided over by two sis- ters… the Miss Ashton Cross… both tall and, as it turned out, indis- tinguishable. One was in charge that day, and there a number of handsome puppies for sale. And there was a tiny… absolutely irre- sistible… puppy in a rabbit hutch. After I’d signed over a number of traveler’s checks to the Miss Ash- ton-Cross du jour, she asked what

1947 Taffy Topaz…a near-Peke

Louise King and Sqeakie Easter, New Jersey

1964 Louise King with Alderhourne Cecily

1953 1974

Parsley, London (Photo by James Rowland)

Buddha aka Old Mr. Quacksnap, New York City

Pipsqueak McFidget (nee Woodgate Star Imp) takes up the sidesaddle in Washington, Connecticut (Photo by James Deutschman)


1992 Miss Bah Humbug occupied with the “Cahiers de Bug”, Connecticut

1997 George Sponge on his way to an AKC CGC at the Governor’s Horse Guards, CT. (Photo by Susan Hays)


year. There was the Christmas with the Alcock’s enlivened by an afternoon C-section. Two puppies were expected. Fran and the vet’s wife were standing by, I was study- ing a framed certificate on the wall to avoid seeing the incision… when the vet spoke to me “Hey… you… get this puppy breathing.” He handed me something minute on a paper towel… an unex- pected third puppy. When all three were breathing; Fran asked if I’d named the puppies. “Oh. Tinsel, Glitter and Miss Bah Humbug,” I hazarded. Miss Bah Humbug remained at Manticore and had two litters before she joined the Connecticut household. By then, Sarah and Chrissie had both died… the Waddley Grouse and Lady Gren- cora were living here. By 1994 there were two middle- aged Pekes… Waddley and Glen- cora… and one aged “Bug” who had been diagnosed with Addison’s Disease. Just before the Fourth of July weekend there was a message on the answering machine (anony- mous): “There’s a nice beige Peke at the Westchester Shores Humane Society… ” followed by a phone number. Having listened to the message twice, I spoke sharply to the answering machine… ”Yellow as a taxicab, big as a house and probably not a Pekingese.” Then I called the number and arranged to meet George. George was undoubtedly partly Peke, partly Tibetan Spaniel with a possible Chihuahua great-grandfather. And George was to be my once in a life- time dog. The Peke population died off gradually… mourned by both George and myself. Tiny Toad (Manticore Pearly Queen) arrived to cheer me… George, however, didn’t quite approve of her, although she adored him and did her best to convince him that she was enchant- ing and brilliant. Stuart Not So Little came after George and did think she was enchanting and brilliant but it took her eleven years to get used to his spluttery effusiveness. And now Toad is gone. A house without a Pekingese is hardly inhabitable and one won- ders who will be next on the scene?

and decided to call the young man to say I wouldn’t take Buddha. I opened the door of my apart- ment and found Buddha attached to the doorknob by his lead with a moldy waterbowl at his side. “Oh well, come along… ” I took Bud- dha into the apartment, threw away the revolting waterbowl and began a new adventure with a wonderful Peke. Buddha never bit me, but he air-snapped quite frequent- ly… always with a warning which sounded like QUACK! After several days he was renamed “Old Mister Quacksnap” or “QUACKSNAP.” The warnings and the snaps were probably related to health issues. He arrived with perianal tumors in need of immediate attention. The protocol that needed to be observed when approaching him involved his deafness and eventu- ally his loss of vision probably from small strokes. Quacksnap wasn’t to be woken up by a call or a touch… better to stomp heavily on floor close by until vibrations brought consciousness. He enjoyed visiting, especially my father, either in New York or Connecticut. On Fifth Avenue walks, we fre- quently met an elderly man with several Pekes. They were nice dogs, and the man spoke highly of their breeder, Mrs. Gatewood. When Quacksnap died… greatly missed… I contacted her and there was Woodgate Star Imp, a double Fu Yong of Jamestown grand daughter, who became Pip- squeak McFidget. Pipsqueak was pretty and opinionated. The col- umns she wrote for the Pekingese News were collected in two slim volumes “A Pekingese Keepsake 1979” and “A Pekingese Trifle.” When Pipsqueak died I visited Manticore, and met a lot of excel- lent Pekes… bred by Kenneth Winters and his partners, Fran and Ray Alcock. Helping at the kennel provided an opportunity to choose two of Pipsqueak’s relations (Fu Yong of Jamestown was the ances- tor in common)… Sarah Stoutly- Bigg (Nanticore Sarabande) and Chrissie Fruitcake (Manticore Bee- in-a-Bonnet) came to live in Con- necticut. We’d commute back to Canada for several months each

1997 George Sponge rehearses with Guy Wolff for George’s third adopted birthday party in Washington, CT. (Photo by Anne Mandelbaum)


2006 George Sponge interviews a good friend. (Photo by Cyndy Brissett)

Tiny Toad as envisioned by Robert Andrew Parker “Tiny Toad at home, Summer Palace” 2008

Tiny Toad at home at Tiny Toad Hall...Washington, Connecticut (Photo by Cyndy Brissett)

Tiny Toad, Stuart Not So Little and the Great Respon- sibility at the Washington Art Association. (Photo by Cyndy Brissett)


“Chrissie Fruitcake” nee Manticore Bee-in-a- Bonnet”… the second Manticore Peke to arrive. (Photo by James Balaban Deutschmann)


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