THE BAD, THE GOOD & THE UGLY!
by SHELLEY HENNESSY
THE BAD I often ask other judges, “Would you give 1st in the Hound Group to a Whippet with its tail laying on its back? Would you give 1st in the Non-Sporting Group to a Dalmatian with its tail laying on its back? Or would you give 1st in the Herding Group to a German Shepherd with its tail laying its back?” Then why, why, why are Chi- nese Cresteds with their tails laying on their backs not only winning Groups, but also Best in Shows? The Chinese Crested standard, under tail, states, “When dog is in motion, the tail is carried gaily and may be car- ried slightly forward over the back.”
The dictionary states ‘gaily’ refers to, “In a joyous or happy manner.” The standard does not say ‘gay’ tail, which is a completely different thing! And while it says the tail may be carried slightly over the back, it does not have to be! And back to the dictionary, slightly means, “to a small degree.” All Crested standards prior to full AKC recognition, stated, “Tail carried up or out” or words to that effect. A Crested with its tail carried straight out was perfectly fine and it is interesting to see that some of our older judges seem to remember this! On the other hand, I remember a show years ago, not too long after the breed came into the
Toy group, when a judge withheld first place in a puppy class with three beau- tiful puppies that trotted around with their tails straight out. Pekes, Poms and Havanese carry their tails over their backs—not Cresteds! I have my own ideas why the tail section was rewritten when the breed came into the AKC, but I think you can figure it out! You find most bad tails on Powder- puffs, but the occasional Hairless will appear in the ring with a curly or cork- screw tail. It doesn’t help that many pro handlers and some owner handlers, prop or push the tail over on the dog’s back. As a judge, I think, “Hey, thanks!
“AND WHILE IT SAYS THE TAIL MAY BE CARRIED SLIGHTLY OVER THE BACK, IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE!”
S how S ight M agazine , M ay 2017 • 257
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