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Cicular 14/2014: FCI basic statement for show judges

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Op initiatief van Nederland die zich hard heeft gemaakt – ook binnen de FCI – om honden mede te keuren op hun geschiktheid hun oorspronkelijk werk te verrichten, heeft de FCI een schrijven doen uitgaan waarin gewezen wordt op algemene punten waarop een keurmeester moet achten tijdens het keuren.
 
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FCI BASIC STATEMENT FOR SHOW JUDGES
DOGS FIT FOR THEIR ORIGINAL FUNCTION

Contents
INTRODUCTION
POINTS TO BE PAID ATTENTION TO
UNIFORM REQUIREMENTS FOR ALL DOGS
DISHARMONY AND CONSTRUCTION
TEETH 
EYES 
SKIN TOO LOOSE 
OBESITY/OVERWEIGHT 
TEMPERAMENT AND BEHAVIOUR 
ABUNDANT COAT AND GROOMING 
INVENTORY

INTRODUCTION
This statement concerns FCI show judges and other show judges who act at shows and activities organised by the FCI members.
The task of a show judge is to help preserve the inner and outer characteristics of each breed within the approved breed standard. In other words, the judge’s main task is to judge and evaluate dogs, according to the breed standard and to consider them as potential breeding dogs for future generations. This must never be done at the detriment of the welfare and well- being of the dogs. Dogs must always be fit for the function for which they were originally meant, developed and bred for.
It is therefore the responsibility of the judge to be acquainted with the breed standard as well as the health and behaviour problems which can occur in each breed. A judge must particularly pay attention to the breed-specific characteristics which have a tendency towards exaggeration, which can creep into a breed and have a negative effect on the health of the individual dog.
In addition, in order to contribute to the preservation and the development of a breed, the judges are asked to take into account, in the best possible way, the health and welfare aspects of the breed and to express this clearly in the written critique of the dog. Dogs have to be fit for their original function at all times.
While judging at shows, all the severe deviations regarding the breed-specific behaviour should not be tolerated and should result in the disqualification of the dog(s).
The judge must be aware of the fact that a pedigree dog with exaggerated breed characteristics which can lead and result in health, behaviour or movement problems, should be excluded from breeding and therefore never be awarded a qualification “Excellent.”
When a judge notices problems in the breed he is judging, he can ask for a form on which he can make a brief list of the breed-specific problems that he found during his judging. The list will be used by the national canine organisation where the dog is registered to adjust breeding and to enhance the health of the breed concerned.

POINTS TO BE PAID ATTENTION TO
It is of utmost importance that each judge continues to judge as positively as previously and selects winners of correct type and overall quality, dogs that represent the ideal type of the breed, according to the adopted FCI standard for that breed.
The critique must always be written in a positive form, but it is important to be precise and open about relevant health and welfare matters, if these have affected the evaluation and/or placing of the dog.
As previously, the judge should evaluate what he sees when qualifying and placing the dog, deviations must be judged on their degree of imperfection, and no faults are linked to a certain award. Exaggerations in conformation and faults which have an effect on the dog’s health are more serious than cosmetic problems. Judges are requested to consider health aspects to a higher degree than previously, particularly when awarding CAC and/or CACIB. 
These common health and behaviour instructions must be applied at all times, even if a breed is hardly represented at shows in the country where the judge is acting. We need judges who will assess and judge dogs in a similar way, regardless of the number of entries of a breed at shows. Only then can we manage a good and healthy breeding policy.
The list of common points to be taken care of must not be seen as a list of disqualifying faults in breeds whose standards contain disqualifications!
Frequently existing faults, not linked with health and exaggeration concerns in individual breeds, have not been listed here but must also be noted when judging.

UNIFORM REQUIREMENTS FOR ALL DOGS
Judges are expected to pay attention to the following problems in ALL breeds. Dogs with those problems should preferably be awarded with a “Good” and can never get more than a “Very Good”. They will never qualify for a CAC and/or CACIB.

DISHARMONY AND CONSTRUCTION
When standing or moving the dog should be balanced.
All dogs should be able to move without problems and every dog should show it sufficiently when being judged.

BREATHING
All dogs should be able to breathe normally while standing and moving.
Particular attention should therefore be paid to exaggerations which might prevent healthy breathing such as:
- very noisy breathing and/or audible respiratory distress ;
- very small and pinched nostrils or nostrils covered with skin.

TEETH
The teeth of the dog should be developed according to the standard.
Particular attention to dogs with jaw and dental exaggerations as:
- too narrow and weak underjaws;
- inverted canine teeth, sometimes even going straight up into the roof of the gums (palate);
- extremely small teeth;
- not closing jaws.

EYES
All dogs should have bright and dry eyes without any sign of discomfort.
Particular attention to dogs with exaggerations that can cause irritation(s) of the eyes, such as:
- overly large and protruding eyes;
- eye rims too loose and droopy eyelids;
- visible inflammation and/or humid eyes
- too small and/or too deep set eyes

SKIN TOO LOOSE
All dogs should have a healthy skin without any sign of discomfort.
Particular attention to dogs with exaggerations that can cause irritation of the skin, such as:
- too many skin folds and loose skin, so that the nose and/or eyes are covered with skin;
- too much loose skin on body, limbs and head

OBESITY/OVERWEIGHT
Lately there has been an increase in overweight dogs. In the show ring some dogs cannot move/breathe properly due to overweight.
A wrong diet is often the problem, but also lack of exercise or health problems. When the judge is not able to feel the ribs anymore, when the loin is not marked anymore and the dogs are not able to move/breathe properly, these dogs should never be qualified with an “Excellent”.

TEMPERAMENT AND BEHAVIOUR
All dogs should have a good temperament in the ring as well as suitable for life in present society.
Breed specific behaviour must be allowed, but excessive shyness, reluctance or sharp temperament is not desirable.
Aggressive or overly shy behaviour must never be tolerated during breed/dog judging and must result in the disqualification of this/these dog(s).

ABUNDANT COAT AND GROOMING
The coat should not be so abundant as to impede movement and/or its ability to see

PRESENTATION OF THE DOG
It is increasingly common that breeds, standing as well as moving, are presented in the ring on a upstraight and neck-tight leash. This does not promote the welfare of the dog, and moreover it inhibits correct movement and makes natural and breed specific movement impossible to be achieved. A dog should be shown on a loose leash in a natural way with a correct and breed specific movement. Pulling the dog up at the neck and/or tail is prohibited.
It is forbidden to prepare a dog with any substance that will alter the structure, colour or form of the coat, skin or nose. Only trimming, clipping, combing and brushing are allowed.
An exhibitor, who does not follow the usual rules for presenting a dog, should leave the ring. Although this does not affect the dog's health or behaviour directly, the judge has the possibility not to judge the dog or award it with a lower qualification.

INVENTORY
It is of utmost importance that every judge realizes that he/she contributes to the development within the breeding and the health of a breed. Judges often form the basis (positive or negative) of the development within a breed.
Therefore we ask the judges after judging a breed in which they remark health and/or behaviour problems, to fill in a uniform document. The results can then be transmitted to the breed clubs, so that these clubs will be able to take the development of the breed into account.
This document will be made available at national and international shows. Breed clubs are also asked to use it because most dogs of their breed are likely to be presented at their speciality shows

The English version is the authentic one.

These regulations were approved by the FCI General Committee at the meeting in Helsinki,
October 2013.