THE FRENCH SPANIEL
(Photo's courtesy of Luc Charron of Deuxrives)
FCI-Standard N░ 175 / 25. 09. 1998 / GB
TRANSLATION: Mrs. Peggy Davis.
DATE OF PUBLICATION OF THE ORIGINAL VALID STANDARD \: 24.07.1996.
UTILIZATION: Pointing dog.
CLASSIFICATION F.C.I.: Group 7. Pointing Dogs. - Section 1.2 - Continental
Pointing Dogs, Spaniel type. With working trial.
BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY: The French Spaniel is a descendant of the bird dogs
described by Gaston Febus and used in the Middle Ages. It is he who is at the
origin of the diverse varieties of hunting Spaniels. Through the selection he
developed into the elegant and athletic dog, pointing very firmly which, today,
excels in the working trials. The first standard was drawn up in 1891 by James de
Connick; it has been revised several times since, and then was adapted to the
diverse evolutions of the breed.
GENERAL APPEARANCE: Medium size dog, elegant and muscled, built on normal
proportions, of bracco´d type. His balanced construction shows energy and toughness
appropriate to his utilization. His bone structure is strong without being coarse.
IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS: The length of the body (from the point of the shoulders to
the point of the buttock) is superior by 2 to 3 cm to the height at the withers (the
animal fits into a rectangle). The length of the chest is equal or superior to
6/10th of the length of the body.
BEHAVIOUR / TEMPERAMENT: Balanced, frank, soft, calm and docile, enthusiastic
hunter, sociable with his fellow creatures and an ideal companion in all
circumstances. Excellent pointing dog, he is also endowed with the retrieve.
HEAD: Carried proudly, without heaviness, without excessive leanness showing well
defined dimensions. Of medium length and width.
Skull: The lateral sides are almost parallel. The superciliary arches are marked.
In profile, the axes of the skull and the muzzle are slightly divergent.
Stop: Progressive and moderately pronounced.
Nose: Well pigmented, the nostrils widely open.
Muzzle: The slightly convex nasal bridge is preferable to the straight one; it is a
little shorter than the skull.
Lips: The upper lip fits well. Seen in profile, it falls almost vertically in the
front and curves progressively up to the only slightly visible but well closed
corner of the lips. The upper lip must not cover excessively the lower lip.
Jaws/Teeth: Complete dentition. Scissor bite or pincer bite (level bite).
Eyes: The eyes of a dark amber colour express softness and intelligence. They are
quite big, of oval shape. The eyelids well adapted to the eyeball. The upper
eyelid is well endowed with eyelashes.
Ears: The leather is well set on, well set back at eye level; furnished with wavy
silky hair down to the rounded tip. Pulled lightly towards the front, the tip must
just reach the beginning of the nose.
NECK: Muscled, profile slightly curved, oval shape, without dewlap.
Topline: In slight depression in relation to the withers, straight, well firm in action.
Withers: Lean, quite high and broad.
Loin: Broad, not too long and powerfully muscled.
Croup: Broad, rounded in the extension of the loin and without visible bony outline.
Chest: Plenty of heart room, of great capacity, let down to elbow level.
Sternal region: Ample and rounded.
Underline: Harmoniously raised towards the belly.
TAIL: Not docked, reaching the point of the hock, not deviated, set below the
topline and falling obliquely, curved like a sabre. Strong at its root, tapering
progressively towards the tip. Furnished with long wavy silky fringes starting at a
few centimeters from the root, lengthening to the middle part, then getting
progressively shorter towards the tip.
FOREQUARTERS: The forequarters are straight and vertical. The back of the forelegs
is furnished with wavy silky feathering of medium length above the elbow, but
definitely longer at level of the forearm and falling to the level of the pastern.
Shoulders: Well attached against the chest and quite oblique (50░ in relation to the horizontal).
Upper arm: Of inferior length by a third of the height at the withers; its slant on
the horizontal is nearly 60░.
Forearm: Lean and muscled.
Pastern joint / Pastern: Well defined, lean, with visible bone structure and not
coarse. The pastern is very sligthly oblique.
Forefoot: Oval, with tight, well arched toes and strong, black nails. Furnished
with hair in the interdigital spaces. The pads are firm and dark.
HINDQUARTERS: Seen from behind, the hindquarters are vertical; the limbs are
powerful and muscled from the upper thigh to the lower thigh.
Upper thigh: Broad and quite long with powerful and very visible muscles. Its slant
on the horizontal is between 65░ and 70░.
Lower thigh: Of noticeably equal length to that of the upper thigh, with sculpted and visible muscles.
Hock joint: Solid and strong.
Hind foot: Oval and slightly longer than the front foot, but otherwise with the same characteristics.
GAIT / MOVEMENT: Easy, supple, regular and energetic while remaining elegant. The
legs move well in the axis of the body without exaggerated vertical displacement of
the topline and without rolling.
SKIN: Supple and well fitting to the body.
HAIR: Long and wavy on the leathers, falling beyond their tips, as well as on the
back of the legs and the tail. Flat, silky and well furnished on the body with a
few ondulations behind the neck and above the root of the tail. Short and fine on the head.
COLOUR: White and brown with medium spotting, sometimes getting predominant, with
irregular patches, slightly or moderately flecked and roan without excess. The
brown varies from cinnamon to dark liver. The white blaze and the white on the
head, if the marking is not too wide, are appreciated. The absence of white on the
head is perfectly admissible. All the outer mucous membranes are brown without
depigmentation notably on the nose and the eyelids.
From 56 to 61 cm for the males.
From 55 to 59 cm for the females.
With a tolerance for each of 2 cm over.
FAULTS: Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the
seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree.
Skull too broad.
Muzzle too short.
Leather partially white, too short or triangular.
Incorrect position of the legs.
Lack of bone.
Hair curly on the body.
Lack of silky fringes (feathering).
Eye surrounded by white (marking), the eyelids being pigmented.
Aggresive or overly shy.
Lack of type (insufficient ethnical characteristics which means that the animal on
the whole does not sufficiently resemble its fellow creatures of the breed).
Distinct convegence of the axes of the skull and the muzzle.
Upper and lower prognathism with a gap of more than one millimeter.
Any other teeth missing apart from the PM1.
Entropion or ectropion.
Heterochromous eyes (different colours).
Eye definitely too light, in animals over the age of 2 years.
Presence of dewclaws on the hind legs.
Any other colour than white and brown.
Depigmentation (important pink on the nose and/or on the eyelids).
Size outside the limits of the standard.
Timid, agrressive or biter.
Important morphological anomaly.
Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.
N.B.: Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.
American Kennel Club (AKC) - Breed Not Recognized
Canadian Kennel Club (CKC)
United Kennel Club (UKC)
Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI) GB
NOTE: Breed may also be recognized is smaller lesser known registries not shown here.
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