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Babrees Canaan Dogs

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This is the original standard for the Canaan Dog written by the Menzels who established the breed. Taken from Pariahunde, written by Drs. R. and R. Menzel in 1960, and published by A. Ziemsen Verlag, Wittenberg, Lutherstadt. Standard translated from German by Dr. Lee Boyd.

Provisional Conformation Standard of the "Canaan-Dog"

(Collie-like, Type III), adopted by the Israel Kennel-Club

Appearance: A middle-sized, harmoniously built dog, close to the wild dog type.

Character: Vigilant, sharp, mistrustful, aggressive to strangers, but in no way a fighting dog. His watchfulness extends not only to strangers, but also to animals (herding dog tradition); toward his master, in contrast, he is an especially devoted follower. When well-kept, he is strictly bound to his home territory and shows no inclination to stray.

Size and Weight: 50 - 60 cm shoulder height, dogs usually considerably larger than bitches, weight 18 - 25 kg, Robustness-coefficient: 20 - 25.

Color: Sand color to red-brown, white, black. Large white markings are not only permitted with all colors, but desirable. Spotting of all kinds is permitted, as well as white or black masks. Boston-Terrier markings are frequent. Grey specimens and black with brown legs are not desirable at this time, to emphasize the difference from similar European sporting breeds.

Coat: Middle length guard hair is preferred, however long and short guard hair occur. Smooth coats and pronounced long hair is less desirable. The amount of undercoat corresponds to the season. Pronounced manes on males are desirable. The feet should be well-feathered, and the tail as bushy as possible.

Body form: Square, where the length slightly exceeds height it arises from short leg bones, rather than length of the back or loins. Deep chest, forechest not too narrow, good tuck-up.
Neck: upright, well-developed withers.

Eyes: Tightly set, somewhat obliquely placed, as dark as possible, unpigmented third eyelids on spotted dogs normal, permitted on all other colors but not desirable.

Ears: Short, relatively broad, erect ears desirable, set low, so that they point outwards somewhat obliquely (not high set and long like those of an Alsatian). Button-ears and all states between erect ears and a lightly hanging ear at this time are still permitted but not desirable.

Head: Well-proportioned and noble, in no way heavy and clumsy, but also not too light. The head is a blunt-wedge shape, of medium length, forehead not too wide, but appears somewhat broader because of the low ear-set. The distance from the forehead depression (between the eyes) to the occipital protuberance is distinctly longer than the distance between both ear set-ons, but without excessive disproportion. The pre-orbital depression should be as slight as possible, preferably lacking; similarly the stop should be as slight as possible. The cranium should be neither too strongly arched nor too flat like a greyhound's; the forehead furrow and the median occipital furrow are only lightly marked, the jaws powerful, not too long and of equivalent width, in no case cube-shaped or like a greyhound's. The comparison between the length of the cranium and the muzzle length is approximately 1:1, deviation from this should tend toward the longer muzzle length. The head reminds one of the head form of the collie, distinguished from it, however, by the somewhat shorter muzzle, broader cranium and the lower and wide-set prick ears. The lips should be tight and short, without pockets, a somewhat stouter appearing lip on heavier male heads can be tolerated. Powerful cheekbones, but rather flat than too strongly arched, except on heavier male heads.

Teeth: Scissors bite preferable, pliers bite allowed, lost premolars absolutely incorrect, as are over and under bites.

Nose: Dark pigment desirable, pigment deficiency allowed at this time, in particular with spotted dogs.

Feet: Forelegs absolutely straight, medium bone, pasterns stand perpendicular to the ground. Broad shanks, lightly feathered, paws as round as possible and arched, hard pads.

Tail: Set high, curled over back when excited, as bushy as possible.

Gait: Short but propulsive trot, natural trot desired.

General remarks: Special importance must be placed on the points that differentiate the Canaan-Dog from the German Shepard Dog, whose highly bred form he sometimes resembles: the Canaan-Dog is square, the loin region short, the forequarters highly erect, the hindquarters less angulated, the neck as noble as possible, the tail curled over the back when excited, the trot is short (see also differences in head and color).

Faults: Aside from deviations from the breed standard, all faults in body build that represent deviations from the norm of a well-built dog.

Character Standard of the "Canaan-Dog"

A. Basic Character

  • Reactivity: Very high, in general a very low stimulus threshold, very agile.
  • Mistrust: Very high.
  • Reliability of behavior in peaceful situations: Average, but sometimes still less than the desired average.
  • Hardiness: Average.
  • Respect for leadership: Especially high, therefore his easy domestication and taming, and his great devotion to human companions.
  • Perseverance: Physical endurance uncommonly high, the psychological ranges from a moderate to a high degree.

B. Protection and Fighting Complex

  • Courage in fighting situations: Moderate, especially strongly dependent on the rearing conditions.
  • Sharpness: in general very high, varies in individual families and varying also in individuals depending on environmental conditions.
  • Protection drive: moderate to high.
  • Fighting drive: very slight as far as behavior toward humans, against other animals, especially dogs, more strongly developed.

C. Other Drives Important for Use

  • Tracking drive: ranges from moderate to high.
  • Searching/Scavenging drive: ranges from moderate to high.
  • Booty drive: in his original form highly developed, not always transferred in the same magnitude to the retrieving drive.
  • Hunting drive: varies in different families.
  • Guarding drive: in individual families highly developed, in others moderate.
  • Maternal drive: harmoniously developed, neither over- nor under-developed.