THE BASSET HOUND
Illustrated Standard

(AUSTRALIAN BREED STANDARD AND EXTENSION)

ESSENCE OF THE BREED
CHARACTERISTICS GENERAL APPEARANCE
TEMPERAMENT HEAD AND SKULL EYES EARS MOUTH NECK
FOREQUARTERS BODY HINDQUARTERS FEET TAIL GAIT/MOVEMENT
FORM & FUNCTION COAT COLOUR SIZE HISTORY ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Drawings from the Japanese Illustrated Standard by Yoko Yamamoto



NECK

Muscular, well arched and fairly long with a pronounced but not exaggerated dewlap


FOREQUARTERS

Shoulder blades well laid back; shoulders not heavy. Forelegs short, powerful and with great bone; elbows turning neither in nor out but fitting neatly against side. Upper forearm inclined slightly inwards, but not to such an extent as to prevent free action or to result in legs touching each other when standing or in action; forechest fitting neatly into crook when viewed from front. Knuckling over highly undesirable. Some wrinkles of skin may appear on lower legs, but this must on no account be excessive.

The shoulder blade and upper arm should be approximately the same length and ideally meet at a 90 degree angle or 45 degrees to the horizontal.

The rear of the hound is built for speed… the front is built to slow him down. In order to attain some sort of balance, the front must be built for maximum reach and efficiency. The shoulder blade does five (5) things; –

    1. Supports the weight.
    2. Absorbs concussion.
    3. Propels on turns.
    4. Offsets lateral displacement.
    5. Aids in maintaining level of centre of gravity.

To do these things the blade should be of equal length with the upper arm, and on an angle of 90o to the upper arm when the dog is standing in a normal position.

In this position, it gives maximum lift and reach, while providing best support in conjunction with the upper arm.


A

B

C

D

E
Bitch E has the best layback of shoulder.

Ideal 90 degree layback is indicated by the green lines.

Red lines indicate the actual shoulder layback in each exhibit.

The bones of the forearm and metacarpals in the Hound are rather short when compared to other breeds. Ideally, the bones of the metacarpals should slope so that the heel is placed directly under the centre of the shoulder blade. By no means should this slope be such that the dog looks “down on his pasterns”.

The bend in pasterns does three (3) things; –

    1. Provides greater lift to centre of gravity.
    2. Prevents knuckling over.
    3. Absorbs shock.

TIP: Good layback is usually accompanied by good length of neck flowing smoothly into the shoulders.

Bassets Have A Wrap-Around Front

In addition to being short, the legs of the Hound are also crook’d, giving him what is known as a wrap-around front, similar to that of the Dachshund and the Corgi.

SOME CROOK IN A HOUNDS FRONT LEGS IS A BREED ESSENTIAL.

This enables the legs to come round and support the chest. Most of the weight of a Hound is in the front. The crook is also the only way a dog with short legs can get his front feet under his centre of gravity. It is impossible for a dog to move correctly if its front legs are not tracking close to the centre line. If they are far from it, only a rolling “bulldog” gait can result.

LOOK FOR:

    • A wrap-around, matched front.
    • Wrinkled skin on heavily boned legs.
    • Well-rounded, massive paws.
    • Check for knuckling over.

The forelegs of the should be short, very powerful, very heavy in bone, close fitting to the chest with crook’d knee and wrinkled ankle, ending in a massive paw.

Achondroplasia (Dwarfism) In The Hound

It is necessary to understand that this breed is characterized by a genetic abnormality known as achondroplasia.

Achondroplasia is a form of dwarfism, which leads to arrested development of the long bones. This results in a dog with short legs!

Although the long bones of the legs are shortened, most other features of the are not affected by dwarfism.

Skeleton of the Basset Hound

Mismatched Front
Dwarfism can lead to obvious structural problems that you will observe in some of the Bassets you judge, including mismatched fronts.


Go to next page …. Body …continued

Page 3

Illustrated Standard prepared by Judy Horton – (All Breeds judge) for the VicJudge’s website Australia
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