Diavolino Italian Greyhounds

                                                                                      ...world reknowned show dogs and world class companions

 
                                             
 
 

Size

Canada: Height 13-15 inches (33-38 cm). Any deviation from these limits must be considered a serious fault.

USA: Height at withers, ideally 13 inches to 15 inches.

As you can see, size is more of an issue in Canada.  In the US it is merely a preferred, with no explanation of what, if any, consideration should be given to a dog that does not meet the preferred.  In Canada, a deviation is considered a serious fault. I really think that is a bit harsh, I would rather the standard read that the seriousness of the fault be determined by how far it deviates from the preferred.   Without getting into the reasons why (this is after all a judging essay, not a breeding essay), I feel it is too harsh because the larger dogs and the smaller dogs have an important role in our breeding programmes.  If a dog has a value to a breeding programme, it should be able to get a title.  However, the standard is what it is.  We have to work with it.

The reality is, very few judges can estimate size anyway.  I have had judges tell me that my 14 1/2" dog is too small and then have another tell me the very same dog is too big.  So I'm not sure why I worry if a dog is a tiny bit over or under the preferred.  Although it is also my experience that most breeders and exhibitors can't estimate size either!  I've seen dogs on websites that are said to be 13" and I know darn well it is impossible.  I have been ringside with my 14 7/8" dog who is dwarfed by the competition, listening to them tell someone their dog is 15".  Yet their dog towers over mine?  Not possible.

Without a wicket it is virtually impossible to measure an IG.  I have a lovely wicket and I use it regularly.  I even bring it to shows sometimes in case someone doubts my dog's measurements.  I also make it available to other exhibitors if they want to use it, and many are shocked when they find out how big (or small) their dog really is!

Height should also be taken into consideration with the length of leg.  It doesn't matter if the dog is 14" if it's legs are 2" too short!

Ironically, many judges will not consider a 12 7/8" dog yet will award a win to a 17" dog.   How can 2" oversize be better than 1/8" undersize?  True, a too-small dog can appear too Toyish, but most IGs that hit 17" do not look like IGs either.  They start to look Whippety.  I've had both too small and too tall, and I've shown and finished both.  To my eye, the best IGs are between 13" and 15 1/2".  That size range usually has the best style of IG that presents what I see as the breed standard.

When judging IGs, if the out-of-preferred sized dog is truly the best IG in your ring, then by all means award it.  But should a dog well out of sized be deserving of a Group win or Best in Show?  Only you can decide that.

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