Frenchie outlines

How important is the outline of a Frenchie?
Well, I thought it might be interesting to illustrate several examples for you and you can make up your own mind. I have not invented them, they can all be seen from ringside at any show where Frenchies are being judged, except maybe the perfect example, there aren´t too many of those!

Fig. 1  Is an approximation of my idea of a perfect outline as taken from the breed standard: A sturdy, compact, solid, small dog with good bone; short, cobby, muscular and well rounded with deep, wide brisket, "roach back"; strong; wide at shoulders and narrowing at loins; good "cut up", ribs well sprung. No point exaggerated, balance essencial.

Fig. 2  Is very common and seems to be on the increase. Surprisingly, it often wins well. One only has to glance through pictures of the past champions to see that several of them looked like this. Straight in topline and undercarriage, frequently narrow chested and flat ribbed giving that slabside appearance. Straight toplines also predispose to a higher set of tail. Viewed from above, these dogs are not the ideal pear shape, but run parallel from front to back with no waist.

Fig. 3  Shows an incorrect set on of head, usually stemming from bad shoulder placement; and a topline which slopes away.

Fig. 4  Is not infrequently described as a good "roach back" is NOT. The curve of back is not over the loins as it should be but starts at the shoulder sloping away quickly at the loin giving a hump or "camel" back. This often goes hand in hand with the poor shoulder placement and set on of head.

Fig. 5 Shows a Frenchy of rangey build, usually finer in bone, too long in neck, back and legs. This one also dips a little too much behind the shoulder, giving a rather exaggerated roach effect.

Fig. 6 Is obvious. He is too short on the leg ruining the essential balance that the breed standard demands.

Fig. 7 Is very short in the neck, giving the appearance that the head springs directly from the shoulders. He is rather straight in the topline too giving a high set tail.

Fig. 8 Again lacks balance being too high on the leg.

These are just a few of the obvious outlines we see, but if we consider other factors which may also play a part ( straight stifles, poor fronts....) the permutations are endless. So, your dog may have a beautiful head or be a super mover, but does he have a good outline? If he does then he will probably have that special look of quality and class that most dogs that do.

By: Pat Wilson
English Frenchy breeder of many years standing with well defined line under the Wilcott affix, and specialist breed judge.The French Bulldog. August,1989


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