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Full Critique for Manchu Shih Tzu Society 2019
Judges : Mrs Stephanie Walsh and Mrs Stephanie Walsh
This critique reflects the judge's opinion
based on what they saw on the day of the show.
|When I first got the invitation to judge at this show, a number of years ago, I was so delighted, honoured and thrilled – to be asked to judge Shih Tzus in England – the country that ’minds’ the breed standard – it was a day I had been looking forward to for so long!! The day itself did not disappoint, lovely venue with either in or outside rings, beautiful weather – even if it got a little hot for some dogs (and me!!), very organised and helpful committee and stewards, lots of prizes for exhibitors in the ring, friendly, sporting and cheerful exhibitors, and a really lovely number of Shih Tzus entered. My involvement with this wonderful breed started over 30 years ago, and I was indeed lucky to have some truly knowledgeable people to encourage my interest, to pass on their views of breed type and ’correct’ type. Those great ladies and mentors who were travelling the world judging Shih Tzus 30 years ago also instilled in me their passion for judging for breed type in our breed, or what I consider to be breed type, and for looking for those essential breed specific points that make our breed what it should be – longer than tall (measured from withers to root of tail) , sturdy, tea-pot tail, good bone, and of course a large round head with large round dark eyes and a broad slightly tilted underjaw which gives that so desired ‘oriental’ expression. So, what did I find? Only one dog that I would consider to be untypical in the extreme, and most of the lovely entry were indeed typical in outline – at least when standing. I am always aware of the large weight allowance in this breed and I found some of the lighter dogs – bitches especially to be almost frail under my hands – certainly not with the sturdy body required. Some heads while being attractive pretty and round were not large and round. As is often the case with many breeds some ribcages were short – which in turn lacks forechest – and lengthens loin, again taking away from a sturdy body. Some dogs moved well in front but were narrow behind moving, the full pads showing behind when moving should come from strong rear action. Some flat tails spoiled otherwise nice outlines, and a big concern was the lack of broad, wide underjaws, and the typical tilt to the jaw in so many exhibits – this is a trait which seems to be vanishing around the world in Shih Tzus. Having said all that there was so much to be positive about!! We had some wonderful displays of the typical Shih tzu temperament during the day, temperaments overall were superb, coat textures excellent, as I said above so many beautifully balanced outlines, many of the dogs placed had sturdy well sprung and long rib cages, good bone, no exaggerated movement anywhere – while some might need a bit more reach in front (better construction) it was indeed gratifying to see so many have typical movement and to be moved at a speed that can display their arrogant carriage . The puppy classes were a joy, the future is certainly looking bright!!! The veterans – ranging from 8 to 13.5 all in superb condition. I enjoyed every moment of this wonderful show and am truly grateful for those people who proposed me and for all the exhibitors for entering and making the day as special as it was. And I must just add to date I have never had so many solids in line-ups!!!|