Beauce Sheep Dog

Posted in Herding Group

A Breed Standard is the guideline which describes the ideal characteristics, temperament and appearance of a breed and ensures that the breed is fit for function with soundness essential.  Breeders and judges should at all times be mindful of features which could be detrimental in any way to the health, welfare or soundness of this breed.

UTILISATION:Sheepdog and Guard Dog

BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY:

‘Beauce Dog’, ‘Beauceron’ and ‘Red Stocking’ were the names chosen at the end of the XIX century to designate these ancient French Sheepdogs of the plains, all of the same type, with smooth hair on the head, a harsh, short coat and ears normally cropped. The body had tan markings, notably at the extremities of the four legs, which led the breeders, at that time, to call these dogs “Red Stockings”. The coat was commonly black and tan but there were also grey, entirely black and even wholly tan dogs. These dogs were bred and selected for their aptitude to conduct and guard flocks of sheep. 

GENERAL APPEARANCE:

The Beauce Sheepdog is big, solid, hardy, powerful, well built and muscular, but without lumber.

IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS:

The Beauce Sheepdog is medium in all its proportions. The length of the body from the point of the shoulder to the point of the buttock should be slightly greater than the height at the withers.
The head is long: 2/5 the height at the withers. The height and width of the head are slightly less than half its total length. The skull and muzzle are of equal length.

BEHAVIOUR / TEMPERAMENT:

Frank approach and self-assured. The expression is candid, never mean, timid or worried. The character of the Beauceron should be gentle and fearless.

HEAD:

The head is well chiselled with harmonious lines. Seen in profile, the top lines of skull and muzzle lie roughly in parallel planes.
Cranial Region:
Skull: Flat or slightly rounded from one side to the other. The median groove is only slightly marked, the occipital protuberance can be seen on the summit of the skull.
Stop: The stop is only slightly pronounced and is equidistant from the occiput and the end of the muzzle.
Facial Region:
Nose: Proportionate to the muzzle, well developed, never split and always black.
Muzzle: Neither narrow or pointed.
Lips: Firm and always well pigmented. The upper lip should overlap the lower without any looseness. At their commissure, the lips should initiate a very slight pouch which should stay firm.
Jaws/Teeth: Strong teeth with a scissor bite.
Eyes: Horizontal, slightly oval in shape. The iris should be dark brown, and in any case never lighter than dark hazel, even if the tan is light coloured. For the harlequin variety wall eyes are admitted
Ears: Set high. Ears are half-pricked or drop-ears. They should not be plastered against the cheeks. They are flat and rather short. The length of the ear should be half the length of the head.
NECK: Muscular, of good length, united harmoniously with the shoulders.

BODY:
Topline: The back is straight. The loin is short, broad and well-muscled. The croup is only slightly inclined.
Withers: Quite visible.
Chest: The girth of the chest is greater than the height at the withers by more than one fifth. The chest is well let down to the point of the elbow. It is wide, deep and long.
TAIL: Whole, carried low, it reaches at least to the hock, without deviating, forming a slight hook in the form of a ‘J’. When in action, the tail can be carried higher, an extension of the top line.

LIMBS:
Forequarters: Upright when seen from the front or in profile. 
Shoulder: Sloping and moderately long.
Forearm: Muscled.
Feet: Large, round, compact. The nails are always black. The pads are hard but nevertheless resilient.
Hindquarters: Upright when seen from profile and from behind.
Thigh: Wide and muscled.
Hock Joint: Substantial, not too close to the ground, the point situated roughly at ¼ the height at the withers, forming a well open angle with the second thigh.
Metatarsals (Rear Pasterns): Vertical, slightly further back than the point of the buttock.
Feet: Large, round, compact.
Dewclaws: By tradition, shepherds are much attached to the conservation of double dewclaws. The dewclaws form well separated ‘thumbs’ with nails, placed rather close to the foot.

GAIT / MOVEMENT:

Supple and free. The limbs move well in line. The Beauce Sheepdog should have an extended trot with long reaching movement.

COAT:
Hair: Smooth on the head, short, thick, firm and lying close to the body, 3 to 4 cm in length. The buttocks and the underside of the tail are lightly but obligatorily fringed. The undercoat is short, fine, dense and downy, preferably mouse grey, very close, and can’t be seen through the top coat.
Colour:

  1. Black and tan (black and tan markings): ‘Red Stockings’. The black is pure black and the tan, red squirrel coloured. The tan markings are distributed as follows :Spots over the eyesOn the sides of the muzzle, diminishing gradually on the cheeks, never attaining under the earOn the chest, preferably two spots

Under the neck,

Under the tail
On the legs, disappearing progressively while rising, without covering in any case more than of the leg and rising slightly higher on the inside.
b) Harlequin (blue mottled with tan markings): grey, black and tan, the coat being black and grey in equal parts, the spots well distributed, with sometimes a predominance of black. The tan markings are the same as for the black and tan.
A faint white spot on the chest is tolerated.
SIZE:
Height at the withers: Male from 65 cm to 70 cm
                                    Female from 61 cm to 68 cm

FAULTS:

Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.

DISQUALIFYING FAULTS:
Aggressive or overly shy

Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.
Size outside the standard limits
Too light boned
Eyes too light, or wall eyes (except for harlequins)
Split nose, of a colour other than black, with unpigmented areas
Overshot or undershot with loss of contact, absence of 3 or more teeth (the first premolars not counting)
Natural ears carried totally upright and firm.
Rear feet turned excessively to the exterior
Simple dewclaws or absence of dewclaws on hind legs
Shortened tail or tail carried over the back
Coat:  Colour and texture other than those defined by the standard. Complete absence of tan markings. Shaggy coat. Well defined, quite visible white spot on chest. For the harlequin variety: too much grey, black on one side and grey on the other, head entirely grey (absence of black).

NB:

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum. 

Only clinically and functionally healthy dogs with breed typical conformation should be used for breeding.