|Barked: Thu Oct 4, '12 7:57pm PST |
|From the AKC standard:
"The well furred tail of fox-brush shape is set on just below the level of the topline, and is usually carried over the back in a graceful sickle curve when the dog is at attention. When carried up, the tail does not curl to either side of the body, nor does it snap flat against the back. A trailing tail is normal for the dog when in repose. Hair on the tail is of medium length and approximately the same length on top, sides and bottom, giving the appearance of a round brush. Faults--A snapped or tightly curled tail; highly plumed tail; tail set too low or too high."
Basically it should naturally fall into an appropriate curve, but it shouldn't be stuck there. The Huskies you see with tails like Akitas are absolutely incorrect, as would be a Husky with a tail like a Lab (although I have yet to see one).
The reason for some variation in the show ring (aside from the mood of the dog at the time) is that the only disqualifying factor for a Sibe in the show ring is height. Poor tail position is faulted, and the further from standard it falls the more poorly a judge will look upon it... But every dog will have faults. The goal is to get as close to the standard as possible. If a tail is sort of off but everything else is perfect, there's no reason for the dog not to win (unless there's another dog in the ring with absolutely everything perfect).
Then you'll have Sibe-specific show politics, too. Basically, some things matter more than others because of trends or tradition or the judge that happens to be there that day. For instance, a Bouvier des Flandres can be shown with cropped or natural ears, but you never see them in the ring with natural ears. It just isn't how it's done. If tails aren't being closely scrutinized, they'll tend to fall to the wayside in favor of the traits that are.
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