New Guinea singing dog

Sepík, male. Breeding: ZOO Zlín

New Guinea Singing Dog

Official Standard of
The New Guinea Singing Dog Club of America
Approved by N.G.S.D.C.A. Board Of Directors 3/96

General Appearance:

The New Guinea Singing Dog is a natural breed of wild origin. The overall impression is that of an extremely agile and graceful animal with a fox-like appearance. This breed is presented in a natural condition with no trimming, even of whiskers. A tonal howl is a unique characteristic of the breed.
Size, Proportion, Substance:

Height of mature dogs averages between 14 - 18" at the withers and for bitches between 13 - 17." Weight averages between 17 - 30 pounds. At all weights the appearance is lean and muscular with substantial, but not heavy, bone. In proportion, the side profile of the body, from point of shoulder to point of rump, is about 20% longer than the height at the withers.
Head - Expression:

The eyes are small, triangular and obliquely set. They are dark amber to very dark brown. Eye rims are dark-pigmented. The white portion of the eyeball often shows in the inside corners of the eyes, giving the dog a sly or mischievous expression. The ears are small, triangular and set wide apart on the head with the tips pointing slightly outward away from each other when the dog is relaxed. Their shape has a cupped base and resembles a tulip petal. When at alert the ears tilt forward at approximately a 60-degree angle to the top of the skull. Viewed from the side the ears appear to be an extension of the curve of the back of the neck. Skull: The head is wedge shaped both from the top and side views. The stop is prominent and there is a shallow furrow running vertically from the stop to the occiput. The face and forehead are free from wrinkles in adults. Muzzle: The muzzle tapers from base to nose and is slightly shorter than the topskull from stop to occiput. The nose is always solid black. Lips are close-fitting and the back corners turn up slightly, giving the impression of a "grin." Bite: The teeth are large for the size of the dog and should meet in a scissors or level bite.
Neck, Topline and Body:

Neck: The neck is long and straight to slightly arched. The skin is pliable but should not form a prominent dewlap. Topline: The topline is straight or slightly roached, with the rump level with or slightly below the height of the withers. Body: The fore chest is rather narrow. Ribs are well sprung but not barrel shaped. The brisket reaches to the elbows in mature animals. Tuck-up is moderate with a clearly defined waist at the flank. The body is extremely flexible and should be well muscled and hard. Tail: The tail must reach at least to the hock. It is strong at the base and set on as a continuation of the topline. There must be a thick brush on the underside that is either white or very light tan in color. A white tip is desired. When the dog is at alert the tail is carried over the back in a gentle curve resembling a question mark. When the dog is stressed the tail may be carried tucked under. During gaiting it may be carried flowing out behind. Kinks, short tails that do not reach the hock and tails that curl more than a half circle are serious faults.

The shoulder blades are well laid back and meet the upper arm at a moderate angle. Elbows are close to the body. Forelegs are straight and the pasterns fairly long and slightly sloped. The feet are cat-like, round in shape and may turn slightly outward. Dewclaws should not be removed.

The hocks are well let down and parallel to each other when viewed from the rear. Thighs are muscular and the stifle moderately angulated. Hindfeet are round to oval in shape. Dewclaws are permitted.

The coat is short, dense, and double. The texture is plush, with the undercoat often visible through the guard hairs. Hairs are longest on the shoulders, center of the back, and backs of the thighs, but should not exceed about 1 1/2 inches in length, nor form feathering or otherwise obscure the clean-cut outline of the dog. The skin is very pliable. Honorable scars are not to be faulted

The undercoat may be of a lighter or darker color than the outercoat for all permissible colors. The following colors and patterns are acceptable: Red: This color ranges from fawn to deep rust. Sable: Shades of red with dark brown or black tipping on the guard hairs. This tipping provides a subtle shaded effect and should not be concentrated in small areas so as to make the dog appear mottled or blotchy. Black and Tan: The black is a glossy jet-black and the tan markings range from fawn to deep rust. The tan markings may occur on the cheeks, the sides of the muzzle, the chest, the feet and lower legs, in a spot over each eye, and around the vent. The brush on the underside of the tail is a very pale tan to cream.

White markings are common, but should not form more than 1/3 of the body's total color. White markings are permissible only in the following areas and may not form spots or patches on the back or sides of the body: muzzle, face, neck (may extend onto the shoulders), belly, legs, feet and tail tip.

A black muzzle or mask may be present in red and sable dogs. This usually fades with maturity.

Movement is free and graceful, with moderate reach and drive. The dog almost appears to be floating above the ground with quick, flowing motions.

New Guinea Singing Dogs are active, lively and alert. They are constantly exploring everything in their environment, using all five senses including taste. They use their acute sense of hearing in addition to sight and scent to locate prey. When prey is detected, their intense hunting drive is likely to overwhelm any training. They do not bark repetitively, but have a complex vocal behavior including yelps, whines, and howls. Their incredible structural flexibility allows them to pass their bodies through any opening wide enough to admit their head. Although usually gentle and affectionate with people they can be aggressive toward other dogs, especially of the same sex. An unprovoked attack upon any person is cause for disqualification.

* NOTE: This information has been contributed by, and is property of The New Guinea Singing Dog Club of America, and is gratefully used here with permission.

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