Belton: intermingled colored and white hairs.
Bicolor: a coat of two distinct colors.
Brindle: an even mixture of dark colors with lighter colors, usually as a striped, tiger-like coat.
Domino: reverse facial mask.
Fawn: color of a newborn deer.
Grizzled: a roan pattern that is usually a mixture of black, bluish-gray, iron gray, or red with white.
Harlequin: black or blue patches on white.
Hound-colored: black, tan and white with a black saddle.
Lion color: tawny tan coat color with darker shading, as seen in Ibizan Hounds.
Merle: a mottled, marbled effect (usually red or black, sometimes blue).
Parti-colored: variegated patches of two or more colors.
Piebald: black and white or two other colors in patches.
Roan: an even mixture of white and another color.
Sable: black tips on silver, gray, gold, fawn or brown hairs.
Saddle: dark patches over the back.
Spectacles: dark markings around the eyes.
Ticked: small areas of black or other dark colors on a white background.
Tricolor: a coat of three distinct colors, usually black, white and tan.
Wheaten: pale yellow or fawn colored.
Corded: coat that is intertwined in the form of long, narrow mats giving a mop-like appearance (example Komondor).
Double coat: fine undercoat of some dogs that is combined with a harsher outer guard coat.
Feathered: long hair on the ears, backs of legs and beneath the tail.
Flag: long fringe on the tail.
Jacket: tight body coat of a terrier.
Mane: profuse growth of hair on the rear of the neck.
Plume: profusely feathered tail carried over the back.
Ruff: profuse growth of hair on the front of the neck, or surrounding the entire neck.
Single coat: coat that is one layer thick, lacking an undercoat.
Stand-off coat: coat that sticks out from the body rather than lying flat (example: Norwegian Elkhound).
Topknot: tuft of hair on the top of head.
Apple head: extremely domed skull.
Brachycephalic: Broad head with short muzzle (example: Pug)
Butterfly nose: spotted or partially unpigmented nose.
Chiseled: clean-cut muzzle and foreface.
Dish-faced: nose tipped up.
Dolichocephalic: narrow head with long muzzle (example: Collie).
Down-faced: muzzle curved downward.
Dudley nose: liver- or flesh-colored nose.
Fill: fullness beneath the eyes, not chiseled.
Flews: upper lips, especially those that are pendulous.
Haw: exposed nictitating membrane (third eyelid), especially if unpigmented.
Mesatacephalic: medium-width head with medium-length muzzle (example: Beagle).
Occiput: highest point at the back of the skull, above where the neck joins the head; in many breeds it forms a crest and is quite prominent.
Stop: transition area from the back of the skull to muzzle, often demarcated by an abrupt depression.
Snipey: weak, pointed muzzle lacking underjaw.
Bite: occlusion; relationship of the upper and lower jaws when the mouth is closed.
Canine tooth: the first premolar; long grasping tooth or a dog's fang.
Deciduous: temporary. Example: A puppy's deciduous teeth are shed before maturity and replaced by permanent teeth.
Dentition: canine tooth development and eruption. In the dog, there are 12 deciduous incisors that erupt at four to five weeks of age, three on each side, six in the upper jaw and six in the lower. Behind them are four deciduous canine teeth, one on either side, in the upper and lower jaws that erupt at about the same time as the incisors. The 12 deciduous premolars erupt about a week later, and are positioned behind the canines, three on each side, in the upper and lower jaws. They complete the set of 28 deciduous or milk teeth. At about three months of age, the central incisors are replaced by permanent teeth. The four permanent canine teeth are often the last to appear, and typically are not visible until about six months of age. Permanent premolars begin to erupt about four months of age. There are four on each side, on both the upper and lower jaws, and the rearmost is usually visible by six months of age. Those 16 permanent teeth take the place of the 12 deciduous premolars. The two upper molars on each side and three lower molars on each side also begin to appear at about four months, with the last of the ten erupting at about six months. Those 42 teeth make up the permanent set of adult teeth.
Eruption: 1. breaking out of a visible, circumscribed lesion of the skin. 2. normal activity of the teeth as they break through the gums.
Full dentition: no missing teeth.
Incisors: any one of the "biting off" or "cutting" teeth directly in the front of the mouth. There are six incisors in the upper jaw, six in the lower. They are named central, intermediate, and corner.
Level bite: when upper and lower incisors meet evenly.
Overbite: when upper incisors overlap lower incisors, leaving a gap between the teeth.
Scissors bite: when upper incisors just overlap lower incisors, such that the rear surface of the upper incisors touches the outer surface of the lower incisors.
Premolars: smaller teeth situated just to the rear of the fangs (canines).
Punishing mouth: strong, powerful jaws.
Undershot bite: when lower incisors extend beyond upper incisors.
Bat ears: large, erect ears (example: French Bulldog).
Bear ears: small erect ear.
Blunt ears: ears that are too short and rounded at the tips.
Button ears: semi-prick ears in which the top portion folds forward (example: Fox Terrier).
Cropping: the surgical removal of a portion of a dog's ear to make it stand erect. Cropping is cosmetic surgery.
Drop ears: long, hanging ears. (example: Basset Hound).
Ear: organ of hearing—inner ear, middle ear and external ear canal. 2. pinna or earflap.
Ear canal: external duct leading from the tympanic membrane (eardrum) to the outside.
Ear canker: external ear ulceration and infection.
Ear carriage: 1. describing the way the ears are held, indicating the dog's mood. 2. position of the ear's attachment to the head.
Ear clamps: templates or patterns that are attached to an anesthetized dog's ears to outline where the surgical cropping cut is to be made.
Ear clip: act of cutting off and rounding the pendulant ears of hounds to give them a shortened, uniform appearance and to lessen the probability of tearing the ear leather in the field.
Ear feather: long hair on an earflap, typical of the Cocker Spaniel and many other breeds.
Ear foreign bodies: grass seeds and various other extraneous matter that finds its way into the external ear canals of dogs.
Ear fringe: long hair on the tips of the ears that is seen in Bedlington Terriers
Ear guide dog: canine specially trained to aid deaf humans.
Ear hematoma: pocket of blood that occurs between the layers of the ear pinna cartilage and skin. It is often caused by shaking head and whipping the ears due to ear mites or foreign bodies in the external ear canals.
Ear leather: pinna or flap of the ear.
Ear mange: redness and crustiness of the ear that is usually caused by ear mites (Otodectes cynotis).
Earmark: tattoo that is impregnated in the ear leather as a means of permanent identification.
Ear mites: Otodectes cynotis, a tiny mite that parasitizes ear canals and causes intense itching and irritation.
Ear notch: in foxhunting, a small notch, or notches, cut in the margin of the ear of the entire pack to immediately identify the dogs of that pack.
Ear ossicles: three bones of the middle ear—malleus, incus and stapes. They transmit sound waves from the eardrum to the otic ganglion.
Ear set: describing where on the heard the ears are attached
Ears set high: placement of ears high on the crown of the head.
Ears set Low: placement of the ears set low on the head.
Ears set wide: placement of the ears on the head at the maximum distance apart.
Erect: perk ear; pinna of the ear that stands erect, either normally or assisted by ear cropping.
Rose ears: small ears folded back in repose (example: Greyhound).
Semidrop ears: ears that fall over the breaks at the tip.
Semiprick: aural appendages that are carried erect with the tips breaking forward.
Pendulant or Pendant: hanging down (example: Bloodhound's ears).
Pinna: the part of the ear that outside the head; flap or leather.
Prick ears: ears that stand upright (example: German Shepherd Dog).
Trowel: ear that is wider in the middle than at the attachment of its tip.
Tulip: ears that stand erect with a slight forward and inward curvature.
V-Shaped: drop ear that tapers to a point.
Bull-neck: thick, muscular, often short neck.
Crest: Arched area near the top of the neck.
Ewe neck: Neck that is arched so that the topline of the neck is concave and the bottom is convex.
Goose neck: overly long, thin neck lacking strength and shape.
Throaty neck: neck with loose skin.
Barrel chest: rounded ribcage.
Brisket: chest or sternum area.
Cape long, thick hair covering the shoulders.
Cobby: compact, short and square.
Herring gutted: gradual slope from a fairly shallow chest to tuck-up.
High in rear: a dog that is higher over its rear quarters than over its front quarters.
High-stationed: tall and long-legged.
Hock: Hock Joint: joint on the hind limb between lower thigh and pastern. Since the hock is a joint it cannot itself be long or short; terms such as long or short in hock refer to the distance between the hock joint and the ground.
Loin: region between the ribcage and croup.
Pastern: region of the metatarsus that extends from the hock to the foot in the hind leg, and the metacarpal area of the foreleg.
Racy: long-legged with a slight build.
Rangy: long-bodied with a shallow chest.
Rib spring: arch formed by the ribcage; more spring refers to more arch.
Roach back: an overly arched, convex topline.
Shelly: narrow, shallow chest and body.
Short-coupled: short loin area.
Swayback: a sunken, concave topline.
Topline: line formed by the withers, back loin, and croup.
Tuck-up: area under the loin in a small-waisted dog.
Bowed front: forelegs that curve out between the elbows and pasterns.
Down in pastern: weak, overly sloping pastern.
East-west front: when feet turn out to the sides, pointing away from each other.
Foreleg: the front leg
Fiddle front: east-west front combined with a bowed front, so that the assembly looks like a fiddle.
Lay back: angle at which the shoulders are set on the dog's body.
Knuckled over: steep pastern, or with a reverse slope.
Loaded shoulders: overly muscled or lumpy forequarters.
Out at elbow: elbows that stick out from the sides of the ribcage.
Returned: set-back of the upper arm under the dog's body.
Shoulder or scapula: also used (incorrectly) to refer to both the scapula and upper are (humerus) region.
Shoulder angulation: angle formed between the scapula and humerus.
Toed-in front: or pigeon toed: feet pointing toward each other.
Bandy-legged: wide, bowed-legged rear quarters.
Cow-hocked: viewed from behind, the point of the hocks point toward each other, resulting in the rear feet pointing outward.
Lower thigh: area from stifle to hock, also called second thigh.
Rear angulation: angles formed between the pelvis, thigh bone (femur) and second or lower thigh bone (tibia/fibula).
Sickle-hocked: viewed from the side, an over-angulated joint between the lower thigh and hock; an inability to straighten this joint when moving.
Well let-down: short hocks.
Cat foot: short, round foot.
Dew claws: extra toes on the insides of the front and sometimes rear legs.
Hare foot: long, narrow foot.
Mops: 1. profuse hair on the paws 2. German name for the Pug.
Paper foot: flat foot.
Splay foot: toes that are not close together.
Bob tail: very short, almost stump-like tail (example: Pembroke Welsh Corgi).
Brush tail: tail covered in hair in such a manner as to give it a bottled-brush appearance (example: Siberian Husky).
Docked tail: tail cut to a shorter length (example: Doberman).
Gay tail: tail carried above the level of the back.
Saber tail: slightly curved, low-carried tail.
Screw tail: short, twisted tail (example: English Bulldog).
Close behind: moving with hocks close together.
Crossing-over: when viewed from the front (or rarely, the rear), the legs converge beyond the midline.
Drive: strong thrust from the hindquarters.
Gait: way of moving.
Hackney: high-stepping front movement.
Loose movement: erratic movement suggestive of poor muscle development.
Lumbering: heavy, ungainly movement.
Pacing: moving both legs on the same side of the body in unison, as though hobbled together.
Pounding: front feet hitting the ground with a jarring reaction.
Reach: length of forward stride.
Single tracking: as viewed from the front or rear, the legs converge toward the center line of balance as the dog trots.
Sound: good movement viewed from the front and rear.
Trotting: moving diagonal legs in unison.
Adoption: to choose or take as one's own; make one's own by selection or assent. To adopt a pet.
Agility: judged competitive timed events for dogs and their handlers in which dogs are trained to master different obstacles such as: tunnels, bridges, various types of high jumps, jumps through windows, board jumps and jumps through tires. The course also includes inclined planes, elevated planks to walk, A-frames to climb and more. Various agility titles are awarded to dogs that successfully complete the course in which they are entered.
Balance: overall proportion and symmetry of conformation.
Bitch: female dog.
Bucketing, to bucket a puppy: Bucketing, to bucket a puppy: When a breeder tosses a newborn puppy into water, drowning it. The reason for the practice is often the breeder feels the dog is not worthy of life because it does not make the written club standards of the specific breed or the puppy does not display the preferred color or type even though it is accepted by the club.
Conformation: physical make-up.
Dam: female parent.
Dealer: one who buys and sells dogs bred by others.
Dominance: assertive characteristics of a dog and its influence over other dogs.
Dominant: alpha dog of a pack that displays a behavior superiority or dominance over other dogs of the pack, and exerts a rule influence
Dysplasia: abnormality of development, especially of the hip or elbow, but it may refer to an organ of the body
Dystrophy: abnormal behavior; behavior problems.
F1: First generation or first cross—the result of two purebred dogs mated together. The puppies would be F1 puppies.
F2: second cross—could mean any next step in the breeding program after F1. Often the F1 offspring bred back to a purebred dog.
F3—third cross after F2 and so on.
Feathering: whelping technique where breeder helps pregnant mother dog (dam) along in her contractions.
Feist: Rat Terrier.
Feral dog: a dog living in a fully wild state.
Flock: 1. collected group of livestock (usually sheep) that are used in a herding trial. 2. farm birds or livestock that are gathered or herded together.
Flyball: in agility trails, a competition that involves a course of jumping and ends with a treadle that the dog steps on to cause a ball to pop out of a box. The dog must catch the ball and return it to the handler.
Game Dog: a working dog usually a hunting , herding or terrier type that will work until it drops, never gives up, perseveres and is ready and willing for anything. See Game Dogs
High in rear: a dog that is higher over its rear quarters than over its front quarters.
High-stationed: tall and long-legged
Hip dysplasia: a very common and debilitating genetic disease of the hips, where the junction of the femur head (large bone in the leg) and the hip socket do not fit as they should. Often, surgery is necessary to correct the problem.
In and In: inbreeding of dogs without regards to results.
Inbred: descriptive of offspring of mated dogs that are closely related to each other.
Inbreeding: practice of mating siblings to each other—father to daughter, mother to son, or other animals closely related to each other.
Kennel: 1. backyard doghouse where family pets or breeding stock are kept. 2. commercial establishment used to maintain a group of dogs, such as a boarding kennel. 3. in foxhunting, fox's lair. 4. foxhunting term for the hound pack's lodging place.
Kennel type: bloodline or strain of dogs that has been developed by an individual breeder in a specific kennel
Line: 1. family of related dogs, usually bred by a single kennel. 2. in foxhunting, the track of a quarry that is indicated by scent. 3. a stripe, streak or lineal mark on a dog's coat.
Linebreeding: mating two dogs that have the same bloodline but are not closely related; a technique used to concentrate and fix genetic features in dog.
Lineage: genealogical descent from a common ancestor; dog's pedigree or family tree.
Metacarpus: referring to bones leading from the carpus (wrist) to the toes; anatomical region of the forepastern.
Molossian dog: Greek sculpture of a Mastiff that belonged to Olympias, the daughter of King Pyrrhus. It is supposed to be a direct ancestor of the modern Mastiff.
Mongrel: cur; mutt; mixed breeds; dogs of unknown ancestry and questionable parentage.
Mops: 1. profuse hair on the paws. 2. German name for the Pug.
OFA: Orthopedic Foundation for Animals.
OFA-certified: a dog’s hips have been x-rayed for hip dysplasia, a very common and debilitating genetic disease.
Pariah dog: is used as a generic term for dogs with a more or less intensive human connection. Some scientists reserve the term for the Indian dog of a specific type, i.e. a Pariah dog: ownerless half-wild mongrel dog common around Asian villages especially India.
Plucking: pulling out loose hair by hand.
Puppy Mill: place in which puppies are bred, often in unsuitable and sometimes inhumane conditions, for sale to dealers.
Purebred: a dog that has parents of the same breed.
Schutzhund: dog that is specially trained and conditioned for guard and attack work.
Schutzhund competition: tests of a guard dog's training in attacking a well padded "enemy".
Sch: abbreviation for the sport of Schutzhund.
Sire: male parent.
Square-proportioned: height at withers equal to length from point of sternum to point of croup.
Stacking: teaching a dog to stand in a show stance that exhibits its characteristics favorably.
Standard: the official blueprint for a breed.
Stifle: knee joint; articulation between the tibia and fibula and the femur.
Stray dog: a dog more or less associated with man who does not have a home; homeless; without a home.
Stripping: the process of hand plucking the outer guard hairs either with your fingers or a stripping knife. removal of the undercoat and dead outercoat without losing the harsh texture; plucking.
Substance: fairly heavy bone and musculature.
Typey: having a superior body conformation; meeting the breeds standard.
Variety: a subtype of a breed that is shown separately, but that can be interbred with other varieties of the same breed.
Weedy: lacking sufficient bone and musculature.
Wicket: device for measuring the height of a dog, consisting of two vertical bars joined by a horizontal bar that can be adjusted for height.