:Julie on..understanding front assembly

This weekend is really busy for both Julie and me. Julie’s son is getting married. I’ve got four days of dog shows. Hey! Julie! Why did your son pick this particular weekend – one of the top ten biggest shows in the country – to get married?! ūüôā

My monitor started acting wacky yesterday…perhaps in celebration of this upcoming crazy weekend. It pixelates. There’s little moving thingees. Rick said it could be the monitor. Or the computer. Maybe I’ll need a new, fancy monitor! Yippee!!

Here’s Julie…

Debby asked if I would put into words what I, as a judge look for in the “front assembly” of a Lhasa, especially for Faye who is evaluating her puppies.
The front of the Lhasa for me is way easier to understand than the rear.¬† The Lhasa has normal “dog” structure, which in one word means EQUAL.
Equal length of bone, equal height , equal angulation.¬† Bone length:¬†the length of the shoulder blade should be the same length as the upper arm (measured from point of withers to point of shoulder & point of shoulder to point of elbow).¬† The height from point of withers to point of¬†elbow should be¬† equal to point of¬†elbow to the floor.¬†¬† Where should the withers lie?¬† In the perfect dog, it would be about at a 40 degree angle from point of shoulder, but Lhasa’s “layback” is far from perfect!!¬† I don’t want the withers in the neck!¬† That may sound funny but many Lhasas withers start in the neck rather than forming the start of the topline.¬† Now picture this, draw an imaginary line down from the withers, the point of elbow on the Lhasa should fall directly into that line.¬† If a dog with withers “set high” the upper arm has to be short, so it fall s in line from the point of withers. You will not get correct movement. A dog with a short upper arm will “pound” the floor in movement.¬† What I see a lot of is “high ” set withers with equal length of all bones, but this places the point of elbow far behind the “line down from the withers”¬† This also is incorrect dog structure¬†which may give¬†the illusion of good gait in a puppy, but as an adult what you will see is the front legs cannot “reach”.¬† These are the Lhasas you see in the ring who are straight coming at you but in side gait the front feet have a hard time breaking through the chest hair, no way is it possible¬† for it reach past the nose which a dog with correct structure should.¬† This is a simplified explanation,¬† there is a lot more that goes into making “movement and structure”¬† So Faye measure-equal bone length, equal height, and equal angles. Also, the width between the shoulder blades ideally should be close, far set shoulder blades end up with what I term “a loaded front” a wide chest usually will accompany this, giving the mature adult Lhasa a bulldoggy muscle bound front.¬† I don’t want a chest that is much wider than 3 of my fingers.¬† If you can put the whole palm of your hand between the puppies front legs-it’s chest is to wide. Also¬†make sure you have¬† depth of chest and nice tight elbow.
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