Breed Standards : Northern Breed Group : German Spitz
Official UKC Breed Standard
Revised July 1, 2009
@Copyright 2006, United Kennel Club, Inc.
The goals and purposes of this breed standard include: to furnish guidelines for breeders who wish to maintain the quality of their breed and to improve it; to advance this breed to a state of similarity throughout the world; and to act as a guide for judges.
Breeders and judges have the responsibility to avoid any conditions or exaggerations that are detrimental to the health, welfare, essence and soundness of this breed, and must take the responsibility to see that these are not perpetuated.
Any departure from the following 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 and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work.
The first documented reference to a spitz being a valiant defender of his home and fields is from the year 1450. Many early members of the breed were from the province of Pomerania, hence the early name Pomeranian.
Starting out as a peasant’s dog, German Spitz became very popular with the royalty in the 18th Century. In Germany the breed is recognized with five size varieties, but when the Toy and Wolfspitz were exported to other countries they were recognized as separate breeds (the Pomeranian and the Keeshond), and in America the German Spitz is registered in two sizes, Mittel and Klein.
The German Spitz is a fairly new breed to America, and in recent years several have been imported from Germany, England and Australia in an effort to establish the breed in this country.
The German Spitz was recognized by the United Kennel Club in 2006.
The German Spitz is a compact, short coupled Nordic breed with a nearly square outline. It is well knit and firm, with good substance, and a profuse coat that comes in a variety of colors and markings. Males are distinctly masculine and females are distinctly feminine.
The breed is intelligent, active and alert, with a confident, happy disposition that shows no signs of nervousness or aggression.
The head is wedge-shaped, with clean cheeks and tight flews.
SKULL - The skull is broad and nearly flat. The stop is moderately defined.
MUZZLE - The muzzle tapers in width to the nose. It is approximately the same length as the skull. Lip color is black in the black, white, black and white parti-colors and black and tans. In other colors it matches the color of the coat.
TEETH - The German Spitz has a complete set of evenly spaced, white teeth meeting in a scissors bite.
Disqualifications: Overshot or undershot bite.
NOSE - Fully pigmented, black in black, white, black and white parti-colors and black and tan dogs; in other colors it matches the color of the coat.
Disqualification: Butterfly nose.
EYES - Medium sized, oval in shape, and set obliquely and not too far apart. The eyes are always dark in color, with fully pigmented eyerims that are compatible with the coat color.
Disqualifications: Entropion or ectropion.
EARS - Small, triangular, and set rather high, the ears are perfectly erect.
Disqualification: Semi-prick ears.
Clean, moderately short, and well set into the shoulders.
The shoulder blades are moderately sloping. The upper arms are approximately the same length as the shoulder blades, and set back on an angle that allows the elbow to be in a line directly below the withers.
FORELEGS - The front legs are one-half the height at the withers. They are well-boned and straight, with strong, flexible pasterns.
In proportion, the body is square, measured from the point of the shoulder to the point of the buttocks, and from the withers to the ground. There is moderate forechest, and the ribs are well sprung and rounded. The loin is short and well developed, and there is moderate tuck-up. The topline is level.
The hindquarters are moderately angulated. The hocks are moderately well let down and the rear pasterns are strong and vertical, neither cow-hocked nor spread hocked.
Small, rounded and cat-like, with well arched toes.
The tail is high set, curled up from the root, and lies curled over the back.
The coat is double, with a soft, woolly undercoat, and a long, harsh, perfectly straight top coat that covers the entire body. The coat is very abundant around the neck and forequarters, and there is a frill of profuse, off-standing straight hair that extends over the shoulders. The legs are well feathered. The ears are covered with soft, short hair, and the hair on the face is smooth and short. The tail is profusely furnished with long, spreading hair. Trimming of the feet, anal area and rear pasterns is allowed.
Serious Fault: Any shaping of the body coat or excessive trimming.
All colors and markings are acceptable, including pure white.
Klein - 9 to 11.5 inches at the withers.
Mittel - 12 to 15 inches at the withers.
At a trot, the gait is effortless and brisk, straight coming and going, and free from exaggeration. The topline remains level.
(An Eliminating Fault is a Fault serious enough that it eliminates the dog from obtaining any awards in a conformation event.)
Over 15 inches at the withers.
(A dog with a Disqualification must not be considered for placement in a conformation event, and must be reported to UKC.)
Unilateral or bilateral cryptorchid. Viciousness or extreme shyness. Albinism. Butterfly nose. Overshot or undershot bite. Entropion or ectropion. Semi-prick ears.
Please Note: Effective January 1, 2010, in UKC Conformation Shows, this breed will show by variety in this order - Klein, Mittel.