Black Mouth Cur
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 origin of the Black Mouth Cur is uncertain. Some writers have claimed that the breed originated in the mountains of Tennessee while others believe the breed originated in Mississippi. In any event, these dogs were widely used by early American settlers as all-round working dogs. As Americans moved west, the Black Mouth Curs moved with them, serving as a hunting dog and family guardian.
The Black Mouth Cur was recognized by UKC on November 1, 1998.
The Black Mouth Cur is a powerful, agile tree dog of medium size. The body is square or just slightly longer than tall. Legs are long enough to allow the dog to move quickly and with agility in rough terrain. The head is broad with a moderate stop and a moderately broad muzzle. Ears are set high and drop. The tail is straight, set low, and may be any length. The coat is short and close fitting. The Black Mouth Cur should be evaluated as a working dog, and exaggerations or faults should be penalized in proportion to how much they interfere with the dog’s ability to work. Scars should neither be penalized nor regarded as proof of a dog’s working abilities.
The Black Mouth Cur is a fast, hard hunter that finds game using its eyes, ears and nose. Silent trailers are preferred, although slightly semi-open on a very hot track is allowed. Never open like a hound. A loud, deep chop on bay or tree, ringing cry or slight yodel allowed. Never full-blown bawl mouthed. The Black Mouth Cur combines tenacity and courage with a strong desire to work. They are very loyal and protective of their owner and family.
The head is large but proportionate to the size of the body. When viewed from the side, the muzzle is slightly shorter than the skull and joined by a definite stop. The planes of the skull and muzzle are parallel.
The skull is flat and broad, tapering slightly toward the muzzle. Cheeks are muscular and prominent.
The muzzle is moderately broad with a well-defined underjaw. Lips are tight. Except in the case of dogs with dilute coat color, lip pigment and the inside of the mouth, excluding the tongue, are darkly pigmented.
The Black Mouth Cur has a complete set of evenly-spaced, white teeth meeting in a scissors bite.
Disqualifications: Overshot bite. Undershot bite.
Nose is broad and slightly protruding with well-opened nostrils. Black pigment is preferred, but red or brown are allowed in dogs with dilute coat color.
Eyes are medium to large in size, set wide apart and may be green, yellow, or brown. Eye rims are tight and match lip pigment.
Fault: Eyes not matching color.
Serious Faults: Blue eye, wall eye.
Ears are drop, of short-to-medium length, wide at the base, and set high.
The neck is slightly arched, strong, very well muscled, and of moderate length. The neck gradually widens from the nape and blends smoothly into the shoulders.
Shoulders are well laid back. The upper arm is long and wide, and forms an apparent 90-degree angle with the shoulder blade.
The forelegs are strong and straight, with large, round bones. The elbows are set close to the body, but able to move freely in action. The pasterns are short, powerful, straight, and flexible.
A properly proportioned Black Mouth Cur is square or just slightly longer than tall. Back is broad, strong, of moderate length, and level, blending into a muscular, slightly arched loin with slight to moderate tuck up. The ribs extend well back and are well sprung out from the spine, then curving down and inward to form a deep body. The brisket extends to the elbow. Viewed from the front, the chest between the forelegs is muscular and wide, with at least four inches between the front legs of a smaller-sized dog. This is a dog bred for stamina and faults should be penalized to the degree that they detract from that goal.
The hindquarters are strong and muscular. The bone, angulation, and musculature of the hindquarters are in balance with the forequarters.
The upper thigh is longer than the second thigh. The stifles are well bent, and the hocks are well let down. When the dog is standing, the short, strong rear pasterns are perpendicular to the ground, and viewed from the rear, parallel to one another.
The feet are of moderate size, compact and well arched. Pads are large, tough, and well cushioned. Toes may be webbed. Single or double dewclaws may be present.
The tail is set on low and may be any length. Coat on the tail may be smooth to slightly feathered.
The coat is short, dense, and close lying. Texture may be coarse to rough to very fine.
Serious Faults: Wiry coat, long coat.
All shades of red, yellow and fawn; black; brown; buckskin; or brindle; with or without black muzzle or mask. Very small amounts of white are allowed under the chin, around the nose, on the neck, chest, legs, and tip of tail, provided that no more than ten percent total of the dog’s body may be white. Dilute coat colors are acceptable and may be identified by the following traits: green, yellow, or light brown eyes; white toenails; red or yellow coat without any trace of black hair. Never spotted, mottled, merle, or with white collar.
Height and Weight
Minimum height is 18 inches for a mature male and 16 inches for a mature female. Minimum weight is 40 pounds for a mature male and 35 pounds for a mature female. Black Mouth Curs are working dogs and should be presented in hard, muscular condition.
Black Mouth Cur gait is smooth and effortless, with good reach of forequarters. Rear quarters have strong driving power, with hocks fully extending. Viewed from any position, legs turn neither in nor out, nor do feet cross or interfere with each other. As speed increases, feet tend to converge toward centerline of balance.
(A dog with a Disqualification must not be considered for placement in a bench show/conformation event, and must be reported to UKC.)
Unilateral or bilateral cryptorchid.
Viciousness or extreme shyness.
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