Maltese,Breeding,Dog Maltese,Breeding,Dog



 (1) View side profile, Head carriage, Topline, Tail carriage, and shape of dog. If tail is placed along back, so top line can't be observed. Check top-line and the causes. i.e. bad front or hindquarters or length of back. If exhibitor is holding tail in place - reason could be bad tail set or the Maltese could have temperament problem.

(2) Come to front of table and check head first. Place finger at the Maltese's stop and check balance and planes, in the case of a down faced or long fore faced Maltese sometimes the exhibitor may place the topknots and or "BACK TEASE? the topknots thereby creating an illusion. Then check eye colour and eye rims etc. then ear placement and then mouth last on the head examination, (Reason I suggest checking mouth last is as sometimes you have a young Maltese or an inexperienced show Maltese which maybe a little mouth shy ? so why cause a dog to stress at the beginning of head examination) then check depth of chest and front legs and feet.

(3) Move to side of table. Start to examine the length of neck, if the exhibitor hasn't loosen the lead so you can examine neck properly then ask them to do so as you will not be able to feel the correct length of neck the exhibit has, and you will not be able to feel if the exhibit has the correct neck to sit on well placed shoulders. Check shoulder lay and continuation of the front legs. At this stage check if you feel the exhibit is within standard height. A way of doing this is to measure your hand span before judging and while you are checking front also measure the height. i.e: if your span is 8 inches and you can touch the table and your thumb is level with withers your exhibit is easily within standard. Then check topline and length of loin and back and the hindquarters. Hindquarters should not be over extended or spread very wide.

Exhibitors will usually do this to correct topline. Then check tail placement. It does not hurt to check to the end of tail for pig tails that lay flat on the back.

Tails that are to low set,gay tails and tails that have permanent bend etc.

(4) Now check texture of coat. A Maltese coat should feel soft and cool to touch. It will, normally lift in a breeze fall back into place. The coat should not stand out and should not feel coarse. If you are concerned about the colour in a Maltese coat lift the top layer of hair and look at the coat underneath. Some exhibits coats appear to have a pearl look, which is sometimes caused by the sun rays. These dogs usually have very good pigment. Sometimes the very white coat has had cosmetic change. But there are also the very white coated dogs; some with good pigment some with poor pigment.

Check pads for pigment. Black pigment on the feet pads is a hall mark of the Maltese but in saying this please be careful that you don?t penalise a quality Maltese for the sake of part of a pad not being completely coloured in or have a missing toe pigment or partly missing. Better to see the missing pigment than encouraging exhibitors to try and cheat by colouring/painting in pigment. Yes pigment is an important but not to the extent of losing a top quality Maltese to a less quality Maltese with full pigment.

(5) Movement - When a Maltese moving away from you. The standard calls for drive in hindquarters but in a fully coated Maltese.

YOU SHOULD NOT BE ABLE TO SEE FULL BACK PAD - (AS CAN IN A SHIH TZU) The hind legs should be parallel and not to close behind. It is often seen when an exhibit is moving very close behind, the coat will be sucked in between the back legs. On Side profile the Maltese should hold and head held high. The degree of head placement will depend on the Speed the dog is moving. If the Maltese is a moving dog then the dog will compensate and will b ring its head a little forward for balance. The front legs should move straight through AND SHOULD NOT BE HIGH STEPPING AND BREAKING THROUGH THE COAT AND SHOWING FRONT PADS ALSO THERE SHOULD BE NO WEAVING. This is where the legs cross over on move. (Incorrect shoulders cause these problems) Exhibitors will usually show their Maltese on a strung lead to try to cover this problem. When a Maltese is moving toward you the front legs should be travelling straight through and the coat should be parting a little for the legs to be able to stride through the coat. IF THE FRONT COAT LOOKS LIKE A MIX MASTER ACTION THEN YOU POSSIBLY HAVE A BAD FRONTED MALTESE MOVING TOWARDS YOU. If in doubt send the exhibit our and back at the pace the Maltese wants to move at, or as slow as possible and ask the exhibitor to loosen the lead and try to get down as low as you can and you should be able to see if the Maltese is moving true or not.

 In stance line up for final judging in mature dogs watch for the dog that has to have its tail held (could have bad tail set or exhibitor could be trying to conceal length of back) also the dog that has to be held in the front area and stretching hindquarters (Topline). Placing dogs on an angle is usually to try to hide length of back. A dog that can stand on a loosen lead for final examination is usually of good type under the coat.

Please don?t expect an adult Maltese always respond to squeaky toys, clapping hands and unusual noises as if they are being shown regularly. Maltese become quite bored with this, as they are quite intelligent little dogs.

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