CKC KUVASZ STANDARD
Origin and Purpose
A Hungarian breed whose forbears can almost certainly be traced back
to the Tibetan Mastiff, the present-type Kuvasz was first recorded in Hungary
in the ninth century. Since that time, they have been widely used in their
native land, primarily as guardians but also for tracking, hunting, herding,
and as companions.
The Kuvasz is a large working dog with a pure white, medium length,
wavy coat. Although strongly built, he possesses grace and lightness of foot,
with no hint of bulkiness or lethargy, and is exaggerated in no aspect.
Temperamentally, the Kuvasz is an intelligent dog with a great deal
of independence of spirit. He has been used for centuries as a guardian and
has very strongly developed protective instincts.
The recommended sizes are: males, 28 - 29-1/2 inches (71-75 cm) high
at the withers with a corresponding weight of approximately 88 - 115 lb.
(40-52 kg); females, 26 - 27-1/2 inches (66 - 70 cm) high at the withers
with a corresponding weight of approximately 66 - 93 lb. (30 - 42 kg).
Coat and Colour
The double coat is formed by a coarse outer guard coat and a thick,
woolly undercoat. The texture of the guard coat is rough so that the coat
readily sheds dirt and shows no tendency to mat. The length of the hair follows
a definite pattern: head, ears, front of forelegs, and feet are covered with
short, straight, dense hair 3/8 - 3/4 inches (1-2 cm) in length. The guard
coat on the body and thighs is medium length 1-1/2 - 4-3/4 inches (4-12 cm).
Some coats have long, loose waves, some have smaller, tighter waves. Both
are correct, as is anything in between. On the adult dog, the coat must not
be tightly curled nor should it lie completely flat, but the degree of waviness
will vary considerably from one specimen to another. There is a ruff and mane
of longer hair about the neck and chest, more prominent on the males, and
feathering of 2-3-1/4 inches (5-8 cm) on the back of the legs. The tail is
thickly covered in long wavy hair 4-6 inches (10-15 cm) in length. Puppies
may have either straight or curly coats but should lose these characteristics
with their first adult coat. The coat is a lustrous, pure white, although
ivory is permissible, but not preferred. A yellow saddle is to be severely
penalized. The skin is well pigmented, preferably grey in colour. The nose,
eye rims, lips, and flews are black. The roof of the mouth should be dark.
Pads of the feet are black or slate grey and slate-coloured nails are preferred.
From the tip of the nose to the top of the occiput should measure slightly
less than half the dog's height at the withers. Viewed from above, the head
should narrow, gradually and smoothly, from the ears to the nose. The skull
and muzzle are of equal length and the width of the skull should be slightly
less than its length. While there is a gentle and graceful arch of the forehead
above the eyes, the stop should be only slightly marked. A distinct furrow
runs from between the eyes to the top of the occiput. The muzzle,
which tapers gently from root to nose, is strongly built with a punishing
bite. It is never snipey but neither should it be coarse or clumsy. Skin
on the skull and muzzle should be clean, dry and close-fitting. The lips
should be tight and show no flews. The eyes should be as dark
as possible, ideally a coffee-black. They are almond shaped with close-fitting
rims, set well apart and a trifle obliquely. The nose is of good size
with well-developed nostrils. The teeth are large and very strong.
Dentition should be complete, and the teeth meet in a scissors bite. The
Kuvasz has drop-ears of triangular shape with a gently rounded tip. Set well
to the side and nearly at a level with the top of the head, the upper portion
stands slightly away from the head while the lower third falls close to the
cheek. When the dog is alert he brings the whole ear slightly toward the
front giving him a keen and alert appearance. The ear should be small
and neat and when pulled over the face should just cover the eye.
The neck should be powerful, slightly arched, and of medium length.
There should be no dewlap.
The shoulders are well covered with good, hard muscle. The shoulder
blade and upper arm should be at right angles to each other and of good length,
allowing the dog ample reach and follow-through of stride. Elbows are close
without being constricted and the whole foreleg should describe a straight
line from shoulder to forepaw when viewed from the front. The leg should be
of good, strong bone, without being coarse or clumsy. The pasterns should
have ample spring and the feet should be of the type known as "cat feet,"
tight and well arched with deep, resilient pads. There should not be much
hair between the toes.
The withers are prominent and slope gently into a strong, level back
of medium length. The chest reaches to the elbow, with a well-developed
forechest and medium spring of rib. The ribs behind the forelegs must taper
inward to allow complete freedom for long, easy stride. The loin is strong
and gently arched. There is a distinct but moderate tuck-up. There should
be a well-formed, slightly sloping croup which is broad and well muscled.
The hindquarters are well angulated. The angle between pelvis and upper
thigh should be 90 degrees to correspond with the proper angle in the forequarters.
The upper thigh itself should be of good length, creating the correct bend
of stifle (110-120 degrees). The bend of the hock joint should be about
130-140 degrees with the metatarsus being short, strong, and perpendicular
to the ground. Rear paws are somewhat longer than forepaws but should nevertheless
be tight and well arched with deep, resilient pads. Dewclaws are undesirable
and should be removed.
The tail is set on low, a smooth continuation of the slope of croup.
The tip, when straightened, should reach the hock. The tail hangs straight
down and may be slightly turned up at the tip but should not curl when the
dog is relaxed. When the dog is excited, the tail will curl up to the level
of the loin, but should not be carried over the back.
The trot is smooth, elastic and far-reaching, often showing a tendency
for the hind foot to overreach the front. As the dog's speed increases,
he will tend to single-track. When he is moving fast, he will carry his head
low, at a level with his shoulders. The Kuvasz should move effortlessly,
enabling him to travel great distances without fatigue.
Since the Kuvasz is a working breed, any faults of soundness should
be considered serious. Faults in type which should be guarded against are:
too short a muzzle, apple head or bulging skull, no visible supraorbital
ridge, too much stop; giving an uncharacteristic setter-like appearance,
drooping haws or pendulous flews, hound ears, lying back in the ruff. Too
long a neck, barrel chest, loose or sloppy shoulder assembly, yellow eyes
or yellow markings, sullen appearance or distrustful expression (not to be
confused with reserve), extreme nervousness, overshot or undershot mouth,
Over or undersize as follows
Males, over 32 inches (81 cm) or under 25-1/2 inches (65 cm);
Females, over 30 inches (76 cm) or under 23-1/2 inches (60 cm).
So pronounced a lack of pigmentation as to have flesh-coloured eye rims.
Colour other than white.
The preceding is the Canadian Kennel Club's version of the Kuvasz standard.
There is also a different AKC version which is outlined on their web site
along with a picture of a nice looking dog. However, in my opinion the picture
is not an ideal portrayal of the correct (FCI) Federacion Cynologique International
KUVASZ AS PETS