Top Notch Toys December 2018


by Jeanie Montford originally published in The Royal Dispatch

T he Cavalier conformation is quite normal—one could almost say their structure and proportions are generic—there are no ex- tremes of proportions or conforma- tion such as we find in the Dachshund or the Pekingese or the Bulldog for ex- ample, which will dictate specialized and distinctive gaits. How important is it to consider Cav- alier movement? Where do we put movement in our list of priorities among head and expression, temper- ament, coat and markings etc? Do all breeders consider good move- ment an essential goal of their breed- ing program or are they more con- cerned with pretty faces and lots of coat? Why do we want our dogs

USA Standard: “Free moving and elegant in action, with good reach in front and sound, driving rear ac- tion. When viewed from the side, the movement exhibits a good length of stride and viewed from front and rear it is straight and true, resulting from straight-boned fronts and properly made and muscled hindquarters.” I do not believe there is any difference in the essential meaning between these two standards. I interpret “move parallel” to be essentially the same as “straight and true”. Some of the factors that affect move- ment are, firstly, structure andconfor- mation. In order to produce the ideal movement described in the Standard, the dog needs to be well-angulated

to move well both in and out of the show ring? Because if a dog is moving with all its bones and joints in proper proportion in relation to one another, it will move more efficiently with less wear and tear on the joints, expending less en- ergy to get from A to B. Hopefully the dog will live well into a comfortable old age without developing arthritis or other joint inflammations. Our Standards for the Cavalier are mercifully clear and to-the-point when describing movement: Country of origin, UKStandard: “Free moving and elegant in action, plenty of drive from behind. Fore and hind limbs move parallel when viewed from in front and behind.”

True and parallel movement in front with leg forming straight column of support under the body.

True and parallel movement behind.

Close movement behind.

72 • T op N otch T oys , D ecember 2018

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