The Curly Coated Retriever Breed Standard
A Breed Standard is the guideline which describes the
ideal characteristics, temperament and appearance
including the correct colour of a
breed and ensures that the breed is fit for function.
Absolute soundness is essential. Breeders and judges
should at all times be careful to avoid obvious
conditions or exaggerations which would be detrimental
in any way to the health, welfare or soundness of this
breed. From time to time certain conditions or
exaggerations may be considered to have the potential to
affect dogs in some breeds adversely, and judges and
breeders are requested to refer to the Breed Watch of
the Kennel Club
website for details of any such current issues. If a
feature or quality is desirable it should only be
present in the right measure. However if a dog
possesses a feature, characteristic or colour described
as undesirable or highly undesirable it is strongly
recommended that it should not be rewarded in the show
Appearance: Strong, upstanding, with a degree of
elegance. Distinctive coat.
Characteristics: Intelligence, steady, reliable.
Temperament: Bold, friendly, self confident and
independent. May seem aloof.
Skull: Head wedge-shaped in both side and front
profiles. In proportion to body size. Slight stop.
Foreface and skull equal length. Planes of skull and
muzzle parallel. Nose black in blacks and brown in
Large, not prominent, oval-shaped, obliquely set. Dark
brown in blacks, in livers brown tone to blend with coat
Rather small, set slightly above level of eye, lying
close to head, covered with small curls.
Jaws strong, with perfect regular and complete scissor
bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping teeth and set
square to jaws.
Strong and slightly arched, of medium length, free
from throatiness and flowing freely into well laid back
Forequarters: Shoulders well laid back and
muscular. Upper arm and shoulder blade approximately
equal length. Forelegs straight with strong pasterns
and set well under body.
Chest deep with well sprung ribs, oval in cross
section with brisket reaching elbow. Forechest
visible. Ribs extend well back into short, deep and
powerful loin. Slight tuck up to flank. Topline strong
and level. The dog should be slightly longer in body
measured from point of shoulder to point of buttock than
in height from withers to ground.
Hindquarters: Strong, muscular. Moderate turn of
stifle. Hocks well let down and well bent.
Round, tight with well-arched toes.
Flows from topline. Should reach approximately to
hock: carried straight on a level with topline when
Gait/Movement: Effortless, powerful gait with good
extension and drive. Parallel movement. At speed, legs
tend to converge.
Body coat a thick mass of small tight, crisp curls
lying close to skin, extending from occiput to tip of
tail: without undercoat or bare patches. Elsewhere hair
Black or liver.
Ideal height at withers: Dogs 69 cms (27 ins),
Bitches 64 cms (25 ins).
Any departure from the foregoing points 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 dogs
ability to perform itís traditional work.
Male animals should have two apparently normal
testicles fully descended into the scrotum.