Current American Kennel Club (AKC) Standard
Approved April 10, 2012
Effective May 30, 2012
Temporary Standard of the ‘Canaan Dog’
Accepted by the Israel Kennel Club
The first “Temporary Standard of the ‘Canaan Dog’ (Collie-like, Type 3)” was accepted by the Israel Kennel Club and published in Pariahunde (“Pariah Dogs”) by Drs. R. and R. Menzel in 1960 in Leipzig. It is the basis for the AKC (American Kennel Club), FCI, and UKC (United Kennel Club) standards which follow. Bryna Comsky translated Pariahunde from German to English. The first [translated] edition was published in 1982, and the second in 2002.
Overall Appearance: A dog of medium size, balanced, near to the wild dog type.
Character: alert, sharp, mistrustful, aggressive toward strangers, but in no way a fighting dog. His watchfulness extends to both strange people and animals in the herd dog tradition. Toward his master he is especially devoted and tractable. If well-kept, he is strongly bound to his home area and shows no tendency to stray.
Size and Weight: 50 to 60 cm shoulder height. Males are mostly considerably larger than females. Weight 18 to 25 kg. Coefficient of robustness 20-25.
Color: Sand colors to red-brown, white, black. Large, white areas are not only permitted with all colors, but preferred. Pied of all kinds are permitted as are white or black masks. Boston terrier design frequent. Grey specimens, and black with brown legs are not desirable at the time in order to emphasize the difference to similar European sporting dogs.
Coat: Middle length double coat preferred, but long double coats and short double coats occur. Smooth coat and pronounced long hair less desirable. The development of the undercoat corresponds to the season. Pronounced mane with males desired. Feet should be well-feathered: the tail as bushy as possible.
Shape: Square. Where length is slightly greater than height results from shorter leg-bones, not on length of back or coupling. Deep chest, forechest not too narrow, underline well tucked up.
Throat and Neck: Upright. Well-developed withers.
Eyes: Set in tightly, somewhat slanted, as dark as possible. Unpigmented third eyelid with spotteds normal; allowed with other colors, but not desired.
Ears: Short, relatively wide prick ear desired, set low, so that it stands pointed outwards somewhat diagonally (not set on high and long, as that of a shepherd). Button ear and all states between a prick ear and a light drop ear still permitted now, but not desired.
Head: Well proportioned and noble, in no way heavy and clumsy, but also not too light. The head is blunt, wedge-shaped, of moderate length. Forehead not too wide, but appears somewhat wider because of the low set-on of the ears. The distance from the indentation of the forehead (between the eyes) to the occipital point is clearly longer than the distance between both sets-on of the ears, but without excessive disproportion. The pre-orbital depression should be as slight as possible, preferably completely lacking; likewise the stop should be as slight as possible. The skull shall be neither too strongly arched nor as flat as a greyhound type dog. The furrow at the forehead and the middle-furrow at the occiput only slightly noticeable; the jaw strong, not too long and of corresponding width, never cube-shaped nor greyhound-like. The comparison between the length of the muzzle and distance to the occiput from the stop is approximately 1:1. Deviations from this ratio shall tend toward the longer length of muzzle. The shape of the head reminds one most of the head-form of the collie, but differs from it by a somewhat shorter muzzle, wider forehead, and the prick ears, set on low and far apart. The lips should be tight and short, not pendulous; a somewhat heavier lip can be tolerated with heavier male heads. Arches at the forehead powerful, but rather flat than too strongly arched. Exceptions with heavy male heads.
Teeth: Scissors bite preferred; pliers bite allowed; loss of premolars a major fault, the same for overshot and undershot bites.
Nose: Dark pigmented desired, lack of pigment presently allowed, especially with spotteds.
Feet: Forelegs absolutely straight, medium bone, pasterns vertical to the ground. Broad hocks, lower segment of the leg lightly feathered; paws as round as possible and arched, hard soles.
Tail: Set on high, curved over back when excited, as bushy as possible.
Gait: Short, but brisk trot, ‘natural’ trot desired.
General Observations: Special weight must be put on the points which distinguish the Canaan Dog from the German Shepherd Dog, whose non-highly bred form he sometimes resembles: The Canaan Dog is square, short-coupled. Shoulders are well-laid back in the forehand. Hind quarters are less angulated. The neck is as noble as possible. Tail is ringed over the back in excitement. The trot is short (see also differences in head and color).
Faults: Besides deviations from the standard of the breed, all faults in body structure which constitute deviations from the norm of a well-built dog.