The Fine Line We Ride....

Excesses can be the detriment of any breed. Excesses can certainly hurt Borzoi. Some of my personal dislikes are paper thin heads with squashed looking eyes (no room for normal ones?) and V-shaped jaws, heavy bone with no muscle, and extra high toplines, sometimes coupled with no width (the classic two-dimensional dog). These kind of dogs are sometimes referred to as "art-deco dogs." Depending on the judge, sometimes these dogs do well. However, looking at the ORIGINAL PURPOSE OF THIS BREED and the dogs who founded it, I feel these kind of dogs are incorrect.

If I have to choose between showring "beauty" and what is really functional and correct for this breed, I will choose a functional dog everytime, even if it means NOT winning in the ring. I cannot sacrifice what I feel is correct for the showring. Sorry, but the extra fancy excessive dog is just not pretty to me. But what makes a really good, functional dog that's still acceptable in the ring? It's a fine line between good and too much.

Let's start at the head. It should be narrow. But how narrow is too narrow? When the Borzoi loses strength and expression it's too much. The back should be arched, that's part of sighthound type. But too much is not good, the Borzoi loses speed and staying power. The front should be moderately angled and set-back slightly. Too much angle and too much set back and a Borzoi becomes less sightound like. It's too much. The rear, well, a good rear is the mark of a good sighthound! It should be long and well-angled, in a moderate way, because excessive length contributes to showring fancy and is of little use in the field - too long and the muscles become too long and weak. A Borzoi should be muscled up and strong. Nice muscling through the loin and rear, Too much and the dog becomes too heavy and loses speed. How about speed? Speed is good. Too much speed and the Borzoi sacrifices stamina. So it is a fine line between great and too much, between what pleases the eye and what really works.

Back to the main page

Comments welcome! E-mail me!