The Spinone Club of America and the Club Italian Spinone, U.S.A. were both formed
in the late 1980s. CISP, U.S.A. is also the official sister club of the Club
Italiano Spinone of Italy. The AKC considers
the Spinone Italiano its 146th breed.
The Spinone Italiano, or Italian Pointer, is Italy's all-purpose hunting dog. It
is also sometimes referred to as a Griffon, since that name formerly designated the
hunting dogs of all Continental Europe. Actually, the dog is a Pointer of the old
school, that is, a rather slow-footed dog similar to those used before the era of
wing shooting. Almost every country in Europe has had its own type of Pointer for
at least three centuries, and each developed the dog in its own locality according
to climate, need, and changing times. The Piedmonte district of northwest Italy is
primarily responsible for the development of the Spinone into an all-purpose
dog. It is said to outrank all other Italian gun dogs as a highly efficient worker.
Muscular dog with powerful bone. Vigorous and robust, his purpose as hardworking
gun dog is evident. Naturally sociable, the docile and patient Spinone is resistant
to fatigue and is an experienced hunter on any terrain. His hard textured coat is
weather resistant. His wiry, dense coat and thick skin enable the Spinone to
negotiate underbrush and endure cold water that would severely punish any dog
not so naturally armored. He has a remarkable tendency for an extended and fast
trotting gait. The Spinone is an excellent retriever by nature.
Size, Proportion, Substance:
Height: The height at the withers is 23 to 27 inches for males and 22 to 25
inches for females.
Weight: In direct proportion to size and structure of dog.
Proportion: His build tends to fit into a square. The length of the body,
measured from sternum to point of buttocks, is approximately equal to the height at
the withers with tolerance of no more than 1 inch in length compared to height.
Substance: The Spinone is a solidly built dog, robust with powerful bone.
Long. The profile of the Spinone is unique to this breed. Expression is of
paramount importance to the breed. It should denote intelligence and gentleness.
Skull of oval shape, with sides gently sloping. With occipital protuberance well
developed, medial-frontal furrow is very pronounced. Muzzle: Square when viewed
from the front. Muzzle length is equal to that of backskull. The planes of the
skull and muzzle are diverging, downfaced. Its width measured at its midpoint is
a third of its length. Stop is barely perceptible. Bridge of the muzzle is
preferably slightly Roman, however, straight is not to be faulted. Lips fitting
tightly to the jawline. Convergence of planes of the skull and muzzle or a
dish-faced muzzle is to be faulted so severely as to eliminate from further
Eyes: Must have a soft sweet expression. Ochre (yellowish brown) in
color, darker eyes with darker colored dogs, lighter eyes with lighter colored
dogs. Large, well opened, set well apart, the eye is almost round, the lids
closely fitting the eye, to protect the eye from gathering debris while the
dog is hunting, loose eye lids must be faulted. Which is neither protruding
nor deep set. Eye rim clearly visible, color will vary with coat color from
flesh colored to brown. Disqualification: Walleye.
Nose: Bulbous and spongy in appearance with upper edge rounded.
Nostrils are large and well opened. In profile, the nose protrudes past the
forward line of the lips. (Pigment is flesh colored in white dogs, darker in
white and orange dogs, brown in brown or brown roan dogs.) Disqualification:
Any pigment other than described or incomplete pigment of the nose is to be
Teeth: Jaw is powerful. Teeth are positioned in a scissors or level
bite. Disqualification: Overshot or undershot bite.
Ears: Practically triangular shape. Set on a level just below the
eye, carried low, with little erectile power. The leather is fine, covered
with short, thick hair mixed with a longer sparser hair, which becomes thicker
along edges. Length, if measured along the head would extend to tip of nose
and no more than 1 inch beyond the tip. The forward edge is adherent to the
cheek, not folded, but turned outward; the tip of the ear is slightly rounded.
Neck, Topline, Body:
Neck: Strong, thick, and muscular. Clearly defined from the nape,
blending in to the shoulders in a harmonious line. The throat is moderate
in skin with a double dewlap.
Chest: Broad, deep, well muscled and well rounded; extending at
least to the elbow. The ribs are well sprung. The distance from ground to the
elbow is equal to 1/2 the height at the withers. Back: The topline consists
of two segments. The first slopes slightly downward in a nearly straight
line from the withers to the 11th thoracic vertebrae, approximately 6 inches
behind the withers. The second rises gradually and continues into a solid
and well-arched loin. The underline is solid and should have minimal tuck up.
Croup: Well muscled, long. The hipbones fall away from the spinal
column at an angle of about 30 degrees, producing a lightly rounded, well
Tail: Follows the line of the croup, thick at the base, carried
horizontally or down; flicking from side to side while moving is preferred.
The tail should lack fringes. It is docked to a length of 5 1/2 to 8 inches.
Tail habitually carried above the level of the back or straight up when
working is to be penalized.
Shoulders: Powerful and long, withers not too prominent; forming
an angle with the upper arm of approximately angle 105. With well-developed
muscles, the points of the shoulder blades are not close together. The
ideal distance between the shoulder blades is approximately two inches or
more. Angulation of shoulder is in balance with angulation in the rear.
Forelegs: The forelegs are straight when viewed from the front
angle with strong bone and well-developed muscles; elbows set under the
withers and close to the body. Pasterns are long, lean and flexible following
the vertical line of the forearm. In profile, they are slightly slanted.
Feet: Large compact, rounded with well-arched toes, which are
close together, covered with short, dense hair, including between the toes.
Pads are lean and hard with strong nails curving toward the ground, well
pigmented, but never black. Dewclaws may be removed.
Thighs are strong and well muscled, stifles show good function angulation,
lower thigh to be well developed and muscled with good breadth. The hock,
with proportion of 1/3 the distance from the hip joint to foot being ideal,
is strong, lean and perpendicular to the ground. Fault: Cowhocks.
Feet: Slightly more oval than the forefoot with the same
characteristics. Dewclaws may be removed.
The skin must be very thick, closely fitting the body. The skin is
thinner on the head, throat, groin, under the legs and in the folds of the
elbows is soft to the touch. Pigmentation is dependent upon the color or
markings of the coat. Disqualification: Any black pigmentation.
A Spinone must have a correct coat to be of correct type. The ideal
coat length is 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 inches on the body, with a tolerance of 1/2
inch over or under the ideal length. Head, ears, muzzle and front sides of
legs and feet are covered by shorter hair. The hair on the backsides of the
legs forms a rough brush, but there are never any fringes. The eyes and
lips are framed by stiff hair forming eyebrows, mustache and tufted beard,
which combine to save fore face from laceration by briar and bush. The coat
is dense, stiff and flat or slightly crimped, but not curly, with an absence
of undercoat. The Spinone is exhibited in a natural state. The appearance
of the Spinone may not be altered. The dog must present the natural appearance
of a functional field dog. Dogs with a long, soft or silky coat, the
presence of undercoat, or any deviation of the coat is defined in this
as well as excessive grooming, i.e., scissoring, clipping, or setting of
pattern shall be severely penalized as to eliminate them from further
The accepted colors are: Solid white, white and orange; orange roan
with or without orange markings; white with brown markings, brown roan with
or without brown markings. The most desired color of brown is chestnut
brown, "monks habit," however, varying colors of brown are
acceptable. Disqualification: Any black in the coat, tan, tri-color, in
any combination, or any color other than accepted colors.
The Spinone is first and foremost a functional working gun dog. Its
purpose as a versatile hunting dog must be given the utmost consideration.
Easy and loose trot geared for endurance. Maximum ground is covered with
least amount of effort, which his purpose as a versatile working gun
dog demands. Profile of the topline kept throughout the trotting gait,
light body roll in mature bitches is characteristic of the breed. While
hunting, an extended fast trot with intermittent paces of a gallop
allows the Spinone to cover ground quickly and thoroughly. Any
characteristics that interfere with the accomplishment of the function
of the Spinone shall be considered as a serious fault.
Any departure from the foregoing points constitutes a fault which
when judging must be penalized according to its seriousness and extension.
Any pigment other than described or incomplete pigment of the nose.
Overshot or undershot bite.
Any black pigmentation.
Any black in the coat; tan, tri-color markings in any combination, or any color other than accepted colors.
This standard was approved February 11, 2000, effective: September 28, 2000.
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