Glossary Of Terms


Gait: The pattern of footsteps at various rates of speed, each pattern distinguished by a particular rhythm and footfall.

Hackney action: A high lifting of the front feet accompanied by flexing of the wrist like that of a hackney horse.

Height: Vertical measurement from the withers to the ground; referred to usually as shoulder height. See Withers.

Hindquarters: Rear assembly of dog (pelvis, thighs, hocks and paws).

Hock:  The tarsus or collection of bones of the hind leg forming the joint between the second thigh and the metatarsus; the dog's true heel.

Knuckling over: Faulty structure of carpus (wrist) joint allowing it to flex forward under the weight of the standing dog.

Loin: The region of the body associated with the lumbar portion of the vertebrae (i.e., posterior to me ribs and anterior to the pelvic girdle).

Lumbering: An awkward gait.


Muzzle: The head in front of the eyes--nasal bone, nostrils, and jaws. Foreface.

Nose: Organ of smell; also, the ability to detect by means of scent.

Pads: Tough, shock-absorbing projections on the underside of the feet. Soles.

Pastern: Commonly recognized as the region of the foreleg between the carpus or wrist and the digits,.i.e. the metacarpus.

Reach of front: Length of forward stride taken by forelegs.

Ruff: Thick, longer hair growth around the neck.

Scissors bite: A  bite in which the outer side of the lower incisors touches the inner side of the upper incisors.

Slab sided: Flat ribs with too little spring from spinal column.

Smooth coat: The Chow has a hard dense smooth outer coat with a definite undercoat.

Soundness: The state of mental and physical health when all organs and faculties are complete and functioning normally, each in its rightful relation to the other.

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