Finnish Hound – General Description
The Finnish Hound (Suomenajokoira, Finnish Bracke) is a breed of dog originally bred for hunting hare and fox.
Classification and Standards
- FCI Group 6, Section 1.2, #51
- UKC Scenthound Group
Character & Temperament
The Finnish Hound is friendly, calm and never aggressive. It is energetic in the hunt and is a versatile tracker. It works independently and pursues the quarry with passionate barking.
The Finnish Hound was a result of a breeding programme in the 1800’s, which involved French, German and Swedish hounds. The goal was to develop a hound dog that could work on hilly terrain and in deep snow. The Finnish Hound has become Finland’s most popular dog breed. Although the breed is very popular in Finland and Sweden, it is quite uncommon elsewhere.
Size & Appearance
The coat of the Finnish Hound is short, dense and coarse to the touch. The coat pattern is tricolor with tan, a black saddle and small white markings on head, feet, chest and tail tip. Height is commonly 20-24 inches (52-61cm) and weight 45-55 pounds (20-25kg).
Health & Maintenance
Finnish Hounds are energetic working dogs with great stamina. They need long, brisk daily walking, and plenty of running and playing free. Life expectancy is about 12 years.
The smooth, short haired coat is easy to maintain. The brushing can be done with a firm bristle brush, and dry shampoo may be used occasionally if needed. The coat does not need bathing unless extremely dirty. Finnish hounds shedding is average.
Finnish Hounds suffer from an inherited disease, cerebellar ataxia, forcing people to euthanize many puppies. This has been traced to a single mutation in a gene called SEL1L. Mutant cells suffer disruptions in their endoplasmic reticula, leading to disease. It is hoped that a test will be developed to screen for this mutation and eventually breed it out of the population.
- Suomen Ajokoirajärjestö – Finska Stövarklubben – http://www.ajokoirajarjesto.fi/swe/rasstand1.htm
- Kyöstilä, Kaisa; Cizinauskas, Sigitas; Seppälä, Eija H.; Suhonen, Esko; Jeserevics, Janis; Sukura, Antti; Syrjä, Pernilla; Lohi, Hannes; Leeb, Tosso (NaN undefined NaN). “A SEL1L Mutation Links a Canine Progressive Early-Onset Cerebellar Ataxia to the Endoplasmic Reticulum–Associated Protein Degradation (ERAD) Machinery”. PLoS Genetics 8 (6): e1002759. doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1002759. – http://dx.doi.org/10.1371%2Fjournal.pgen.1002759
- EtäKärppä (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
- Published by Posti- ja telelaitos (http://www.datafun.fi/postimerkki/) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
- W. E. Mason – Dogs of all Nations [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Finnish Hound (Suomenajokoira)
FCI-Standard N°51 / 14. 11. 2000 / GB
ORIGIN : Finland.
DATE OF PUBLICATION OF THE ORIGINAL VALID STANDARD : 17.07.1997.
A hound for hunting hare and fox by following the scent. Eager to hunt also in difficult circumstances. He works independently, he is a versatile tracker and pursues the quarry with resonant barking.
F.C.I. CLASSIFICATION :
- Group 6 Scenthounds and related breeds.
- Section 1.2. Medium sized hounds.
With working trial.
BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY :
In Finland in the beginning of 19th century there were in addition to the finnish country dogs also many dogs resembling the European hound breeds. After the establishment of the Finnish Kennel Club in 1889 the development of the Finnish Hound began. The first standard was written in 1932. The breeding associations in different parts of the country were very important to the development of the breed. The crosses made in the beginning of the 20Th century have also helped to create the stock from which the Finnish Hound descends.
GENERAL APPEARANCE :
Tricolored, medium in size, evenly high ; clearly longer in body than the height at the withers, strongly built but not heavy. The supporting area of standing is as long as the body or slightly longer, in front it is as broad as the chest and in rear at least as broad as in the front. The sex should be clearly stamped.
IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS :
- The ratio between the length of the body and the height at the withers is of 1,1 to 1.
- The depth of the chest is a half of the height at the withers.
- The length of the muzzle is equal to the length of the skull. The length of the skull is equal to its width and depth.
BEHAVIOR / TEMPERAMENT :
Calm, energetic and friendly, never aggressive.
CRANIAL REGION :
Seen from the front of even breadth, domed at the top of the skull. Forehead slightly convex in profile. The topline of the skull is parallel to the bridge of the nose ; the furrow between the eyes is barely visible ; eyebrows and occiput are clearly visible.
Stop : Slight but clearly defined, accentuated by the eyebrows.
FACIAL REGION :
Nose : Well developed, black ; large and mobile nostrils.
Muzzle : Equal in length to the skull, moderately deep, slightly tapering ; the bridge of the nose is straight. The lower lip forms the lower line which is almost parallel with the topline of the muzzle.
Lips : Well developed, good pigmentation. The upper lip beautifully curved. The lips and the corners of the mouth are close fitting.
Jaws/Teeth : The jaws are strong. Teeth well developed, symmetrically set in the jaws. Complete normal dentition. Tight and complete scissor bite.
Cheeks : Moderately clean.
Eyes : Medium in size, not protruding, slightly oval, of a dark brown colour, looking forward. Expression calm. The eyelids are black.
Ears : Hanging with the front edge close to the head. Turned so that the back edge points outwards, the tip nearly forwards. Set on the line drawn from the nose to the eyes. Flat, reaching over half of the muzzle when drawn forward.
Of medium length, muscular, rather clean, the topline only slightly arched. When standing the tip of the nose is at the level of the topline or slightly higher.
Back : Of medium length, straight and muscular.
Loin : Rather short and powerful.
Croup : Well developed, long and strong, slightly oblique. In profile the topline continues to a beautifully arched croup.
Chest : Long and deep, reaching to the elbows. Ribs well sprung ; the forechest clearly visible.
Underline : Slightly rising.
Low set, slightly arched, reaching the hocks. Strong at the base, tapering towards the end. In repose hanging close to the hindquarters, in action it may rise but not higher than the level of the topline. The hair on the tail is similar to that on the body.
General appearance : Well angulated. Straight and parallel when viewed from the front ; the forearms are vertical. The deepest point of the chest is at the level of the elbows. The upper arm and forearm are equal in length.
Shoulders : Rather long, oblique and powerful ; close to the body but very mobile.
Upper arms : Equal in length to the shoulders, clearly oblique and powerful.
Elbows : Set well behind parallel to the body ; tightly close to the body.
Forearm : Powerful and sinewy with strong oval bones.
Metacarpus (Pastern) : Slightly oblique.
Forefeet : Slightly oval and high, with well arched tight toes. Nails strong, preferably black. Pads springy, preferably black and on the sides covered with dense hair.
General appearance : Strong, well angulated, straight and parallel when viewed from behind.
Upper thigh : Long and broad with strong muscles.
Stifle : Pointing forward. The front line of the hind leg is smoothly curved.
Lower thigh : Moderately long and oblique, sinewy.
Hock : Strong, rather low.
Metatarsus : Rather short and powerful, vertical.
Hind Feet : Construction equal to the front feet, pointing straight forward.
Trots lightly and effectively with a long-reaching stride. The topline remains level and firm on the move. The legs move parallel.
Thick, close-lying all over the body with no wrinkles.
Undercoat short, dense and soft in texture. Outer coat medium in length, close-lying, straight, dense and rather harsh.
Tricolored. Black mantle, rich tan color on the head, lower parts of the body, shoulders, upper thighs and also elsewhere on the legs. White markings usually on head, neck, forechest, lower parts of the legs and on the tip of the tail.
Height at the withers : Males from 55 cm to 61 cm.
Bitches from 52 cm to 58 cm.
Ideal height :
Males from 57 cm to 59 cm.
Bitches from 54 cm to 56 cm.
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.
- Too light or too heavy in construction.
- Wrong sex characteristics.
- Head shape obviously triangular.
- Loose skin on the head.
- Muzzle snipey or short.
- Level or slightly overshot mouth.
- Square or too long body.
- Short and at the same time steep croup.
- Long, splayed or flat feet.
- Short and obviously soft hair.
- Mottled color.
- Clearly broken mantle colors.
- Lot of grey hairs or so called wolf hair.
- Height at the withers 1 cm more or less than given in the standard.
- Slightly timid or excessively rough with other dogs.
ELIMINATING FAULTS :
- Shyness or aggressiveness.
- Total lack of pigment in the nose.
- Undershot or clearly overshot bite.
- Kinky tail.
- Height at the withers more than 1 cm more or less than given in the standard.
Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioral abnormalities shall be disqualified.
N.B. : Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.
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