ORIGIN: Shanxi Province, China
DATE OF PUBLICATION OF THE OFFICIAL VALID STANDARD: November 2017
UTILIZATION: Sighthound that hunts for game (hare) and protects against predators.
FCI-CLASSIFICATION: Group 10 Sighthounds
BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY: Paintings and drawings of Xian Hound-type dogs have been depicted on the walls of an ancient Qin Dynasty prince's tomb dating 2500 years ago. Emperors used this royal hunting sighthound to hunt game. Their history is thought to precede the records of the ancient silk routes. Xian, the thirteenth dynasty capital, was the Eastern most city on this silk route and an important trading center. General conjecture has pointed to these hounds being the precursor of all sighthound breeds today.
GENERAL APPEARANCE: The whole appearance of this breed should give an impression of grace, symmetry and of great speed and endurance coupled with strength and activity. Noticeably svelte and elegant, the Xian Hound gives a general impression of great slenderness. It’s salient bone structure and musculature appear through thin skin free from folds and wrinkles. Its spinal column is so constructed to permit the hound to contort to accomplish leaps and bounds of great ease and efficiency.
BEHAVIOR/TEMPERAMENT: Aloof and devoted to their master. This breed is self-reliant and independent. They are suspicious of strangers.
HEAD: Long and narrow, the whole showing a noble expression. Head piece being in balanced with the size of the dog.
Skull: Moderately wide between ears, not domed.
Stop: There exists two head types. The first has a stop which is not pronounced which is preferred in this sighthound. The second, however, has a convex foreface where the toplines of the skull and muzzle incline in diverging directions. The convex foreface head type is acceptable. Either head piece being in balance with the size of the dog.
Nose: Preferably black, liver permissible in light coloured dogs.
Muzzle: Long, straight, tapered without exaggeration towards the end. Well developed, strong underjaw.
Lips: Thin lips tightly fitting, no flews.
Eyes: Alert expression, dark to hazel and bright, large but not prominent, oval to almond, set obliquely. The eyes rims are pigmented. Fault: Unpigmented eye rims.
Bite: Preferred scissors bite, level bite tolerated. Undershot/overshot bite to the slightest degree disqualifies.
Ears: Ear set high, mobile, long and covered with long silky hair, hanging close the skull.
NECK: Long smooth and well muscled, well set into moderately angulated shoulders. The skin is fine and does not form a dewlap.
BODY: Slightly longer than tall measured from the prosternum to the point of buttocks but may give the appearance of being square. The topline is strong, slightly arched over the loin, extremely flexible allowing the sighthound to bend and flex to enable it to jump and leap.
LOIN: Slightly arched and well muscled.
CROUP: Hipbones prominent and wide apart. Obliquely set ideally at a 45 degree angle. Major Fault: Hipbones not prominent or covered by excessive weight.
CHEST: Deep, long and moderately narrow denoting great lung capacity. Proportionally, the depth of chest is 4-10 to the height at the withers to the ground, this being a characteristic of the breed. It is common for ribs to show due to the hound’s high metabolism and bone structure. Fault: Overweight. Major Fault: Chest reaching the elbow.
UNDERLINE: Well tucked up.
TAIL: Long set on low and carried naturally in curve or ring at the end, well feathered on the underside with long silky hair, not bushy. Not too short and raised when in action.
~ General appearance: Forelegs vertical and parallel and toes inclining neither in nor out.
~ Shoulder: Well laid back, well muscled without being coarse.
~ Upper arm: Approximately equal in length to the shoulder blade, forming moderate angulation.
~ Forearm: Bony and muscular.
~ Pastern: Strong and supple, slightly sloping.
~ Front feet: Feet of moderate length, toes long and well arched, not splayed, but at the same time not cat-footed, the whole being strong and supple.
~ General appearance: Viewed from behind, hindlegs are vertical and parallel. Strong, showing galloping and jumping power which is a characteristic of the breed.
~ Upper and lower thighs: Well developed.
~ Stifle: Moderately bent.
~ Hocks: Strong, well let down.
~ Hind feet: Similar to front feet.
Smooth, flowing and effortless at trot. Light and lifting showing both reach and drive without hackney action or pounding.
Hair: Smooth and soft, silky texture feathering on legs and at the back of thigh, puppies may have slight woolly feather on thighs and shoulders.
COLOUR AND MARKINGS:
Solid colours acceptable - black, blue, grey silver, cream, white, red, and fawn. Brindle patterning is acceptable. Blue, grey and silver with white toes tolerated. Black coloured dogs with white toes are disqualified. On the forechest, a small white patch no more than 3 centimeters in any direction is acceptable. White tip at the end of the tail is a disqualification.
Dogs - height at the withers 73 cm. is average with plus or minus five centimeters consistent to type. Over or under this range is a fault.
Bitches - height at the withers 70 cm. is average with plus or minus five centimeters consistent to type. Over or under this range is a fault.
~ Aggressive or overly shy.
~ Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities will be disqualified.
~ Undershot or overshot mouth.
~ Colour and markings not in accordance with the standard.
~ Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles full descended into the scrotum.
~ Only functionally and clinically healthy.