The American Kennel Club establishes standards of various dog breeds, including the Pomeranian. Before the American Kennel Club recognizes a breed, the breed has to have certain characteristics, referred to as standards of the breed, that remain stable generation after generation. Breed standards serve several functions. A dog owner buying an American Kennel Club recognized breed of dog knows how big a puppy will be when it grows up. All puppies start out small, but a Pomeranian owner knows he or she will end up with a dog that weighs in at seven pounds or less. Breed standards also predict temperament, and the owner of a Pomeranian puppy knows the grown dog will be playful, energetic and extroverted.
If you want to see you your Pomeranian compares to the show dogs that win American Kennel Club championships, grab your dog and your bathroom scale. You’re about to find out whether you have a potential champion on your hands.
Another benefit of having standards for different breeds of dogs is to encourage good breeding practices. Dogs in the toy group are notoriously fragile, and restricting the weight of the Pomeranian to seven pounds maximum helps prevent the breed from getting too heavy and risking injury to bones and joints.
The American Kennel Club knows that it matters and that is the reason for the establishment specific standards for each of the breeds it recognizes. The American Kennel Club requires that certain characteristics of a breed be stable for many generations of dogs before it recognizes a breed. Thus, a puppy buyer can predict how big or small a grown dog will be and what kind of temperament it will have. According to the American Kennel Club, a Pomeranian puppy, for instance, will weigh no more than seven pounds and have a perky, energetic personality.
Setting standards for breeds encourages good breeding and helps weed out qualities that might be bad for the dog’s health. Take, for instance, the size of the Pomeranian. The Pomeranian is fragile, and its weight should be restricted. Setting a standard for the Pomeranian’s weight discourages breeders from breeding heavy dogs.
The Pomeranian coat can be virtually any color. All colors, patterns and color combinations are judged the same. The most often seen Pomeranian patterns include black and tan, brindle and parti-color. Black and tan Pomeranians have light patches above the eyes, on the muzzle, throat, chest, legs, feet, and under the tail. Brindle-coated Pomeranians have a gold or red base with black cross stripes. A parti-color Pomeranian is white but has patches of one or more other colors in its coat.
In specialty dog shows, Pomeranians are split into three different groups for judging, according to the color patterns of their coats. Red, orange and sable dogs make up one group, black and brown dogs make up another, and other variations are judged together in a third group.
The AKC also judges a dog’s temperament. The Pomeranian should be confident, intelligent and extroverted, spirited and full of personality. Breed standards define the dog and promote predictability. The American Kennel Club makes Pomeranian breed information available to anyone who wants to know what a champion Pomeranian looks like.
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