Finland has made several suggestions and propositions to Commission des courses de Lévriers (CdL), Commission for Sighthound Races of FCI. Among these propositions have been such diverse elements as safer pulleys, muzzles and judging guidelines. As it happens, the judging guidelines Finland has been using for some years in national level have been approved to CdL rules as an addendum.
The guidelines are ‘specific’ representation of how a dog should behave to get certain amount of points. It clearly states the quality of the dogs performance in the trial, all the way from failed to exceptional (certificate level) performance in every judging category. These guidelines were approved in unison by the CdL delegates in their meeting this summer, to the amazement of all Finnish people, who have been working with the proposal.
The categories and their point values are as follows. The descriptions of the categories are the same as I have earlier described.
no points runs so little that it cannot be judged
1-5 points chase is lazy and not full speed
6-9 points speed is slower than the average for the breed, no rhythm changes
10-14 points dog runs the whole course with typical gallop for the breed, speed is at least the breed average (acceptable result)
15-17 points speed is significantly faster than the breed average throughout the course, including also clear rhythm changes
18-20 points speed is top quality for the breed, including fast rhythm changes according to the situation
When judging the speed the breed characteristics should be taken into account. All breeds do not reach as high absolute speed as the others. Greyhound is showing specifically extremely strong forward directed absolute speed. Chart Polski is similar but a bit slower and so are the Deerhound and Galgo Espanol. Whippet is also showing explosive starting speed and fast rhythm changes. Saluki is also fast but the speed appears to be not so strong, instead it appears to have a bit lighter and really durable gallop. Borzoi shows its speed as rhythm changes when it gets close to the lure, otherwise it should move forward with long, ground covering leaps. Azawakh and Sloughi are little slower than Saluki, they have little shorter body and because of that their gallop is not as open.
no points runs so little that it cannot be judged or it does not follow the lure at all
1-5 points runs without enthusiasm, follows the lure only occasionally
6-9 points follows the lure, but does not try to actively catch the lure. Reacts slowly to the movement of the lure
10-14 points follows the lure for the whole course, reacts immediately to the movement of the lure
15-17 points follows the lure precisely and tries to make “jump to kill” immediately when it gets close to the lure
18-20 points tries actively and aggressively to catch the lure throughout the chase
Credit single minded interest towards the lure – dogs which above all keep their eyes on the lure through turns as well as on straight parts of the track. Also credit dogs who really try to catch the lure and not only chase it. Do not credit a dog because it barks and jumps in the starting position. Credit a dog that go after the lure without making great assumptions as to where the lure will be traveling (course wise running).
no points chase is coincidental and colliding, or the dog following only the pair
1-5 points the dog does not have skills to use the terrain, the rhythm is disturbed by the variation of the terrain, collides with the pair and obstacles
6-9 points the dog does not have skills to use the terrain, the rhythm is disturbed by the variation of the terrain, however it is not colliding with the pair or obstacles
10-14 points the dog is able to choose the easiest chasing lines and can fit the running rhythm to the variation of the terrain
15-17 points the dog is able to use the terrain to reach the best position to catch the lure
18-20 points the dog tries to force the lure to the open terrain
Credit single-minded interest towards the lure – dogs which above all keep their eyes on the lure through turns as well as on straight parts of the track. Also credit dogs who really try to catch the lure and not only chase it. Do not credit a dog because it barks and jumps in the starting position. At the start: By its concentrated attention. By fixing its eyes on the lure. When in pursuit of the lure: By its permanent drive on the lure, forcing the operator to accelerate the lure to avoid a take before the end of the course. By jumping an obstacle cleanly, without hesitation of an obstacle. By its desire to return to the lure if it gets left behind. At the take of the lure: At full speed. By tackling the lure with a sliding take. By its attempts to catch the lure, even when it has been taken by its opponent.
no points runs so little that it cannot be judged
1-5 points running is uncontrolled
6-9 points with increasing speed and in more difficult terrain, the dog cannot keep its running rhythm
10-14 points the dog controls its run through the whole chase
15-17 points when the terrain is varying the dog can quickly switch between running rhythms
18-20 points the run is not disturbed by the terrain variations and obstacles
Credit dogs that are able to change direction quickly and efficiently especially evident in the turns. Also watch the action of the running dog – credit those that run with no wasted motion in their forward drive (often low, powerful and with great force in each step).
no points the dog does not start at all or it discontinues quickly
1-5 points the dog does not run the whole course
6-9 points the dog runs the whole course but the speed slows down at the end and it hardly finishes
10-14 points the dog runs the whole course without slowing down notably (acceptable result)
15-17 points the dog runs the whole course without slowing down and is capable of rhythm changes also at the end of the chase
18-20 points the dog runs the whole course aggressively and does not show signs of tiredness even at the finish
Now we have detailed point explanations, by which we dog owners can ‘evaluate’ our dogs performance in trainings and walkies!