©2005 Ms D E Ashdown
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This is a sequence of 15 drawings taken from one template. The original template depicts a beautiful Papillon of classic fine-boned, elegant type, balanced and graceful with a lovely head and fringes.
A1 A2
A1 and A2 show a dog very slightly longer than he is high, firstly with full plume, then with the tail flicked to one side so that you can see his level topline. As the dog, in this drawing, has his head turned to one side you can see little of the shoulders and nothing of the neck. The shoulders are just visible, and are correctly laid back.
B1 B2
B1 and B2 (tricolour) also show a correct level back but the body is appreciably longer than A1 and A2. However, with a fully plumed tail, this barely notices. (You will see that the dog has to draw his hindquarters further underneath him in order to preserve the stance of A1 and A2, because of the increase in body length.)
C1 C2
C1 and C2 (another tricolour) looks gorgeous with full plume, and is made the more glamorous by his long, sloping shoulders. Take the fully coated tail away, however, and you can see that these shoulders lead into a dipped, hollow back with a rising rump and falling off of croup, leading to the inevitable low tail set. The latter is well disguised by his beautiful coat, though in point of fact the dog would have to have a very long tail to enable him to carry it this high over his back. Other sequences in the Ill Std will show that a low tail set is more commonly accompanied by a tail carried low, or not fully curving over the back at all.
D1 D2
D1 shows a red sable dog with, again, what at first glance looks like long, sloping shoulders – though only at a first glance. Peel away the plume and you have a dog with a topline sloping down to the root of his tail. D2 shows that the dog is quite long in body, with the same need to tuck the hindquarters well under the body demonstrated by B2.
E1 E2
E1 is a very pretty version of this template, showing as it does a black and white Papillon with lovely high plume and good shoulders. Take away the plume and E2 reveals a dog with a rising topline, ( which accounts in part for his tail carriage.)
F1 F2
F1 is perhaps the most deceptive of all. You can see the back rise slightly, but because he is turning his head this does not look so bad - he is entitled to be a little bunched up in this position. But take the plume away and F2 stands revealed as a dog with a badly roached back and, again, a sloping croup with low tail set.
The remaining 3 versions of this template illustrate other points.


G is shelly, too light and insubstantial and with a tuck-up in excess of what the Standard asks for. Although the Standard asks for fine bone, this dog’s bone is too fine and fragile for health purposes (there will be section on the Standard and Health). H, however, is the opposite - too heavy and cloddy all through, with very heavy bone. In both cases, however, their heads are so good that it is hard to overlook them. I shows a black and white version so over coated that it is impossible, now, to see the outline of the dog and the excess coat completely destroys his balance. Yet many people say that they long for a dog with a coat like this!