Gilberts' K-9 Seminars News & Review
Copyright (c) 2004-2009 Gilbert K-9 Seminars
The above Article is Copyrighted (c) 2004-2009 Gilberts' K-9 Seminars.
Permission to reprint can be obtained from Gilberts' K-9 Seminars - gilbertk9@sbcglobal.net
SOFT COATED WHEATEN TERRIER – POTENTIAL MAJOR PROBLEM
E. M. Gilbert Jr.

The new wording to the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier Standard by The Kennel Club is: “Tail - Previously customarily docked.

Docked: Set on high, carried gaily but never over back. Not curled and not too thick.
Undocked: Set on high, carried gaily but never over back, not curled and not too thick. Tip may curve forward in a gentle arc. Length in overall balance with the rest of dog.”

This wording does not describe the shape and length of the natural tail. Stating “Length in overall balance with the rest of dog” is open to individual interpretation. The length should be stated in more definitive terms. Such as “The natural tail reaches to point of hock” – but at this point in time there have not been enough natural tails to define the shape or length.

I have seen two Soft Coated Wheatens with natural tails. One was carried horizontal and the other had a double curl over the back. The horizontal tail had a slight slope to the croup. The double curl was set on high. Wonder what other combinations are out there? Hope there is a large market for natural tail pet quality Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers.

The croup is going to change and the tail set is going to change in several generations with undocked tails. The compact appearance will be lost due to the natural tail affecting the appearance. The nice level line into the well set tail is going to be lost. The rear movement is also going to be affected. Like it or not this change is defining a new breed - Pandora will take care of them! The only thing the natural tail will accomplish is loss of breed type.

It is understood that the AKC Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier Club is considering a similar change. Now even AKC parent clubs are joining in the drive to rid the world of purebred dogs. How sad.