Saturday, August 2, 2008


Is there any other breed of dogs in the world with the amount of variety our Icelandic Sheepdogs show? I seriously doubt it.

We have a very diverse gene pool. That is a good thing, in my opinion.

Take a look at just one of our breeds’ traits: their tails.

Here is what the most recent FCI standard for Icelandic Sheepdogs, November, 2000, says about tails: -

TAIL : High set, curled over and touching the back.”

Here is the current AKC breed standard voted on and approved by the members of the ISAA: -

Tail – High set, curled over and touching the back; the amount of the curl may vary from an arch to a double curl; may be vertically or horizontally oriented.

I like all of the attached tails. Some people may prefer one kind of tail over another, but arguably, all of them ‘fit’ the standard, regardless of which standard you use.

I hope we never officially prefer one over another. Restricting the variety in our breed could lead to a genetic bottleneck which reduces the number and variety of genes we can work with. That, in my opinion, would not be a good thing for future breeders and enthusiasts.

Here are some tail examples. There are simple arches, single curls, double curls, some touch the back on the top of the back, some touch the side of the back. Some are horizontal; others are vertical. In my opinion, all fit both standards.

I heard from my good friend Petra in Switzerland today. She belongs to Vinlands Sigga. Petra updates me regularly on Sigga's progress. She loves doing agility. Here are some recent photos of Sigga, who was named after Sigriður Pétursdóttir in Iceland.