Conformation Dogs

Con Andy

When you study the basic structure of a dog, you are studying its "conformation." Dog shows provide a systematic way of evaluating the conformation of dogs within a breed. Why does conformation matter? The uneducated eye might see only the aesthetic appearance. But the more knowledgeable eye breaks the dog down into pieces. It is the length, size, substance, proportions and angles of the bones in the dog’s body that create his conformation. It is the balance and interaction of these parts that determine what the dog is best "conformed" to do and gives us our various breeds.


The genes he has received from his sire and dam determine how close any dog comes to the ideal structure for his breed and/or for his performance. Because weak conformation means inability to function properly, vulnerability to injury and future health problems, the conscientious breeder must determine each dog’s structural strength’s and weaknesses. If a dog’s faults outweigh his strengths a responsible breeder will not breed the dog.

The responsible breeder must weigh both the conformation aspects of the dog and the temperament, health and trainability of each individual. Breeding a dog with exceptional conformation cannot be justified if there are serious faults in temperament, health, or trainability.

We were not familiar with the term "conformation" when we decided to get our first Ridgeback. Thanks to Kathy and Beach Main for entrusting us with two of their show quality dogs and for introducing us to Dog Shows. Fred and Chani each achieved their conformation Champion titles with professional handlers. Chani went on to become our Foundation Bitch.


As a brood bitch Chani produced outstanding conformation and performance Ridgebacks. Most notably, when bred to BIS BISS CH Gitano of Raintree, she produced MBIF CH Pheron's Kasai of Raintree CD LCM CGC VC to carry on the line. Kasai's littermate CH Pheron's Connor Mestizo made a nice contribution to the Ridgeback gene pool during his stud dog career and is the Grand Sire of the 2011 and 2012 Westminster Dog Show Best of Breed winners.


Our first Versatility Certificate Excellent dog - Kariba's MyStar Adhara UD MX MXJ RA CGC HIC VCX - came from Kasai bred to CH Rare Earth's Quantum Leap. Littermate Gilda produced Sanyati - MBIF DC Pheron's  Sanyati of Kariba CDX LCX MX MXJ MC RE FCH TT HIC CGC VCX. We bred Sanyati's littermate Luther to Teeka - acquired from Ann Miller in 2005 - and produced our GCH Pheron Annya Tatenda Rajataru. Annya bred to Hendrix in 2013 produced Bentley and Joni as part of a litter of nine. Joni is the Dam of our litter whelped January 2017.


Please take some time to browse through our dogs and bitches albums for more details. 

© Hounds of Pheron  2019