reprinted by permission of
Mrs. Judy Threlfall
Mark Threlfall, great judge and dog-man offers his hilarious version of the TFT standard after living with the breed.
This month, I am going to give you my interpretation of the Toy Fox Terrier (TFT) breed standard. I have made a number of corrections based on my close observation of the breed (the ones that live in my house) for the past 3 ½ years. Please note that the following is a completely subjective opinion and is not meant to be used as a tool for judging, breeding or evaluating Toy Fox Terriers. In fact, it’s not much good for anything except taking up space in this magazine.
The immediate ancestor of the Toy Fox Terrier is the Hoover Canister Vacuum Cleaner Model 1442A, developed around 1940. The Hoover was bred to the Mohair sweater and the Chatty Cathy doll to create the modern Toy Fox Terrier.
The TFT is small in size, with a body that is round when viewed from any angle. The length of the head, neck and legs are obscured by the shape of the body. They look like a football on 4 sticks. They are easily trained to eat, but training them for anything else requires bribery and the patience of Job.
The TFT is self-possessed, spirited and has little consideration for anything or anyone unless (1) It is food or (2) It is a person who has food. The TFT is also alert, willing to bark at any noise like a car pulling into the driveway, a slamming door, a pillow falling on a bed or a cotton ball hitting the floor.
The head is that little pointy thing on one end of the dog, not to be confused with the tail, which is at the opposite end. If you’re not sure if the pointy thing is a head or a tail, wave that end at a cheeseburger; if the cheeseburger disappears, yep, that was the head.
The neck connects the head (see above) to the body. Usually it is invisible, because the body has swelled up to the point that the neck is totally hidden. So, if you want to attach a leash to your TFT, you might try putting it around the body or maybe a leg.
Yes, they are there. Somewhere.
As I said before, it looks like a football, or the Hindenburg, depending on the size of your TFT. If your dog’s body has “Spaulding” written on it, it probably is a football. If it has helium leaking from it, it is probably the Hindenburg. If it is a football, throw it over your neighbor’s fence. If it is the Hindenburg, KEEP IT AWAY FROM ANY OPEN FLAMES!
They are strong enough to allow your TFT to leap onto any chair, counter or table in search of food or to run top speed when it’s time to bathe them, cut their nails or clean their teeth. Outside of that, they are rarely in use.
There are four of them, and they have nails that grow like Jack’s Magic Beans. Good luck cutting them.
The tail is the little wiggly thing at the end opposite the mouth. It doesn’t eat anything. It doesn’t need much attention at all. I think this is my favorite part of the dog.
The coat is short and shiny. TFTs do shed, but usually only twice a year for about six months at a time. Don’t wear black during these periods.
White. With some other color, but white is the important one, because you can’t see colored hair as easily on your clothes as you can see white.
While they are being shown, it’s under control. That means from 3 ½ pounds to 7 pounds. After they are retired and living within 1000 yards of the refrigerator, they can balloon up to 85 pounds or so in a week.
Usually a little trot, except when they see the flash of the refrigerator light or hear the opening of a cabinet door. Then it becomes a blinding, world land speed record gallop.
Spaulding written on side. Helium leaks. Picky eater.
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