Rafeiro of Alentejo (Dog Standard)

Rafeiro of Alentejo is an excellent watch dog of farms and dwellings in Alentejo as well as a highly appreciated protector of the herds.

FCI-Standard N° 96 / 05. 01. 1996 / GB

(Rafeiro do Alentejo)

TRANSLATION : Portuguese Kennel Club, Dr. J.-M. Paschoud and Mrs. Ruth Binder-Gresly.

ORIGIN : Portugal.


UTILIZATION : An excellent watch dog of farms and dwellings in Alentejo as well as a highly appreciated protector of the herds. During the day he is less vigilant, but threatening against strangers.

CLASSIFICATION F.C.I. : Group 2 Pinscher and Schnauzer- Molossoid breeds- Swiss Mountain and Cattle Dogs and other breeds.
Section 2.2 Molossoid breeds, Mountain type.
Without working trial.

GENERAL APPEARANCE : Dog of large SIZE, powerful, rustic, sober. Outlines slightly convex; the general structure is rather long than large.

HEAD : A bear type HEAD. Wider on the top of the skull, narrower and less rounded at the base; well proportioned to the SIZE of the BODY.

Skull : Broad, rounded in the longitudinal and transversal axes. Superciliary ridges not protruding, slight furrow between and above the eyes. Occipital protuberance not too marked, top skull between the ears slightly and regularly arched.
Stop : Not pronounced; the upper longitudinal axes of muzzle and skull should be divergent.

Nose : Oval, with the tip slightly blunted, from above downward and towards the rear part; dark in COLOUR.
Muzzle : Nasal bridge straight, its cross section arched; muzzle shorter than the skull length, of medium width.
Lips : Slightly rounded in front, overlapping and well cut. Thin and firm, giving a slight curve to the lower profile.
Jaws : Strong and well developed, well set.
Eyes : With a calm expression; eyes set almost level with the orbital ridge. Dark, horizontal, elliptical and small. Black pigmented lids.
Ears : Set on medium high, folded and hanging at the sides. Little mobility. When the dog is attentive, they still keep folded, they rise at the base and the vertical wrinkles are more pronounced. Triangular, small, with a narrow base, their width at the set on corresponding to the length of the median axis of the lobe.

NECK : Well set into the shoulders, straight, short, strong, with dewlap.

BODY : Strong, well muscled; long, bulky, slightly sloping from fore to rear, and moderately hollow. The underline rising gently from the brisket to the groin.
Back : Straight, long, moderately sloping.
Loin : Medium SIZE, straight, wide; slightly rounded, well muscled.
Croup : Medium length, broad and high, slightly sloping.
Forechest : Wide, but not very marked.
Chest : Well down, wide, deep and with the sternum almost horizontal. Ribs straight; slightly obliquous.
Belly and flanks : Proportioned to SIZE; underline not whippety, following the line of the sternum.

TAIL : Set on at medium height; thick, long, slightly curved, more so towards the tip, but never kinky. When at rest, it should fall between the hocks and reach below them. In action it may roll upwards.


FOREQUARTERS : Strong, straight and vertical, either viewed from front or from profile; rather wide in front.
Shoulders and upper arm : Strong, medium length, shoulder blades rather apart and only slightly sloping, well developed and muscled. Open shoulder angulation.
Forearm : Vertical and long; strong and well muscled.
Carpus : Strong.
Pastern : Medium length, strong, slightly sloping.
ForeFEET : Strong toes, well closed and long, not too arched; strong nails; their COLOUR changing according to the COAT. Pads thick and tough.

HINDQUARTERS : Strong, vertical, viewed from the rear as well as in profile; legs standing well apart.
Thigh : Long, broad, well muscled but hardly visible.
Second thigh : Slightly sloping; medium length, well muscled.
Hockjoints : Set at medium height; lean; moderately angulated.
Metatarsus : Strong; medium length, slightly sloping; may have single or double dewclaws.
Hind FEET : Similar to the foreFEET.

GAIT / MOVEMENT : Heavy, slow and rolling MOVEMENT.

SKIN : Thick and rather close fitting; mucous membranes partially or totally pigmented with black.


HAIR : Short or preferably of medium length, heavy, dense, straight and evenly covering the BODY down to the space between the toes.

COLOUR : Black, wolf-like, fawn or yellow with white markings, or white with markings of these COLOURs, either dappled, streaked or brindled.

Height at the withers :
Males : 66 to 74 cm.
Females : 64 to 70 cm.

Weight :
Males : 40 to 50 kg.
Females : 35 to 45 kg.
SIZE AND WEIGHT of a typical dog

Length of skull 15 cm
Width of skull 13, 5 cm
Length of muzzle 10 cm
Girth 86 cm
Width 21 cm
Depth 31 cm
Length of the trunk 65 cm
Width of the trunk 15 cm
BODY 76 cm
TAIL 46 cm
Height at withers 73 cm
Height at the forelimb 38 cm
Height at the HINDQUARTERS 73 cm
Weight 47,5 kg

FAULTS : Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree.
Appearance : Untypical conformation, obesity, underdevelopment; lacking in substance.
Nose : Too pointed, blunted.
Muzzle : Too long.
NECK : With no dewlap.
Croup : Falling away.
TAIL : Inserted too high or too low; curled at rest.
COAT : In poorly condition.
Construction : Too light.

Aggresive or overly shy.
HEAD : Long and narrow.
Skull : Flat or narrow.
Muzzle : Excessively long or arched.
Jaws : Overshot or undershot mouth.
Eyes : Light, of different COLOUR or shape; partially covered by the third lid.
Ears : Inserted too high or too low; big or round.
TAIL : Docked, naturally short or absent (anuria).
HAIR : Too short.
Lack of black pigmentation at the tip of the nose, nostrils, mouth and lips.

Eyes 5
Ears 5
Total 100

Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.

N.B. : Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

Source: FCI >>>

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