FCI standard Nº 20
|Mrs Peggy Davis
|Group 6 Scenthounds, and related breeds
|Section 1.2 Medium sized Hounds
|With working trial
Acceptance on a definitive basis by the FCI
|Friday 01 October 1954
Publication of the official valid standard
|Wednesday 24 January 1996
|Tuesday 03 September 1996
En français, cette race se dit
Diese Norm ist in deutscher Sprache sichtbar
En español, esta raza se dice
|Sabueso del Ariege
In het Nederlands, wordt dit ras gezegd
|Scenthound used for driving game to waiting guns and for coursing. His medium size and lightness make him a precious auxiliary, whether he hunts on his own or in a pack, capable of evolving easily on difficult terrains. Hare hunting is his favourite type of hunting; but he is also used in tracking roe deer or wild boar.
Brief historical summary
|Originates from the Ariège, product of a crossing of a Briquet with a “chien d’ordre” (scenthound hunting in a pack) which could have been the Bleu de Gascogne or the Gascon Saintongeois. Physically he has kept the typical characteristics of the “chien d’ordre”, with, however, less distinction, less size and more lightness.
|Light dog, medium size, elegant and distinguished.
Behaviour / temperament
|From his origins he is hardworking dog being at the same time very good at driving game to the waiting guns and showing proof of much initiative and enterprise. He has a resounding voice and is quick in his plotting. Happy and sociable; easy to train.
|Seen from the front, slightly domed, not too broad; the occipital protuberance only slightly marked. Seen from above, the back of the skull is of lightly pronounced ogival shape. The forehead is full. Superciliary arches only slightly marked.
|Only slightly accentuated.
|Black, developed; nostrils well opened.
|Tight, rather thin. The upper lip must just cover the lower jaw but without giving the muzzle a pointed profile.
|Nasal bridge straight or slightly arched; muzzle of equal length with that of the skull.
Jaws and teeth
|Scissor bite. Incisors set square to the jaws.
|Well open, brown; eyelids without looseness. Alert, bright expression.
|Fine, supple, curled in, must be able to reach the onset of the nose without going beyond its extremity. The leather is narrow at its base and is set just below the eye level.
|Light, rather thin, long, slightly arched.
|Well muscled and sustained (firm).
|Well fused, slightly arched.
|Long, medium width, let down to elbow level.
|Long, moderately rounded.
|Flat and slightly drawn up.
|Well set, fine at its extremity, reaching the point of the hock. Carried gaily, sabre blade style.
|View of the ensemble : solidly constructed.
|Moderately oblique, muscular without heaviness.
|Close to body.
|View of ensemble : well proportioned.
|Quite long and muscled without excess.
|Well set in the axis of the body, well let down. No dewclaw.
|Elongated oval, i.e. “harefeet”; toes lean and tight. Pads and nails black.
Gait and movement
|Supple and easy.
|Fine, supple, not closely adherent to the body but not allowing the presence of dewlap, folds or wrinkles. Mucous membranes (hairless zones) black.
|Short, fine and dense.
|White with jet black markings with well defined outlines; sometimes mottled. Presence of quite pale tan on the cheeks and above the eyes.
Size and weight
Height at withers
|Males 52 to 58 cm, females 50 to 56 cm.
|• 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 and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and its ability to perform its traditional work.
• Faults listed should be in degree of seriousness.
| Skull flat or too pronounced dome.
Profile of the extremity of the muzzle too square.
Presence of wrinkles or dewlap.
Eye round; haw apparent.
Leathers too flat; thick, badly set, too long or too short.
Slack (soft) back.
Insufficiently developed bone structure.
Cow hocks seen from behind.
| Flightened or aggressive subject.
Lack of type.
Serious anatomical malformation.
Visible disabling (invalidating) defect.
Over-or undershot mouth.
Any coat other than schedulded in the standard.
|• Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.
• The above mentioned faults when occurring to a highly marked degree or frequently are disqualifying.
• Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.
• Only functionally and clinically healthy dogs, with breed typical conformation should be used for breeding.
|The Ariégeois is a worthy representative of the excellent common dogs produced by the French regions and who have contributed so much to the wealth of the national cynophilia.
Yet this is a dog that almost disappeared in the late nineteenth century. In his book Le Chien et ses Races, Pierre Mégnin wrote: "The Ariège breed has fallen into a decadence from which it will not recover. And he added, "Artesians and Porcelains are nearly dead as a pure race. There are probably only Arlesian-Normans and Harriers-Porcelaines, apart from a few rare subjects."
This pessimism was probably founded at the time, but, fortunately, the prediction was not accomplished. And while the Dog of Ariege is still relatively rare today, there are some beautiful subjects, especially in Saint-Girons, in the south of France, in Haute-Garonne and in the Gers.
The Ariégeois is a half-blood, or "dog cut", resulting from crossings between thoroughbred stallions like the Gascon-Saintongeois dog (still called Virelade) or the Bleu de Gascogne on the one hand and the best bitches Lighters of the country on the other hand.
Witness the words of the brothers Castet: "Thus Mr. Aldebert presented at the Dog Show of Paris, in 1890, Ariégeois son of a pure Virelade, Tapageur, and a large Briquette of Ariege, Sapho", and than those of the local great huntsman of the time, Count Elie de Vezins, who was one of the most famous haresmen of his region: "The Dog of Ariege, issued from the dog of the order and the Briquet, has preserved physically the typical characters of the purest factor with less species, less size and more lightness. It measures about 21 inches; distinguished, light as a whole, with a dry, elongated head, the pronounced occipital bone, the thin, wavy ear, tied low, the whip, the hare's paw."
Ariegeois of the first generation could present a certain balance, since each individual inherits 50 of the genetic inheritance of his father and 50 of that of his mother. But in the following generations, before the race was finally fixed, it was natural to appear dogs closer to the Blue type, heavier, and others closer to the Gascon-Saintongeois type, much finer and elegant. While the Blues continued to renew themselves frequently thanks to the activity of the club of the race, the Gascons-Saintongeois were going through a very hollow period since the end of the golden age of the dogs of J. Carayon Latour de Virelade . From where, at the level of the breeding of Ariégeois, a long predominance of massive subjects reminding the Blue of Gascogne, especially among the males, whereas the heavy dog ??is never recommendable for the hare. It is even to eliminate for hunting in difficult terrain, especially in the mountains.
Fortunately, the breed seems today to find its distinction thanks probably to the renewal that the Gascons-Saintongeois have been experiencing for some years now. Dogs are lighter and more elegant. The head is drier and the skull narrower but still too flat for the occipital protuberance to be prominent and prominent. The ears are always very French, but sometimes a little long, resembling those of the Blues and Gascons-Saintongeois, whereas the blood Lighter had shortened them. The tissues are, however, quite dry, and the lower eyelid, less drooping, does not reveal the conjunctiva. The influence of the Blue is still reflected by fairly bright fires on the cheeks and above the eyes, while these marks should be pale.
Finally, the Ariégeois often lacks skeleton, and it would gain perhaps a little retempe, either with the Harrier, or with the Anglo-French Small Vénerie.
A rustic animal particularly well suited to small hunting, the Ariégeois is absolutely not a pet dog. Approaching 60 cm at the withers, it has the size limit to hunt the hare, the ideal height being between 48 and 55 cm. He has always been appreciated for the qualities brought to him by the Lighter: intelligence, liveliness, health, skill, activity in the work, persistence and tenacity to meet the defects.
Generally well gorged, Ariégeois have a voice lower and more serious than other common dogs. They are pretty thin nose, an essential quality on this side of the Channel because, as noted thirty years ago a great dog, Mr. de Kermadec, we do not hunt the hare in France in the same way that in England, with "a lot of dogs, a lot of hares and a lot of horses". And the hare's path, light as that of deer, decreases rapidly as time passes.
More docile than Lighters, the Ariégeois also show more wisdom in the led. They are good for hare, deer, wild boar, but they are not rabbit dogs. Like all the dogs of the South, they are particularly at ease on dry, sandy, rocky ground, and their owners agree that they are closer to the hares of the night than their congeners.
In recent years, the Ariégeois overflowed from his native Midi to spread in the west of France, where he was used to make Anglo-French. Those of Philippe Mitterrand, brother of the President, from crossings between Ariégeois and pure Harriers, are a perfect example. The subjects obtained are distinguished from the Anglo-French of Petite Vénerie by their longer ears and Ariégeois by a significantly improved construction. Very homogeneous, robust and resistant, they take their hare.
The real Ariégeois de Saint-Girons, for their part, are totally French dogs. In particular, they were not the subject of any English blood supply. All the freedoms being possible in breeding of current dogs, one can regret it, because this contribution could only strengthen their framework and make them more robust.