Shaar Hagai Canaan Dogs
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Judging the Canaan Dog

Feet:  Strong, round and catlike with hard pads.

The terrain that is the Canaans natural environment is very harsh.  It consists of extremely hard and very rocky ground, hills and wadis that have a great deal of loose, sharp rock lying around, and vegetation that is often tough, thorny, very thick, and close to the ground.  The ground and rocks can also be very hot in the summer when it has been exposed to hours of sun.  The Canaan must have feet that can stand up to these conditions without being damaged and will allow him to keep moving and functioning for many hours a day.  The most efficient foot for functioning in these conditions is a tight catfoot with well-arched toes, and very strong and tough pads that are impervious to the rocks, thorns and heat of the ground, and that are suitable for running and climbing.  Some desert breeds of dog have longer or hare feet, but these are dogs that run on the sand or the flat for the most part; for the rocky environment of the Canaans, elongated feet are not functional.  Weak feet, soft pads, open toes, flat feet, and hare feet are serious faults.