The goal of morphology…

© Diffomédia/Royal Canin

… is to be able to describe every physical characteristic of the dog as precisely as possible.

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Classification

Canine morphology is highly varied. Veterinarian Pierre Mégnin’s classification identifies the following groups:
- Lupoids, which have prick ears and a triangular head (e.g. Belgian Shepherd Dogs)
- Braccoids, which have drop ears, a broad muzzle and a well-defined stop (e.g. Dalmatians)
- Molossoids, which are generally large, with small drop ears, a solid round or square hort muzzle (e.g. Mastiffs, Pyrenean Mountain Dogs)
- Graoids, which have small ears that point backwards, a fine, broad head, an indistinct stop and thin limbs (e.g. Whippets, Salukis, Afghan Hounds).

© Diffomédia/Royal Canin

On définit également plusieurs formats de chiens.

Dogs can also be classified by size.
There are three height classes:
- Small (less than 46 cm)
- Medium (46-61 cm)
- Large (more than 61 cm)

And four weight classes:
- Small (less than 10 kg)
- Medium (10-25 kg)
- Large (25-45 kg)
- Giant (45 and greater)

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In terms of general morphology, all dogs have the same body parts:
- Forequarters: head, neck and front legs
- Trunk: back, loins, ribcage and abdomen
- Hindquarters: croup, hind legs and tail
Dogs display a wide variety of coat colours and textures.

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