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25 Words or Less…Can You Do It?

by Andrea Erickson




I read an article years back that proposed that a breed could be described succinctly in 25 words or less.  If you had to describe the Polish Lowland Sheepdog to an intelligent but non-dog oriented individual what words would you use?  Let’s say that this person is a judge of horses, but not a judge of dogs. Or, let’s say that you are approached at a dog show by a prospective judge and asked to describe the breed, would you be able to convey the essence of the Polish Lowland in 25 words or less?   


This is an exercise that you can do on your own.  First, print off a copy of the standard for the breed.  Click on this link and select print on your toolbar


Now, section by section, select key phrases or words that you feel are most important in describing the Polish Lowland.  For this exercise we will grant as “freebies” any articles (“a”, “the”, “an”, etc) and any conjunctions (“and”, “but”, “or”, etc.).  Most likely you will have more than 25 words!  Now, go through each of those sections again and look at those words and choose only those that you feel are the absolute essentials.


Is it possible to describe the breed in only 25 words?  It may be difficult for some, but it is possible and VERY educational!


The words or phrases most used in the various sections of the standard are “strong”, “heavy”, “muscular” all three words being keywords in the description of the breed.   Here is my list of 25…..feel free to e-mail us with your list!  Results will be posted in next month’s issue.  Replies to:



General Appearance



Long thick coat



Size, Proportion, Substance





Head and Skull

Medium sized head

Profuse hair


Neck, Topline, Body

Muscular and strong

Deep and broad (chest)



Heavily muscled (shoulders)

Heavy bone (legs)

Short, set low (tail)



Heavily boned

Well muscled



Double coated

Soft and dense (NOTE!  This refers to the undercoat – there is no mention in the current standard in regard to proper coat texture of the guard hair!)



Fluid motion

Great reach of stride

Parallel (front leg movement)

Good rear angulation

Parallel (back legs)




Nervous, cowardly, vicious (NOTE!  FAULTS)













Ch. Czaber z Wielgowa - "Zoom" to his friends, with the kids from the Jasper County, Indiana Head Start program doing a presentation on Dog Safety for children.
May 2007