I was chairman of the CCRCA committee that wrote the current AKC standard. The article below is one I wrote for a 1988 Curly Commentator regarding the Curly Coated Retriever standard revision. As noted in the article, the AKC decided in 1988 to REQUIRE all breed clubs to revise their breed standards in accordance with a format and word definitions the AKC decided to use.
I decided to reproduce it here because many people still repeat the old myth that the CCRCA decided to rewrite the standard. Nope. The Curly Coated Retriever Club of America members didn't decide to rewrite the standard--the AKC REQUIRED us to do so.
Below is the 1988 article I wrote for CCRCA members explaining the process. One of the committee members decided to leave the committee and a different member was added.
For articles related to this one and to the U.S. standard, click the arrows in the boxes below.
One important aspect to note from the above letter is the requirement, by the AKC, to use terms as they were defined by Harold Spira in his book CANINE TERMINOLOGY.
When Spira defined a dog with "good" angulation, he used a German Shepherd dog as an example. Of course, that presented a lot of problems. Should curly coated retrievers exhibit the same shoulder and stifle angulation as German shepherds?!
Please also note certain sections were REQUIRED by the AKC. We couldn't just say "no, we are not including that section." The AKC would not allow us to do so.
Current U.S. AKC Standard
The standard used by AKC conformation dog show judges and breeders.
Why Does the U.S. Standard have a Size Range?
The history of selection for a size range, rather than just one height, in the U.S. standard.
A Well-Respected and Well-known Breeder critiques the U.S. Standard.
Read a letter written by one of the most famous and highly regarded curly coated retriever breeders regarding the U.S. standard.