EARS:
Ears should be parallel to the ground or at slightly higher angles. A very slight angle below
parallel to the ground is noticeable at times; however, the ears should become parallel or
higher when on alert.

While at birth, lambs may display droopy ears, especially those who are part of a multiple
birth; however, the ear(s) should straighten up within a few days. Otherwise, ears must not
droop enough to be considered floppy. Such ears would tend to indicate cross-breeding in
the background of the sheep.  Naturally occurring (not due to injury or other difficulties)
droopy ears are a disqualification for registration.

Ears generally should come to a slight point at the tip and not be completely rounded in
shape. Elf ears (ears with external cartilage which is generally 1/2 inch to 3 inches in length
and exhibiting a more v-shaped ear) and Gopher ears (ears without visible external
cartilage or with less than 1/2 inch) are acceptable. Natural ears may vary in length but are
generally in the range of 3 - 4 inches. Abbreviations used within the registry are as such: E
indicating Elf Ears, G indicating Gopher Ears, and N indicating Natural Ears.

SEE ILLUSTRATIONS TO THE RIGHT

EYES:
Eyes should be bright and alert and must be free from genetic eyelid defects such as
Entropion.

The colors of the eyes vary from dark brown, golden brown to amber with some blue eyes
appearing in sheep with Jacob bloodlines.

SEE ILLUSTRATIONS TO THE RIGHT

INCISOR TEETH:
Incisor teeth should meet the dental pad. A severe and distinct space between the incisor
teeth and the dental pad is a disqualification.

Sheep should not have an extreme overbite (parrot mouth) or underbite (monkey jaw).

SEE DRAWINGS TO THE RIGHT

CLICK HERE to learn how to estimate the age of your sheep by looking at the teeth!

NECK:
Neck should continue from the head and gradually lead into the shoulders and be
gracefully held when sheep are alert.

A ewe’s neck will be graceful and proportional in size based on the ewe‘s overall frame.

A ram’s neck will be thicker and more muscular than a ewe‘s neck in appearance and to
the touch. During the Fall or cooler weather, rams may display an increase in hair and
undercoat growth around the neck area which will make the neck look much larger.

MANE:
Mature rams will display a mane in the winter. Some rams will shed the mane completely in
the summer while others will retain the mane. Some ewes may also have a short mane.

A ram’s mane may be varied in length from short to long, some even almost touching the
ground when in full winter coat. Some manes may be much shorter and hang just a couple
of inches below the bottom line of the chest. A ram with no mane at any time is a fault and
is discriminated against.

SHOULDERS AND WITHERS:
The shoulders should be developed and muscled proportionally to the size of the sheep.
They should flow into the ribs (well laid into the ribs).

The withers (area between the shoulder blades along the top line) may be elevated with
rams exhibiting a more pronounced and higher elevated wither. Some sheep may have a
completely straight top-lines and no elevation.

CHEST:
The width of the chest of most Painted Desert Sheep will be narrow to moderate with a
more athletic look - proportional to the size of the sheep.

The width of the front of the sheep should not be greater than the width of the back of the
sheep to facilitate lambing.

BACK:
Continuing after a smooth transition from straight or elevated withers, the back should be
strong, level and relatively smooth. The Back may tend in width to look lean, sleek, and
athletic.
The back is proportioned to the height of the sheep and is generally not longer than the
height.

RIBS AND ABDOMEN:
Ribs should be well sprung. Abdomen should allow for multiple births and be proportional
for smaller sized ewes; however, Mouflon sheep and high content Mouflon ewes are
primarily shaped and geared toward single births.

BOTTOM LINE:
The bottom line should not be tucked in at the foreflank nor the rearflank.

LEGS:
The Legs should be sound and proportioned to size of individual sheep as sheep
represented by UHHSA, Inc., may vary greatly in size. Sheep will have long athletic legs,
usually longer than body height from bottom line to top line.

Rams will generally have thicker legs then ewes.

Legs should have a conformationally correct appearance. Front legs should not be knock
kneed, bowlegged, buck-kneed or calf kneed. Rear Legs should not be cow hocked, sickle
hocked or post legged. Lower Legs on both front and rear legs should not toe in (angle
inward/pigeon toed) or toe out (angle outward/splayfooted) too much. Pasterns should be
strong and correct.

SEE LEG CONFORMATION ILLUSTRATIONS TO THE RIGHT

A nice four square (though with narrow bodies of some sheep it is more rectangular)
stance is desired with legs standing nicely inline with the body of the sheep.

RUMP:
Continuing from the back, the rump should exhibit a gradually angled slope to the dock.
Size and muscling of rump are proportional to the size of the overall sheep.

THIGH:
The Thigh should be well developed in proportion to the size of the sheep. Painted Desert
Sheep may not display the depth and heavy muscling of some sheep breeds developed
purely for fast gain and high weights (meat) at an early age.

TWIST:
The twist is the junction where the insides of the thighs meet. To compare sheep as far as
meat capability, the measurement of the depth of the twist may be taken. To measure the
depth of the twist, one can place hands at the top of the tail and at the crotch. This
measurement assists especially in judging of pure meat sheep breeds and shows the
depth of muscling in this area.

The Painted Desert Sheep tend toward the depth of the twist being minimal to moderately
deep. The Twist should be muscled proportional to the size and frame of the individual
sheep.

UDDER:
A ewe’s udder should be well proportioned and relatively symmetrical and have only two
teats.  A ewe with more than two teats is discriminated against. The teats should be free of
obvious defects affecting function.

SCROTUM:
Both Testicles should be uniform and symmetrical, free of obvious deformities.  Testicles
should be well sized and the scrotum itself should also be free of obvious deformities.

SEE SCROTUM/TESTICLES ILLUSTRATION TO THE RIGHT

TAIL:
Tail lengths vary.  Shorter tails are preferred.  Tails should not be “round” and should be
more “flat“.         

A tail that is reaching to the hocks is discriminated against.  A tail past the hocks is a
disqualification.


SEE TAIL LENGTH ILLUSTRATION TO THE RIGHT!!!


HOOF:
Hooves should be well formed and kept free of deformities and disease.

Painted Desert Sheep hooves may be white/cream, black, or variegated in color (both
colors or variances of each of them).


SEE HOOF ILLUSTRATION AND PICTURES TO THE RIGHT



HORNS:
All rams must grow and display horns, however, both polled (hornless) and horned ewes
are acceptable as are ewes with scurs. Some breeders prefer not to have scurs on their
sheep due to scurs being easily knocked off and bleeding that could occur.

Rams with scurs are not eligible for registration. To be registered, ram lambs out of
unregistered parents will need to exhibit horns in submitted registration photographs.

HORN DISTANCE FROM FACE:
In general, wide horns (horns with plenty of room from the face) are preferred over horns
that may grow close to the face and eventually touch the face. Some flock owners and
breeders prefer horns which are a little closer to face (more heart shaped) or have tight
curls while other flock owners prefer horns which have much wider areas between the face
and the horns or less tight curls (horns almost sticking straight out).

Filing or training of the horns to prevent horns from touching the face is acceptable and will
not prevent the ram from being registered. However, such activities should always be
disclosed in a honest manner to potential customers.

HORN SHAPE AND TYPE OF HORNS:
Horns can be of varying shapes except for Mouflon Sheep which will display Heart Shaped
horns. Some may be wider than others at the “tips“.

SEE PHOTOS TO THE RIGHT

Over all directional shape of horn growth
    Supracervical Horns (abbreviated SH)
    (Heart Shaped when viewed from front)

    Homonymous Horns (abbreviated HH)
    (Spiraling Out like a corkscrew when viewed from side)

 Polycerate/Multiple Horns (abbreviated MH)
(multiple horns - 3, 4, +)

Actual shape of individual horns
Webbed Horns
    Abbreviated SW for Supracervical shape, webbed horns
    Abbreviated HW for Homonymous shape, webbed horns
    Abbreviated WH for horns which do not show overall shape of horn growth yet but do
    show they are webbed

Round Horns
Horns are more round in circumference.  This is the most common actual horn shape.

EWES' HORNS:
Ewes’ horns really do not take on shapes as the rams’ horns. They sometimes can be
curved outward or backward. To indicate Horned Ewes in the registry, HE is the
abbreviation used.

SEE PHOTOS TO THE LEFT


HORN LENGTH
A mature ram’s horn lengths vary based on actual age, individual ram (genetics), areas of
the country (environment and weather), nutrition and health. Growth rate (rate at which the
horns grow) is also dependent upon some of the above factors. Horns generally slow down
during late winter/early spring unless fed to overcome the slowdown; however, the average
overall growth rate for horns for young rams is 1 inch per month for the first two years.
Some rams may seem to get a good start with quick growing horns while others horns grow
slower but then catch up as the ram matures.

Mature rams usually display 20 - 29 inch length horns to measurements in the 30 - 39
range. Horns generally turn outward. Bases on mature rams generally run 8 to 9 inches in
circumference. Ten inches in circumference of the base of mature rams’ horns also can be
found. Eleven inches in basal circumference (base measurements) for each horn is
exceptional.

Some breeders will prefer larger base measurements as the horns grow out from the bases
and with larger base measurements, the belief is, the better future opportunity for growth
exists.

CLICK HERE OR ON PICTURE TO LEFT TO LEARN HOW TO MEASURE AND SCORE
YOUR RAM!

HORN COLOR:
While shapes and lengths of the sheep breeds represented by UHHSA, Inc., are similar,
certain breeds prefer certain colors of horns. For the Painted Desert Sheep, horns may be
white, black/dark, or variegated (both colors or variances of each, striped horns). As rams
age, darker colored and variegated horns may become more washed out in appearance.


SEE HORN COLOR PHOTOS TO THE RIGHT


SIZE:
The average height of the Painted Desert Sheep for the ewes is 20 - 25 inches at the
withers and 21 - 30 inches at the withers for rams.  Individual sheep may be outside of the
range and there is no fault or disqualification for above or below average heights.

The Painted Desert Sheep is generally smaller than the Texas Dall Sheep and the Black
Hawaiian Sheep which are also represented by the United Horned Hair Sheep Association,
Inc.  

WEIGHT:
The weight of the sheep varies and individual sheep may weigh outside the range.  

Ewes may weigh 60 - 150 lbs with an average of 65 - 85 lbs.  Rams generally weigh from
75 - 200 pounds with an average of 75 -100 lbs.

BACKGROUND/HERITAGE:
Painted Desert Sheep are a naturally shedding, spotted hair sheep with Mouflon Sheep
influence in ancestry. All rams must have horns, and the ewes are allowed to have horns
although most ewes are polled. Rams must not exhibit scurs instead of horns, while ewes
with scurs are acceptable.

The Sheep should not contain, to the best knowledge of the owner, any polled blood or
other types of polled bloodlines, including but not limited to Dorper, Katahdin, and St. Croix
sheep breeds. Horned Ancestry bloodlines accepted are Black Hawaiian, Texas Dall,
Desert Sand, American Blackbelly, Corsican, Mouflon, Horned Rambouliet, Merino, Navajo
Churro, or Jacob sheep breeds.

While the original crosses occurred several decades ago, some breeders may wish to
create new bloodlines using one or more of the parent wool breeds. To be registered,
Painted Desert sheep must consist of 1/8th or less of parent wool breeds and meet all
other breed standards.

Painted Desert Sheep which are directly bred from wool lines and include only Horned
Rambouilet, Merino, Navajo Churro, or Jacob wool sheep breeds, must completely shed
and additional pictures showing the completely shed sheep may be required for
registration if the picture submitted does not clearly show the sheep shedding or having
shed.

Information about any known background of the ancestral breeds should be included in
pedigrees with their percentages of the breeds noted to assist breeders in choosing
bloodlines. If a sheep is unregistered, the animal should be clearly labeled as unregistered.
This information should include any known wool breeds in the bloodlines.

TRAITS REQUIRED FOR REGISTRATION:
•Rams must have horns
•At least 2 colors with a separately distinguishable area of white which shows on
registration photos. United Horned Hair Sheep Association, Inc., reserves the right to
request additional photos showing horns, coat or other attributes of the sheep for which
registration or recording is requested.
•Solid colored and sheep without separately distinguishable area of white which shows on
registration photos or who are solid white color may be RECORDED if both parents are
registered Painted Desert Sheep or if one parent is Registered and the other parent is
Recorded
•Known background of only Painted Desert, Texas Dall, Black Hawaiian, Desert Sand,
Mouflon, Corsican Sheep and wool parent breeds of Horned Rambouilet, Merino, Jacob,
and Navajo Churro
•1/8th or less of wool parent breeds
•Sheep at maturity normally exhibiting shedding ability


TRAITS DISCRIMINATED AGAINST (considered a fault):
•Rams’ horns which touch the face at maturity
•For multi horned animals - fused horns
•Extra Teats on ewes
•Slight under or over bite, with teeth just barely touching the edge of the dental pad
•Sheep which do not shed out completely at maturity on a general basis
•Mature rams with no mane at any time
•Tails reaching to the hocks

DISQUALIFICATIONS:
•Sheep with known recent polled bloodlines
•Rams which are polled or have scurs at maturity
•Tails past the hocks
•Docked tails
•Sheep with more than 1/8th known wool breeding from the parent breeds - Horned
Rambouliet, Merino, Navajo Churro, or Jacob
•Sheep with any known wool breeding from any non-parent wool breed
•Hermaphroditism
•One or both testicles not descended
•Severe under or over bite, with distinct space between teeth and edge of dental pad
•Evidence of cross breeding shown by physical appearance of breeds which are not
included in the history or background of Painted Desert Sheep such as Suffolk, Hampshire,
Dorper, Katahdin, St Croix, etc.
•Entropion (inverted eye lids) or other genetic eyelid defects
•Naturally occurring droopy or floppy ears on adults
•Any solid colored sheep born from two Recorded Parents or with one parent which is not
Registered or Recorded.


NOTES:
Sheep with Disqualifying traits are not eligible for registration and will be denied
registration. Excessive Discriminating traits of an individual sheep may render that sheep
ineligible for registration if, at the inspectors and board of directors discretion, such traits
seriously challenge the breed identity.


United Horned Hair Sheep Association, Inc.
PAGE 1 Contains:
General Appearance; Head; Nose; Coat including Colors, Patterns and items affecting color


PAGE 2 Contains:
Ears; Eyes; Incisor Teeth; Neck; Shoulders and Withers; Chest; Back; Ribs and Abdomen;
Bottom Line; Legs; Rump; Thigh; Twist; Udder; Scrotum; Tail; Hoof; Horns including Distance
from Face, Horn Shape, Horn Length, and Horn Color; Size; Weight; Background and
Heritage; Traits Required for Registration; Traits Discriminated Against; Disqualifications
THIS website is copyright May 2009 by United Horned Hair Sheep Association, Inc.  
Active Members of UHHSA are permitted to use information on their website to help in
ethical and honest promotion and education about the breeds represented.  However,
a link to this website should be provided.

Pictures are copyrighted by owners of the sheep pictured and permission will need to
be sought to use the pictures.
Gopher Ear
Length
Normal Ear Length
White/Cream
colored hooves
Black/Dark
colored hooves
Variegated Hooves
Black/Dark colored
hooves with light
colored stripes or
areas of color
Variegated Hooves
White/Cream
colored hooves
with black stripes or
areas of color
Elf Ear Length
PAINTED DESERT SHEEP BREED STANDARDS
PAGE 2
Black Horns
Painted Desert Rams
White Horns
Mature Painted Desert Rams
Variegated Horns
Yearling Painted Desert Ram
1 1/2 Year Old
Horned Ewe
Mature Horned Ewe
Webbed Horns
Homonymous
HW
TWIST: Hand Placement
is indicated by the
horizontal the vertcal blue
line
Supracervical Horns
SH
Homonymous Horns
HH
Ears will generally be at parallel
to the ground (pictured above)
or above for these sheep.
Sheep which naturally have
ears below parallel to the
ground are disqualified from
registration
Variegated Hooves
HORN MEASURING
Click on picture above to
learn how to measure
and score YOUR ram!
Eye Colors
Normal Bite
Underbite
Overbite
Back Legs - Side View
Front Legs - Front View
Front Legs - Side View
Correct
Correct
Correct
Sickle-Hocked
Postlegged
Weak
Pasterns
Calf
Kneed
Buck
Kneed
Toes Angled
Inward
Pigeon Toed
Toes Angled
Outward
Splayfooted
Bowlegged
Knock-
Kneed
Weak Pasterns
FAULT
Back Legs - Rear View
Correct
Bowlegged
Cow-Hocked
CORRECT
Both Testicles
Normal and even
DISQUALIFICATION
(L) One testicle did not descend
Unilateral Cryptorchidism
(R) Both testicles did not descend
Bilateral Cryptorchidism
FAULT
Both testicles small
sized but still
functioning properly
FAULT
One testicle
smaller than the
other
SCROTUM/TESTICLES
Tail Lengths
Tails with these lengths are Correct
Tails to the hocks are acceptable but
considered a fault.
Tails past the hocks (red horizontal line) are
not acceptable and is a Disqualification from
Registration
Black Hooves
Supracervical Horns
SH
Polycerate (Multiple - more than 2) Horns
MH
Ram to the LEFT has fused
horns so that it looks like he
only has 2 horns instead of 4

The three rams above have
separate 4 horns
Black Horns
Painted Desert Rams