Why do we have standards for breeds? Why are they important? Of course there's plenty of frivolous non functional aspects in modern standards, but here's a functional point that I noticed this hunting season. The Japanese Dog (Nihon Ken) should have a thick undercoat, and tough outer coat. My Kishu Baron has a very poor undercoat, and as you can see in the pictures below, his underside gets very irritated when hunting in the dense undergrowth of the Japanese mountains. This is actually a good day, on days he's been hunting, his skin is red and you can tell it's a bit tender.