Now that I've gotten more familiar with the physics of the four legged locomotion I'm having a non-reference play. To keep it simple and to concentrate on the forward propulsion I'm using a cartoony pokemon like character.
The soft features and stumpy feet take away the complex triple joint manipulations of the four legged variety and use the physics of a realistic four legged walk into an abstract animal shape. The figure is bear/sloth like and the weight is somewhat equally distributed between the from and hind legs. Head is bobbing only slightly and has a distinct directional neck stretch (with addition of a sprawl and a shell this could become an amphibian) applies the figures shoulders are swaying with it's weight giving it some character and purposeful walk.