The breed survey is the ultimate instrument used as the selection method for the German Shepherd Dog Breed. It is absolutely necessary for the preservation and advancement of this breed.
Originally developed in Germany for their domestic stock, in 1922 the breed survey also became the tool used as a resource for breeding the German Shepherd Dog. Simply explained, German Shepherd Dogs need a certificate for reproduction.
This certificate is issued by the USA/SV organization which follows a special procedure where the breed survey judge evaluates the dog’s temperament in different stimulus situations. The dog must always demonstrate a friendly and self-confident character and in any situation, must show control even when in confrontation with its own natural instincts.
After these tests the dog will be measured, weighed, and anatomically analyzed in the stand position and also, when in movement. Based on each dog’s overall evaluation, it will be awarded the predicate Class I or Class II. Of course, not all dogs will be able to reach the level of these certificates.
The requirements to enter a dog in the breed survey event are not easy to achieve. They must be registered with the SV/USA organizations, absolutely healthy, a minimum of 2 years of age, they must have successfully completed an endurance test, received a rating of at least“good” in a breed show, they must have obtained at least a performance title of SchH 1 and must have certified hips. This may seem to be very restrictive, but it makes sense since we are looking for animals within our whole breed population, which have been selected based on their temperament, performance, and anatomy to improve and advance the breed.
This is an ideal tool for breeders to be able to carefully plan all their future breedings.
USA Breed Survey Regulations
The United Schutzhund Clubs of America (USA) is a German Shepherd Dog breed organization guided by the rules of the founding organization of German Shepherd Dogs, the Verein für Deutsche Schäferhunde (SV) in Germany, with the objective of preserving the breed in accordance with the breed standard as a working dog. The USA Breed Survey Regulations coincide with the SV regulations; however, they have been somewhat modified to conform to the needs of USA.
The USA Breed Survey Regulations govern all breed survey activities for the German Shepherd Dog. The purpose of the USA Breed Survey Regulations is to select breeding animals that, according to their temperament, performance, and anatomical characteristics, are suitable for maintaining and improving the breed.
2. USA SURVEY ORGANIZATION
2.1. Breed Book Office
The USA Breed Book Office checks all breed survey paperwork for correctness, then processes and files the reports. The USA Breed Book Office publishes a USA Breed Survey Book annually containing the data on all dogs that have been breed surveyed in a USA event.
2.2. Breed Survey Masters
USA appoints experienced USA breed judges to serve as breed survey masters and also uses SV Körmeisters. The breed survey masters have no legal claim to yearly breed survey assignments. Selection of breed survey masters lies with the local clubs.
2.3. Breed Survey Season
The season for breed surveys is from January 1st through December 31st of each year. Dogs may be presented for surveying one time during each season.
2.4. Breed Survey Entry Maximum
The number of dogs for each survey day is limited to 50. If more than 50 dogs are entered, an additional half-day must be added on the same weekend.
2.5.1. The decision of the breed survey master is final. Objections are not permitted.
2.5.2. Obtaining or losing breed survey status gives no legal claims to interested parties or outsiders. Any claims for damages from interested parties (owners) or outsiders arising from obtaining or losing breed survey status are denied.
2.5.3. The owner of the dog is liable for any damage caused by the dog.
3. PREREQUISITES FOR BREED SURVEY PARTICIPATION
3.1. USA Registration
Dogs must be registered with USA if the owner resides in the United States
3.2. USA Membership
Owners of the dogs must be current members of USA if residing in the United States. If the dog is co-owned, the signature-authorized owner must be a current USA member.
3.3. Age Requirement
Dogs must be a minimum of two years old in the year of the survey.
3.4. Performance Title
Dogs must have at least one performance title (SchH1-3, VPG1-3, IP1-3, or HGH) obtained under a USA-recognized performance judge, and a BH obtained under a WUSV-recognized judge. Dogs with an HGH title are not required to have a BH title.
3.5. Endurance Test
Dogs must have passed an endurance test (AD) under a USA-recognized judge; however, this requirement is waived for dogs with an HGH title and dogs that are six years and older.
3.6. Hip Certification
Dogs must have a USA-recognized hip certification with tattoo number or microchip identification. Note: Check with the USA Office for a current list of recognized hip certifications.
3.7. Breed Show Rating
Dogs must have a breed show rating of at least “good” obtained under a USA-recognized breed judge in the youth, young dog, or working dog class.
3.8. USA-Recognized Judges
The judges who are recognized by USA are USA judges, SV judges (including SV foreign judges), and Canadian judges.
3.9. Additional Prerequisites
3.9.1. Sick animals may not be presented.
3.9.2. Females in season must be reported to the breed survey master, who controls participation.
3.9.3. Females in whelp must be reported to the breed survey master, who controls participation.
3.9.4. Dogs must be identifiable by a recognizable tattoo number.
4. SPONSORING LOCAL CLUBS
4.1.1. Venue with the necessary accommodations and restrooms
4.1.2. Trained assistants
4.1.3. Breed survey secretary
4.2. Required Equipment
4.2.1. Shelter for the breed survey master and breed survey secretary
4.2.2. Sufficiently large ring
4.2.4. SV breed survey measuring stick
4.2.5. Measuring tape (metric system)
4.2.6. Scale (metric system)
4.2.7. Two blank guns (6 mm) with adequate blank ammunition
4.2.8. Numbered bibs or armbands for dog handlers
4.3. Duties of Breed Survey Secretary
4.3.1. Mail breed survey entry forms a minimum of three weeks in advance.
4.3.2. Check submitted documents for completeness and correctness, and check eligibility of dogs for entering breed survey.
4.3.3. Confirm that owners who are residents of the United States are USA members
4.3.4. Prepare Körlisten and temporary breed survey certificates and have them ready for the breed survey master either prior to or at the start of the survey. The forms are available from the USA Breed Book Office.
4.3.5. Inform the breed survey master regarding receipt and number of entries.
4.3.6. Provide a catalogue-like list of participants that is divided by males and females, and first and repeat breed surveys.
4.3.7. Submit the checked documents for each dog to the breed survey master before the start of the breed survey.
5. REGISTERING FOR THE SURVEY
The following documents must be submitted no later than the day of the breed survey:
5.1. Original USA-recognized pedigree showing proof of USA registration.
5.2. Original breed show rating book/card showing proof of breed show rating.
5.3. Original scorebook showing proof of AD, BH, and one performance title.
5.4. Original hip certificate showing proof of USA-recognized hip certification with tattoo number or microchip identification, if not entered on the pedigree.
5.5. Original breed survey report in cases of resurvey.
5.6. Original signature authorization form for dogs that are co-owned, unless previously submitted to the USA Breed Book Office (form available from the USA Breed Book Office).
5.7. Photocopy of USA membership card.
6. SURVEY PROCEDURE
6.1. Temperament Test
The breed survey master must subject each dog to a temperament test. Temperament evaluation may extend throughout the entire survey. According to the standard, the dog must display sound temperament; i.e., be carefree, self-confident, and good-natured and have steady nerves.
6.2. Gun Test
From a distance of at least 15 paces, at least two shots must be fired from a blank gun (6 mm). The dog must not have a negative reaction to the gunfire.
6.3 Protection Work Execution – Surprise Attack with Guarding
6.3.1. The handler reports to the breed survey master with the dog on leash.
6.3.2. Upon instruction by the breed survey master, the handler assumes the basic position at a marked spot 30 paces from the blind and takes the leash off the dog.
6.3.3. The leash must be placed around the shoulder or in the pocket of the handler.
6.3.4. Upon a signal from the breed survey master, the handler walks toward the blind with the free-heeling dog.
6.3.5. The dog must stay closely at heel.
6.3.6. Upon a signal from the breed survey master, the helper performs an attack while making threatening noises. The attack occurs when handler and dog are five paces away from the blind.
6.3.7. The dog must counter the attack immediately and confidently and must bite hard and full.
6.3.8. Once the dog has a grip on the sleeve, the helper applies two stick hits with a soft stick on either the thighs, the sides, or in the area of the withers.
6.3.9. The handler may verbally encourage the dog to counter the attack.
6.3.10. Upon a signal from the breed survey master, the helper stops the attack and stands still.
6.3.11. The dog must release either on its own or upon receiving the verbal command “aus/out” and must guard the helper.
6.3.12. The breed survey master gives the handler the instruction to step up to the dog.
6.3.13. The handler puts the dog on leash and receives the instruction from the breed survey master to step into the assigned blind.
6.4. Protection Work Execution – Attack, Fight, and Guarding
6.4.1. The breed survey master tells the handler to leave the assigned blind and take the position on the centerline.
6.4.2. The handler takes the dog off leash and holds the dog by the collar.
6.4.3. The dog must stay in this position until he is sent to counter the attack with the verbal command “voran/go on.”
6.4.4. Upon receiving a signal from the breed survey master, the helper leaves the assigned blind, which is located at a distance of approximately 70-80 paces from the handler, and walks across the field at a normal pace.
6.4.5. The handler verbally commands the helper to stop by shouting “stop/stand still.”
6.4.6. The helper ignores the command and performs a frontal attack on the handler and the dog.
6.4.7. Immediately after the attack begins, the breed survey master gives the handler the instruction to counter the attack/send the dog.
6.4.8. The handler immediately sends his dog with the verbal command “voran/go on” and stands still.
6.4.9. The dog must energetically counter the attack with drive and with a strong, full, sure, and calm grip.
6.4.10. Once the dog has a grip on the sleeve, and after a brief pressure phase, the helper stops the attack on a signal from the breed survey master. No stick hits are given.
6.4.11. Thereafter, the dog must release either on its own or upon receiving the verbal command “aus/out” and must guard the helper.
6.4.12. Upon a signal from the breed survey master, the handler walks directly to the dog at a normal pace and puts the dog on leash.
6.4.13. With the dog on leash, the handler reports to the breed survey master and then leaves the field.
6.5. Protection Work Scoring – Release
6.5.1. After the helper stops the attack, the dog must release on its own.
6.5.2. The handler may give the first “aus/out” command on his/her own after a reasonable time.
6.5.3. If the dog does not release after the first “aus/out” command, the breed survey master instructs the handler to give two more “aus/out” commands, if necessary.
6.5.4. When giving the “aus/out” command, the handler must stand still and may not influence the dog in any way.
6.5.5. If the dog's name is used, it is counted as an “aus/out” command.
6.5.6. If the dog releases on its own when the handler approaches, it can still be counted as a release; however, the handler must be at least five paces from the dog at that time.
6.5.7. If the dog releases on its own or in response to the “aus/out” command after the attack and after the defense exercise; the rating “does release” is awarded.
6.5.8. If the dog does not release—even once—on its own or in response to the “aus/out” command after the attack or after the defense exercise, the dog receives the rating “does not release.”
6.5.9. The breed survey ratings themselves are not affected by this rating.
6.5.10. The breed survey master stays near the handler during the entire protection routine, and keenly observes the behavior of dog and handler until after the handler has picked up the dog.
6.6. Protection Work Scoring – Evaluation of Instinctive Behavior, Self-Confidence, and Ability to Cope with Stress (TSB)
6.6.1. The overall rating of the protection exercises is scored as “pronounced,” “present,” or “insufficient.”
6.6.2. Pronounced: Self-confident, intense, goal-oriented and secure gripping and holding, no negative reactions to the stick hits, and close and attentive watching in the guarding phases.
6.6.3. Present: Deficiencies, for example, in self-confidence, in goal-oriented behavior, in grip and stick behavior, as well as in the guarding phases.
6.6.4. Insufficient: Lacking self-confidence, strong deficiencies with respect to hardness, and disinterest in the helper.
6.7. Measurements and Weights
The breed survey secretary or an assistant may weigh the dogs and take measurements for chest depth and chest circumference. The breed survey master must take measurements of the height at the withers.
6.8. Examination of Standing Dog and Evaluation of Movement
During this examination, the breed survey master writes the breed survey report. The handler must refrain as much as possible from influencing the dog during this examination.
6.9. Reports and Certificates
After completing the survey for each dog, the breed survey master announces the results over the loudspeaker. The owners of the dogs receive a temporary breed survey certificate signed by the breed survey master that shows the survey result. This certificate is proof of breed survey and replaces the original paperwork while the USA Breed Book Office is processing the breed survey.
7. BREED SURVEY
7.1. Survey Class 1
Survey Class 1 is the highest breed survey classification and is awarded to dogs recommended for breeding. This class is limited to dogs that conform to the breed characteristics as follows:
7.1.1. Measurements, weight, and structure conform to the standard.
7.1.2. Overall temperament is self-confident and good-natured, with TSB rating of “pronounced.”
7.1.3. Faultless dentition with no missing teeth; however, double premolars #1 are allowed.
7.2. Survey Class 2
Survey Class 2 is the lower breed survey classification and is awarded to dogs approved for breeding. This class includes dogs with the following faults:
7.2.1. Minor anatomical faults.
7.2.2. Oversized or undersized up to 1 cm, measured at the withers (maximum is males 66 cm/ bitches 61 cm and minimum is males 59 cm/bitches 54 cm).
7.2.3. TSB rating of “present.”
7.2.4. Dentition faults as follows:
· Missing one premolar #1 or one incisor
· Missing two premolars #1
· Missing one premolar #1 and one incisor
· Missing one premolar #2
· Slight level bite of the middle incisors
7.3. Upgrading of Survey Class
The owner of a dog surveyed in Class 2 (initial or repeat survey) has the option of presenting the dog again for a breed survey improvement in the first year of the current breed survey. Application for survey rating upgrade is possible one time for both the initial survey and resurvey.
7.4. One-Year Deferment
A one-year deferment is possible for the following reasons:
7.4.1. The physical development of the dog is not advanced enough for surveying, but the dog is expected to reach desirable development.
7.4.2. The TSB evaluation of the dog is insufficient to pass the breed survey.
7.4.3. A one-year deferment is only possible one time for the same reason.
If the dog fails a second time for the same reason, the dog is not suitable for surveying.
7.5. Not Suitable for Survey
The following faults preclude a breed survey:
7.5.1. Considerable anatomical faults.
7.5.2. Oversized or undersized more than 1 cm, measured at the withers (maximum is males 66 cm/ bitches 61 cm and minimum is males 59 cm/bitches 54 cm).
7.5.3. Testicle faults.
7.5.4. Dentition faults as follows:
· Missing one premolar #3
· Missing two incisors
· Missing one premolar #2 plus one incisor
· Missing one premolar #2 plus one premolar #1
· Missing two premolar #2
7.5.5. Considerable pigment deficiencies.
7.5.6. Long coat or long stock coat.
7.6. Survey Term
7.6.1. The term for initial survey and survey after lapse is two years. The dog must be presented again during the second year of the current breed survey for the resurvey for life.
7.6.2. Resurvey is effective for life.
7.6.3. Upgrading of survey class does not extend the original survey term.
7.6.4. The survey term for females that are in an advanced stage of pregnancy or are nursing may be extended for an additional year without the female being presented for evaluation (survey extension). Survey extension is not possible for any other reasons and may be granted one time. On the day of the breed survey the following proof must be presented:
• Pregnancy of at least 42 days by submission of the stud certificate/report of breeding card.
• Certificate issued by the local breed warden or a licensed veterinarian verifying that the female is visibly pregnant.
• Certificate issued by the local breed warden or a licensed veterinarian verifying that the female is nursing if no more than 42 days have elapsed from the whelping day to the survey day.
7.7. Termination of Survey Status
7.7.1. If a surveyed dog is not presented for resurvey, the breed survey status expires at the end of the calendar year.
7.7.2. Breed survey status is terminated by “breed survey status repeal.” Breed survey status is repealed upon application of the breed survey master or breed judge directed to the USA Breed Book Office. Breed survey status may be suspended during the time the application is being processed.
8. BREED SURVEY CERTIFICATE AND BREED SURVEY BOOK
The USA Breed Book Office returns to the owner in a timely manner the original documents submitted at the breed survey. Upon processing of the breed survey, the breed survey results will be published in the next possible issue of the USA magazine. The owner receives a translation of the breed survey report from the USA Breed Book Office. The breed survey result is noted on the original pedigree.
Data on dogs surveyed during each year are published, separated by gender, in the USA Breed Survey Book. The Breed Survey Book contains comprehensive information for the dogs recommended or suitable for breeding, including physical characteristics and temperament. Together with the comments of the breed survey master with respect to breeding recommendations, this information makes this book a comprehensive and indispensable reference source for the serious breeder.