The DKV and the German Breeding System
The American German shorthaired pointer has descended from the Deutsch Kurzhaar but the manner in which these dogs are bred is radically different. The Deutsch Kurzhaar Verband (DKV) in Germany sets the breeding requirements that a DK must meet in order for a litter to be registered. At a minimum, both parents must pass a conformation evaluation, perfomance test ( Solms, HZP, AZP, or VGP), and be certified hip dysplasia free via x-rays evaluated in Germany. The results of these tests and evaluations are abbreviated with letters after the dogs name and recorded on the ahnentafel (pedigree) By contrast, there are no breeding requirements for a GSP to be registered with AKC, NAVHDA, or any US based breed registry.
A DK can enter performances tests that are specific to DK's and sponsored by the DKV or tests that are open to all German recognized hunting breeds (Deutsch Drahthaar, Deutsch Langhaar) which are sponsored by the umbrella organization JGHV to which the parent breed clubs belong. A dog only has two chances to pass a performance test.
DKV sponsored tests are scored on a 4 point system 0 = failing, 1 = deficient, 3 = good, 4 = very good, 4h = excellent. Dogs that pass are awarded either a Prize1, Prize 2, or Prize 3.
The Derby is held in the spring for pups born in the previous breed year. (Breed years run from Oct 1 to Sept 30) The test consists of an evaluation of the pups inherited natural ability in the field (nose, search, pointing, and cooperation as well as desire to work and obedience). Dogs that pass are awarded either Prize 1, 2, or 3 which is recorded in the Zuchtbuch (breed book) in Germany. D1 after a dogs name indicates a Derby Prize1
The Solms is held in the fall for pups born in the previous breed year. The Solms is also considered a natural ability test but it also emphasizes the dogs mental stability and temperament. The test consists of a field portion where search, pointing, nose and cooperation are evaluated and a water portion with a search behind a live duck and a blind water retrieve. In addition, there are drags (rabbit, duck) which are laid out of sight of the dog which the dog must find and retrieve to hand. S1 after a dogs name indicates a Solms Prize1
The AZP is held in the fall for older dogs that have missed the Solms test. It is the same as the Solms but the dog is expected to perform with a higher level of obedience. AZP1 indicates an AZP Prize1
IKP and NAKP
These tests are showcase tests for DK's and have strict entry requirements. The IKP (International KurzhaarPrüfung) is held every other year in Germany and alternates with the Kleeman. The NAKP is the same test held in the US in the same year as the Kleeman. Dogs must have earned 2 Prize 1's in order to enter.
This is the ultimate showcase held in Germany every other year with strict entry requirements (Prize1 in Derby, Solms, VGP, among others) This is a Pass Fail test which awards the prestigious KS title to dogs who pass. It is essentially a Solms test which is judged very strictly with only about half of the dogs entered passing. There is also a breed show the day before the Kleeman. A dog that makes the top 5 in the breed show and passes the Kleeman becomes a very sought after stud.
Scoring System -
The VJP and HZP are hunting tests for pups born the year before, or the last three months of the year before that. The same scoring system is used for both tests: 0 = failing, 1-2 = unsatisfactory, 3-5 = satisfactory, 6-8 = good, 9-11 = very good, 12 = excellent. Elevens and twelves can only be given in certain categories. A twelve may only be awarded in very special, difficult to accomplish situations. Ten is the maximum score in obedience areas. For each testing category there is a multiplication factor, ranging from 1 to 3, depending on the relative importance of that quality.
The Verbands-Jugend-Prüfung, or spring natural ability test, attempts to measure the pup's inherited potential. The pup is scored on Tracking, Nose, Search, Pointing, and Cooperation. A pup which was scored in the upper good range (8 points) in each category would receive a total score of 56 points.
he HerbstZucht-Prüfung, or fall breed test, usually does not include tracking live upland game in this country, but does include all of the other VJP categories, as well as the additional categories of Desire, Search behind the Duck (following a duck's scent trail across water), Blind Retrieve of a Duck, 150 and 300 meter retrieves of game placed by drag track, Manner of Retrieve (sit and hold to deliver), and Obedience. In essence, the HZP is a measure of the pup's actual usefulness as an upland and waterfowl hunting dog which has been trained to a moderately high degree. A dog which receives an 8 in each HZP category would receive a total score of 144.
Verbands-Gebrauchs-Prüfung, or utility test. The VGP is a two day test involving about two dozen different scoring areas. It includes many aspects similar to the HZP, plus a fox retrieve, a 400 meter blood track, steadiness to wing and shot, and land and water independent hunting exercises. In this test, the dog and handler are judged as a team; natural ability is not rated. Scoring is changed to a four-point system for the VGP: 0 = failing, 1 = deficient, 3 = good, 4 = very good, 4h = excellent. The passing scores are designated with both point total and prize classifications of Prize1, 2, or 3. To meet each prize classification, the dog and handler team must achieve a minimum point total and demonstrate qualifying performance in selected categories. This is a very difficult test as the dog must remain focused and is constantly shifting gears.
In order for a dog to be breed eligible, a conformation evaluation must be performed by a conformation judge at a breed show (Zuchtschau). The dog is judged against the FCI breed standard and is awarded one of 5 ratings: The dog must receive an evaluation of G in order to be breed eligible.
V Vorzueglich, Excellent
SG Sehr Gut Very Good
G Gut Good
Gen Genuegend Acceptable
Unge Ungenuegend Not Acceptable
These evaluations are not about the prettiest dog. Good conformation is required for a DK to function effectively in the field and water. Structure, movement, teeth and bite are extremely important when selecting breeding dogs .