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About Deutsch-Drahthaar Test Scores

The prospective Deutsch-Drahthaar puppy owner may be unfamiliar with the testing system, the detailing of the pedigrees, and the meanings of the various scores. At a minimum, one should understand the VJP, HZP, VGP, ZR rating, and HD-frei rating. The VJP, HZP and VGP are actually German Versatile Hunting Dog Association (Jagdgebrauchshundverband - JGHV) tests which VDD has elected to use as its breed club tests. It is the JGHV which governs these tests and certifies judges.

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. Even elevens require conditions which may not be present in every test situation. Therefore, the luck of the test often controls just how high a score a dog can get, regardless of how good he might be. 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. As a Drahthaar puppy buyer, it might be more important for you to look at the individual scores of the parents in the areas that are most important to you, rather than the total score. The dogs are also examined for physical deficiencies and temperament faults at all tests. Any notations become a permanent part of the their records. A dog that shows the slightest degree of gun sensitivity or has any one of a number of physical defects, may not be used in a Verein Deutsch-Drahthaar breeding program.

VJP - 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.

HZP - The 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. Buyers who are particularly interested in breeding and/or participating in the VJP and HZP should be aware of the fact that age restrictions sometimes make it more difficult for a pup born between mid-July and September 30 to do well, unless the handler is very skilled and/or the pup is quite precocious. If you are especially interested in testing your pup and getting high scores in these two breed tests, you may prefer a pup from a litter born between October 1 and July 15.

VGP - Some of the dogs on the pedigree may also have a five digit number to the right under their names. This shows that the dog has passed the 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 classification, for example VGP II./300 means a Prize II with 300 points. To meet each prize classification, the dog and handler team must achieve a minimum point total and demonstrate qualifying performance in selected categories.

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