Monitoring of German Shepherd Dog classes at championship shows enters second phase

The monitoring of German Shepherd Dog (GSD) classes at championship shows by Kennel Club representatives entered its second phase on 1st January 2018.

This latest monitoring will focus on ensuring championship show judges of the breed adhere to the points made in the education which they must have undertaken in order to award Challenge Certificates from this year onwards. This education, available on the Kennel Club Academy, emphasises that the breed is to be exhibited in the same manner as all other large pastoral breeds.

In September 2016, the first phase of monitoring of GSD classes at championship shows began and centred on the show society’s use of the previously agreed and published escalation procedure to enforce the Kennel Club’s regulation on double handling. Societies were asked to provide Kennel Club representatives with a copy of the contract paperwork of all judges officiating at the show. These measures were part of a number of directives issued by the Kennel Club in July 2016 in order to tackle concerns over the reputation of the breed.

The Kennel Club Academy content was updated early in 2017 to include a film on ‘Ring Procedures at KC licensed shows’ aimed at judges of GSDs. The film emphasises the judge’s responsibilities in relation to health and welfare, and general ring procedure, and also covers breed-specific aspects such as the double handling escalation procedure and the 2016 change to the Breed Standard.

There is a corresponding multiple choice examination and the questions are based on the content of the film, Kennel Club show regulations, the Code of Best Practice for Judges and Ring Stewards and other announcements made by the Kennel Club on the exhibition and judging of this breed. All this information is available via the Academy or on the Kennel Club website. Judges must attain a score of 18 out of 20, and a certificate is downloadable for those who achieve this.

As was announced at the time the film and exam were uploaded, all GSD championship show judging contracts for 2018 and beyond were suspended until such time as each judge has undertaken the education.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, said: “There are already a number of judges who have passed the online GSD exam and are therefore now eligible to award Challenge Certificates. As with the first phase of monitoring, we feel confident that the Kennel Club representatives, show societies, breed clubs and of course the judges will all work well together to their mutual benefit, as well as to the ultimate benefit of the GSD and ensuring a pleasant day out for everyone concerned.”

The GSD film and exam can currently be accessed free of charge by all GSD judges, as well as by anyone interested in the breed. Visit the Academy to enrol in the course.

Those who have not previously used the Academy should go to where registering an account is also free.