Performance Testing

The JGHV testing program is a performance-based testing system with regulations established designed to demonstrate and improve upon inherited qualities while determining the success of past and future breeding programs. As member club # 2415 of the JGHV, Deutsch Langhaar Gruppe Nordamerika adheres to all JGHV Test Regulations. To enter a dog in one of these tests the owner must be a member of a member club of the JGHV. The JGHV provides the test regulations, authorizes the judges, and maintains the test records for member breed clubs. The JGHV is considered to be THE umbrella organization for German hunting breeds and it’s objectives under the by-laws and organizational structure make it truly a unique worldwide entity.


The successful completion of JGHV performance tests is required to identify the dog's natural abilities and suitability to hunt. The Natural Ability Test (VJP) is conducted in the spring for the DL whelped prior to October 1st of the previous year.  The VJP judges evaluate 5 attributes throughout the day.  Those attributes are as follows:




A dog is required to demonstrate a willingness, desire and ability to concentrate under difficult hunting conditions. The manner of the dog is also noted.




The degree of accurate scent discrimination and how sensitive the nose is, are evaluated. The nose is evaluated during Search, Pointing and Tracking.




A dog is evaluated on the desire to find game, style, and stamina coupled with an impressive search pattern.  A dog is also evaluated on how steady it is to gunshot.




A dog is evaluated on the duration and intensity of the point, and must indicate the location of the game.




The ability for the dog to remain attentive and to be a team member is a very highly valued trait. The dog needs to demonstrate the ability to know where the handler is, be able to change direction with the handler and have the ability to note the location of his handler when working out of sight.



The Advanced Natural Ability Test (HZP) is an intermediate level test conducted in fall of the same calendar year as the VJP.  The HZP judges evaluate several attributes throughout the day.  In addition to the 5 attributes judged during a VJP (nose, tracking, search, pointing, and cooperation), the additional attributes evaluated are as follows:




During the whole of the examination, the dog is required to demonstrate a desire to work and a willingness to perform each of the tests on land and in water.


Marked Duck Retrieve


The dog sees a dead duck thrown into the water.  After the dog is sent for the retrieve, a shot will be fired over the dog to ensure that he/she is not gun sensitive in the water.  The dog must complete the retrieve.


Blind Water Retrieve


The dog is examined on if and how it conducts the search, whether it finds and retrieves the (dead) duck, and the desire to retrieve are all evaluated. A maximum of 10 minutes is allowed for the dog to complete this examination. Minimum distance of 30 meters.


Search Behind Duck


There are a number of qualities that need to be demonstrated by a dog; strength of character, persistence for searching and a willingness to swim.


Gamebird Drag


A willingness to work the trail and a desire to return the fowl to handler are desirable traits. A dog is scored on the ability to work the track and work back to the handler. The distance is 150 meters.


Hare/Rabbit Drag


This has the same requirements as the gamebird drag except the gamebird is replaced by a hare or rabbit and the distance is 300 meters.


Manner of Retrieve


A dog is required to exhibit trained skills of pick up, the manner in which the game is carried and the delivery to handler.  A dog is rated in all sections of HZP that require retrieving and the scores are averaged.




A dog is required to demonstrate a quick and willing response to voice, hand signal, and whistle. It is evaluated in all phases of the examination however not in the presence of game.



The Utility Test (VGP) is a comprehensive master/utility performance test, evaluating a finished versatile DL in 26 categories and 18 different hunting situations.


In the field portion of the VGP, the following attributes are evaluated:




A dog will need to demonstrate a good nose, to have the ability of finding game.




A dog is required to demonstrate a high level of desire, stamina, and cooperation in this phase.




Intensity, honoring and steadiness to shot are all observed and a dog is required to demonstrate these traits at a high level.  The dog must be steady to wing and shot.




A dog is required to demonstrate the ability to relocate and hold the game.


Gamebird Drag


A dog is required to demonstrate a desire to find the game quickly and without any additional directions from the handler.

Gamebird Retrieve


A dog is required to complete the retrieve of a shot gamebird.



In the water work portion of the VGP, the following attributes are evaluated:


Marked Duck Retreive


The dog sees a dead duck thrown into the water.  After the dog is sent for the retrieve, a shot will be fired over the dog to ensure that he/she is not gun sensitive in the water.  The dog must complete the retrieve.


Search Without a Duck


A dog is sent to search a large body of water that is devoid of any game.  The handler must remain in place but may assist the dog by pointing and giving a few directional commands (the fewer the better). The dog must hunt persistently and show a strong desire to find game whether they come across any scent or not.  Usually, the judges will expect a dog to search for 10 minutes before allowing the handler to call the dog back.


Blind Retrieve


A dog is required to show the ability to locate the game by either signals from the handler or by using his/her own desire to search. Minimum distance of 30 Meters.


Search Behind Duck


It is important for a dog to show ability to follow the duck track on the water using the nose. A dog that works with eyes alone will not be rated.



In the forest portion of the VGP, the following attributes are evaluated:


Blood Tracking For Hoofed Game


This is performed on a lead and a dog must demonstrate calm and confident concentration, as well as initiative and desire.  A dog must have the ability to guide the handler to where the game is and behave correctly while searching for the game.  The blood trail is approximately 400 meters long and usually aged between 2 and 8 hours.  Handlers may also request an overnight blood trail for additional points. 


Furred Game Drag Track


The judges lay a 300-meter fox drag (fox should be provided by the handler).  The handler must send the dog with 1 command.  The dog must complete the track and retrieve the fox to hand.  The manner of working the track and the retrieve are both taken into account for scoring, as well as the use of the nose, perseverance, and desire.  There are two parts to scoring: the track and the retrieve.

Furred Game Retrieve Over Obstacle


A fox is placed behind a natural barrier (usually about 30 inches tall).  The handler must send the dog with one command.  The dog must jump over the obstacle to retrieve the fox to hand.

Independent Forest Search


The dog is sent to search a wooded area that is not known for holding game.  The dog is expected to search diligently until called back by its handler.  Perseverance, passion, and boldness are all taken into account for the rating of a dog.  Generally, the judges want to see a dog search the woods for 10 minutes without another command from their handler before they will allow the dog to be called back.


Dense Cover Search


In this portion of the test, the dog and handler are asked to search a dense wooded stand.  The dog will be required to demonstrate a calm and purposeful search.  The judges will fire a few shots randomly during the search.  The dog is expected to remain calm and under the control of their handler even while the shots occur.


In the obedience portion of the VGP, there are seven main categories being evaluated:


Obedience During the Driven Hunt


The dog is put on a down-stay or a sit-stay and expected to remain quietly by the handlers side while a mock driven hunt is conducted right in front of the dog.  The driven hunt consists of several people yelling and shooting as they push through the woods in front of the dog.


Heeling On Lead


The dog is required to heel on lead with its handler while weaving in and out of trees in a wooded area.


Heeling Off-Lead


The dog is required to heel off lead with its handler.  The judges will ask the handler to vary walking/running speed, stop, and change directions to evaluate the dog's ability to heel off-lead.




The dog is placed on a down/stay while the handler walks out of sight.  The handler fires a couple of shots before returning to the dog.  The dog must remain in place throughout the entire process.


Steadiness to Wing


During the field portion of the VGP, the dog is expected to remain steady to the flush of a gamebird.


Steadiness to Shot


During the field portion of the VGP, the dog is expected to remain steady to the shot after a gamebird is flushed.


Overall Obedience


A dog's obedience is judged during the entire time of the 2-day test.  A dog should be under the handler's control at all times...whether the handler is sending the dog for a retrieve or just walking the dog back to the car.


It is most desirable that the DL successfully complete the Schorlemer HZP, aka SP, as a demonstration of its early breeding suitability; as well as the JGHV Association Utility Test (VGP), the Retrieve Reliablity Test on Natural Wound Track (Vbr), the JGHV Association Blood Tracking Test (VSwP), the Retrieve Reliability Test (Btr); Natural Blood Tracking (,,:'') or (:) repectively, and the performance award Wild Boar ("LzS") as demonstrations of the dog's ability to withstand great stress while hunting.


IVGP (or INT.VGP) = International Association Utility Test


Award Designations
A.H. = Armbruster-Halt-Award


All certified JGHV judges have successfully trained and handled a dog through all tests and have served as an apprentice judge at a minimum of two times for each level of testing.

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