Breeding License

Do you need a license to breed dogs or, more specifically, German Shepherd Dogs? 

Legally, no. Ethically, yes.  

There is a “breeding license” program in place for the German Shepherd Dog. It is called a körung* (Koerung) designated by KKL (Koerklasse) after the dog’s name. Meaning this dog has earned its körung, also commonly referred to by English speakers as a breed survey. The körung is a breeding license as defined by the World Federation of German Shepherd Clubs (WUSV), whose purpose is to preserve the core values and integrity of the German Shepherd Dog. 

What do you have to do to have these three simple letters behind your dog’s name?

  1. Formal Certification:
    • Hips (SV German A-Stamp)
    • Elbows (SV German A-Stamp)
    • DNA (blood DNA kept on file with the SV)
  2. ZAP 1 (Wesen test) Character assessment test between 9 to 13 months of age.
  3. Breeding Evaluation dog must be >12 months or older and receive a rating of “G” or higher. Also referred to as a “Show Rating.”
  4. BH (Begleithund) translates from German as Companion Dog. The BH is a combination of temperament and obedience tests, consisting of three parts – written test (for you), obedience, and the traffic portion (temperament). 
  5. AD (Ausdauerpruefung) is an endurance test. During the AD test, the dog trots next to the handler, who is riding on a bicycle, for a total of 12.5 miles (20 KM) at a pace of 7.7 to 9.5 MPH (12-15 KMPH). The test contains a 15 minute rest period at the 5-mile (8 KM) mark and another 15-minute break when the dog has completed 9.4 miles (15 KM). During the rest periods, the judge checks the dog for tender or worn pads, overall fatigue, or poor condition. The judge dismisses any dog that is not fit to continue. After completing the full distance, there is a 20 minute rest period followed by a short obedience routine.
  6. IGP (International Gebrauchshund Prufung) translated as International Working Dog). You may see the abbreviations of IPO or SchH on dogs pedigrees, which are former designations of this title. To earn and IGP title, you and your dog must successfully pass tests in three phases: tracking, obedience, and protection, all at one competition. There are three levels to the IGP 1, 2, 3, with each level increasing in difficulty.
  7.  You have successfully earned all the above, and now, you may present your dog to a Koermeister. A Koermeister is an SV judge with decades of experience in training, titling, raising, and breeding the German Shepherd Dog. 

Congratulations, you now have a license to breed your German Shepherd Dog!!

*Previously there were two classifications for the körung. KKL1 and KKL2 or KKLa or KKLb. with the a, b, 1, or 2 – this may still be seen on older dogs in a pedigree. The designation is as follows:

  • KKL1 or KKLa – recommended for breeding.
  • KKL2 or KKLb – suitable for breeding with some warnings.