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About the BH Test.

The BH stands for “Begleithundprüfung” which is a German term meaning “traffic-sure Companion Test".  In short, The BH Test is a Basic Companion Test and is the entry level title for IGP and working titles within the SV program.  Dogs must be 15 months or older in order to participate, must have identification (tattoo/microchip) and valid score book through the USCA or GSDCA.  There are three portions to the BH exam: 1. Temperament, 2. Obedience & 3. Traffic. A few years back there used to be a written test which the SV, and fellow associations, have now done away with. The BH exam is a pass/fail exam based on points accumulated in the obedience portion as well as "pass/fail" from the temperament and traffic test. Teams must earn a minimum of 70% in the traffic portion as well as "Pass" in both Temperament & Traffic test's to earn the BH title.

Temperament Test

The Temperament test is given at check in. The handler will walk the dog onto the field, loose leash and with no commands. The handler then greet's the judge introducing themselves and their dog. After which, the judge will then check the identity of the dog (tattoo/microchip) and observes the dog's confidence, friendliness, condition, etc. If the handler/dog (team) fail this portion they may not proceed further.  If the judge determines everything to be in order, the team will advance onto the Obedience test. 

Obedience Test

Upon entering the field the judge (or handler) will acknowledge if the team is "active" or "down". If the team is "down" they will walk to the location on the field for the "down under distraction".  If the team is "active" they will advance to the starting point for on-leash heeling.

To keep things simple we have broken the Obedience Test down into 4 phases. Phase 1: On-Leash Heeling, Phase 2: Off-Leash heeling, Phase 3: Sit-Stay & Down with Recall, Phase 4: Down Under Distractions.

Phase 1: On Leash Heeling

 If the team is the "active"(after greeting the judge) they will proceed to the start of the obedience pattern, get into a basic position and await the judges acknowledgment to begin. Upon beginning, the team will heel (on leash) in the pattern that is shown below.  The first part of obedience will conclude after heeling around the group. Once the team "stops/sits" next to a person in the group the handler will then say "Thank You Group" and move back to the start position, get in the basic position, and await the judges acknowledgment to begin Phase 2 "Off-Leash".

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Phase 2: Off Leash Heeling

See Image Below

Upon judges acknowledgment, The handler will remove the leash from the dog and either place the leash entirely in their pocket or loop the leash across their body (shoulder to waist) clipping the leash on their right hip. The Off-Leash portion will be a partial repeat of the BH pattern (see below).  The team will heel 50 paces out, about turn (left) 10-15 paces normal, 10-15 paces fast, 10-15 paces slow and 10-15 paces normal. Once back to the starting position the team will turn left and go into a basic obedience position, and acknowledge the judge before proceeding to Phase 3 "Sit-Stay and Down with Recall".

Phase 3: Sit-Stay & Down with Recall

(Off Leash) See Image Below

Upon judges acknowledgment, From the basic position, the team will walk 10-15 paces, the handler will ask the dog to "sit" and the handler walks (without the dog) 30 paces away and directly in front of the dog. Upon judges acknowledgment, the handler will return back to the dog and back into the basic position. The handler then walks 10-15 paces and asks the dog to "down" and continues to walks 30 paces away and directly in front of the dog. Upon judges acknowledgment, the handler will call the dog "Here!". When the dog arrives and sits directly in front of the handler the handler will ask the dog to heel ("Fus!"), upon which the dog will move into heel position. Excerise complete and the handler may then place their dog back on leash.  From here the handler will either move on to the "Down under Distraction" or return to the judge for comments/review.

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Phase 4: Down with Recall

As there are two teams that enter the field at a time, the "Down with Recall" can either be the first exercise or the last.  If the "down" is first, the team will proceed to the down-stay location on the field directly after the meeting the judge upon entry.  If the team is "active" first then the Down Under Distraction will come directly after the Down With Recall in Phase 3. Regardless of whether the team is performing this exercise first or last there will be a specific location on the field designated to this exercise. Often times there are different locations depending if you have a male or female dog.   Once the team is at the down location on the field the handler and dog will arrive in the basic position. Upon acknowledgment from the judge the handler will then remove the leash from the dog and give the command to "down". Once the dog is in the down position the handler proceeds to walk about 30-50 paces away. This team will remain in place throughout the duration of the "Active" dog obedience pattern.

Traffic Test

This is the 3rd and final portion of the BH exam.  During this pass/fail portion of the BH, the team will be exposed to a group of people, joggers, bike rider and other dogs. The idea behind this portion of the exam is to evaluate the dog's confidence and sociability in a public and "real life" setting as well as the handlers ability to maintain clear communication and control with their dog. Additionally, in the traffic portion, the dog will also be tied out (in a safe location) while the handler goes out of sight. During the absence of the handler the dog will encounter a person walking by as well as another dog. In this exercise the judge is simply looking that the dog is confident, social and non-confrontational.

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