Temperament Evaluation

The Temperament Test administered by Temperament Test Associates is not a CKC recognized title . It is, however, an attempt to define a standard of acceptable temperament .

The Temperament Test consists of several individual tests designed to place varying amounts of stress on the dog . These tests have been designed to simulate circumstances that might occur during an outing with the dog .

The dog is assessed against its Breed Standard with regard to his reactions to the various tests, as different breeds will react very differently . The type of life the dog leads, as well as the amount of training he has received are also considered when assessing the reactions of the dog . The test is conducted by a Chief Tester, who will generally be assisted by one or more apprentice testers 

German Shepherd Dog Club of Canada
Temperment Evaluation

Temperament Evaluation Scoring Guidelines:

1. There are 2 evaluators observing each dog. Both will agree on the score.
2. The entire test is considered as "failed" if the dog scores "unsatisfactory" in any of the exercises, or if the dog scores 4 or more "poor"/"no responses" (any combination) in the exercises.
3. If the dog fails the evaluation in the first 10 exercises, he/she does not proceed on to #11.

EVALUATION EXERCISES*:

What is GOOD reaction and what is a BAD one? (note that there are variations between good and bad which may still be acceptable to the evaluators)*

1. Show tatoo or Micro chip - Evaluator is neutral GOOD: dog allows handler to show tattoo or scan microchip
BAD: Dog does not allow tattoo to be read or microchip to be scanned.
2. Neutral Stranger - A stranger to the dog approaches the owner and engages in conversation for 10 seconds and ignores the dog. GOOD: Dog show strong investigative behaviour
BAD: Dog backs away and tries to hide behing owner or dog panics and becomes aggressive, growls or barks continuously
3. Friendly Stranger - A stranger to the dog approaches happily and briskly and is exuberantly friendly to the dog. Petting for 10 seconds GOOD: Dog is curious and advances confidently to stranger, tolerant and aloof (Many working breeds) OR Dog shows pleasurable response and advances to stranger. He is interested and enjoys petting.
BAD: Dog backs away and tries to hide behind owner or dog panics and becomes aggressive, doesn't allow petting.
4. Crowd - A group of strangers to the dog (approx 8) approach the team to form a non-threatening circle around the team. GOOD: Dog is curious and advances confidently to the crowd, shows strong positive investigative behaviour toward strangers OR dog shows pleasurabel confident response, advances with interest to strangers, gives positive attention to crowd.
BAD: Dog backs away and tries to hide behind owner or dog panics and becomes aggressive OR Extreme avoidance
5. Hidden Clattering - As the dog and handler team come to within 30' of the well-hidden assistant, the assitant begins to rattle a metal bucket filled with stones. Upon hearing the sound the dog should be given10 seconds to investigate, after which the handler may encourage the dog for 10 seconds. GOOD: Dog alerts immediately forges ahead of handler to investigate
BAD: Dog alerts but will not investigate within 20 seconds, avoidance OR Dog alerts backs away, strong avoidance cannot be made to approach OR Dog panics
6. Gunshots - Dog and handler have their backs turned from the well hidden and unnotices assistant. The team and assistant are 25' apart. With the .22 starter pistol or 6mm blanks or 12 guage primer, the assistant fires three shots into the air. The handler does not encourage the dog in this test, but if the dog turned toward the sound and starts to move toward it, then the handler may follow a few steps. GOOD: No reaction , no turn OR Dog alerts with almost non-existant reaction and may turn and move toward the source of the sound.
BAD: Startles, no recovery. OR Startles and tries to get away OR Panics
7. Umbrella test - the handler/dog team proceed toward the assistant who is sitting relaxed and motionless in a chair and holding a large spring loaded self opening black umbrella in a closed position in front of him. When the dog is 5' from the umbrella and looking at it, the umbrella is suddenly opened at a 90o angle to the path of the team. Then the umbrella is lowered immediately and smoothly to the ground. If the dog does not investigate the umbrella within 15 seconds the handler may encourage the dog for 15 seconds. GOOD: Dog alerts, forges confidently ahead of handler to show strong investigative behaviour
BAD: Dog will not approach umbrella within 30 seconds or shows strong avoidance behaviour or panics with no recovery
8. Recongizes Stimulus - The team apporaches the hidden decoy until 30' away from the decoy. The decoy then emerges from behind the hiding place and crosses the team's anticipated path. The decoy walks uncoordinatedly, staggering and making weird sounds and motions but is not threatening the team. GOOD: Dog instantly alerts, moved forward, continued to stare, may either growl or bark (protection dogs)
BAD: Dog startles and does not recover, tries to get away or hides behind handler. OR Dog startles and keeps trying to run away but he is restrained by leash and collar. OR Panic reaction
9. Recognizes Threat - After crossing the path, the decoy turns toward the dog and continues weird sounds and motions while slowly and tentatively advancing to the team. If dog exhibits positive raction, then test #10 will follow. Handler remains stationary. GOOD: Dog instantly alerts, moved forward, continued to stare, may either growl or bark (protection dogs)
BAD: Dog startles and does not recover, tries to get away or hides behind handler. OR Dog startles and keeps trying to run away but he is restrained by leash and collar. OR Panic reaction
10. Dog is Threatened - In test #10, the decoy raises the riding crop, pounding it on the ground repeatedly while advancing to a distance of 10" to the handler . Continuing with weird sounds and motions. Then the decoy back off in a thief-like and tentative manner. The chief tester declares the test a completed. GOOD: Very strong positive response. Dog advances, either growling, lunging or barking
BAD: Dog startles and does not recover, tries to get away or hides behind handler. OR Dog startles and keeps trying to run away but he is restrained by leash and collar. OR Panic reaction
11. Traffic Test - Dogs are tied out approximately 15' apart making sure that the outs are short enough that dogs may not contact each other. Handler will leave the dogs in a sit, down or sand and proceed out of sight. After about 2 minutes the dogs will be passed by a jogger, a person on a bike ringing a bike bell and a car blowing the horn. These distractions travel past the dogs turn and proceed by them again. GOOD: Dog remains in position in a confident manner
BAD: Dog tries to get away from distractions OR whines, shows panic reaction OR shows aggression towards other dogs
12. Group - A group of about 10 people is assembled. the Dog and handler walk in and around the group - the people are moving, talking and laughing among themselves. Dog and handler stop in the middle until the evaluator asks them to leave the group. GOOD: Dog remains in position in a confident manner
BAD: dog tries to get away from distractions OR whines, shows panic reaction OR shows aggression towards other dogs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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*Adapted from GSDCC temperament evaluation score sheet.