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German Sieger Show aka World Sieger Show

by David W.

The German Sieger Show (Bundessieger-Zuchtschau) aka World Sieger Show, dating back to 1899, is a veritable showcase of some of the best young German Shepherd dogs in the world. For a breeder or handler, attendance at this show is one of the highlights of the year, as it offers them the opportunity to witness firsthand the direction the German Shepherd breed as a whole is heading. It also serves as the culmination of a year’s worth of competition. For aficionados of the breed, it offers the opportunity to see some of the best the world has to offer and allows great first-hand contact with breeders of this wonderful dog.

The German Sieger Show is held over a period of three days, at which time over 1500 dogs will be shown. This is the largest German Shepherd dog show offered in Germany. The annual event is offered in a different city each year, drawing 30,000 spectators.

German shepherd breeder puppy

Requirements for Entrants to the German Sieger Show

The dogs exhibited at the German Sieger Show have already been judged on numerous occasions and hold a Schutzhund title. They must be of excellent conformation, have correct dentition, and must have hip certification. They must have already received a ‘VG’ rating at a recognized show during the previous year, ensuring that the dogs entered at this international event have already been recognized for excellence within the breed.

German Sieger Show Conformation and Gaiting

The German Sieger Show competition is divided up over the course of three days, with different judges handling the various portions of the test. Divided up by sex and by age, dogs will be judged on several different factors. They are judged on conformation, where their physical structure is analyzed. They will also be judged on their gait and movement. German shepherds are expected to exhibit ground covering stride coupled with excellent reach in the front and exceptional power from the rear.

“1st VA dog 1925 Klodo von Boxberg”

Courage and Performance at the German Sieger Show

During the German Sieger Show competition, the dogs will also be judged on their courage and obedience, participating in a test in which a gun is fired in their presence to make sure that they do not unduly react to the gunfire. The dogs will also be tested for their courage by participation in a performance test, which reflects the Schutzhund title held by the dogs. The dog and handler will approach a blind, at which time the helper, who is wearing special padded clothing, will emerge from behind the obstacle and threaten the handler. The dog is expected to protect the handler by biting the helper and holding on until he is released by the handler. The dog is then expected to attack another threatening helper at the other end of the field. The dog’s attitude, protective stance, and bite are all judged, as well as his willingness to release the bite upon command by his handler.

After proceeding through the various preliminary stages of the German Sieger show competition, the highest-ranking dogs will have their pedigrees examined, as the history and breeding of the dog plays a major role in the judge’s decision as to the ultimate award to be given to the top dogs in each class.

Max von Stephanitz-founder of the German shepherd

Awards and Titles of the German Sieger Show

The judge will decide how to make his awards, giving the coveted award of Sieger to the top male dog, with the top female receiving the title of Siegerin. These awards indicate that these two dogs are the top German Shepherds in the world.

The judge will also award ratings of ‘VA’, which stands for excellent select, to a handful of dogs that were in contention for the Sieger Award. This rating is generally accorded to less than a dozen dogs at the competition. Dogs with a VA rank are considered the top specimens in the world. Since this rating is awarded to so few dogs, a typical dog with a VA rating may bring upwards of $100,000 if sold on the open market. Dogs with the highest awards also garner very high stud fees. Dogs will be rated with an indication of where they fell in the ranks; for example, the dog considered the best in the ‘VA’ rating will receive a rank of VA 1.

The remaining ratings which will be given to the dogs include ‘V’ (excellent), ‘SG’ (very good), ‘G’ (good), ‘A’ (sufficient), ‘M’ (faulty), ‘U’ I (sufficient), and ‘O’ (failed bite work).

How Puppies are Exhibited at the German Sieger Show

Puppies are divided into age groups, in groups of 6-9, 9-12, and 12-18 months. They will be given a rating as indicated above, although the puppy classes do not include gun sensitivity testing nor the performance test. Puppies are judged on conformation, gaiting and temperament.

Summation of the German Sieger Show

German shepherd dogs were historically the herding dog of the average working-class farming family. The German Sieger Show reflects that history, emphasizing overall performance, health, courage, and conformation in determining the awards to be given to the superior dogs shown at the event. These traits can be witnessed in person at the national German Sieger Show aka World Sieger Show.

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