Hunting dog test and trial regulations

The task of the hunting dog handler

1. Before the start of the test or trial, the handler should submit to the trial office the competing dog's pedigree and certificate of vaccination, testifying of a valid vaccination against rabies and signed by an authorised veterinary surgeon.

2. In tests and trials a handler may not handle more than two dogs. Field trials are an exception to this rule.

3. The handler may handle a dog that is not owned by him. A foreign handler may handle a hunting dog that is in Hungarian ownership.

4. Dogs should be on leash on the grounds of the test or trial from the beginning of the work in the morning until the end of the test or trial in the afternoon. The dogs may only be let off the leash at the orders of the judge.

5. At the event, during the execution of the different tasks a hunter may only shoot if he is appointed by the organisers and authorised by the hunting society that owns the grounds. Exceptions may be made in the case of field trials.

6. During the whole duration of the event, the handler is obliged to appear at the different locations in the order set in advance by the leading judge, and to be continuously at the judges' disposal. After the completion of each task he is obliged to proceed without delay to the location of the next task (or the one specified by the actual orders of the leading judge) and report to the judges there.

7. At the end of the day's work the handler is obliged to submit the evaluation sheet to the trial office without delay.

8. The handler should behave in a sportsmanlike manner during the whole event, his appearance should be appropriately hunter-like (in Hungarian: vadászias).

9. The competing dogs may not wear coercive tools during the whole event. The handler may not use any coercive tools or ultrasonic whistle.

10. It is qualified as unsportsmanlike handling , if – during the competition or anytime, in connection with any hunting dog related event – the handler:

•  speaks or behaves in an abusive or derogatory manner with or in connection with the judge, other officials or any other participant

•  hits, kicks his dog beyond the generally accepted extent or abuses his dog in any way. It should be seen as the proof of abuse, if the behaviour of the dog clearly shows that it is afraid of its handler's movements or commands.

•  deliberately disturbs the work of his fellow handler or the dog of his fellow handler in any way or by any means

•  tries to influence the judge in the evaluation of the completed work

•  deliberately disturbs the scheduled course of the test or trial, or appears at the location of a task with unjustifiable delay.

•  behaves in a way that is not in accordance with the norms of generally accepted, civilised behaviour.

It is the duty of every judge participating in the event to report any unsportsmanlike behaviour to the leading judge. The leading judge states the report at the conference of the judges and the present judges decide whether it presents the report to the Council of Judges; or, if the unsportsmanlike action involved the deliberate disturbance of the work of a fellow handler or the order of the event, the conference of the judges may decide to cancel the results of the handler and his dog.

It is the task of the Council of Judges to decide whether it presents the case to the National Ethics Committee or the National Disciplinary Committee.


1. In the test or trial the completion of a task is evaluated with a mark between 0 and 4. In trials 'half marks' (i.e. marks of 2.5 or 3.5, for instance) may also be awarded. From the point of view of prize classification, a 'half mark' should be taken into account approximated (i.e. a 2.5 mark is to be considered a 3 when awarding prizes)

2. In the case of outstanding performance a 4! mark (excellent) may be given. However, the reasons should be explained on the 'remarks' page of the evaluation sheet. Without explanation the trial office does not take into account the exclamation mark.

3. If the dog receives a 0 mark in one of the tasks and therefore cannot be qualified, it may still complete the test or trial. Exception to this rule is when the dog commits a fault that entails disqualification. However, if the dog receives two 0 marks the handler must give up competing. The organisation hosting the event may provide different regulations, but this has to be indicated in the call for competition.

4. A dog should be disqualified:

•  -         if it does not point, even though it had at least two possibilities to show its pointing ability (this applies to vizsla breeds)

•  -         if it refuses to hunt

•  -         if it harms the game or digs it

•  -         if it cannot be called back from chasing the game within 3 minutes after jumping in

•  -         if it leaves the water after shooting and does not return to the water even on command

•  -         in the case of tasks with a time limit, if it does not return in the double of the allowed time period

•  -         if it is gun-shy

•  -         because of reasons specified in the regulations for the given breed.

The dog that commits a disqualifying fault has to quit the competition after committing the fault, and its evaluation sheet is withdrawn by the group of judges where the fault has been committed. The sheet is submitted to the trial office by the judge.


In tests , primarily inherited qualities should be evaluated, because from these conclusions can be drawn about the transmitting ability (genetic value) of the parents and the breeding value of the specimen.

The performance that is the condition of the qualification is defined for each breed separately. There is no ranking in tests, titles cannot be issued; dogs receive prizes only.

Each task is evaluated by awarding a mark between 0-4; half marks (i.e. 2.5) may not be given.


1. Trials may be organised to compare the work of hunting dogs and to select the most outstanding animals.

2. The trials should be organised according to the regulations.

3. Trials not conforming to the regulations or partial trials may only be held on the basis of previous announcement, in which the rules of the trial must be defined. In these trials CACT and CACIT titles may not be issued, and the results may not be entered in the pedigree of the dog.

4. Trials may be open, if anyone may enter according to the call, or challenge, if only dogs that comply with the conditions specified in advance (in the call for competition) may be entered. The call for competition should specify the maximum number of participants and the breeds that may be entered.

5. In trials – apart from qualification – the participating hunting dogs must be ranked on the basis of performance. Hunting dogs that cannot be qualified (because of having received a 0 mark in one of the tasks) should be ranked after the qualified dogs according to the achieved number of points. In the case of an equal number of points, the dog that has more 4! marks or the one that is younger or the bitch should be ranked higher.

6. Evaluation should be carried out according to the regulations.

7. The winner of a national trial receives the CACT title, the dog that is ranked second receives the „Res.” CACT title. The winner of an international trial receives the CACIT title, the dog that is ranked second receives the „Res.” CACIT title. These titles may only be issued to dogs that achieved first prize. The titles may not be issued if the number of dogs entered to the trial is less than six.

8. Special prizes may be offered by anyone. If the person offering the special prize gives it for a specific reason, the prize may only be awarded for this reason. If the special prize is offered for a non-specific reason, the judges of the trial and the hosting authority should distribute it jointly in the first conference of the judges. Special prizes should be submitted to the organisers on the day preceding the trial.

General provisions for the preparation and evaluation of the tasks

1. Regulations of the handling of live game

Live game should be handled humanely, according to the provisions of the law on the protection of animals, in order to prevent the injury of the game and to ensure that it is placed in the field in a healthy and intact condition. Birds should be given water before the placing-out and should be kept in a suitable, airy, shaded place.

Attention has to be paid that the spare game are placed on the grounds in a way that ensures that they do not disturb the work of the dogs.

2. Regulations of the placing-out of live game

A. In field work:

The placing of the game should not be seen by either the dog or the handler. The game should be placed out ensuring that as little human track leads to it as possible. It is good if a car is available and the bird is made to fly when let out to the grounds. At the commencement of the work the distance between the dog and the game should be at least 150 metres .

B. In water work:

Ducks may be placed out by being started from the bank or throwing them in 6- 10 metres from the bank. However, the game should be placed out in the same way for each dog, and the dog may not see the placing of the game.

If possible, the duck should be made to swim to covered area as soon as possible, so that the dog has to follow the scent left on the water, making evaluation possible. The judges should give permission to the starting of the dog as soon as it is presumable that the dog cannot sight the duck anymore.

If there is no possibility to work with live ducks (according to the regulations of the law on the protection of animals), the task may be solved in the following way:

A freshly killed duck is dragged on a long (5- 7 metres ) string for about 50- 60 metres with the help of a boat and with back wind. The movement of the boat should not break up the scent. Before the commencement of work the judges should check the direction of the wind and movement of water as well.

At the end of the trail the assistant takes the string off the duck and cautiously rows away for about 30 metres , where he does not disturb the dog nor serves as a direction.

In this case the 'deep water retrieve with gunfire' task has to be executed separately. The retrieve and presentation of the water game should be evaluated in both tasks, and the average of the to performances gives the final mark.

3. Placing out shot game for searching using air scent

It is important that the game used in this task should already be cold. The dog is sent to search into the wind, and should not see the placing of the game.

The terrain should have vegetation that ensures covering, so that the dog may not see the game, and it should not contain any features (row of trees, dam, etc.) that may influence the direction of the wind. The judge places the game taking into account the direction of the wind, by throwing the game towards the starting point of the dog from the side opposite to the starting point, so that human tracks do not lead to the game. The judge should return to the starting point following his own tracks. In the case of placing out two game, the distance between them should be about 20- 30 metres . A new ground should be provided for each dog, ensuring that the distance from the previous places of game is at least 60-70 paces (yards).

4. Regulations of the preparation and evaluation of field drag

The drag (trail) should be laid with back wind, and its length should comply with the regulations of the test or trial. The starting point should be indicated, and some feather or fur should be left there. The judge laying the drag places the game according to the regulations, and after proceeding for about 50 paces hides in a covered place (if possible), so that he is able to see the game and evaluate the behaviour of the dog. The game should be left at the end of the drag. The game may not be hidden (e. g. placed in a hole or a ditch).

The breaks in the trail should be obtuse-angled (app. 120-130 degrees). The distance between the trails should be 80-90 paces (yards). In trails following each other the breaks should be at the same distance and of same direction. The judge laying the trail should indicate to his fellow-judge when he has finished.

The handler may only lead his dog for 10 metres from the starting point of the trail, from there the dog has to work independently. Having worked out the trail, the dog has to fetch the game and present it correctly to the handler.

If the dog does not find the game, the handler may start it again two times. Each re-starting reduces the mark by one grade. If the dog finds the game but does not fetch it, it should receive a 0 mark for the working out of the trail and for fetching as well. Dogs that do not follow the trail but use air-scent in finding the game may only obtain a 1 mark.

It is not a fault if the dog leaves the trail shortly, but corrects itself. Re-starting means that the handler re-starts his dog from heel (from his side).

It is not a fault if the dog runs by the game and searches for it into the wind, or if it works out the trail under the wind , beside the trail.

5. Forest drag

If the terrain conditions make it necessary, about one third of the forest drag may be laid in the field. The drag should be laid according to the regulations of the field drag. The two judges should have appropriate contact with each other. When the judge laying the trail has finished, he should indicate this to his fellow judge. The judge at the beginning of the trail should indicate to the one at the end of the trail when the dog has finished working because he can only leave his place afterwards.

If the dog does not pick up the game when it is found for the first time and leaves it, the judge at the end of the trail should indicate this to his fellow-judge, pick up the game and return with it to the beginning of the trail. In this case the returning dog cannot be re-started. The task should be evaluated with a 0 mark. The evaluation of the work is identical to the evaluation of the field drag.

6. Regulations of the laying of blood trail

Blood trails should be numbered at their starting point and end. At the beginning (the place of the shot) the day and the time (hour) should be indicated. The place of the shot and the direction of the trail should to be indicated as well. The direction of the trail is indicated by a broken branch .

The trail has to be laid containing two obtuse-angled breaks (the angle cannot be smaller than 135 degrees). The first 200 paces (yards) may be laid before the forest (but not in ploughed land), the rest must be in the forest. The trail has to include two resting-places.

The distance between the different trails should be at least 80-100 paces (yards). The trails should be of the same level of difficulty. The trails should be marked in a way that the handler may not see the markings, but the judges may verify the direction of the trail with ease. The blood of game, cattle or sheep may be used, the use of pig blood (either domestic or wild) is forbidden. The blood should be preserved using heparin, if possible; the preserving substance must not change the scent of the blood.

In every trail the blood may be:

a. dripped

b. spattered

c. dunked (in Hungarian: tupfol).

The location of the trail should be marked out on the day before the trial in the presence of a judge, so that the markers indicating the direction of trail should face the starting point making it easy for those who lay the trail to follow the directions.

The trails are laid so that the time specified in the regulations may elapse until the commencement of the work. The trail can only be laid following the direction of the trail (the trail may not be laid backwards, starting from the end and proceeding towards the starting point). When laying the trail, the markers indicating the direction of the trail should be turned in the opposite direction (so that they face the end of the trail).

The place of the shot and the resting-places should be marked with more blood.

A freshly killed game should be placed at the end of the trail. Attention should paid that – except for the places of the bullet's entrance and the exit – the game is properly stitched up. The transporters of the game should pay attention not to drag the game on the ground between the two ends of the trail and that they do not place the game behind trees or bushes or in holes. The judge is responsible for the correct execution of the placing of the game.

The judge at the end of the trail and the transporters of the game should leave the game and go to a cover, so that the dog may not notice them or get wind from them. They can only leave the cover at the horn-call of the judge accompanying the handler.

The judges of the blood trail should have at least to horns for signalling, one at the beginning of the trail and one at the end. The attending judges may only permit the starting of the dog after having received a signal from the judge at the end of the trail after the placing of the game.

An extra trail should be laid for each day of the trial. A different trail should be provided for each dog. A trail that was started but not finished by a dog may not be assigned to a different dog.

7. Correct retrieve:

The dog has to pick up the found game and bring it directly to the handler and keep it in its mouth while sitting, until the handler takes it. Retrievers may present the game either sitting or standing.

Elements to be evaluated: picking up the game, the hold, fetching and keeping. It is not a fault if the dog puts down the game to adjust the hold, but continues working without a command or raising its head. Any command that is given entails the subtraction of a half mark from the final mark.

If the dog puts down the game and does not continue the retrieve even on command, the task should be evaluated with a 0 mark, because the game was not retrieved.

Faults: hard hold, which injures the game; putting down the game repeatedly; repeatedly squeezing the game; insecure hold; or if the dog unjustifiably delays the picking up of the game.

The force of the regulations:

The present regulations were defined by the Board of Hunting Dog Performance-Judges on the basis of the recommendation of the breed organisations. The regulations were authorised by the National Presidency on 10 March 2004.

The regulations became operative on 10 March 2004.