What do the titles mean?

You may have noticed the letters before and after each dog’s AKC registered name. Here is a summary of what some of those letters (titles) stand for. For a complete listing of AKC titles,
click here.

International Champion

The internet is getting flooded with phony titles on dogs and one of such title is “International Champion”.

Some people (breeders) attend shows offered by the INTERNATIONAL ALL BREED CANINE ASSOCIATION (IABCA) in the USA. This organization offers an IABCA title and also a title called IABCA International. Unfortunately, a dog does not have to go outside the USA to obtain this title. Reputable show people who are not interested in deception by a twist of words will list this as IABCA Int’l Ch which is the CORRECT way. However, some people choose to just use Int’l or International Champion in their dog’s title, when in fact the dog never traveled outside of the USA to obtain this title. In some cases, the dog does not even travel out of the state it was born in and will be shown/judged with no competition!

The Doberman Pinscher is a recognized breed by the AKC (American Kennel Club) since 1921 and it is not necessary to use a rare breed organization to obtain a good competition title: Champion, Obedience, Rally, Agility, Tracking…
So if you come across a breeder that advertises Champion (CH) or International CH title dogs, make sure that you see proof before you purchase a puppy. Do not assume the dog is a TRUE International Champion or AKC Champion. If you have any doubt, please feel free to get in touch with us and we’ll try to help you.

Conformation Titles

CH: Breed Champion

Often prefaced by Am (American[AKC] Champion), Can (Canadian[CKC] Champion) or UDC (United Doberman Club Champion) depending on what organizations in which the dog has acquired champion status. To become a Champion, the dog has to earn a certain number of points- the points are earned by being picked by the judge as the best dog in that sex (male or female) that day. The number of points earned for each win depends on how many dogs were shown that day. For instance, to become an American (AKC) Champion, a dog must acquire a total of 15 points, with two of the times they win points being ‘major’ wins – ie. three points or more earned in one win. The most amount of points that can be won in any one win is five. In Dobermans, a female dog (bitch) must be picked the best over 26 other bitches to win a three point ‘major’.

Obedience Titles

CD: Companion Dog

The Novice level AKC obedience title requires three different qualifying scores (“legs”) under three different judges. The Novice level requires heeling both on and off leash, including heeling a figure 8 around two people, a stand for exam exercise, a recall, a one minute sit stay and a three minute down stay with the dog’s handler standing across the ring.

CDX: Companion Dog Excellent

The Open level AKC obedience title. Also requires three legs. Exercises include heeling off leash only, including a figure 8, a drop on recall, where the dog is called to you, commanded to down when the dog is halfway, and then called again, a retrieve of a dumbbell thrown across the ring and over a high jump, and a three minute sit stay and a five minute down stay with the handlers out of sight of their dogs.

UD: Utility Dog

The most advanced level of AKC obedience. Includes heeling off leash, a signal exercise (dog sits, downs and comes on command of a signal only), a stand out of motion (dog is heeling with owner and on command stops and does a stand stay while the handler continues on), a directed retrieve, a directed jumping exercise, and a scent discrimination exercise (dog must go retrieve an article that the handler touched out of a group of other articles that someone else has touched).

Agility Titles

NA: Novice Agility

The Novice level AKC standard agility title. Like obedience titles, agility titles require three different qualifying scores (“legs”) under three different judges. The Novice level requires that the handler direct the dog off leash around the obstacle course, the obstacles must be executed a certain way and in a particular order. Standard agility courses include contact obstacles (an A-frame, dog walk, and seesaw), jumps, tunnels and weave poles.

OA: Open Agility

The Open level AKC agility title. In the Open level the courses are longer and more difficult to perform.

AX: Agility Excellent

The most advanced level of AKC agility. In the Excellent level the courses are even longer and harder.

NAJ: Novice Agility Jumpers

The Novice level AKC Jumpers agility title. These courses include only jumps, tunnels, and weave poles.

OAJ: Open Agility Jumpers

The Open (intermediate) level AKC Jumpers agility title.

AXJ: Agility Excellent Jumpers

The Excellent (advanced) level AKC Jumpers agility title.

Flyball Titles

FD: Flyball Dog

The most beginning flyball title, requires 20 points. Flyball titles are obtained by earning points- and the points are awarded by how fast the team the dog is on runs a heat. One heat is four dogs running relay race style over four jumps in a row, taking a tennis ball out of a ‘flyball box’, and running back over the jumps with the ball. If the team runs a heat in less then 32 seconds, all dogs on the team get 1 point. If the team runs a heat faster then 28 seconds, all dogs earn 5 points. If the team runs faster than 24 seconds, all dogs earn 25 points.

FDX: Flyball Dog Excellent

Requires 100 points.

FDCH: Flyball Dog Champion

Requires 500 points.

FM: Flyball Master

Requires 5000 points.

FMX: Flyball Master Excellent

Requires 10,000 points.

FMCH: Flyball Master Champion

Requires 15,000 points.

ONYX: Onyx Award

Named after the first dog to reach 20, 000 points (a Doberman!). Requires 20,000 points.

FDGCH: Flyball Dog Grand Champion

Requires 30,000 points.

Schutzhund titles

BH: Begleithund

Means ‘Traffic Safe Companion Dog’. The BH is a combination obedience and temperament test that is pass/fail. It is required before a dog is allowed to trial in Schutzhund. The BH includes heeling on and off leash, through a group of people, heeling off leash while a gun is fired, a sit out of motion, a down out of motion, a recall, and a long down stay with the handler’s back turned to the dog while another dog does the above. The temperament part varies from test to test, but usually includes walking the dog through groups of people, having a bicyclist, jogger, and car go by, and a tie out where the dog is tied to a stationary object while the handler goes out of sight for a few minutes.

SCH(SchH) 1: Schutzhund 1

Schutzhund is a three phase sport that includes tracking (following the scent trail where a person has walked), obedience and protection work. The Schutzhund 1 level includes following a 20 minute old track laid by the handler and successfully finding articles that were dropped; the same obedience routine as described in the BH above with the addition of two retrieves (on the flat and over a 1 meter jump) and a send away, where the dog is sent to run away from the handler on command across a football length field and downed on command; and protection work which includes seeking out a hiding bad guy and barking at him to indicate that he has been found, protecting the handler against an attack by the same bad guy and the final test, called the ‘courage test’ where the dog is sent across the field to apprehend the bad guy who is coming to attack dog and handler.

SCH(SchH) 2: Schutzhund 2

All three phases increase in difficulty. The track is longer and laid by a different person than the handler, the obedience and protection work increases in difficulty.

SCH(SchH) 3: Schutzhund 3

Highest level of Schutzhund.

Other Titles

WAC/ROM: Working Aptitude Certificate/Register of Merit

The WAC is awarded to a Doberman who passes the Working Aptitude Evaluation, a test offered by the Doberman Pinscher Club of America. The WAE is a temperament test to evaluate whether a Doberman is trustworthy with people, not scared of strange sights, noises (gunfire) and surfaces and is able to react protectively if necessary. A Doberman that passes the WAE, has a breed Championship and has a working title is awarded with the Register of Merit (ROM) title instead of just a WAC.

CGC: Canine Good Citizen

AKC’s basic temperament/obedience test. Requires the dog walk on a loose leash without pulling, sit, down and come on command, allow handling by a stranger, and not show aggression towards other dogs.

VC/VCX: Versatility Companion/Versatility Companion Excellent

The United Doberman Club’s titles awarding dogs who show success in multiple venues.