(Formally known as IPO, VPG or SchH)

IGP stands for

Internationale Gebrauchshund Pruefung.

IGP is a three part sport which includes Tracking, Obedience and Protection phases – the dog must pass all three phases in the trial.  To succeed in the protection aspect of the sport, the successful IPO candidate must possess a basic level of instinctual drives, solid nerves, desire, and willingness to perform the work with their handler.

The specific drives which must be present are prey (desire to chase an object based on visual cues) and fight (desire to defeat the prey object).  While it’s helpful if the dog possesses other drives, they are not nearly as essential as strong prey and fight drives. Strong nerves are also an asset. When we talk about “nerves” we are referring to the dog’s core confidence.  A “nervy” dog is one who gets stressed and worried easily – often flipping into forward aggression or fear inappropriately or very easily.   A dog with “solid nerves” does not see a threat easily and is much easier to train in the sport.  A dog with weak nerves does not belong in the sport of IGP.

INT/NAT SR CH Armored Rose Archangel JHD, CSAU, TT, CGC

Bred by Jennifer Rose

Owned by Luke & Vicky Lisa

In response to political forces in Germany, in 2004 the Verein für Deutsche Schäferhunde (SV) and the Deutscher Hundesportverein (DHV) made substantial changes to Schutzhund. The DHV adopted the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) rules that govern IPO titles, so that at least on paper the SV and DHV gave up control of the sport to the FCI. This is why here in the USA you no longer hear the sport referred to as Schutzhund (SchH), but rather IPO. That said, the exercises and trials are nearly identical. The DHV changed the name of the titles from "SchH" (Schutzhund) to "VPG" (Vielseitigkeitsprüfung für Gebrauchshunde) which roughly translates to Versatility examination for working dogs). The SV has retained the "SchH" title names, but otherwise conforms to the DHV/FCI rules.


As of 1/1/2019, the rules have again changed and the sport of IPO is now known as IGP.

Python Warrior Soul BH IPO 1

Bred by Laila Ooms

Owned by Laila Ooms

There are three basic IGP titles:  IGP 1, IGP 2 and IGP 3. IGP 1 is the first level title and IGP 3 is the most advanced level title. Additionally, before a dog can compete for an IGP 1, it must pass a temperament test called a B or BH (Begleithundprüfung, which translates as "traffic-sure companion dog test"). The BH exam tests basic obedience and sureness around strange people, strange dogs, traffic and loud noises. A dog that exhibits excessive fear, distractibility, or aggression cannot pass the BH and can not proceed on to IGP 1.

The IGP trial has changed over the years. Modern IGP trials consist of three phases: tracking, obedience, and protection. A dog must pass all three phases in one trial to be awarded an IGP title. Each phase is judged on a 100-point scale. The minimum passing score is 70 for the tracking and obedience phases and 80 for the protection phase. Should the dog fail one phase not reaching the minimum passing score, then he fails the whole trial. At any time the judge may dismiss a dog for showing poor temperament, including fear or aggression.

Kiwi Warrior Soul BH

Bred by Laila Ooms

Owned by Laila Ooms & Katerina Hrkalova


The tracking phase tests not only the dog's scenting ability, but also its mental soundness and physical endurance. In the tracking phase, a track layer walks across a field, dropping several small articles along the way. After a period of time, the dog is directed to follow the track while being followed by the handler on a 33 foot leash. When the dog finds each article, he indicates it, usually by lying down with the article between his front paws. The dog is scored on how intently and carefully it follows the track and indicates the articles. The length, complexity, number of articles, and age of the track varies for each title.

Kiwi Warrior Soul BH

Bred by Laila Ooms

Owned by Laila Ooms


The obedience phase is done in a large field, with the dogs working in pairs. One dog is placed in a down position on the side of the field and its handler leaves it while the other dog works in the field. Then the dogs switch places. In the field, there are several heeling exercises, including heeling through a group of people. There are two or three gunshots during the heeling to test the dog's reaction to loud noises. There are one or two recalls, three retrieves (flat, jump and A-frame), and a send out, in which the dog is directed to run away from the handler straight and fast and then lie down on command. Obedience is judged on the dog's accuracy and attitude. The dog must show enthusiasm. A dog that is uninterested or cowering scores poorly.

Horus Warrior Soul

Bred by Laila Ooms

Owned by Laila Ooms

Kerang Warrior Soul IPO 3

Bred by Laila Ooms

Owned by Thomas Woginger

2013 & 2015 CMBF IPO 3 World Champion

(did not compete in 2014)

Only Beauceron in the history of the breed to

compete in the FCI IPO III World Championships!


In the protection phase, the judge has an assistant, called the "helper", who helps him or her test the dog's courage to protect itself and its handler and its ability to be controlled while doing so. The helper wears a heavily padded sleeve on one arm. There are several blinds, placed where the helper can hide, on the field. The dog is directed to search the blinds for the helper. When it finds the helper, it indicates this by barking. The dog must guard the helper to prevent them from moving until recalled by the handler. There follows a series of exercises similar to police work where the handler searches the helper and transports them to the judge. At specified points, the helper either attacks the dog or the handler or attempts to escape. The dog must stop the attack or the escape by biting the padded sleeve. When the attack or escape stops, the dog is commanded to "out," or release the sleeve. The dog must out or it is dismissed. At all times the dog must show the courage to engage the helper and the temperament to obey the handler while in this high state of drive. Again, the dog must show enthusiasm. A dog that shows fear, lack of control, or inappropriate aggression is dismissed.