The Journée Temperament Test

(A Brief Overview)
By Claudia Batson

The test consists of several steps, each designed to evaluate a specific aspect of the dog’s temperament.

Entry into the testing area:

The ring secretary greets the exhibitor, verifies the identity of the dog and checks his tattoo. The dog’s collar is removed and replaced by a new one, attached to a long lead. Simple instructions are given to the master. The judge observes the dog’s reactions and behavior and evaluates its sociability.


The dog and his master are asked to walk away towards the end of the testing area. One shot is fired in the air at a minimum distance of 20 meters while the pair has its back to the tester. When the exhibitor and his/her dog reach the spot they were sent to, they turn to face the judge and another gunshot is fired in the air. Should the dog’s reaction be somewhat unclear, it is possible the tester may fire one or more shots. The purpose of this exercise is to evaluate the dog’s sensitivity and emotivity.

Threat with a stick:

The judge then walks toward the dog and his master. When he is at about 2 meters away from the pair, the judge threatens the dog with the stick, swinging a three-foot stick in a downward fashion. The threat takes place only once the dog is aware of the presence of the tester and not less than two meters away. Should the dog react with fear, the tester will not put any more pressure on the dog. However, in case, the dog’s reaction is not clear to the tester, it is possible that he may pretend to attack the master thus getting a positive reaction from the dog. The purpose of this exercise is to evaluate the courage of the dog.

The dog and his master return to the starting point where the tester interacts with the team. The dog is expected to have recovered from the test and will allow the tester to approach him and his master. The collar and leash used for the test are removed and after the dog is fitted back to his own collar and leash, the exhibitor and his dog leave the judge’s station. The sociability of the dog is evaluated during his entry and exit of the testing area.

IMPORTANT: Please note that at NO time during the testing is the owner/handler allowed to correct or talk to his dog. The purpose of the test is to evaluate the innate qualities of the dog’s temperament: his sociability, his sensitivity, and his courage. These three simple exercises are set up a way that is NOT traumatizing to the animal, yet still give a good indicator of the steadiness of temperament that is required in a good Beauceron.

© 2005 C. Batson. Used with permission.

French Dog Ratings

Some of our members subscribe to the Bas Rouge and as they read the show results. They may wonder about the numbers sometimes added to the dogs’ names.  These numbers are ratings, on a scale of 1 to 6, with 6 being the highest rating a dog can earn.

Dog is registered on L.O.F. and not yet confirmed.

1: Confirm or confirmed: is given to a dog that has passed confirmation.  Confirmation is the first evaluation a dog is given, at a year of age at the earliest.  At that time, the dog only has a Certificat de naissance, he will be issued a final pedigree that will allow the animal to be bred if he is deemed conform to the standard and shows a stable temperament.

Several faults will prevent the dog to be confirmed:

  • Lack of type
  • Size above or under the limits of the standard
  • Insufficient build and structure making the dog unable to work cowhocked hindlegs with an angle over 150 degrees tail curled up on back lack of double dewclaws
  • Color and texture of coat not conform to the standard white spot on chest superior in size to 5 square cms very light eyes monorchid, croptorchid prognathism with loss of contact
  • Absence of three teeth or more (except for pm1) dog very aggressive or very timid

2: Premier choix or First choice: goes to a dog that has been confirmed and has earned an excellent in temperament test.  The dog must have received a Très Bon (very good) or an Excellent in conformation.

3: Excellent.  The dog earned an excellent both in conformation and in temperament in a National Specialty Show.

4: Recommended on the appearance.  The dog has been selected among the best dogs rated excellent (3) in a National Specialty Show and has also been rated A (free of dysplasia), see the caption dys. A on recent pedigrees.

5: Elite B.  Recommended on the progeny. The dog is not rated 4 but is free of hip dysplasia and is rated for the quality of its progeny, see explanation that follows “6 – Elite A”.

6: Elite A.  Recommended on the progeny. The dog is rated 4 (on his own quality) and also on the quality of its progeny.

  • The male’s progeny is evaluated on animals produced out of a minimum of 2 females and a maximum of 5 females.  His progeny must include a minimum of 8 dogs of high quality:  2 rated Cot. 4 (recommandé) and 6 rated Cot. 3 – Excellent
  • The female progeny is evaluated on 5 offspring with a minimum of 2 rated 4 (recommandé) and 3 rated Cot. 3 – Excellent

N.B.: The above ratings do not apply to animals that are registered with no known background.  Such dogs can only receive the rating 1 (confirmed) and the rating 5 if their progeny has proved to be of the quality described above.

Cotation 2: Premier Choix dogs must be dysplasia free.


© 2005 C. Batson. Used with permission.

French Show Ratings

Only the rating counts.  Whether the dog is placed second or fourth, if he/she has obtained the rating excellent, he/she is very close in quality to the dog placed first and is of far superior quality to the first dog rated Very Good.

Excellent: Must only be awarded to a dog that is extremely close to the standard of the breed, that is in perfect condition, thus presenting a harmonious and balanced image, a dog that has “class” and splendid presentation.  The overall superiority of his/her qualities will rule out minor faults. He/she will be representative of his/her sex. 

 Très Bon (Very Good): will be given to a typey dog, well proportioned, in good physical condition.  Some small faults -however not major conformational- will be tolerated.  This rating only applies to a dog of quality worthy of being used for breeding.

Bon (Good): must be given to a dog possessing the characteristics of the breed, but that shows some faults i.e. eyes too light, provided that they are not disqualifying i.e. lack of dewclaws.

Assez Bon (Average): Is awarded to a dog sufficiently typey i.e. that can be recognized as a Beauceron but that does not show any outstanding quality and is not in good physical condition i.e. poor coat condition.  

The CAC (Certificat d’Aptitude au Championnat – Certificate of Aptitude to the Championship) can only be awarded to the dog placed first among the Excellent group, but this award is not automatically granted.  It is possible that the dog placed first can only be given the Excellent and nothing more.  The CAC is only awarded to the exceptional animal worthy of becoming a champion.

The title of Champion de Conformité au Standard (Champion of Conformity to the Standard) is awarded to dogs that have obtained all of the following distinctions:

  • The rating of 4 (see Beauceron Ratings in France)
  • The CACS (Certificat d’Aptitude de Conformité au Standard-Certificate of Aptitude of Conformity to the Standard) awarded at the National Specialty Show (Nationale d’élevage) or the Championship Show (championnat de France).
  • A CACS in an International Show where the CACIB (Certificat d’Aptitude au Championnat International de Beauté- Certificate of Aptitude to the Championship of International Beauty) is awarded.
  • A CACS in a National Show

The three CACS must have been earned under three different judges.

© 2005 C. Batson. Used with permission.

Pedigree Terms and Abbreviations

Elite A: The dog is rated 4 (Recommandé) and is rated for the quality of its progeny.

Elite B: The dog is not rated 4, but is rated on the quality of its progeny.

Recommandé or REC., COT. 4: The dog has earned a Cotation 4 at the Nationale d’Elevage, this entails earning an Exc. Plus in conformation, Exc. in temperament, and dys. A, dysplasia free rating).

Excellent: The dog has earned a Cotation 3 (Exc. in conformation, Exc. in temperament, and is rated dys. A).

CH T: Dog is a champion working dog.

CH B or CH.CS: (Champion conformité au standard). The dog is a breed Champion.

To be a Champion, the dog must earn a minimum of:

  • 2 CAC-IB
  • 1 CAC
  • These must occur under three different judges
  • One of the CAC has to have been won at either The Nationale d’Elevage (National Specialty Show) or The Paris Championship Show

IB: International Beauty.

Brevet, BR: Brevet de défense (French Ring level that allows the dog to continue to Ring I level).

RI, Ring I:    Dog is a Ring I.

RII, Ring II:  Dog is a Ring II.

RIII, Ring III: Dog is a Ring III.

RCI: Dog works in an event that includes Ring and Tracking.

PIS (Pistage): Titled Tracking dog.

BREV-MOUTONS (Brevet Moutons): Herding dog titled on sheep.

DYS A, DYS G: The dog is dysplasia free.


This Glossary of Terms and Abbreviations Used in Pedigrees  is
(c) 2005 C. Batson, Kennel du Berger Noir, and is used with permission.