Minnesota Bird Hunters Association
First and foremost, the MBHA provides an opportunity to enjoy good dog
work and the camaraderie of fellow pointing dog enthusiasts. These
trials provide an opportunity to prove a dog in competition. However,
our focus is on the process of improving our dogs. If you have never
participated in a field trial Ö. Donít worry, any member of the club
will be happy to help get you started.
The MBHA follows the judgment criteria of the American Bird Hunters
Association (ABHA) which is fully sanctioned and recognized by the
Amateur Field Trial Clubs of America (AFTCA). Therefore, ABHA trials
are nationally recognized by the Field Dog Stud Book (FDSB) and any
placements are recognized in the pedigree of any animal registered
with the FDSB.
MBHA trials and judgment criteria focus on traits that constitute the
ultimate foot hunting gun dog. Judgment criteria is based on the dogís
age. Age groups and judgment criteria are outlined below. This is by
no means a complete accounting of the criteria by which an animal is
I. SHOOTING DOGS are judged on the following criteria.
A. Steady to flush. Specifically, this means the dog may not move after
the dog has established point.
B. Ground application. Shooting dogs should posses intense desire to
find birds. They should display speed, stamina, industry and
independence. At the same time, their search should lead them to
logical objectives where birds would likely be found. Shooting Dogs
should also adjust their pace and range to be most effective for the
work at hand. In other words, they should adjust to the cover.
C. Handling. Shooting dogs should be quick to locate their handler and
respond kindly to commands.
D. Bird Finding. Keen ability to detect the presence of game, and to
locate it accurately and promptly.
E. Backing. Shooting dog are required to back if the situation presents
F. Retrieving. Placement for shooting dogs requires a retrieve.
G. Other. Some additional factors in consideration of placements are:
1. Style of carriage and grace of movement.
2. Willingness to face heavy cover or other handicaps.
3. Intensity on point.
4. Handling birds at an exceptional distance.
II. DERBY DOGS (Born after 1/1/00) are judged on their potential as a
finished Shooting Dog. They should demonstrate:
A. Speed and stamina while hunting to the course.
B. Ability to locate and point birds quickly and accurately.
C. Staunchness on point. Steady until flush.
D. Bird sense, hunting objectives likely to hold wild birds.
* Derby dogs are not required to back or retrieve.
III. Puppy Judging Standards (Born after 1/1/01) Focus is on natural
qualities. They should posses desire to hunt and instinct to
point. They should also, show intelligence and courage in their
ground application. Pups should have good conformation & style.
For more information contact: Ben Berg 320-252-6585