Reading your dogs Pedigree
This article is aimed at novice saint owners, future Saint owners shopping around for a pet,
or just people curios to know what all the information on pedigrees mean, and to be able to
interpret info from breeders, and ask the correct questions.
Of Course all the abbreviations won’t necessarily be seen on local pedigrees, but it’s still
This is also to help people to not be ‘impressed’ purely because your dog is registered/
pedigreed. As sometimes the ‘wrong’ pedigree can actually count against a dog, rather then
FOR the dog. But if you don’t know what you are reading, you might be unnecessarily
impressed, and might even be paying to much for something meaningless.
1. Breeder: This refers to the registered owner of the bitch at time of the birth of the litter.
2. Title: Once a dog is titled ( at least earned 5 CC (challenge certificates) at official dog
shows) a dog will get a Title (CH -Champion). However a puppy obviously won’t have
any titles yet. This will only appear on the ‘new’ pedigree certificate once the Champion
status is registered. TIP: The more CH titles you see on any pedigree the better the
offspring will be (theoretically). You also get dogs with multiple Champion statusses,
which you would more often see on European pedigrees, as dogs might be a Champion
in different countries. It will either be indicated as Multi Ch, or the individual titles will
Herewith some abbreviations:
CH – Champion
FIN – Finnish Champion
NUCH – Norwegian Champion
SUCH – Swedish Champion
Nordic CH – Indicates all Nordic countries
DKCH – Danish Champion
BEL CH – Belguin Champion
NL CH – Netherlands Champion
AM – American Champion
CAN – Canadian Champion
AUST – Australian Champion
BISS – Best in Speciality Show Champ
INT CH – International Champion
LUXU CH – Luxumburg Champion
DT CH – German Champion
3. Hip score: Much awareness exists lately about ‘hip dysplasia’. Unfortunately it’s true
that most ‘untested’ Saints in South Africa probably have dysplastic hips of different
degrees. Although this is not a ‘sentence’ on your dog, it might avoid future health
problems if you know your dogs hip status. If breedings is planned, one should always
aim that the breeding partner to have a better hip score then the one you plan to breed
The ideal would be ‘clean’ hipscores. Do note that hip Dysplasia is partly inhereted, and
partly environmental and feeding, thus getting a puppy from ‘clean’ parents won’t
guarantee ‘clean’ puppies.
However, breeding from 2 dogs with bad hip scores will almost guarentee puppies with
bad hips, therefore it makes sense to ‘know’ what the scores are, to make a calculated
desicion to purchase puppies.
Puppies themselves can only be tested for hip dysplasia from around 18 months and older,
once adulthood is reached.
4. Registered name: This is the name given to puppies by the breeder. Sometimes
breeders will ask new owners before registration, if they have a prefferance, and register
the puppy as such.
However long-time breeders usually work with a system to assist them in always identi-
fying each individual litter. This is done by ‘naming’ litters either alpabetically or
according to some kind of theme.
The ‘name’ of the puppy will be pre indicated with the kennel name (thus you will know
you buy from an existing registered kennel) It’s called a prefix. If no kennel prefix is
shown, it indicates you are dealing with novice or ‘one-time’ breeders. (‘breeders’ who
do not have a registered affix/ kennel names). This migh indicate less knowledge about
pedigrees/breedings and/or the backround and lineage of breeding stock. Also, mostly
breeding stock from unregistered kennels would not have done any genetic testing on
dogs, thus you will buy unknown factors such as hip dysplasia, heart conditions etc.
If a dog don’t have a prefix, but an ‘affix’ (kennel name at the END of the ‘name’), this
indicates that dog was purchased, FROM a kennel. In above example dog was not from a
registered kennel, but registered INTO a registered kennel. You might also get names with
both a prefix and a suffix, indicating that dog was purchased FROM a registered kennel
TO a registered kennel. This might suggeste a more proffesional approach to breeding, as
true breeders need to introduce ‘new’ bloodlines into their breeding programme from
time to time, and thus much thought would be given as to where this dogs will be pur-
chased from. Often this will be when dogs are imported. This type of naming will also
(for stud service) but rather a pick of the litter as payment. No 11 is an example of such,
and this is an indication of a good’ dog, as long-time breeders will always KEEP the best of
any litter, and if given the opportunity to get the “BEST’ from another kennel. So a name
with both a prefix and affix indicates puppies that probably was the pick of the litter. Not
only was the ‘stud’ chosen (obviously for certain traits), but the best of the offspring was
chosen. The more such names on the pedigree, the better the lineage.
5. Owner/s: This will be your name, once you’ve sent in the certificate for transfer. If you
do not transfer the puppy into your name the name that will appear is that of the breeder.
6. Kusa registration Number: If you are a member of KUSA your own KUSA reg no
will appear here. However you don’t need to be a KUSA member to register a puppy to
your name, but if you want to breed/ register a litter yourself, you’ll need to be a KUSA
7. Great-Grandparents: The 3rd colom of names indicates the dogs great grand parents.
Starting with the sire’s side (no 7-10 on the certificate itself). Each ‘couple’ will first show
the male (sire) and then female (dam) of the pair. Each name shows the particular dog’s
registration no as well, and any titles the dogs may have, as well as prefix and suffix.
8. Grandsire: The second colom of names indicates the grandparents. Also starting first
on the sire side and then the dam’s side. This is no 3-6 on a KUSA certificate.
9. Sire: Usually no 1 on the KUSA certificate itself. This will be the father /Sire of the
puppies. All titles will be indicated in front, prefix and suffixes will be shown as well as
registration no and Hipscore results.
11. Grandmother: Indicated by no 3 on the KUSA Certificate. Indicating the grandmother
on the sire side with all other information attached like titles, pre and suffix, hipscores and
12. Great Grandparents: From no 11-14 on a KUSA certificate indicate the great grand-
parents on the dam’s side. First the father, and then the mother, complete with titles, pre
and suffixes, hipscores and registration number.
13. Dam: This will be the mother of your dog/puppy. Complete with titles, pre and suffixes,
hipscores and registration number and titles.
14. Date of registration: This will be the date the litter was registered by the breeder.
15. Date of transfer: This will be the date your dog is transferred from the breeder to
yourname by KUSA.
16. Member no: This will be the BREEDERS’s member no.
17. Breed: Indicate the type of breed the certificate is for. In this instance (ofcourse) it will
18. Notations: This will be any breeding notations that the BREEDER will put on a puppy
/litter. Normally only exceptional animals should be bred from, and the rest should be
blocked. Therefore responsible breeders might put breed restrictions on most puppies
(preventing unscrupulous breeding).
This will be indicated by the abbreviation N/P (as per example) -meaning progeny not
eligable for registration. Should a breeding with such a dog be attemted, the litter will not
be able to be registered.
Mostly puppies without breed restrictions will be sold at a higher price, thus making
certain only the best are bred from, and that potential buyer think twice because of the
higher price. It might also be that a responsible breeder are aware of certain traits in a
specific puppy that may not be desirable (like blue eyes) and thus the need to block certain
dogs from any potencial breeding scheme.
Make sure before you purchase a puppy what notations are put on pups, (and the
reasons) depending on your plans. Ofcourse this will not matter if you were only looking
for a pet.
19. Date of birth: The date of birth of your dog
20. Sex: The sex of your dog.
21. Colour: Since Saints are always ‘tri-colour’ it should never be indicated as anything
other, although sometimes the term ‘typical’ –reffering to the ‘typical’ colouring namely,
white, black and brown.
22. Microchip /tattoo no: Mostly hobby breeders /one time breeders will not microchip
puppies in an attemt to safe money, as it is quite costly. Dedicated breeders will chip dogs,
not only to adhere to international standards but it is best for your puppy. If it gets lost/
stolen, it’s always identifyable.
This is also handy to identify valuable breeding stock. The tattoo serves the same pur-
pose, but only certain breeds do both, like GSD’s.
23. Registratoin no: This will be your dog’s individual registration no for life, and can
never be changed. Litter mates’s numbers will follow each other.
24. Hip score: Right through the pedigree the hip scores of the different dogs will be
indicated. See the article on Hip dysplasia elsewhere on this website to see the different
scores. The ‘ideal’ would be 0/0 or A1