North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association

The North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association was founded 1969 in Goodwood, Ontario, Canada by a group of pudelpointer and griffon enthusiasts.[1] Presently based in Arlington Heights, Illinois, NAVHDA “is a nonprofit corporation whose purpose is to foster, promote, and improve the versatile hunting dog breeds in North America; to conserve game by using well trained reliable hunting dogs before and after the shot; and to aid in the prevention of cruelty to animals by discouraging nonselective and uncontrolled breeding, which produces unwanted and uncared for dogs.”[2] The group has chapters in most states of the U.S. and provinces of Canada which sponsor training and testing programs. The organization describes its work as a 1999 complement to the activities of sporting dog breed clubs and field trial organizations, “created to supplement the activities of those clubs by providing a proven, standard method of evaluating the performance of all versatile hunting dogs, consistent with North American hunting practices, regardless of breed.” In addition to well-known gundogs such as the German Shorthaired Pointer, NAVHDA recognizes dog breeds which may not yet have AKC recognition, such as the Cesky Fousek. The organization defines versatile dogs as “the dog that is bred and trained to dependably hunt and point game, to retrieve on both land and water, and to track wounded game on both land and water.” The group asserts that “The versatile breeds, as we know them today, are products of Europe. No distinctive versatile hunting breed has been developed in North America.” [Source: Wikipedia]