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Constitution of the BSDA of GB







The object of the Association shall be to foster the breeding, showing and working of the Belgian Shepherd Dogs, namely the GROENENDAEL, TERVUEREN, MALINOIS and LAEKENOIS in Great Britain and to safeguard the Breed standard. The Association shall also provide a means of exchanging information on the Breed between members.



The Association shall consist of a Patron, a President and Vice-Presidents, Officers and Committee members, as hereafter described and an unlimited number of members.



The management of the Association shall be in the hands of a Chairman and a Committee consisting of 12 members of whom the Honorary Secretary, Honorary Treasurer and Membership Secretary shall be ex-officio members. Any paid up member of the Association shall be eligible for election as a Committee member unless that member is an Officer or Committee member of any club or Society devoted to the same breed and providing the member has been a fully paid up member of the Belgian Shepherd Dog Association of Great Britain for at least 12 months before the postal ballot. In order to be elected as an Officer a person should have been a member of the committee for at least 12 months, although the committee may invite any member to fill the post mid-term in an Acting capacity until the next election for that post is due. No person whilst an undischarged bankrupt may serve on the committee of or hold any other office or appointment within a Kennel Club registered society (KC mandatory rule). The Officers of the Committee shall retire after two years, the Chairman and Treasurer in one year and the Secretary and Membership Secretary in the next year, but shall be eligible for re-election. The remainder of the Committee shall retire annually but shall be eligible for re-election. No more than 2 members of one family or dog owning partnership shall be eligible to serve on the Committee in any one year. The election of the Committee shall be by means of a postal ballot. The Committee shall meet within two months of their election and thereafter as often as deemed necessary. Seven, including at least one ex-officio member shall form a quorum for the transaction of business. Any member of the Committee persistently failing to attend Committee meetings without reasonable excuse shall be removed from the Committee and not be eligible for re-election unless the Committee find otherwise. Committee meetings shall be open to all members, who will be allowed to speak with the permission of the Chairman. Non-committee members will have no voting rights at committee meetings. Certain sensitive items, at the officers discretion, will be considered by the committee only. The Agenda for forthcoming meetings will be published on the website. A Patron, President and Vice-Presidents shall be proposed by the committee and ratified at the AGM. The Patron would normally serve for 5 years and this would not normally be renewable for more than one extra term. They should be a figurehead for the Association and would be expected to actively promote the breed and the Association, to actively contribute to Association events, in particular the AGM and Championship show, where they would be invited to lunch and expected to help to entertain judges and other visitors. The President should normally be selected from the Vice-Presidents and serve for a term of three years and not normally serve for more than two terms consecutively. They would be expected to actively contribute to Association events, in particular the AGM and Championship show where they would be invited to lunch and expected to help to entertain judges and other visitors. They should be offered the Chair at the AGM and would be expected to present the Annual Awards. They would be expected to present the major awards at the Championship Show. There will be a maximum of 10 Vice-Presidents and they will be elected until such time as they can no longer fulfill the obligations of the post. They must already be a Life Member, should have been on the committee and contributed significantly to the running of the Association and its events, should have been a member of the club for at least 15 years, should continue to contribute to the running of the club and its events eg entertaining judges and visitors, helping at shows and other events. Suggestions for nominations may be submitted in writing to the Secretary by fully paid up members of the Association at any time. This must include a justification and a proposer and seconder. The committee will consider such nominations and decide whether to bring them forward to the next AGM.’


A category of membership called Honorary Membership is available for people who do great service to the Belgian Shepherd Dog. This would be open to non-members and overseas people. They would be proposed by the committee for ratification at an AGM’



The election of the 4 Officers and 9 Committee members shall be by a postal ballot, the results of which shall be announced at the Annual General Meeting. Nominations for Officers and Committee Members for the ensuing year must be submitted to the Honorary Secretary, on the official forms which will be made available to all members, not later than the 31st January each year. The Honorary Secretary shall send a reminder of this privilege to all members on or about the 14th December each year. Nominations are on the strict understanding that the proposer has secured the prior consent of the nominee/s to take office if elected and that such proposer and nominee shall be fully paid up members of the Association for at least 12 months before the ballot.


If a Committee position becomes vacant in the ensuing year the Committee reserve the right to select the person with the next highest number of votes from the postal ballot. If however, there are no further people, the Committee may co-opt a suitable member to fill the vacancy until the next election. The Officers also acknowledge their duty to inform the Kennel Club of any change of Secretary of the Society which may occur during the course of the year.



Candidates for membership of the Association shall be proposed by one member and seconded by another member and elected or balloted for by the Committee at one of their meetings. A majority in favour shall elect. Young persons under the age of sixteen years may be admitted as Junior members. Such Junior members shall enjoy all the privilege of membership except that they shall not be eligible to vote at General Meetings, participate in the postal ballot for Officers and Committee or sit on the Committee.

The Society will make a membership list available for inspection by the members of the Association or the Kennel Club.



Please refer to the Membership page for current membership fees


The Annual Subscription shall be payable to the Honorary Treasurer on the 31st January each year. No member whose subscription is unpaid shall be entitled to participate in the postal ballot or to any of the privileges of membership. If any member shall fail to pay the Annual subscription by 1st March the Committee shall have the power to erase his/her name from the list of members but if the Committee shall subsequently receive a satisfactory explanation the member may, at the discretion of the Committee and on payment of the arrears be re-admitted to membership, providing that membership has not lapsed for a period exceeding 12 months.



Any member who shall be suspended under Kennel Club Rule A42j(4) and/or any member whose dog(s) is/are disqualified under Kennel Club Rule A42j(8) shall ipso facto cease to be a member of the Association for the duration of the suspension and/or disqualification.

If the conduct of any member shall, in the opinion of the Committee of the Association be injurious or likely to be injurious to the character or interests of the Association, the Committee may, at a meeting, the notice convening which includes as an object the consideration of the conduct of the Member, determine that a Special General Meeting of the Association shall be called for the purpose of passing a resolution to expel him/her. Notice of the Special General Meeting shall be sent to the accused Member, giving particulars of the complaint and advising the place, date and hour of the Meeting that he/she may attend and offer an explanation. If at the Meeting, a resolution to expel is passed by a two-thirds majority of the Members present and voting, his/her name shall forthwith be erased from the list of Members, and he/she shall thereupon cease for all purposes to be a Member of the Association except that he/she may, within two calendar months from the date of such Meeting, appeal to the Kennel Club upon and subject to such condition as the Kennel Club may impose. If the Association expels any member for discreditable conduct in connection with dogs, Dog Shows, Trials or Competitions, the Association will report the matter in writing to the Kennel Club within seven days and supply any particulars required.



The Officers acknowledge that during the month of January each year, maintenance of Title fee will be forwarded to the Kennel Club by the Secretary for the continuance of Registration and that by the 31st July each year, other returns, as stipulated in Kennel Club Regulations for the registration and Maintenance of Title of Societies and Breed Councils and the Affiliation of Agricultural Societies and municipal Authorities will be forwarded to the Kennel Club.



The financial year of the Association shall be from 1st January to 31st December each year. Members shall receive at least 14 days notice in writing of a General Meeting. The Annual General Meeting shall be held in the first quarter of the year for the purpose of receiving the report of the Committee and the statement of Accounts, to announce the results of the postal ballot electing Officers and committee members and to discuss any motion duly placed on the Agenda of which prior notice has been given to the Honorary Secretary. No business shall be transacted at an Annual General Meeting unless Notice thereof appears on the Agenda with the exception of routine matters or those which in the opinion of the Chairman of the Meeting are urgent. Any items for the Agenda of the Annual General Meeting must be received in writing by the Honorary Secretary not later than 31st January. The Honorary Secretary shall send a reminder of this privilege to all members on or about the 1st December each year.

The Ballot papers for the election of Officers and committee members shall be sent to an independent professional body for counting and all members should ensure that the Ballot papers are in the hands of this professional body at least 14 days prior to the date set for the Annual General Meeting. The ballot paper supplied to each member shall be accompanied by an envelope in which the Ballot paper must be sealed. Only members who have been fully paid up members for at least 12 months prior to the postal ballot shall be eligible to participate in the Postal ballot and must be fully paid up members 28 days before the date set for the Annual General Meeting. The Chairman shall announce the result of the Postal Ballot by reading out the names of the successful candidates at the Annual General Meeting.


A Special General Meeting shall be summoned by the Honorary Secretary if 20 members send a signed resolution stating the subject to be discussed; no other business except that matter on the Agenda may be discussed at a Special General Meeting. At a Special General Meeting 10% of fully paid up members shall form a quorum. Two-thirds of votes cast shall be necessary to carry a resolution. The rules and/or Breed Standard of the Association shall not be altered except at a General Meeting or Special General Meeting. Any alteration to the rules and/or Breed standard shall not be brought into force until the Kennel Club has been advised and given its approval of the alteration.



A Banking account shall be opened in the name of the Association into which all revenue of the Association shall be paid and from which withdrawals shall only be made on the signature of two or more Officers, one of who shall be the Honorary Treasurer. The accounts shall be kept by the Honorary Treasurer and two auditors shall be appointed at each Annual General Meeting who shall audit the Associations accounts for the previous year before the next Annual General Meeting. The audited accounts for the preceding year shall be placed before the Annual General Meeting for approval.



All judging lists of the Association shall be compiled by the Association's Committee. The Championship show judging list to be prepared and voted on by secret ballot of the Association's Committee and any proposed addition to this list shall be submitted to the Honorary Secretary who will then send the nominee a Questionnaire to complete and return. The Association shall have 5 judging lists, 'C' judging list, 'B*' and 'B' judging list, 'A3' judging list, 'A2' judging list and 'A1' judging list. All judging lists will be prepared in accordance with Kennel Club regulation (C4(c)).


'To be placed on the 'C' list: A person may apply to the BSDA of GB Committee for inclusion to the 'C' judging list once they have owned, shown (including regular handling) or bred Belgian Shepherd Dogs for 5 years. In the case of all-rounders they may be included at the committee's discretion. Where dogs are owned (registered at the KC) by one member of a partnership but the other partner regularly attends shows and contributes significantly to the showing of the dog, they may count the years involvement as if they were the registered owner.


To be placed on the 'B' list: To advance from the 'C' list to the 'B' list they must have judged for 3 years after being on the judging list, judged a minimum of 3 shows, 10 classes and 30 dogs and have attended a BSDA of GB/NBSDC Teach-in. Non-breed specialists awarding CCs in at least one other breed may have direct entry to the B list.


To be placed on the 'B*' list: To advance from the 'B' list to the 'B*' list they must have judged for 3 years since their inclusion on the 'B' judging list and have attended a further BSDA of GB Teach-in and passed the BSDA Judging examination. In addition Breed Specialists must have stewarded at a Club Show. Where people have spent longer than the minimum time at a particular level their progress may be accelerated subject to their experience and qualifications at the discretion of the Judges Sub-Committee.


To be placed on the 'A3' list: To advance from the 'B*' list to the 'A3' list, breed specialist judges must have been on the B list for a total of at least five years, have judged a total of 40 classes and 100 dogs, have passed the written Judges examination, have owned/bred at least three dogs at the time they first gained their stud book number, have passed the KC Examination on Rules and Regulations, have been assessed at a KC accredited seminar on Construction and Movement and have stewarded on at least 12 occasions over at least a three year period.


To be placed on the 'A2' list: To advance from the 'A3' list to the 'A2' list they must apply to the Association, and should the committee/judges sub-committee deem it appropriate, a KC questionnaire will be issued which the Association would submit to the KC. Any further requirements (eg attendance at KC courses) for KC approval are the responsibility of the potential judge.


Honorary List: for those people on the A1 list who no longer wish for judging appointments.


Non-breed specialist judges to be placed on the judging lists at the Committee's discretion. The BSDA. Judging lists will be reviewed annually in accordance with BSDA. regulations. It is the responsibility of people on the 'B' and 'C' judging lists to update the committee as to their experience and continued interest annually. Anyone failing to do this for three successive years will be deemed to have no further interest and be removed from the list. Anyone judging a Championship Show who fails to write a critique for the Dog Press shall be contacted by the Judge’s subcommittee. Failure to provide a critique or a reasonable explanation will result in their removal from the judging list and the KC will be informed. The BSDA Committee will draw up every year a supported and preferred list of judges to be made available to the Kennel Club and to all registered Societies.



All members of the Belgian Shepherd Dog Association of Great Britain undertake to abide by its general Code of Ethics.


Club members:


a)Will properly house, feed, water and exercise all dogs under their care and arrange for appropriate veterinary attention if and when required.

b)Will agree without reservation that any veterinary surgeon performing an operation on any of their dogs which alters the natural conformation of the animal, or who carries out a caesarean section on a bitch, may report such operation to the Kennel Club.

c)Will agree that no healthy puppy will be culled. Puppies which may not conform to the Breed Standard should be placed in suitable homes.

d)Will abide by all aspects of the Animal Welfare Act.

e)Will not create demand for, nor supply, puppies that have been docked illegally.

f)Will agree not to breed from a dog or bitch which could be in any way harmful to the dog or to the breed.

g)Will not allow any of their dogs to roam at large or to cause a nuisance to neighbours or those carrying out official duties.

h)Will ensure that their dogs wear properly tagged collars and will be kept leashed or under effective control when away from home.

i)Will clean up after their dogs in public places or anywhere their dogs are being exhibited.

j)Will only sell dogs where there is a reasonable expectation of a happy and healthy life and will help with the re-homing of a dog if the initial circumstances change.

k) Will supply written details of all dietary requirements and give guidance concerning responsible ownership when placing dogs in a new home.

l) Will ensure that all relevant Kennel Club documents are provided to the new owner when selling or transferring a dog, and will agree, in writing, to forward any relevant documents at the earliest opportunity, if not immediately available. (BSDA Rescue dogs excepted)

m) Will not sell any dog to commercial dog wholesalers, retail pet dealers or directly or indirectly allow dogs to be given as a prize or donation in a competition of any kind. Will not sell by sale or auction Kennel Club registration certificates as stand alone items (not accompanying a dog).

n) Will not knowingly misrepresent the characteristics of the breed nor falsely advertise dogs nor mislead any person regarding the health or quality of a dog.

o)Will not breed from bitches either before the age of 2 years or the 3rd season whichever is the earlier, nor will they breed from bitches on consecutive seasons if the seasons are less than 12 months apart. Exceptional circumstances accepted

p)Are recommended only to breed from dogs and bitches of sound temperament that have been BVA/KC hip scored, elbow scored and have a current (within 12 months) BVA/KC clear eye test certificate up to the age of 7 years.

q)Will not allow their Stud dogs to be used on bitches knowing that a point of the Code of Ethics would be broken.

r)Are recommended if possible to have all puppies marked for life.

s)Will attempt to help and befriend new Belgian Shepherd Dog owners.

t)Will conduct themselves in such a way as not to bring discredit to the Breed or the Association and will demonstrate good sportsmanship at all times.

u)Will train dogs using motivational reward-based training methods (no pinch/prong collars, no electric devices or any other aversive training equipment)

Breach of these provisions may result in expulsion from club membership, and/or disciplinary action by the Kennel Club and/or reporting to the relevant authorities for legal action, as appropriate. The BSDA of GB Committee reserve the right to refuse entries to future shows and events organised by the Association.



Should, in the opinion of the Committee, the Association be unable to continue to function then a Special General Meeting shall be called to discuss the matter further.



In the event of a Trophy becoming engraved or the Society going into liquidation, the donor shall have the option of retaining their trophy. The presentation of Association Trophies shall be made only in consideration of awards won under the British Kennel Club rules.



The Kennel Club shall be the final Court of Appeal in all matters of dispute.



The Association shall not join any federation of Societies or Clubs.

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