Schutzhund, or in German translation "protection" is a dog sport developed in Germany in the early 20th century as a breed compatibility test for German Shepherd dogs. There are three phases in Schutzhund training; tracking, obedience, and protection. The sport tests three phases of tracking, obedience and protection at three levels. These are called Schutzhund or IGP 1, 2, & 3.
The sport of Schutzhund tests the dogs strong desire to work harmoniously with the handler, its courage and fighting drives, intelligence, trainability in nose work and ability to work independently. It also tests for physical traits such as strength, endurance, agility, and scenting ability. The sport`s goal is to reveal character and ability of a dog through training. Schutzhund is a challenging test of a dog`s character and not every dog is up to the challenge. Even breeds common in the sport have dogs that do not have the necessary drives or physical characteristics to pass the test. Schutzhund is also an extreme test of the handler's ability to train dogs. Dogs of many breeds, even mixes, compete in schutzhund. Any relatively large dog with the right temperament and physical characteristics can participate. Most common breeds are the herding and working breeds. For the obedience or tracking phase almost any breed, of any size, may be suitable.