© WDSAA 2017




This Club is a working and breed organization to promote the Dutch Shepherd as a working dog and to support other organizations promoting working dogs.


This Club is called the Working Dutch Shepherd Association of America (WDSAA).

The Dutch Shepherd is a medium-sized, well-proportioned, well-muscled dog, with a powerful, well-balanced structure, an intelligent expression and a lively temperament. He is alert, devoted to his owner, obedient, and eager to please and oblige. He is a good guardian, is very faithful and reliable, undemanding, with plenty of stamina, is vigilant, active and is gifted with a typical shepherd temperament. He may be somewhat reserved and should be well socialized.

The length of the body exceeds the height, at the withers, in a ratio of 10:9.

The breed is divided into three varieties, determined by coat type: short coat, long coat, and rough coat.

The objectives of the Club are to:

Preserve, promote and protect the Dutch Shepherd as a working dog.

Maintain open dialogue with all clubs and federations sharing similar objectives for Dutch Shepherds and for other breeds while ensuring our autonomy.

Educate the public and our members about our breed’s temperament, working ability, health, training, conformation and the need to preserve the breed as a total dog, sound in mind and body.

Acknowledge all earned titles from recognized organizations.

Recognize the registrations issued by recognized registries, national and international.

Conduct events that promote the Dutch Shepherds as a working breed, offer titles for such events, and encourage participation by the breed in working events sponsored by other organizations.

Develop and apply a standard for conformation that focuses not only on appearance but also on health, function, working ability, and the promotion of functional characteristics.

Improve the breed by refusing single registration to any dog of unacceptable temperament or with serious genetic defects.

Conform to internationally acceptable rules and regulations governing dog sports.

License judges and certify evaluators for events and programs established and promoted by the Club.

Publish an official publication promoting the objectives of this Club.


Article I: Membership

Section 1. Categories of Membership

a.     Individual Membership.  Open to persons 18 years of age and older who subscribe to the purposes and ethics of this club.

b.     Family Membership.  Open to persons living in a family unit and family members 18 years of age and older who subscribe to the purpose and ethics of this Club. Also, open to persons under 18 sponsored by an adult (over 18) family member.

c.     Club Membership.  Open to all clubs whose members agree to be governed by pertinent articles of these by-laws, and agree to incur no indebtedness on the part of the Club.

d.     Honorary Member.  The WDSAA may nominate a person as an honorary member for special achievement on behalf of the Dutch Shepherd Club.  Honorary members may not vote or be elected to any position on the board.

Section 2. Membership Procedures

a.     Individual members.  A candidate for individual membership must submit a written application on the approved form together with an application fee established by the Board. If the applicant is accepted, the fee will be applied to the first full year’s dues.  The application fee is nonrefundable.

b.     Club members.  For a Club membership, a candidate must submit to the Membership Secretary an application in writing together with an application fee established by the Board.

Section 3. Dues. 
The Board of Directors will establish dues by majority vote for all types of memberships.  They will adjust these dues from time to time.

a.         All memberships run from March 1st to February 28th.  Dues for the following year are due    on or before the first day of March.   By January 31st of each year the Membership   Secretary will mail each member a statement of dues for the following year.

b.        Applicants approved for membership will pay pro-rated dues for the first year, depending on the quarter during which they are approved for membership.  The minimum dues for a partial year’s membership will be ¼ of the annual amount.

Section 4.  Election to Membership:

a.     The Board of Directors will approve membership application forms containing the information required by the Board, with the applicant’s agreement to abide by the Club’s Constitution and By-Laws.

b.     Applications must be submitted to the Membership Secretary and must be accompanied by payment of the appropriate application fee.

c.     Applicants may be approved by the Membership Secretary or at any meeting of the Board of Directors (in questionable circumstances), on a conference phone call or by written vote of the directors by US mail, Internet, or via email.  A two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Board is required under such circumstances to accept a new member.

d.     Members will receive a membership card and the official publication of the Club.

Section 5. Termination of Membership. 
The Board of Directors may expel a member by a 2/3 vote. Members who do not pay dues for the next year by May 1st are considered terminated and will have to reapply to have their membership reinstated.

Article II: Meetings & Quorums

Section 1. Annual Meeting.
The annual meeting of the WDSAA will be held in conjunction with the annual national event, by conference phone call, or on line.  The Board of Directors will set the date and location.  The Recording Secretary will mail the annual meeting notice to each member at least 60 days before the meeting.  The annual meeting will include the following written reports to the membership:

a.     A report from the President on the general state and activities of the club in the preceding year.

b.     Treasurer’s report, including an income statement and balance sheet;

c.     A report by the Membership Secretary

d.     A report by the Recording Secretary

Section 2.  Regular Board Meetings:
The Board will hold at least two meetings a year. One will be held in conjunction with the annual meeting of the membership and the annual national event.  The location and date of other meetings will be decided by majority vote of the board, or by a meeting committee if authorized by a majority vote of the Board.

Section 3. Special Board Meetings. 
Board members may call a special meeting of the Board.  Whoever calls the meeting will notify the Recording Secretary in writing at least 15 days before the meeting.  Dates should be coordinated so that all required attendees could participate

Section 4. Quorums. 
A quorum must be present for any business to be conducted.  A quorum requires at least ½ of the Board members, including the President or Vice President, or 1/3 of the members in good standing, or 25 members in good standing, whichever is less.

Article III Governance

Section 1.  The Board of Directors includes:

a.       President.  Presides over meetings, using Robert’s Rules of Order.  Maintains dialog with other organization and reports said dialog to the Board.  Responsible for ensuring that delegates are present for required meetings.

b.        Vice President.  Presides over meetings in the President’s absence.  Takes responsibility for other Presidential duties as needed.

c.        Recording Secretary.  Writes and maintains records of all meetings.

d.        Membership Secretary.  Takes new membership applications and maintains a current member list, with all contact information.  Issues membership cards yearly. 

e.        Treasurer.  Receives and deposits Club dues and income, into the Club’s account.  Maintains a detailed record of all Club deposits and expenses, and provides that to the BoD and Membership at least once yearly.  Writes checks from the Club account when needed.  File a yearly income tax form.

f.         Regional directors may also be elected as liaisons to the board in regions with multiple clubs.

Section 2.  The four US regions are:

(a) North: North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, and Alaska

(b) South: Kansas, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina

(c) East: Maine. New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia

(c) West: Washington, Montana, Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Hawaii

Article IV: Elections

Section 1: Terms.
The Regional Directors will hold office for a three-year term. The Board of Directors will hold office for a two-year term.

Section 2: Rights to Office.
To be elected to the board, a member must be a founding member or have been a member for at least 1 year while actively taking part in the titling of dogs in working activities.

Article V: Discipline

Section 1.  Charges. 
Any member may prefer charges against a member for alleged misconduct prejudicial to the best interest of the Club or of the breed.  Written charges with specifications must be filed in duplicate with the Recording Secretary together with a deposit of $50.00, which shall be forfeited if such charges are not sustained by the Board or Disciplinary Committee following a hearing. The Recording Secretary shall promptly send a copy of the charges to each member of the Board or present them at a Board meeting. The Board shall first consider whether the actions alleged in the charges, if proven, might constitute conduct prejudicial to the best interests of the Club or the breed.  If the Board considers that the alleged conduct is not prejudicial to the best interests of the Club or the breed, it may refuse to entertain jurisdiction. If the Board entertains jurisdiction of the charges, it shall fix a date of a hearing by the Board or a Disciplinary Committee appointed by the majority of the Board not fewer than three weeks nor more than six weeks thereafter.  A Disciplinary Committee shall be composed of not fewer than three members of the Board. One member of the committee shall be appointed by the board to be the chairperson. The committee chairperson shall be responsible for the committee minutes. The Recording Secretary shall promptly send one copy of the charges to the accused member by certified mail, together with a notice of the hearing and an assurance that the defendant may personally appear in his, or her, own defense and bring witnesses if he, or she, wishes.

Section 2.  Board Hearing.
The Board or its Disciplinary Committee shall have complete authority to decide whether counsel may attend the hearing, but both complainant and defendant shall be treated uniformly in that regard.  Should the charges be sustained after hearing all the evidence and testimony presented by complainant and defendant, the Board or Disciplinary Committee may by a majority vote of those present suspend the defendant from all privileges of the Club for not more than six (6) months from the date of the hearing, or until the next annual meeting if that will occur after six months.  And, if the Board or its Disciplinary Committee deems that punishment insufficient, it may also recommend to the membership that the penalty be expulsion. In such case the suspension shall not restrict the defendant’s right to appear before his, or her, fellow members at the ensuing Club meeting which considers the recommendation of the Board or Committee. Immediately after the Board or Committee has reached a decision, its findings shall be put in written form and filed with the Recording Secretary. The Recording Secretary, in turn, shall notify each of the parties of the decision and penalty, if any.

Section 3.  Expulsion. 
Expulsion of a member from the Club may be accomplished only at a meeting of the Club following a Board hearing and upon and recommendation of the Board or Committee as provided in Section 3 Board Hearing of Article VI Discipline. The defendant shall have the privilege of appearing in his, or her, own behalf, though no evidence shall be taken at this meeting. The President shall read the charges and the findings and recommendations, and shall invite the defendant, if present, to speak on his, or her, own behalf.  The meeting shall then vote by secret ballot on the proposed expulsion. A 2/3 vote of those present and voting at the Annual Meeting shall be necessary for expulsion.  If expulsion is not so voted, the suspension shall stand.

Article VI: Miscellaneous Matters

Section 1.  Good Standing.
The Club decides most business by a majority vote of regular members, in good standing.  To be in good standing, a member must

a. Pay his or her dues within 30 days of when they are due.

b. Always display good sportsmanship.

Section 2.  Participation in illegal activities: 
The Club will not condone the use of the Dutch Shepherd in any illegal activity. Convictions resulting from the illegal use of animals will result in immediate termination of membership.

Section 3.  Deciding Special Matters: 
The Club will decide certain special matters by a 2/3 vote of regular members in good standing, or 2/3 vote of the Board.  These matters include amending these bylaws.  The board can also decide that other special matters need a 2/3 vote.  For any matter needing a 2/3 vote of club members, the Club will accept votes by US mail or email ballot.

Section 4.  The business year: 
The WDSAA will operate on a fiscal year starting on January 1st and ending on December 31st of each year.

Section 5.  Governing Rules
The rules contained in the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order--Newly Revised govern the Club whenever they are applicable, and in matters in which they are consistent with these bylaws and with any special rules of order the Club may adopt.

Section 6. Recognized Organizations.
The WDSAA will recognize official titles sponsored by organizations promoting and recognizing the working abilities of the Dutch Shepherd. To be recognized, an organization must be approved by a 2/3 vote of the board of directors and have held at least three working events per year over the three years before the vote.

Section 7. Recognized Registries.
The WDSAA will recognize the following registries as legitimate holders of Dutch Shepherd ancestry; United Kennel Club (UKC), American Kennel Club (AKC), and Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI).

Section 8. Single Registration.
Single registration of dogs not already identified by the organizations in section 7 of these bylaws will be determined upon inspection by judging officers deemed qualified by 2/3 vote in the board of directors. These dogs must meet the standards outlined in the WDSAA breed standard and meet said judge’s personal scrutiny.