Hip scoring is a procedure used to determine the degree of hip dysplasia in dogs and other animals and reporting the findings in a standard way. The hip score is the sum of the points awarded for each of nine radiographic features of both hip joints.

The British Veterinary Association uses the following criteria to determine hip score:

  1. Norberg Angle
  2. Subluxation
  3. Cranial Acetabular Edge
  4. Dorsal Acetabular Edge
  5. Cranial Effective Acetabular Rim
  6. Acetabular Fossa
  7. Caudal Acetabular Edge
  8. Femoral Head/Neck Exostosis
  9. Femoral Head Recontouring

The lower the score, the less the degree of dysplasia present. The minimum (best) score for each hip is zero, and the maximum (worst) is 53, giving a range for the total of 0 to 106. Each hip is scored separately under the BVA, so within the UK scores are usually displayed as two numbers separated by a forward slash (e.g. 2/6). The highest score of one of both hips (BVA) is taken to provide a score for international comparison.

The following table compares the scores recognised by Orthopaedic Foundation for Animals (OFA), Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI), the British Veterinary Association (BVA) and Verein für Deutsche Schäferhunde (SV).

OFA (USA) FCI (European) BVA (UK/Australia) 1 Hip SV (Germany)
E A-1 0 Normal
G A-2 1-3 Normal
F B-1 4-6 Normal
B B-2 7-8 Fast ["almost"] Normal
M C 9-18 Noch Zugelassen ["still permitted/allowed"]
Mod D 19-30 Mittlere ["intermediate"]
S E >30 Schwere ["heavy"/"severe"]

British Veterinarian Association[1]

The average hip scores in the year 2005 for popular breeds from Australia are tabulated below: (Scores of both hips together)

Breed Average score
Airedale Terrier 13
Alaskan Malamute 11
Beauceron 14
Belgian Shepherd 9
Bernese Mountain Dog 11
Border Collie 9
Bull Mastiff 23
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 15
Curly Coated Retriever 11
Dogue de Bordeaux 22
Doberman 9
German Shepherd Dog 13
Golden Retriever 16
Irish Setter 15
Japanese Akita 11
Labrador Retriever 12
Mastiff 11
Newfoundland 21
Old English Sheep Dog 17
Rhodesian Ridgeback 7
Rottweiler 10
Samoyed 19
Siberian Husky 6
St. Bernard 18
Staffordshire Bull Terrier 12
Weimaraner 10


  1. ^ British Veterinarian Association, BVA, about Hip Scores.