The most prestigious dog shows in the world are events where purebred dogs compete against each other. The dog shows are referred to as conformation shows. Each dog is judged on their breeds calibre in a very dignified process. The owners are dressed in their sports blazers and parade their dogs around a packed arena.
Although dog shows can be quite an expensive affair, there are no large cash prizes at the end of the day.
Each dog is compared against the recorded standards applicable specific to their breed. There is much thought given to a dog’s coat texture, their body structure, appearance, which also includes their teeth and their physical characteristics.
Purebred dogs are breeds that are pedigreed and registered with a breed club. Generally, the breed club is connected to a kennel club, ensuring that the dogs records are available. When wanting to include a dog in a dog show, they can only be entered if they have an Authority to Compete number or a Kennel Club Registration number.
Dog shows began in 1603, but classifying by breed was only introduced in and around the 1800’s. This is when the types of breeds were differentiated for ease of judging purposes. Consider the quandary when needing to compare a Labrador, a Beagle and a French Bulldog with each other and decide on who to assign the title of top dog.
The average local dog show can have between 2500 and 3400 participants. Although there are a number of dog shows in the world, only two stand out as being part of the most prestigious.
Westminster which is held in the U.S.
The Westminster dog show is run by the American Kennel Club. This dog show is held in New York and is documented as having its first show in 1877. In 2008, over 3 million people were recorded as watching numerous dogs compete for the coveted title. There are two venues used for two separate award categories. Here is a look at the Westminster Dog Show.
Crufts which is held in the U.K.
The Crufts dog show is sponsored by Eukanuba and run by the Kennel Club. In March 2017, Crufts took place in Birmingham and a grand total of 21,838 dogs took part. A percentage of the profits were donated to 3 previously identified charities. There are a number of repeat contenders that have been part of the Crufts dog show since 2007.
Best In Show was given for the first time as a title in 1907. A smooth fox terrier has won the title three times since then. A championship title is considered a judicious unbiassed indication of excellence. This is considered a good prerequisite for breeding purposes.