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MANCHESTER TERRIERS (TOY & STANDARD) IN THE UNITED STATES


MARY GONZALEZ | REXY5711@YAHOO.COM | WWW.KISMETMANCHESTERS.COM


In the United States there are a great variety of canine sports and other activities one can get in- volved in with our versatile Man- chesters. Of course one of them is Conformation shows, also re- ferred to as breed shows, which seems to be the most commonly participated in by most Manches- ter breeders/owners, but there are many others open to breeders and pet owners alike.


CONFORMATION


Conformation is a good start for your show quality dogs, be it to earn a championship title for fun (for you and your dog), or to com- plete the title for a dog of bitch you plan on using for breeding in the future. In the United States, a dog must be 6 months of age in order to compete and start earn- ing championship points. There are numerous classes a puppy can start out in, from the Puppy 6 – 9 class, American Bred, Novice- Owner-Handler, through to Bred By Exhibitor.


It takes two major wins (three, four or five point wins count as “majors”), and a total of 15 points to earn an American championship title. The number of points awarded depends on how many other non-champion dogs are entered and where in the country you live. Certain areas


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do not have a large population of Manchesters while others have more, so the American Kennel Club monitors entry numbers in different zones across the coun- try and adjusts the numbers to match. So, for example, to earn three points it takes a minimum of 4 class dogs or class bitches in some areas, while in others it may take 7 class dogs or bitches for the same number of points. Only unfinished dogs compete for points toward their titles and the winning class dog and class bitch compete with dogs who are already champions for Best of Breed.


Once a dog earns their champion- ship title, and the breeder/owner continues to show the dog, it is then being shown as a what is


referred to as a “special”. Those who choose to special their cham- pion compete and earn points at breed and all-breed levels, which can place the dog in the top rank- ings in the breed or prompt invi- tations to the Eukanuba Classic show or the Westminster Kennel Club show.


Just this year AKC introduced a new Grand Champion (GCh) title that can be earned only by dogs who have already completed their championship title. To earn that title, a champion must earn a to- tal of 25 Grand Champion points, which includes three major wins based on the same criteria for earning championship points, and has to defeat at least two oth- er champions in the ring.


Gunner BLACK & TAN | SPRING 2010


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