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IMHO – The Top Three Changes In Dog Shows Worldwide?

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138 – June 2019

By Elaine Lessig

We asked experienced AKC judges two questions about current issues affecting our sport. Here’s what they had to say…

For IMHO this month, I decided to put a world-wide slant to the questions and invite well respected American and foreign judges to respond. Mr. Michael Canalizo from New York, NY USA, Dr. John Reeve-Newson from Toronto, Canada, and Mr. Frank Kane from Yorkshire, United Kingdom–all icons of the dog world–kindly agreed to give us their insights into the changes they have seen in dog shows over their decades of participation and the differences in judging procedures they have experienced. I find it remarkable to see how some of the issues were noted by all three. That is an important message which should attract our attention. In other responses, you can appreciate their individual observations and thoughts. I am certain you will find their opinions interesting.


Remark upon the top three changes in dog shows worldwide.

A. The breed standards have become “Homogenized” with the onset of semen from around the world being shared/used. This presents a unique challenge when the subtle differences in the recognized standards are being incorporated by the international breeders. Do we adhere to the standard in effect when judging even though the breeders are blending their lines with stock bred down from another standard?

B. Too much influence is being put on performance and presentation, which is shifting the premise to reward dogs for their value as “breeding stock” to the backseat. The importance of finding the quality at the “breed level” is not as important as in the past. This is especially noticeable in countries with small breed numbers, and the flashy dog wins because it might be more exciting at the group level.

C. Breeders and owners are more informed/aware of a judge’s abilities via social media and live streaming. Many won’t enter under to a judge if they” see” them not finding the right dogs in an entry…and this is before ever entering under them personally. Years ago: everyone went to a new judge to see what/how they would do. Now, money is too tight, show costs are high, and no one ventures to new judges unless they know they are finding the better dogs.

Click the link below to continue reading more from MICHAEL CANALIZO (AKC JUDGE – USA), DR. JOHN REEVE-NEWSON (AKC JUDGE – CANADA), and FRANK KANE (AKC JUDGE – UK)!

Click here to read the complete article
138 – June 2019

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