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No More Cheap Champions

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154 – May, 2022

By William Given

You have, very likely, heard about it or even experienced it. I am referring to the idiom “the straw that broke the camel’s back.” It is meant to express a minor action or occurrence that causes an unexpected or sudden need for action. It is not the incident itself, but rather the cumulative effect of small things.

For me, the last straw was a comment made in response to a recent post on Facebook’s Dog Show Forum which mentioned the American Kennel Club was considering a conformation point rule change which would provide an opportunity for the Winners Dog or Bitch to earn championship points for Group 2-3-4 placements. In the response to which I refer, the writer suggested, “It is a bad idea because without breed competition, it would result in more cheap champions.”

Too many cheap champions

Should we accept without question the suggestion that there are simply too many cheap champions. Let us take a few moments to do some math. If a breed chosen at random had 20,000 dogs individually registered with the American Kennel Club in 2021 and 2,000 earned a championship, that would be 10% and we all know, quite well, that ten percent is way too high. So, it is much more likely that 200 dogs or 1% earned their championship. If 20 of those dogs earning a championship were recognized for non-existent qualities that amounts to just 0.1%. So, while an individual might reasonably believe that our present judging system is somewhat flawed, it most certainly is not an indication that today’s breeders are struggling to improve quality or that the education of potential dog show judges is substantially lacking.

Eliminate the specials class

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154 – May, 2022

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