The AKC Eukanuba Championship is an annual worldwide dog show event held every December & January in the US. Organized by the American Kennel Club (AKC), the event is sponsored by Eukanuba Dog Food Co. The first Eukanuba Championship was held in Orlando from 2001 – 2003.
Here are ten interesting facts about the dog show:
- The Eukanuba Championship is strictly BY INVITATION ONLY. Over 4,000 dogs from around the world are invited every year by the AKC to participate in the event. The Top 25 dogs recognized by the AKC will have higher chances of competing for these awards: Owner/Handler/Breeder Champion, Amateur-Handled Champion and Grand Champion.
- In December 2009, the AKC officially opened the event for all over 45 countries, including Brazil, Japan, United Kingdom, Italy, China and Ukraine.
- The awarding of the AKC Breeder of the Year is one of the much-awaited highlights of the event. The award is given to seven dog breeders who have consistently dedicated their lives in improving the temperament and health of dogs.
- All the invited dogs will compete in three major national AKC events: The AKC Agility Invitational, AKC National Obedience Invitational and finally the Eukanuba National Championship.
- A total of $225,000 prized money is given during special competitions such as AKC Bred-By-Exhibitor events.
- The AKC Meet The Breeds is another much-awaited highlight of the event where members of the National Breed Club are gathered to share their knowledge on their breeds through exhibits and other informative showcases. As of 2010, there are more than 160 National Breed Clubs worldwide.
- The show offers special scholarship awards for its “Junior Handler” winners. The Junior Handler event is for dogs from 9 – 18 years of age invited to demonstrate unique skills for $2,000 worth of scholarship from AKC.
- Serves as the only all-breed event in North America. The Kennel Club of England recently added two special awards in their own Eukanuba Championship event – the Best of Breed and Best in Opposite Sex.
- Day 1 of the event begins with “Breed Classes” where all males of different breeds will be qualified based from their age or criteria (American Bred, Pugs or Puppy). Each male winning breed will compete with the previous winners in the “Winners Class” category where the “Winners Dog” will be awarded.
- All invited dogs must win a total of 15 breed points at all AKC events to earn the coveted Eukanuba Championship Title. The points are earned by defeating other dogs of the same breed and sex from various classes. The breed points are used to determine the dog’s ranking, which are broadly recorded by the AKC. One point will be given to each dog defeated (Example: the dog will earn 49 points after defeating 50 other dogs in a single event).
Here are few ways to qualify for the Eukanuba Championship’s main events:
- Breeds must earn the required number of points during BBE, Puppy and other class events organized by the Kennel Club.
- Winners from the Amateur Owner Handled class must earn a total of 20 – 30 breed points. The criteria for their qualification in the Eukanuba Championship are based from the Kennel Club’s decision.
- Dogs that are part of the Top 25 breeds. The ranking are based from the breed points earned. The Top 25 are invited to participate in “face-off” competitions. The dogs will defeat the previous winners of these special awards: Best in Show, Amateur Owned Handler Award, National Specialty Winner and Bred-By-Exhibitor Champion.
- Dogs personally campaigned by handlers/owners will become eligible for the championship events.