1 point - 2 dogs/ 2 bitches
2 points - 3 dogs/ 4 bitches
3 points - 4 dogs/ 5 bitches
4 points - 6 dogs/6 bitches
5 points - 7 dogs/8 bitches
Note: Male dogs are often referred to as dogs, while female dogs are referred to as bitches
For Shih Tzu and other breeds in California or other States, go to the AKC's Point Schedule web page at:
In the group ring, as in the breed ring, the dogs are not judged against one another, but
in terms of how close they come to a written description of the perfect dog of their breed. The ideal Shih Tzu is described in the Shih Tzu Breed Standard.
Any dog placing first through fourth in its group, if not yet a champion, is awarded the largest number of points given that day in any of the breeds it defeated. The first place winners of each of the seven groups then advance to Best in Show, where just one dog is declared the best of all the dogs competing on that day.
For more information on how a dog show works, go to www.akc.org. The events section
of the AKC website also has information on the regulations for competing in performance events such as obedience, agility, and rally, where dogs are judged on how well and how fast they perform specified tasks rather than on how they look. Elsewhere on this web site, there is an article about specialty shows, in which only a single breed competes. The AKC web site lists upcoming shows of all kinds, and gives the winners of shows that have already taken place. The dog show superintendents who take care of the nuts and bolts of running the dog shows-from fencing and matting and tents to entries and record-keeping and ribbons-have their own web sites. One of the most interesting is www.infodog.com.
On this site, you can go to show information, then locate shows by date or state. You can even make show entries online.
WHO CAN ENTER THEIR SHIH TZU IN AN AKC SHOW?
Any Shih Tzu registered with the AKC, 6 months or older on the day of the show may compete. Spayed or neutered dogs are not eligible to compete in conformation classes at
a dog show, nor are dogs with disqualifying faults or certain surgical procedures, as noted in the AKC Shih Tzu standard and surgical eligibility.
WHERE DO I START?
If you have attended a dog show, you have taken an important first step in getting
involved in the sport of showing your dog. If you haven't attended a show, make an effort to do so, before you consider entering your dog. Dog shows are advertised in local newspapers, on posters in local shops, on the radio, TV and the Internet. Most of the time, a phone number is given, so that you can call to get more information on the time Shih Tzu will be judged.
WHERE DO I LEARN TO SHOW MY SHIH TZU?
While visiting a show, inquire at the Shih Tzu Fanciers table about breed handling or showing a dog in the show ring. Often clubs have classes on weekends or evenings to
teach you the basics. If the club doesn't offer classes, they will know where classes are held. The club may have information about match shows in your area. Matches are fun shows, used for practice and training of dogs and their novice exhibitors. Although these "shows" award no points toward an AKC title, they are a great place to "get your feet wet" before entering a real show.
It would be to your benefit to ask how you may go about joining the club. Shih Tzu clubs
are involved in many activities besides putting on a dog show, and they welcome new
members who want to lend a hand. You will get the chance to meet new people and share their knowledge and experiences. If you wish to join Shih Tzu Fanciers of Southern CA, go to our membership application, fill out the application and mail it with a check. STFSC puts
on shows for conformation and agility. We have included a list of all the AKC affiliated clubs across the U.S. for your convenience.
DO I HAVE TO SHOW MY DOG MYSELF?
If you don't wish to handle your dog yourself, you can hire a professional handler. Professional handlers charge a fee for showing dogs, so before hiring one, make sure you obtain a fee schedule. Talk to several handlers, get copies of their rate schedules and visit their facilities, if possible. Observe them in and out of the ring before you make up your mind.
You will be entrusting a handler with your dog's care, so make sure you are comfortable with that person. If there is something you don't understand, make sure the prospective handler answers all of your questions before entering into any agreement.