Nearly 2,500 dogs of 167 different AKC-registered breeds will compete for more than $225,000 in cash prizes at the Tenth Annual AKC/Eukanuba National Championship (AENC) this weekend (December 4th and 5th) in Long Beach, California. The two-day event is held in conjunction with the AKC Agility Invitational and the AKC Obedience Invitational, the Junior Showmanship competition, and the Eukanuba World Challenge. Combined, these events will host 3,233 competing dogs.
"The top dogs from across the country have entered the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship, including our new AKC Grand Champions, so we expect this event to be one of most hotly contested Championships yet," said Ron Menaker, AKC/Eukanuba National Championship Show Chairman. "In addition to the conformation dog show, we’ll have the hardest working dogs in the nation at the AKC National Obedience Invitational and AKC Agility Invitational. Nearly 40% of our entry also comes from the Bred-By-Exhibitor competition, which showcases dogs bred by AKC breeders, the backbone of our sport."
Of the 167 AKC-registered breeds that are entered to compete, the breeds with the largest number of representatives are the French Bulldogs, Samoyeds, Border Collies, Siberian Huskies, Australian Shepherds, Basset Hounds and Golden Retrievers, each with over 30 dogs taking part. The most recently registered breeds to take part include the Bluetick Coonhound, Boykin Spaniel, Cane Corso, Icelandic Sheepdog and Leonberger breeds. The groups with the largest number of entries are the Working, with 434 dogs, the Sporting, with 393 dogs, and the Hound group, with 340 dogs.
Over $225,000 in cash and prizes is being offered by Eukanuba. Judge Mrs. Jean Fournier of Calhoun, Georgia will select the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship Best in Show (BIS) winner. The owner(s) of the BIS winner will receive more than $50,000 while the breeder(s) of the Best in Show winner will be awarded $15,000. Mrs. Polly Smith of St. Stephens Church, Virginia will select Best Bred-By Exhibitor in Show from the 953 dogs that are entered in the Bred-by-Exhibitor (dogs being shown by their own breeder) competition, making up 39% of the entry, who will be eligible to win the $15,000 cash prize.