CONFORMATION

"The official term for dog shows is conformation — as in, the act of conforming or producing conformity. While a dog show may look like a beauty pageant, it’s not. Dogs are not being compared to each other; they’re being measured by how closely they conform to the standard of their particular breed. Why? Because the closer a dog’s appearance is to the breed’s standard, the better that dog’s ability will be to produce puppies that meet the standard. It’s also the reason why mixed breeds and spayed or neutered purebreds are ineligible to compete in conformation." - AKC Website

JUNIOR SHOWMANSHIP

"Children have always been an important part of the future of canine sports, dating back to 1920 when the first competition for children handlers was held. Think of Junior Showmanship (also called “Junior Handling”) as a training ground for a life-long journey in dog shows and sports. Children 9 to 18 years old learn basic handling abilities, and how to care for, and present, different breeds in a competition. While Juniors are judged by an official AKC Judge, it’s the quality of their presentation that is judged, not the dog." - AKC website