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Best of Breed (BOB) or Best of Variety (BOV): the dog judged as the best in its breed or variety. This dog advances to the Group competition.

Best of Winners (BOW): the dog judged as the better of the WD and WB.

Best of Opposite Sex (BOS): the best of the dogs that are the opposite sex to the BOB winner.

Select Dog and Select Bitch (SEL): After the judge awards the BOB and BOS winners, the champion dog and champion bitch judged next best are awarded Select Dog and Select Bitch.

Grand Championship Points (GCH): With the addition of class entries in their respective sexes, winners at Westminster awarded by the breed judge (Best of Breed, Best of Opposite Sex, Select Dog and Select Bitch) are awarded points toward the AKC’s Grand Championship title. For details, see grandchampionship.

Awards of Merit (AOM): At the discretion of the judge at Westminster, an Award of Merit may be made to outstanding entries that are not judged to be either BOB / BOV, BOS or SEL.



All Rounder Judge: An individual licensed by the AKC to judge every breed.

Breed Type: The manifestation of those unique traits and characteristics of a dog that distinguish it as that particular breed.

Breeder: The owner of the dam (mother) when she was bred to produce this dog.

Breeder-Judge: Someone licensed by the AKC to judge dogs of their breed.

Breeder-Owner-Handler: An individual who bred, owns and handles that dog.

Benched Show: A show where dogs are required to be on assigned benches while not being shown. This allows all concerned – spectators, breeders, handlers and owners – the opportunity to interact, ask questions, and share information about the various breeds.

Catalog: The compilation by breed of all dogs entered in the show, listing armband numbers, birthdates, sire and dam, breeders and owners.

Champion (CH): A title or the dog that has earned a certain number of points (15) in competition at AKC licensed dog shows.

Conformation: The structure and physical characteristics of a dog.

Gait: The action of movement of the dog. Generally speaking, a sound and balanced gait usually indicates proper conformation and structure.

Judge: An individual licensed by the American Kennel Club (AKC) to judge dogs.

Limited Entry: Where the entry is governed by certain parameters set by the club, such as total number of dogs or champions only; or in Junior Showmanship, a certain number of qualifying wins for the handler.

Owner-Handler: Someone who handles a dog that they also own.

Professional Handler: Someone who handles a dog for a fee.

Stack: The pose itself by a dog or the posing of the dog by a handler in its natural stance.

Standard: The written description of the traits and movement of the ideal specimen of a breed, generally based on form and function. Each parent club creates and maintains their breed standard. Judges are to judge dogs by comparing them to the standard for their breed.

Variety: A division of a breed based on coat, color, or size. For example, Poodles (size: Standard, Miniature, Toy), Cocker Spaniels (color: Black, Parti-Color, ASCOB); Collies (coat: Rough, Smooth).