As is obvious, I am missing a dog. That dog is Esme who was down in the US being shown by her co-owners ... my parents. The system in the US is very similar to Canada but does differ in a couple of significant ways. The dogs must get 15 points for a Championship and they must also earn 2 majors - a win of 3, 4 or 5 points - and those majors are awarded based on how many dogs are entered which is based on what state or AKC region in which you are showing. Easy right?
In Canada the point system is the same for the whole country and to get points from the classes you have to get Winners Dog or Winners Bitch. Those two dogs then compete in the Breed class for Best of Winners and whoever wins gets the points based on the combined number of both sexes of class entries. Complicated? Sounds to be but it's not really. See, this past weekend, when Cora was showing, she got no points for getting Winners Bitch because she was the only bitch, I had very little faith we'd come out of the weekend with any points because she had to beat 3 male dogs. In boys there was a 2 point win because there were 3 entries so the dog who got Winners Dog automatically earned 2 points. Without the judge awarding Cora Best of Winners she would get nothing. If she did win it wouldn't take away any point from the boys, that winner would still get their 2 points, but Cora would also get 2 because she would have beaten 3 dogs. So what the judge needed to do was a cross-over, which is what Sunday's judge did to award Cora 2 points.
So what of Esme and why does the above paragraph matter? Well, going into the show Esme had 2 points and no majors, so she needed to bring home at least one major to be seriously on her way to her US Championship. Unfortunately for her there was no major in girls, only boys. Just like Cora, Esme had to beat the boys for her major wins. She also had some girls to compete against but that would only earn her one or two points, not the 3 we need for a major.
The difference with the US shows is that they don't combine the sexes for Best of Winners, you *must* beat the sex that has the major in order to get it. Say there are 5 entries for a 3 point major in boys and only 3 bitches, which is not a major - Best of Winners doesn't combine all the entries to 8 for a major, the bitch has to beat the male for the 3 points so they both get 3 points. Crazy right? The bitch will clearly have beaten 7 other dogs and should get more points for it but she doesn't, she only gets the same as the boy who won. I don't think that's a fair system since sometimes there is no major in either sex but combined there usually is - it would make some people who find it hard to get majors in their breeds a lot happier if the sexes were combined for majors in Best of Winners.
But still, Esme did it! My mom said she showed great and the judges really liked her. She took Best of Winners at 2 of the shows and Winners Bitch as well so Esme brings home 9 additional points which puts her on 11 total. She only needs 4 single points to go. It's such an improvement over the last show she attended in the US when my mom said she behaved so badly the judges couldn't see her movement. I rather wondered if they'd taken the right dog in the ring!
Anyway, hooray for little Esme and thanks to my parents for showing her when I couldn't. It was a great weekend for my class girls and I am pretty proud of them both for beating the boys!