AKC 'Canine Olympics' Slated for January
Thousands of the world's most competitive and coifed canines will compete for the crown at the 2006 AKC/Eukanuba National Championship in Tampa, Fla., on Jan. 14 and Jan. 15.
The top-ranked 25 dogs from each of the 153 AKC-recognized breeds are invited to the event to compete for cash and prizes totaling more than $225,000. The National Champion will win $50,000. The show will be broadcasted live by Animal Planet and the Discovery Channel starting at 8 p.m. EST both nights.
"The dogs shown at this competition are examples of the work of responsible breeders - people who dedicate their lives not only to the sport but to creating the most ideal examples of their breed," said Ron Menaker, show chairman and AKC Chairman of the Board. "Watching or attending the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship is an ideal way for any dog lover to learn more about purebred dogs and witness the human-canine bond in action."
The Tampa Convention Center and St. Pete Times Forum will house three championship events during the weekend: the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship; the AKC National Agility Championship; and the AKC National Obedience Invitational. The events have been dubbed the "Canine Olympics."
Nearly 2,500 dogs competed last year, including 108 competitors from foreign registries representing 16 countries.
Agility events allow dogs to demonstrate their athleticism and versatility by racing against the clock and overcoming a challenging course of different obstacles. Agility is the AKC's fastest-growing canine sport.
In the sport of obedience, the dog and handler are judged as a team. Obedience trials test a dog's ability to perform a prescribed set of exercises.
"With participants from around the globe, multiple competitions, educational displays, and fun, interactive activities, this is a canine event unlike any other," said Gina DiNardo Lash, AKC spokeswoman.
The AKC/Eukanuba National Championship also features a unique competition for Junior Handlers - competitors between the ages of 10 and 18 who will vie for top honors and scholarship dollars.