Conformation dog shows are events where the best examples of a breed compete against each other in the breed ring. The judge chooses the dog that best conforms to the breed standard and looks at general overall conformation, movement and temperament of the dogs being exhibited.
The judge has in his/her mind what the ideal dog within each breed should look like based on the written breed standard and then picks the dog in the breed ring that most closely matches that image. A judge needs to be skilled and knowledgeable in every breed that they judge. At the breed level the judge will award the best dog in the breed ring Best of Breed. That dog then goes on to compete at the group level.
Within the CKC the Leonberger breed is a member of the Group 3 or the Working Group. The working group contains many popular working breeds such as the Alaskan Malamute, Bernese Mountain Dog, Doberman, Rottweiler, Great Dane, Siberian Husky and many more. The group judge then picks the best four dogs in the group ring and gives placements 1 to 4. In the group ring the group judge compares each dog in the ring to the breed standard for that dog. The group judge will decide which dogs in the ring conform best to each dog’s written breed standard. Placing in the working group is very competitive as there are often many beautiful dogs competing at each conformation dog show.
Below are the Leonberger dogs that have placed in the working group at Canadian CKC all breed conformation shows. The Leonberger has been recognized by the CKC since April 1992 and has been competing in the working group since that time. Below lists all the Leonbergers that have achieved a group placement at a CKC all breed show. Several of these dogs have been awarded multiple group placements over their show careers but are only listed once below and marked with an *. 2012 was a big year for the Leonberger breed in the conformation show ring, where the first BIS was awarded to BIS Ch. Orovale’s Endless Rhapsody (female). Shortly there after the first male was awarded a BIS win, BIS Ch. Hjerpegarden Star Of Darkness. In 2016 BIS Ch Bludrift’s Champagne Taste Of Diamonds became the all time top wining CKC Leonberger ending the show year with 593 points including a huge BIS win at the Erie Shores Kennel Club with a total of 470 points for the BIS. Congratulations to all Leonbergers for the group placements. Slowly Leonbergers are becoming better recognized in the CKC working group and continue to increase the number of group placements yearly.