Judging FAQs

Judges and Judging General Enquiries

Q.   What is a critique and why does a judge need to supply a critique?

A.   A critique is a written report completed by the judge, where he/she will outline the relative virtues and weaknesses of the dogs they have judged at a show, and explaining why they have chosen one dog above another. Exhibitors really want to see them as they want to know what a judge thought about their dog.

The KC recognised that some judges weren't supplying critiques to the dog press and brought in a regulation in July 2004. F(1)22(d) states: 'All Judges at Championship Shows and Open Breed Club Shows must produce a written critique for the first two placings in each class, and will dispatch these to at least one of the weekly United Kingdom Canine journals.'

Q.   I haven't seen a copy of the critique for a show I entered - what should I do?

A.   Once the exhibitor has written to the Kennel Club, we will write to the judge and ask them for a copy of the critique. Once we have received it, we shall send a copy onto the exhibitor.  If a judge isn't able to send a critique we will warn them that they have to keep critiques in future.  If they fail to supply critiques after being warned the matter is referred to the SEC and they may be fined.

Q.   I had an appointment which stated no judging in a 70 mile radius.  I accepted another appoint unknowingly within 67 miles.  The Club withdrew the contract and replaced me without asking if I would withdraw from the other appointment.  Is this correct?

A.   The club was within its rights to withdraw you from the appointment; however it should have informed you in writing of its intention to do so.

Q.   My breed was stud book band E but has now moved to D. I accepted a judging appointment for the breed prior to this announcement can I still judge them even though I am not on the relevant list to do more than 3 classes.

A.   Yes you are still permitted to judge the classes as you were eligible for the appointment at the time of signing the contract.

Q   I award CCs to one breed, is it permissible to judge the Group and AVNSC Classes at open show?

A.   Provided that you have previously awarded CCs to at least one breed and are currently eligible to do, then you are eligible to judge the above classes.

Q.   I am due to judge Boxers in the morning at a forthcoming show, however I also own Bullmastiffs which are being judged in the afternoon.  Can I exhibit my Bullmastiff at the show?

A.   No, it is not permissible to judge and exhibit at the same show, regardless of the breed.

Q   Where can I find details of judging seminars?

A.   These are advertised in the Kennel Club Journal, Dog Press and also in the Judges Training Section. You may also wish to contact a member of the Education and Training Team (01296 318540 ext: 225).  If a judge cannot find anything going on in their area they can contact the trainer and to enquire about one-to-one training sessions.

Breeders Competition FAQs for Judges

Q. How and where should winners be listed in the judge's book/slips?

A. After Best of Breed and Best Puppy have been awarded, the full name of the winning Breeders needs to be added to the end of the judging book. Remember it's the name of the breeder you are recording and it is not necessary to record the names or exhibit numbers of the dogs in the team. It is up to the Breeder to make sure that that sort of information is properly recorded in their Record Book. If your Judging Books have not been pre-printed with Best Breeder and a space to record the names it is acceptable to write Best Breeder and the winning breeder's name after the spaces for the CCs.

At Group level, the top 4 breeders' names will need to be recorded in a similar fashion

Q. How much time should be allowed at the end of breed judging for this award?

A. With entries being accepted on the day this will always be tricky to gauge, particularly until it is established whether some breeds customarily generate more teams than others. A competition similar to this runs very successfully in Scandinavia where the judging of Best Breeder takes only five to ten minutes per breed.

Q. Does the judge have to go over every dog?

A. No. Even if the judge officiated in the other sex and has not been over all of the dogs in the breed competition, there is no need to make a detailed examination of every dog. Time constraints may not allow this.

Q. Can the judge withhold the award if they believe that the dogs do not show sufficient merit?

A. Yes. This competition is similar to other KC competitions and the same principles of custom and practice apply.

Q. Will there be a set procedure for judges dealing with this award?

A. No, but normally judges will be expected to make a quick assessment of the dogs standing together and then, if possible, the dogs will be moved together once up and down the ring. Some judges may wish the dogs to be moved together around the ring once. At some shows time will be at a premium and judges should, as they normally would, give consideration to any breeds following them in that ring.

Q. Does the judge have to write a critique?

A. As the Best Breeder in Breed/ AVNSC classes and the Best Breeder Group in Group awards form part of the breed competition the writing of critiques is to be encouraged.


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