New to Dog Showing?

Dog Showing is the most popular canine activity in the country and is a great way to show others why your dog is the best in the world.  All pedigree dogs can take part in Dog Showing and you never know you could end up taking part in the world's greatest dog show Crufts.

What is Dog Showing?

Dog showing or exhibiting is an exciting competitive activity where dogs compete against each other for prizes or awards. It is a competition where a dog’s attributes and conformation are compared against a breed standard for its breed. Whilst it can often be taken very seriously, it can be a fun pursuit that people and their dogs thoroughly enjoy. Dog shows are held all over the country, and to find a show within your area, please see the Kennel Club’s Find a Dog Show website.

Where should I start? 

  • Ensure your dog is registered with the Kennel Club on the breed register. Only pedigree dogs are eligible to compete at dog shows (this does not include companion dog shows- where crossbreeds are allowed to compete).
  • Go to a local ringcraft class to learn the basics of how to show your dog in the ring.
  • Try to go to an open show or championship show and watch how your breed is shown. All breeds are shown differently so you will therefore need to understand how you can show your dog in a breed specific way.
  • Speak to exhibitors who are around the ring side. No question is a silly question, we have all been new once so go ahead and ask away! Just remember not to disturb or distract someone who is just about to go into the ring. 
  • In order to compete, your dog will need to be 6 months of age or over on the first day of the show.
  • Health is of paramount importance
  • Familiarise yourself with the Kennel Club show regulations, these can be found on the Kennel Club website

What types of show are best for me?

To find out about the different types of show and decide which would be most suitable for you and your dog, click here.

What classes can I enter?

A list of classes you can enter can be found here. Once you've found a class, you will need to complete an entry form. Show Schedules and Entry Forms can be found on the following websites: and

Further information: 

The Kennel Club has created a guide for people starting out in dog showing, which aims to encourage newcomers and help them navigate their way around what is required when competing in this activity.

With the information in the guide, owners will be well equipped to start their competitive journey and enjoy a successful and rewarding partnership with their dog in dog showing.

The 13-page guide answers questions of a general nature on dog showing: where to start, breed standards, types of shows and classes and how to find and enter shows. It also provides essential information on how to prepare for a show, what to expect on the day and how to gait your dog correctly.

Details are also provided of how dogs progress from the breed to the group and ultimately to Best in Show competition, depending upon which awards have been accumulated along the way. Useful contact information, suggested reading and a glossary of terms are also provided.

Click here to read more. 



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