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GroupShotJustJuniors.jpgThe annual gathering of Canada’s most talented young dog handlers was witness to an unprecedented display of friendly competition, camaraderie and sportsmanship when the 17 competitors from across our vast country convened for the Canadian Kennel Club Junior Handling National Championships for Conformation and Obedience in Belleville, Ontario on October 26, 2019. 

 

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Belleville-and-District-Kennel-Club2.pngOn October 26th, 2019, Junior Handlers from across Canada will participate in the CKC Junior Handling National Championships hosted by the Belleville & District Kennel Club in Belleville, Ontario. Juniors will compete for the title of Best Overall Junior of 2018 in their discipline, Conformation or Obedience. In addition, the Conformation winner will have the chance to represent Canada at Crufts in England in March 2020.

​Please meet the talented and dedicated Junior Handling Provincial Zone Winners that are competing in this year’s National.

Canada, Conformation, Dog Show, Junior Handling, Junior Nationals, Juniors, obedience Canada, Conformation, Dog Show, Junior Handling, Junior Nationals, Juniors, obedience
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Photo by Clint ElleryIt’s no secret that the exhibitor is the backbone of the fancy. I’ve been to many dog shows and apart from watching the beautiful dogs, I also tend to watch the exhibitors. I have often joked that the people at a dog show can be more entertaining than the dogs (hence the success of the movie “Best in Show”).

I’ve seen thousands of people show thousands of dogs and have noticed some traits that successful exhibitors tend to have. I’m not a professional handler or judge, but here are, in my opinion, signs of a good exhibitor.
Canada, CKC member, Dog Show, Ian Lynch, Junior Handling, Tips Canada, CKC member, Dog Show, Ian Lynch, Junior Handling, Tips
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All photos by Lesley R. FinlayManitoba Junior Kennel Club host’s the first CKC sanctioned Stand-Alone Junior Handling Competition
 
In 2018, Beth Chopey, Zone 8 Junior Handling Representative for the Manitoba Junior Kennel Club, had a meeting with her friend and the Manitoba Director for the Canadian Kennel Club, Mr. Larry Kereluke. The two were discussing ideas and plans for the Manitoba Junior Kennel Club, as well as the success they had when the Northwinds Dog Club held a dog show in conjunction with the Winnipeg Pet Show earlier in the year. At that event Junior Handling was offered both days and drew a large crowd, as well as gathered interest from new people who became members of the MJKC. Like most provinces, Manitoba has seen a decline in dog show entries which has caused some clubs to fold. Larry and Beth discussed the future of the dog show world, and ideas on how to keep the interest alive.
 
Canada, Dog Show, How to, Ian Lynch, Junior Handling, Juniors, Tips, Winnipeg Canada, Dog Show, How to, Ian Lynch, Junior Handling, Juniors, Tips, Winnipeg
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Kayla-Penney-3-edited.jpgOur Junior Handling National Champion is heading to England for the International title

14-year-old Kayla Penney of Chilliwack, B.C. won the Canadian Junior Handling National Championship in October and is now headed to Birmingham, England to compete in the Crufts International Junior Handling Competition on Saturday March 9th, 2019. I had the chance to ask this representative of Zone 12 – B.C. Interior and Yukon some questions before she takes off across the pond.
Canada, Conformation, Crufts, Ian Lynch, Junior Handling, Junior Nationals Canada, Conformation, Crufts, Ian Lynch, Junior Handling, Junior Nationals
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All-Competitors-1.jpgCKC’s Junior Handling National Championships celebrates the accomplishments and talent of dedicated Junior Handlers from across the country. Bringing together the top Juniors in both Conformation and Obedience, the Junior Nationals is more than a competition – it is an opportunity for some of our most promising, up and coming handlers to see and be seen by fellow canine aficionados in different parts of our spectacular country. Friendships that begin at this event can last a lifetime, bonding contestants as they laugh and learn together, supporting one another as they prepare for the challenge of their respective rings. 
Conformation, junior handling, junior nationals Conformation, junior handling, junior nationals
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gQo3TpkhTn9WXeGQzYJA_29025538_10156291012049187_2200693087297077248_n-1-1.jpgMy name is Caroline Holicka, and I had the honour of representing Canada at the International Junior Handling Competition at Crufts this past March. It was one of the best experiences of my life, not only because I had the chance to compete with the best junior handlers in the world, but also because of the love and support I received from our dog show community.

Before I get into the details of my trip, I have to take you back about 10 years, to when my handling career began. I was seven years old, with pigtails and chubby cheeks. My family had just purchased our first boxer, and we started to attend shows sporadically. My mom showed Lambada, our girl, while I was the designated clapper, and even an occasional towel holder. It was a great job, one of my favourites, until one day I got a promotion.

 
Conformation, Junior Handling, Junior Nationals Conformation, Junior Handling, Junior Nationals
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Wd8NJ7GKRBGc4Dw6934A_JN-007.jpgJunior Handlers from across Canada will be competing for the title of Best Overall Junior of 2017 in their discipline, Conformation or Obedience, at the CKC Junior Handling National Championships hosted bythe Battle River Canine Association in Camrose, Alberta on October 27th, 2018.

The event starts at 11 a.m. with Obedience followed by Conformation.  The Obedience champion wins a $1,000 bursary. The Conformation champion wins a $2500 bursary to attend Crufts’ International Junior Handling Competition. Back in 2014, CKC National Champion Colton O’Shea won this competition and it was an enormous thrill to see Canada do so well on an international level.
Ian Lynch, Junior Handling, Junior Nationals Ian Lynch, Junior Handling, Junior Nationals
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CKCJrNationals2017.jpgJunior Handling is an awesome event offered by the Canadian Kennel Club at most dog shows across the country in two disciplines: Conformation and Obedience. This blog will focus on Junior Handling in the Conformation ring. This is where children and teenagers under the age of 18 compete but, it’s not the dog’s conformation being judged in this ring – it’s the handling skills.  Teamwork between handler and dog is what brings home the ribbons here.
Conformation, Ian Lynch, Junior Handling Conformation, Ian Lynch, Junior Handling
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thumb.JPGThis week we meet Aurora Kimber! Aurora has been a junior handler for about 3 years and enjoys being part of this great community. Learn more about Aurora and her passion for dogs in our latest video profile!
Conformation, Junior Handling, Video Profile Conformation, Junior Handling, Video Profile
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DSC_4690_Final.jpgAt the risk of sounding as if all I do is travel and attend shows, I want to share my experience from this year’s Junior Handling Nationals Championships.  I had the privilege of receiving an invitation from the Conception Bay Kennel Club to attend the Junior Nationals held during their show in Bay Roberts, Newfoundland last month.  This was my 3rd Junior Nationals as ED of the CKC.

One of the things I learned is that a small club can certainly put on a big show!  Granted, the club had a head start with traditional Newfoundland hospitality, the club created an environment of organized chaos and positive spirit.  When it was time for the Junior Handling Finalists to compete, the show stopped and the entire focus turned to the Juniors. You could hear a pin drop by the time the winners were announced.  It was wonderful to see everyone come together to support the Juniors and give them their-well deserved time in the spotlight. Congratulations again to Caroline Holicka (Conformation winner) and Chantal Ratté (Obedience winner)!  I don’t think anyone will be surprised to hear how, every competitor displayed high levels of skill, maturity and professionalism. Their love of the sport is almost tangible...  I recall one competitor that took the time to speak with me and explain the performance of his dog, the nuances of the breed and even some grooming tips.  All the while he was probably anxious about the event he was about to compete in.  
Junior Handling, Junior Nationals, Lance Novak Junior Handling, Junior Nationals, Lance Novak
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