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Junior Handling is an AKC event included in Conformation shows, but specifically for children and youths ages 9 through 17. In this activity, the handler's skill is judged rather than the breed conformation of the dog. This provides another way for the young people to enjoy the sportsmanship of showing dogs. Many amateur and professional handlers started as Junior Handlers.

ABTC Junior Showmanship Program

The Belgian Tervuren is still a fairly uncommon breed, but in encouraging and promoting Junior Showmanship, the ABTC was a pioneer. For many years the Club has been giving a trophy to the outstanding Junior Handler of the Year in both conformation and performance. The junior winning the trophy must be a member of a family belonging to the American Belgian Tervuren Club, Inc. or hold their own membership. We use the AKC definition of a family as Mother, Father, Brother, and Sister and corresponding half and step relationships. Age restrictions are at least 8 years of age and under 18 years of age.

The ABTC point scale allows for accomplishments in Junior Handling as well as in Breed Conformation, Obedience, Tracking, Agility, Herding, Rally, and any other sport that the junior and Terv choose to compete in! Juniors earn points from the ABTC only for exhibiting a Belgian Tervuren. To get credit for points, a junior must send a record of the class they showed in, how many exhibitors/dogs were present, the win/placement they received, and the dates and names of the shows directly to the Junior Showmanship Chairman within 3 weeks of exhibiting. Each Junior is responsible for turning in their accomplishments.

If you do not win or place, but still exhibited in any activity, send that information in also, and you will still receive points for participation. Also, if you do not know how many entries were in your class, still send in your win or placement and it will be recorded.

In performance events, the number of points awarded is determined by whether or not the team qualified, with variation between the sports (for example, a qualifying run in herding earns more points than a qualifying run in agility because there are far more agility trials than herding trials). There is also a bonus awarded if the dog finishes a title and the junior handler exhibited the Terv for all of the necessary legs.

For Example: Jane Smith and her Terv "Winnie" competed in junior showmanship at a 2-day show. In Junior Showmanship the first day she placed 3rd in Open Senior. There were 8 Open Seniors present. Jane beat 5 juniors, and earned 5 points plus 4 points for placing. The next day, Jane won Best Junior in an entry of 18 junior handlers. She earned 10 points for the Best Junior Handler award, plus 17 points for the 17 juniors she defeated. The whole weekend she earned 36 points!  John Ford showed his Terv "Bee" in Obedience at a 2-day show. Bee failed her sit stay the first day, so John earned one point for competing. The second day Bee really behaved, and finished her CDX. John was awarded 10 points for qualifying plus a 20 point bonus for handling Bee for all legs of her CDX. For the whole weekend, John earned 31 points.

Junior Showmanship Point Schedule:

1 point for each junior handler defeated

1 point for participation, even if no placement is earned

In the past we awarded bonuses for placements, but that has been changed to make the Juniors stats more similar to regular conformation stats.

Conformation Point Schedule:

1 point for each dog shown per day (so if a junior handler shows three Tervs on a given day, he or she earns 3 points)

Points earned in Conformation will be added to the Junior Showmanship points. The reason for only giving participation points in Conformation is so that juniors with show-quality dogs don't have a huge advantage over juniors without show-quality dogs (any dog can compete in Junior Showmanship). In the event of a tie, Conformation points will be removed from consideration.

Performance Point Schedule:

Participation in any event - 1 point

Qualifying run in Lure Coursing - 2 points

Qualifying score in Agility or Rally - 5 points

Qualifying score in Obedience, Herding, or Tracking - 10 points

Other sports will be added as necessary.

Title Bonuses

10 points - RN, RA, NA, NAJ, NF, HT, CA, CAA, CAX

15 points - TD, CD, PT, OA, OAJ, OF, RE, RAE

20 points - CH, CDX, HS, AX, AXJ, XF

25 points - TDX, UD, HI, MX, MXJ

30 points - VST, UDX, HX

50 points - OTCH, MACH, CT, HC  

There are three options for submitting points toward a year-end award:

a) Fill out the ABTC Junior Handler Show Record form and email it to the Junior Committee Chair (you can also just provide all of the information in an email)

b) Fill out the form and mail a hard copy to the Junior Committee Chair

c) Email the Junior Committee Chair with a link to the show results for that day, the name of the junior handler, and the registered name of the dog(s) being shown. In this case, filling out the entire form will not be necessary.

All methods of reporting are perfectly acceptable.

- Kate Eldredge, ABTC Junior Showmanship Chairperson

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