It is time to go to the show

And so, your growing up bulldog will have to make his debut at the show. What and in what a way will be required from him there and what is it necessary for?
To begin with, let us investigate how the demonstration of dogs in the show ring takes place.
All the dogs under the numbers corresponding to their registration in the show catalogue are brought into the ring and ranged in according with the numbers. It is the beginning of the demonstration during which the judge surveys the ring quickly and gets the first impression of it. At the moment it is very important for the dog to behave accordingly, that is to say quietly, with confidence and to be standing in a beautiful pose till the group movement around the ring begins.
At this moment of the demonstration you are to move straight forward behind the person in front of you; the dog must not bark and behave aggressively towards other dogs and people. The optimal distance between the exhibitors in the ring is equal to the dog`s body length.
In such a way the group usually makes 1-2 circles around the ring, in the judge`s discretion, for assessment the general level of the dogs` qualities.
Then the individual examination of each dog follows.
The individual examination consists of three stages: the examination of teeth (demonstration of the bite) and of testicles in male dogs, then the examination of movements and of the show pose.
During the examination of teeth (bite) the dog may be either sitting or standing. The technique of the demonstration is very simple, you must only watch your own hands attentively.
To demonstrate the dog`s bite, and it is done with the dog`s mouth closed, you must place your right hand under the dog`s jaw and raise the dog`s head slightly. Your left hand is placed upon the upper part of the muzzle, but you must not on any occasion close the dog`s nose! Lift slightly the flews with your left hand and let the lower lip down with the thumb of your right hand.
During demonstration of the bite do not squeeze the dog between your legs, do not mount the dog and do not screen the dog from the judge.
Some judges disjoin dog`s lips themselves to examine the bite and the presence of teeth; so the dog must be prepared to such procedure as well and endure it calmly.
Then the examination of the dog`s movement follows.
It is carried out while the dog is moving in circle, in triangle and straight (there and back again). At the time the dog must be moving in regular quiet jogtrot, not trying to play with the owner (or the handler), without jumping and spurts. Do not strangle him and drag him behind yourself when he is refusing to go. Do not try to lift the bulldog`s head pulling the ring chain up. The result will be only one: the dog will be choking (probably even disgorging), breaking out and bending his head still lower. It is better to attract his attention with your voice, a squeaking toy or a titbit.
And do not forget to praise the dog who is excited not less than you!
During the dog`s movement in circle and in triangle the judge is appreciating:
a) the manner of holding the head;
b) the firmness of the topline;
c) the wideness of step;
d) the balance of the front and rear limbs movement;
e) the degree of the angulation opening;
f) the freedom of movement and firmness of the angulation ligaments;
g) the manner of holding the tail (the tail set).
Straight movement (there and back again) permits to appreciate the orientation and firmness of the dog`s elbows, pasterns, stifles, hocks and rear pasterns, and also the parallelism and wideness of the front and the rear.
After the examination of the movements the judge will begin to examine the dog in detail. He will feel with his fingers all the dog`s confirmation or only some parts of it. Sometimes the procedure is called manual examination or manual control.
During the manual control the judge checks the firmness of the dog`s topline and the structure of some parts of the body and limbs. He checks also the dog`s condition and the peculiarities of the coat and skin.
During the examination and the manual control the dog must be standing quite calmly and let the judge touch himself; he must not break out or “fall into coma”. The procedure permits also to appreciate the nervous system type which has great significance for the breeding. A dog who is afraid of the judge panickally, whatever beautiful he can be, will never get a high mark.
And so, the examination of the dog is completed and the description begins. During it the dog must be standing in the show position, calmly, confidently and not moving for 1.5-2 minutes. It is the most important conclusive moment when the judge is deciding what mark he will put.
To teach a bulldog to take the show position is simultaneously very simple and very difficult. It is also the very responsible show moment since in the show position all the dog`s merits and drawbacks are seen at once.
To underline the first and to conceal the second, you must have some practical skills and definite know-how.
I advice you before the show to address your dog`s breeder or some person knowing the technique of demonstrating English Bulldogs. They can prompt you about your dog`s drawback which is to be hidden and the merit which can be underlined effectively simply by placing the dog into the correct and most advantageous position. The English Bulldogs, not like the other breeds, are placed with the face and not the profile towards the judge, since the head and front of the bulldog have the principal meaning for getting the high mark at the show.

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