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Nearly 2,500 Top Dogs From 50 States and 40 Countries Compete for $225,000 and Top Honors at Seventh Annual AKC/Eukanuba National Championship

(Wednesday, November 21, 2007)
Canine Competitors in Conformation, Agility and Obedience Descend on Southern California

The American Kennel Club® and Eukanuba announced today that 2,444 dogs will compete for a total of $225,000 in cash prizes at the Seventh Annual AKC/Eukanuba National Championship on Dec. 1 and 2, 2007 in Long Beach, Calif. The show is held in conjunction with the AKC Agility Invitational and the AKC National Obedience Invitational (entries of 470 and 95 respectively) making for a combined entry of nearly 3,000 dogs competing in the three events.

The AKC/Eukanuba National Championship will be simulcast on Animal Planet and the Discovery Channel on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2008 from 8-11 p.m. (ET/PT). Highlights from the AKC Agility Invitational will air on Animal Planet on Sunday, Feb. 10, 2008 from 8-9 p.m. (ET/PT). "The AKC/Eukanuba National Championship is a unique experience for any dog lover —whether they are watching it on TV or enjoying it in person," said Ron Menaker, Show Chairman. "With nearly 400,000 square feet of event space, 3,000 dogs in competition, dozens of vendors, 148 educational displays, numerous demonstrations and now 40 international competitors in our Eukanuba World Challenge event, there is nothing that can compare to this complete canine extravaganza."

"The AKC/Eukanuba National Championship is a phenomenal event that brings together the best breeders, handlers and champions to encourage and celebrate the excellence of dogs," said Dan Rajczak, general manager, Procter & Gamble Pet Care. "Alongside our partners — AKC and Animal Planet — we're proud to be part of one of the most prestigious and well-respected dog shows and to provide a showcase that allows the world to appreciate these amazing animals."

Event highlights include:
  • Eukanuba World Challenge — This inaugural international competition will feature top dogs from 40 countries and six continents. Rare breeds such as the Spanish Greyhound and the Azawakh will compete against more traditional favorites such as Poodles and Dalmatians for the title of "Eukanuba World Challenge Winner" and a total of $15,000. The 2006 AKC/Eukanuba National Championship and 2007 Westminster Kennel Club Best in Show winner — "James," an English Springer Spaniel — will represent the U.S.


  • AKC Meet the Breeds® — Dog enthusiasts will have the opportunity to get up close and personal with 148 breeds, as the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship continues its honored tradition of highlighting responsible dog ownership with its "AKC Meet the Breeds" event. Designed to showcase a wide variety of adult dogs and puppies, breeders will also be on-hand to share their insights and expertise on unique canine characteristics. Visitors should make sure to stop by the booths of the two newest AKC breeds — the Beauceron and Swedish Vallhund.


  • The AKC Agility Invitational — The AKC's fastest-growing canine sport and one of the most exciting to watch, agility allows dogs to demonstrate their athleticism and versatility by racing against the clock and overcoming a challenging obstacle course of tunnels, weave poles, jumps and seesaws. It's a sport of physical skill, control, patience and — most importantly — teamwork between handler and dog. The top five ranked agility dogs in each of the AKC recognized breeds are invited to attend this prestigious event. A total 470 dogs of 129 breeds from 41 states plus Puerto Rico and Canada will compete. The AKC Agility Invitational airs 8 p.m., (ET/PT). Feb. 10, 2008, on Animal Planet.


  • AKC National Obedience Invitational — Obedience trials demonstrate the usefulness of a dog as a companion to humankind. Accuracy and precision are essential, but the natural movement of the handler and the willingness and enjoyment of the dog are also important. To be invited to this prestigious competition, a dog and handler must be ranked within the top 10 percent of their breed or be ranked in the top 25 nationwide. A total of 95 dogs of 30 breeds from 44 states and Canada will compete.


  • Junior Showmanship — The excitement of competing in the National Championship isn't just for adults — 159 Junior Handlers (ages 9-18), who have met high academic standards and qualification criteria based on year-round competition will compete for prestigious wins and scholarship money.


  • AKC Awards for Canine Excellence (ACE) — Given annually to dogs in five categories (Law Enforcement, Search and Rescue, Therapy, Service and Exemplary Companion), the ACE Awards commemorate loyal, hard-working canines that have made significant contributions to their community. The five honorees and their owners — including Junior Handler Francisco Sanguino who discovered the sport of dogs with the help of his foster mother and a rescued Rottweiler — have been flown to Long Beach to receive their awards and be recognized in front of the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship audience.
The AKC/Eukanuba National Championship and its related events are sponsored by the AKC Pet Healthcare Plan, BowTie Inc., College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University, Dog News, Jakks Pets, Jewett-Cameron, Nature's Miracle and Veterinary Pet Insurance. For more information visit www.akc.org or topdogshow.com or to purchase tickets, please visit http://www.akc.org/invitational/2007/tickets.cfm.