A great way for children and teens from 9 to 18 years of age become involved in a unique sport with man's best friend! AKC designed this program with the future of the sport of showing dogs and responsible dog ownerhsip in mind. The program evaluates not only the dog but the skills of the Junior Handler.


The AKC Junior Handler Program provides the opportunity for these young adults to:

  • Develop and improve their handling skills

  • Learn about good sportsmanship

  • Become educated about dogs and dog shows

The responsibilities, attitudes, morals, ethics and standards learned in the AKC Junior Showmanship will serve them well throughout their lifetimes. The time and effort required and invested in learning about their dog and the dogs of other Junior Handlers, as well as, the friendships that will develop are priceless. For these values they will cherish as much as the wins they will be rewarded with for years to come!


The best way to see what is involved in junior handling and see other Junior Handlers is to attend a dog show. Be sure to watch the Junior Handlers, speak to them after they have finished showing their dog (ask lots of questions!) - you may be surprised how knowledgeable they are!


To submit a photo of a Junior Handler email to




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