Horse shows and dog shows – their differences

There are as many ways to show off an animal as there are animals but the most common are horse and dogs shows. Since I have had extensive experience with both, lets examine how similar and different they are.

Both horse shows and dog shows have classes that are geared toward conformation as well as performance. In order to show your dog almost all dog shows require that the dog be registered with a breed club or in the USA, the American Kennel Club (AKC). In horse shows, being registered is only limited to breed specific shows, at “open” shows the horse can be registered or not. Unregistered horses can also compete in conformation classes as well as performance classes.

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In dog shows only entire, unaltered dogs can be shown in conformation classes. In horse shows the conformation classes are open to mares, stallions, geldings and spayed mares (yes mares can be spayed).

In dog shows, both altered and unaltered animals can compete in performance classes, the same is true in horse shows.

The majority of differences between horse shows and dog shows is registration of the animal and if they still have their reproductive organs or not. Dog shows are geared more toward the improvement of dog breeds while horse shows are geared more towards the rider and horse competing at a sport.


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