I am not a fan of the AKC show ring. The show ring, with its emphasis on extremes in type and lack of concern with temperament have ruined many breeds. In America, a dog enters and leaves the ring a winner or a loser - and no one has any idea why. Judges do not explain their decisions, so little education can happen ring side for dog owners. Dogs compete against each other, with First Place often going to a poor specimen who is "best of a bad lot".
The Europeans have a much better system. Dogs are judged against the standard, so that if there are two or more very good dogs, they can ALL receive the coveted "V" (Excellent) rating. As well, if there is NO dog of sufficient quality to earn a "V", the "V" title can be withheld. Best of all, dog owners receive a written critique of their dog from which they can learn the good and bad points of their animal.
There is an organization which now offers European style shows. A dog can earn its "International Champion" title if it receives a score of "V1" (Excellent) three times under judges from at least two different countries. This title should not be confused with the "Int. Ch." which a dog earns by winning its championship in three or more countries.
I don't take these titles too seriously, however I do find the written critiques helpful. I prefer that people interested in my dogs hear what an impartial person has to say about them than just me. So listed below are the three written critiques XDog received while earning his Int. Ch. title at 15 months of age.
Coat; correct, Head; a little blocky, Bite; scissors, full dentition. Eyes; correct, nice and dark. Ears; proper set and carriage. Chest; correct for age. Fore quarters; Good. Back quarters; Good. Tail; correct. Topline; correct. Movement; good coming, going, side. - V1.
Balanced, square young adult. Coat; Black, thick, correct texture. Head; blunt wedge, parallel planes, could use more underjaw. Bite; scissors, complete. Eyes; dark, almond. Chest; could use more front angulation. Front quarters; to elbows, more fill needed. Back quarters; balanced to front. Topline; level, short backed. Movement; adequate reach and drive. - V1.
14 month male, good outline. Coat; nice condition. Head; good balance. Bite; scissor. Eyes; good, dark and "keen". Ears; good set. Chest; good depth, could use more forechest. Front Quarters; Good reach, Back Quarters; Nice drive. Tail; good carriage, croup too angled. Topline; good, correct. Movement; correct. - V1.