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General Rules, Procedures and Policies


Check in Procedures

  • In compliance with the Royal Show, Grooming Exhibitors shall not leave the venue until after 5pm
  • The check-in counter will open one (1) hour prior to the contest commencement time.
  • Grooming Exhibitors will have the pre-contest photographs taken.
  • The check in counter will close 15 minutes prior to the start time
  • Grooming Exhibitors will present themselves and their dog at check in counter 45 to 60 minutes prior to commencement time.
  • Grooming Exhibitor who have not checked within 15 minutes before the contest commencement time may not be permitted to compete 
  • Model dogs may be submitted at the check in counter from 7:30am to 10am

Pre-judging and Entry Confirmation
  • Model dogs must not be groomed for 6 weeks or more prior to the date of the competition except for the Rolled Coated Stripping breeds 
  • Dogs should be clean, dry, and free of mats and tangles.
  • Nails should be clipped and/or filed and ears clean.
  • Sanitary and pads can be clipped prior to the show.

Judges will undertake the following during pre-judging:
  • Confirm that the dog is entered in the correct class;
  • Confirm that there is sufficient coat growth and evaluate preparation;
  • Confirm the time frame permitted according to size, breed or technique;
  • Confirm that the contestant is entered in the correct division;
  • Determine if pattern has been pre-set.
  • Document specific information relating to the health and presentation of the dog such as, but not limited to: ear infections, missing coat, moles, scars or healing injuries.

Product Application​

  • Spray is limited to only “freshening up” once time is called.

  • Reshaping such as that done on Kerry Blue jacket, shaping or patting coat into place, utilizing water or product or shaping a show Poodle headpiece may not be done once time is called.

  • Chalk, such as terrier chalk may be applied prior to or during the show time frame to aid in hand stripping. It is prohibited to apply chalk after time is called.

Assistance during the show​

The Grooming Exhibitor should notify the ring steward immediately if he/she needs assistance during the competition.



  • ​A mandatory break will take place during the show.

  • All Grooming Exhibitors and dogs must proceed as a group to the designated break area.

  • Water will be offered for both Grooming Exhibitors and dogs.

  • Toilet/potty break opportunity available for both Grooming Exhibitors and dogs

  • Any discussion with regard to dogs or grooming by Grooming Exhibitors or assistants is prohibited and could be construed as coaching which may result in disqualification of offending contestants.

  • No grooming or styling of any kind is permitted during the break

Competition End

  • ​When time is called Grooming Exhibitors will cease grooming and place tools on the table.

  • Exhibitor will remove hair, tools and equipment from grooming table.

  • A comb will be placed on the table.

  • Grooming Exhibitor  may comb their dogs after scissors down, prior to and after judging.

  • Grooming Exhibitor may use finishing sprays to freshen up their dogs after scissors down, prior to and after judging, but reshaping or styling with hair spray, products or water is prohibited.

  • Grooming Exhibitor will stack and present their dog to the judges.

  • Please ensure that the dogs have proper grip on the table when being stacked and presented to the judge



​In order to determine placement, Judges will evaluate the following:

  • The Profile of the dog groomed to.

  • The overall uniformity of the trim.

  • The overall balance, symmetry and style of the trim.

  • For purebred dogs, the adherence to the acceptable breed profile and standard.

  • For Freestyle classes, the ability of the groomer to create the best possible profile for the dog chosen according to his/her body type, coat and structure.

  • For scissored dogs, the plush overall appearance without scissor marks, utilizing the proper technique.

  • For hand striped and carded dogs, the smooth and natural appearance utilizing the proper technique.

  • Clipper lines should be clean and free of irritation.

  • Edges such as in the cocker foot or poodle foot should show neat and tidy bevels.

  • Consideration given to difficulty with regard to the amount of coat removed, whether a pattern is created or followed, difficulty of the coat type, texture, quality and quantity and how the stylist achieves the ultimate trim.


The Show Ring

The following is strictly prohibited:

  • Use of phones, radios and headsets

  • Standing on tables or chairs

  • Beverages NOT in spill proof containers

  • Coaching by anyone, at any time during the competition

  • Visual or written instructions

  • Only cordless clippers and equipment permitted. No power is provided.

Professional Conduct by Grooming Exhibitors

  • Appropriate grooming attire and shoes must be worn at all times.  

  • Inappropriate attire would be considered as very short skirts, tight shorts, and low cut blouses.

  • Open toe shoes are not permitted.

  • A professional manner and attitude must be maintained at all times

  • Grooming Exhibitors  must maintain a safe styling counter at all times (as an example: Open scissors left on the table for the dog to step on would be considered unsafe styling counter).

  • Grooming Exhibitors  must practice kind and safe handling  techniques at all times.

  • Dogs must not be left unattended at any time.

  • Grooming Exhibitors must apply technical skills with safety. Nicks, cuts and clipper burns are considered unsafe technical skill application.

  • Good sportsmanship must be displayed at all times. 


Entering policy

By entering AGS Grooming show, you will also given permission to enter into The Pointscore Competition.

Please note that once an entry has been entered into the Pointscore Competition, it will not be removed until the full year cycle end.

We have 2 Pointscore Competitions :  1) Top Groomer of the Year   2) Rising Star of the Year

Refunds and changes

Cancellation of entry will incur a 5% Administrative and Processing fee  and will be deducted from the refund.

No refund of entry fees will be made after the closing date of entries.

Entry fees are also not refundable in the event of the Grooming Exhibitors being withdrawn, disqualified,  or the show cancelled unless otherwise specified by the AGS.

In the event that the show as a whole is cancelled by the RAS, all entry fees will be reimbursed in full.

No changes will be made after the closing date of entries.

Any class change will be permitted after the closing date only with the approval of the Committee and only in exceptional conditions. 

Show Manager

The Show Organiser/s shall ensure that:

  • All Policies, Procedures and Rules are adhered to by Grooming Exhibitors;

  • They do not influence or otherwise provide advice to Judges with regard to placements.

  • We reserve the right to reject entry of exhibit/exhibitors without assigning any reason.

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