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The Miniature Bull Terrier Club of America’s annual National show is held each year, usually in October.

Locations vary across the United States. The National includes three shows with entry open to registered

Miniature Bull Terriers from throughout the world:

  • National Specialty

  • Parent Specialty I

  • Parent Specialty II

The Van Hildrikhusen Trophy Show

The Van Hildrikhusen Trophy is named for the Hildrik family of Lotte Frank, donor of the trophy and the judge of the first competition held in October 1990 in Chicago, in conjunction with the MBTCA National Specialty. The Van Hildrikhusen Trophy sculpted, by German artist Hilda v. Gerten Bosch, is a perpetual trophy and always remains in the possession of the MBTCA. Every winner's name will be inscribed on the trophy, and each winner will be given a souvenir commemorative trophy donated by the MBTCA.

Lotte's idea of establishing the Van Hildrikhusen competition was to bring together, at one time and at one place, North America's outstanding representatives of the Miniature Bull Terrier. She envisioned it as an exceptional event where the breed's virtues could be assessed and appropriately recognized. Her goals were to provide a special opportunity for fanciers to view top Miniature Bull Terriers from around the North American continent, furnishing breeders with a setting where they may appraise and relate their own progress in the breed and to formulate future plans to move the breed forward; and with the hope of creating a spirit of collaboration, better understanding, support, and closer cooperation throughout the entire Miniature Bull Terrier fancy.

Eligibility and Rules


1. Eligibility – 

This competition is open ONLY to Miniature Bull Terriers which were bred and whelped on the North American continent, its offshore islands, and the state of Hawaii, and must be owned by a full and non-probationary member of the Miniature Bull Terrier Club of America.

A.  Any Miniature Bull Terrier that has completed the requirements for an AKC, CKC, or Mexican KC (“FICI”) Championship prior to the entry closing date. Proof must be provided.

B.  Any entry that has earned a Reserve Winner or higher award at a specialty or a supported show on the North American continent, or its offshore islands, or the State of Hawaii where the major held and was judged by a MBTCA approved judge. Proof must be provided with name of show, location, date, and award given.

C.  Any previous VHTS winners are ineligible.

D.  Special Invitation - Any animal not otherwise qualified may request a "special Invitation". In addition to the regular entry form and fee, a $50.00 non-refundable application fee is required. The request for a special invitation also must be accompanied by photos: full body - both sides, head profile - both sides, and a full front and full rear view. The animal is not to be identified. At least 7 days prior to the regular closing date, the photos are to be submitted to the MBTCA Show Chairperson. The Show Chairperson will forward the UNIDENTIFIED photos to the Board of Directors of the MBTCA. The entry must be approved by 2/3 majority of the board.  The photos will become the property of the MBTCA.


2. Competition and Exhibiting – 

An officiating judge shall not own, co-own, or exhibit any entry at that VHTS. An exhibitor may not exhibit under a judge who bred the entry, owned the entry within the past twelve months, or who has handled the entry during the past twelve months. An exhibitor who co-owns a dog with a judge at VHTS may  NOT show any dog underneath that judge.


3. Conflict of Interest -

Any other possible conflict of interest should be brought to the attention of the Show Chairman for referral to the Board. The MBTCA Board will determine whether in fact, a conflict exists and will then rule accordingly. Any Board ruling will be final.


Judging Procedure


VHTS competition is judged by a panel of three judges. The 3 judges that received the highest number of votes shall be given the assignment of the VHTS, and shall be designated as Judge 1, Judge 2 and Judge 3, respectively, except the Fancier who will only serve as Judge 3. 


Classes – 

There will be four: Colored Dogs, White Dogs, Colored Bitches, and White Bitches.  After entries have been received, the Show Secretary will make the judging assignments based on class sizes. Judges 1 and 2 will judge the two largest classes. Judges 1 and 3 will do the third class and Judges 2 and 3 the fourth. If classes happen to be equal in number then Whites and/or Bitches will be assigned first. Judges 1 and 2 will award the major trophies. In each case the unassigned judge will serve as referee if needed.


REFEREE - If the two assigned judges disagree between two entrants for a class placement, the referee will then enter the ring, judge those two entrants, and render a decision, which will break the tie. In the class judging, the entrant not chosen is automatically reserve winner. 

If a referee decision is required for the trophy round of judging, the entrant not chosen by the referee is NOT automatically given a placement, as the reserve to the winner must now come into the ring to be considered.


NO CONFERRING - Judges are not to confer in the preliminary round. At no time during the class judging will either judge confer with the referee. 

Class Judging – 

Each judge will only select entries which in their opinion are at the pinnacle of breed development, and in which they are truly interested for one of the top placements. Judges will be aware that a great deal of significance is attached to participation in the trophy round and only the very top entrants should be so rewarded. 

Each judge will examine each entry individually and then both will stand together while each entry is moved. When this preliminary judging is completed, each judge will submit on their card the armband numbers from two to a maximum of four entries which they wish to reexamine in the final round of competition for best and reserve in their class. With all the class entrants in the ring, the steward will combine numbers from the judges' cards and read in ascending order the entry numbers of dogs which will return for final round judging. This selection process will result in a minimum of two and a maximum of eight entries from each class, which will return to the ring for finalists judging. The other entries are excused and the finalists shall remain in the ring for judges critiques and their awards. Judges are required to write a critique of each dog that was selected for finalists judging. Before leaving the ring, all the finalists will be moved once around the ring together. 

Results of each judges’ selection from the various rounds will be posted after completion of each class.

Finalists Judging – 

All class finalists return to the ring in the same order as they were judged in the preliminary round. Judges will reexamine all the finalists. After which, Best and Reserve of each class will be awarded. 

The judges are allowed to confer in the finalists and trophy rounds. At no time during the judging will either judge confer with the referee. 

Trophy Round Judging -  

Following the selection of Best and Reserve of each of the 4 classes, the winner of each class shall return to the ring to be judged together for the Van Hildrikusen Trophy. The judging order will be:  1- VHTS Trophy**, 2- Runner Up Trophy, 3- Best of Opposite Sex. **After the VHTS Trophy winner is chosen, the Reserve Dog or Bitch to the winner will enter the ring to compete for Runner-up.


Merlindan Movement Cup


After the conclusion of the VHTS Competition, the Merlindan  Movement Award Competition will be held. It is awarded to the Miniature Bull Terrier considered by the judges to be the best mover out of all the exhibits.


From each of the 4 classes each judge shall select the best moving entrant in that class and give to the ring steward the number of 1 exhibit who will later return and compete for the Merlindan Movement Award.


Upon the completion of the regular VHTS awards, the ring steward will call back to the ring those exhibits selected specifically for the movement competition.  This can be a maximum of 8, but may be less.  Judges 1 and 2 shall judge the competition, and the unassigned judge will serve as referee if needed. 

MBTCA 2023 National Logo.jpg

MBTCA National Specialty & Van Hildrikhusen Trophy Show

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