Futurity & Maturity

The Futurity and Maturity Stakes offer breeders and owners a special opportunity to showcase their youngsters at two consecutive ACA National Specialties.  These puppies and young adults represent not only the best efforts of ACA breeders but also the future of the Akita.  Since the Futurity competition was inaugurated in 1989, many of its winners have gone on to become Top Ten Akitas and outstanding producers of new generations.  In nominating a litter for the Futurity, ACA members are casting votes of confidence in their breeding decisions and indicating their commitment to improving the quality of our dogs.  The Futurity and Maturity Stakes seek to encourage highly selective breeding practices and to reward breeders for their achievements.  To encourage the breeding of the best possible AKITA and to reward all involved for their efforts: the breeder and the owners of the puppy and the sire, with recognition being given to the owners for developing the Akita’s inherited potential and to the sire for his genetic contributions. The Maturity Stake not only provides Futurity nominated puppies with an additional opportunity to compete, but also gives those unable to participate in a Futurity the chance to compete during the next National Specialty.

Futurity Stake Rules

I.  General

A.  The Futurity Stake is entered by nominating a LITTER.  Individual puppies from a nominated litter are eligible to compete in the FIRST Futurity held on or after the date they reach six months of age, and in the next years Maturity, and ONLY in those stakes.

B.  Correct and timely nominations of both the litter and the individual puppy are required for stake eligibility. Nomination forms may be obtained from the Futurity Committee or submit online.

II. Nomination of a Litter

A.  Must be made by the breeder or co-breeder, one of whom must be a member of the Akita Club of America in good standing.  To be timely, nomination must be after the breeding has occurred but BEFORE the puppies are whelped.  Nomination of a litter makes each puppy in that litter eligible for individual nomination and entry into both the Futurity Stake and following year’s Maturity Stake, and only those Stakes.

B. Fee is $30.00.  Of the litter nomination fees, $10 will be for ACA expenses and $20 for Futurity prize money.  Late litter nominations will be accepted until four months after the whelping date, with postmark on envelope or date of credit card transaction determining eligibility.  Cost of late entry is litter nomination fee plus penalty fee of $40.00, such late fee will be designated to Akita Rescue.  Upon receipt of a litter nomination, the Futurity Committee will provide the nominator puppy nomination forms by either email or US postal service.  A Futurity nomination is final and no refunds will be made.  Nomination fees can not be transferred from one litter to another or from one Akita to another.

III. Nomination of a Puppy

A. Must be made by the breeder, owner, or co-owner of the puppy.  Owners need NOT be ACA members.  To be timely, must be made before the puppy reaches four months of age.

B. Fee is $20.00.  Puppies nominated for the Futurity are also automatically nominated for the Maturity Stakes one year hence. Of the puppy nomination fees, $3.00 will be for ACA expenses, $7.00 for Futurity prize money, and $10.00 for the next year’s Maturity prize money.  Late puppy nominations will be accepted until the puppy reaches six months of age, with postmark on envelope or date of credit card transaction determining eligibility.  Cost of late entry is puppy nomination fee plus penalty fee of $40.00, such penalty fee will be designated to Akita rescue.  A Futurity/Maturity nomination is final and no refunds will be made. Nomination fees cannot be transferred from one litter to another or from one Akita to another.

C. Any changes in the identifying information to appear in the ACA National Specialty catalog from that previously provided must be provided to the Futurity Committee by the date entries close for the National Specialty.   Failure to provide such will result in ineligibility to compete.

IV. Eligibility of Nominated Dogs

A. Individual puppies from a nominated litter are eligible to compete ONLY in the FIRST Futurity Stake held on or after the date they reach six months of age.

B. If a dog, its sire, or its dam is owned or co-owned by the judge or a member of the judge’s family, that dog cannot be shown at this Futurity competition.

V.  Entry for Stake Judging

A. Must be entered in one of the regular classes: conformation, obedience, agility, or rally at the ACA National Specialty Show.

B. Futurity Stake entry must be indicated as an additional class on the official AKC entry form.  There is a $10.00 fee for this additional class.  Additional class entry must include age division.  Individual puppies from a nominated litter are eligible to compete in the FIRST Futurity held on or after the date they reach six months of age, and ONLY in this Stake.

VI. Class Divisions & Sequence of Judging

A. Stake is divided into four age groups: 6-9 months; 9-12 months; 12-15 months; 15 months and over. Each age group is further divided by sex. The four dog classes will be judged in order, followed by the bitch classes. The Judge will make four placements for each class.

B. The Judge will select Best Futurity Puppy first, followed by Best Opposite Futurity Puppy, from the four winners of the 6-9 and 9-12 month classes.

C. Best Futurity Junior and Best of Opposite Futurity Junior are selected from the four winners of the12-15 and 15 months & over classes.

D. The Best Futurity Puppy and the Best Futurity Junior then compete for GRAND FUTURITY WINNER.
VII. Division of Total Futurity Stakes Monies

A. General:  Expenses of the Futurity will be deducted (not to exceed 35%) prior to disbursement of the stake monies. The stakes prize monies will be divided among the Breeder (50%), Owner (35%), and Owner of Sire at the time of Nomination of Litter (15%). Prizes will be distributed by the Akita Club of America.

B. Division of the Individual Stake Monies (divided as specified above).

1. Grand Futurity winner receives 25% of the Stake Prize money. Best Futurity Puppy and Best Futurity Junior will each receive 12.5%, Best Opposite winners receive 5%.

2. The remaining funds will be divided with the Winner of each of the 8 age classes receiving 5%. If there are not 8 age classes entered, remaining prize monies will be distributed among those classes with entries.

VIII. Selection & Eligibility of Futurity/Maturity Judges

A. Members nominating litters may list three names for a Futurity/Maturity judge to serve at the National Specialty one years hence.  Only the names indicated on the first litter nomination a breeder submits for a given Futurity will be counted by the Futurity Committee. Voting Procedure: Six months prior to the National, the members nominated will be contacted to ascertain if elected to judge would they be willing to accept the assignment. Only those names that have agreed to accept the assignment will go on the final ballot. Balloting will be done electronically and/or via postal mail and will only include those members who have nominated litters for that year

B. The Judge, or any member of his/her family, cannot be the owner, co-owner, breeder, or co-breeder of any puppy or its sire or dam entered in the Futurity in which he/she judges.

C. A Judge cannot judge a Futurity and Maturity more than once every five years.

D. An individual must be a member in good standing of the ACA and satisfy the 12/5/4 rule (12 years in the Akita breed, five litters bred, four champion Akitas bred) to be eligible to judge the Futurity and Maturity Stakes.

E. The Futurity/Maturity chairperson, committee members, nor any member of the household shall be eligible to judge the stakes. Upon resignation, or termination of serving on said committee members of the committee shall not be eligible to judge stakes for 1 yr.

F. In the event of a tie between 2 eligible judges, the person who has been a member of the Akita Club of America longest shall be declared the winner.

Maturity Stake Rules

I. General

The Maturity Stakes will be held in conjunction with the ACA National Specialty.  A puppy nominated for a Futurity is automatically nominated for the following year’s National Specialty Maturity Stake.  Entry in the Futurity Stake is not required for Maturity eligibility.

II. Eligibility of Nominated Dogs

A. Individual puppies from a nominated litter are eligible to compete ONLY in the Maturity Stake held the year AFTER the Futurity Stake for which they were eligible.

B. If a dog, its sire, or its dam is owned or co-owned by the judge or a member of the judge’s family, that dog cannot be shown at this Maturity competition.

III. Entry for Stake Judging

A. Must be entered in one of the regular classes: conformation, obedience, agility, or rally at the ACA National Specialty Show.

B. Maturity Stake entry must be indicated as an additional class on the official AKC entry form.  There is a $10.00 fee for this additional class.  Additional class entry must include age division.  Individual puppies from a nominated litter are eligible to compete ONLY in the Maturity held the year AFTER the Futurity Stake for which they were eligible.

IV. Class Divisions and Sequence of Judging

A. Stake is divided into two age divisions: under 24 months and over 24 months. Each age division is further divided by sex. The dog classes will be judged first, followed by the bitch classes. The Judge will make four placements for each class.

B. The Judge will select Best Maturity Junior first, followed by Best Opposite Maturity Junior, from the winners of the under 24 month classes.

C. The Judge will select Best Maturity Senior first, followed by Best Opposite Maturity Senior, from the winners of the over 24 month classes.

D. Best Maturity Junior and Best Maturity Senior will compete for GRAND MATURITY WINNER

V. Division of Total Maturity Stakes Monies

A. General:  Expenses of the Maturity will be deducted (not to exceed 35%) prior to disbursement of the stake monies. The prize monies will be divided among the Breeder (50%), Owner (35%), and Owner of Sire at the time of Nomination of Litter (15%). Prizes will be distributed by the Akita Club of America.

B. Division of the Individual Stake Monies (divided as specified above).
1. Grand Maturity winner receives 25% of the stake prize money. Best Maturity Junior and Best Maturity Senior each receive 17.5%. Best Opposite winners receive 10%.

2. The remaining funds will be divided with the Winner of each of the 4 age classes receiving 5%. If there are not 4 age classes entered, remaining prize monies will be distributed among those classes with entries.