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The IJA Judge

Invitation to Join IJA

The IJA recognizes experienced judges as well as individuals with excellent skills and knowledge by sending a special invitation to join IJA and be a member of the most progressive educational team in the world. Judges and industry experts who receive this invitation can submit their application without going through the approval process.


The applicant must be well educated in the art of dog bathing, grooming and styling all pure breeds with three or more of the titles listed below to apply for the prestigious position of an IJA Judge.

  • Level 3 IJA Certified Expert Dog Bather, Groomer and Stylist

  • Level 4 IJA Certified Dog Bather, Groomer and Stylist Specialists

  • Level 3 IJA Certified Expert in the Art of Dog Grooming Contest Competitor

  • Level 4 IJA Certified Specialist in the Art of Dog Grooming Contest Competitor

  • Grooming Contest Judge

  • Conformation Handler and/or Exhibitor

  • Conformation Judge with Excellent Grooming Experience

  • Practical Skills Instructor Certified to Teach Advanced Training

  • Certifier for Certification Associations


Honest and forthright, decisions are based on merit rather than personal likes or dislikes.



Executes decisions with balance and fairness.


Communication Skills

Communicates well with others. 



A professional with multifaceted experience in the grooming and styling industry.



Seeks out new methods, techniques and ideas.  Continually updates industry knowledge through a multitude of media. Frequently attends and/or participates in dog conformation shows and/or grooming competitions. 


Breed Knowledge

Well versed in international breed standards.  

Strong knowledge of conformation and breed profile.  

Ability to discuss the profiles of a cross-section of pure-breeds. 



Demonstrates caring, concerned interaction with people and dogs. 


Team Facilitator

Interacts well with peers; supports the “panel” philosophy; respects the opinions of others. 



Will defer personal opinion to support the consensus of the majority. 



Shares knowledge freely, provides mentor-ship and support to fellow judges and contestants.



Professional presentation in dress, manner, communication and handling.  

A role model to professional groomers and stylists. 



Demonstrates a vibrant interest in dogs and the grooming profession.


Organizational Skill

Focused, with an attention to detail, ability to execute and record decisions in a timely and accurate fashion. 



Understands and supports IJA standards, policies and procedures. 

Accurately communicates IJA guidelines to others.

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