I just want to clarify - I don't mean to say that about ALL European titles in any way, but I've heard that some countries (and, in particular, the countries that dog has titles in), are that way. If I'm wrong about that, I'm happy to be wrong!
I also appreciate your very thorough post.
I came on a bit strong lol as yes I have heard that too, but I suspect this might be more due to the possible corruption and nepotism rather than how stringent or lax their actual requirements to earn the Champion titles are. But I think it's important to know the whole story so that people can form an opinion themselves on how much weight or meaning they give to a specific country's titles.
As a whole I think also there might be more opportunity for attempts at handler judging because the dress code is ahem... inexistent and I've seen people send out pretty blondes in bikinis to lead their dog around the ring. In that sense I can understand being suspicious and feeling as though certain countries' champion titles have more or less weight. On the other hand what is great about the European system is that normally they have judge's cards for the rating and comments and a sort of score book or score sheet given to each contestant. If someone were really serious about digging why a dog is or isn't a champion they could request to see the judge's comments and decide if that judge was honest or out to lunch lmao. I would say probably a western bias doesn't help our collective view of Eastern European countries and I think we unconsciously tend to accept the notion that their standards might be below ours in regards to certain things. Whether rightly or wrongly.
Certainly with a written record though it's a bit less of a mystery than AKC or CKC judges and why they choose one dog over the other in ways that sometimes rouse pretty strong sentiments one way or another. Are they fault judging or quality judging, are they handler judging, are they performance judging, are they judging the dog's actual merits, why does one area carry more weight to this judge but less to the other etc. United Doberman Club follows the European system using AKC judges which gives some interesting insights for sure. They read outloud their comments on a microphone for each dog as well.
I will say Junior Champion carries a lot less weight too because usually the criteria is less stringent and obviously as the dog matures they might mature out the wrong way. A hard guess as to why many of the imports used by Euro Greeders in the US have Junior Champion titles but no other ones?
Regarding the actual criteria, for example Champion of Romania requires at least 4 CAC, 3 of which must be given at an international show, under 3 different judges and there is a time frame of minimum 7 months passed between the first and last CAC earned. You can't just take a dog out two or three weekends in a row back to back and walk away a champion.
The other way to be Champion of Romania is to have 1 CAC and one CACIB for a dog with an already existing "Champion" title from an FCI recognized country (Including American Kennel Club, Kennel Club and Canadian Kennel Club).
By contrast Bosnia is very lax as it requires only 2 CAC, no judge, time or international requirements. Or they did at the time I am not even sure if they are still FCI members as they were suspended and kicked out in 2009.
For general information I'm gonna list the requirements of the countries this particular dog is a champion from. I will only focus on the 'easiest' route for this to most conservatively evaluate the difficulty.
As a reminder the CAC has to be earned in Intermediate, Open, Champion or in working breeds, Working classes.
Champion of Ukraine: 6 x CAC under 5 different judges with the first and last CAC earned no sooner than a year and one day from each other.
Champion of Hungary: 4 x CAC under 3 different judges, and at least 1 of these against international company with the first and last CAC earned no sooner than a year and one day from each other.
Champion of Russia: 6 x CAC under 6 different judges for Russian born dogs. For foreign born dogs under Kennel Club, American Kennel Club or Canadian Kennel Club, 2 CAC obtained at a Russian national show.
Champion of Romania: 4 x CAC 3 of which at international shows under 3 different judges. Minimum 7 months should have passed between the first and fourth CAC earned.
Champion of Bulgaria: 3 CAC under 3 different judges at 3 different shows.
Champion of Moldova: couldn't find information.
The others seem to be regional titles of varying size.
Most of these countries have criteria equal, sometimes exceeding the criteria in some of the western European countries. I would say any country requiring only 2 CAC (this includes places like Monaco!) as being less meaningful than any place requiring 4 CAC or more, especially if at least one of those has to be at international shows or special shows, and have a multiple judge requirement, also a timeframe requirement, because this requires the dog to be more than just a flash in the pan.
I also just noticed he placed third in the 2018 International Dobermann Club Champion Class so that I think has some meaning too.
In Western Europe I'd say the most stringent countries might be Germany and France. France Demands at least three CAC however one must be obtained at an international show, one must be obtained at a Special Show and one must be obtained at a Nationals Breed show. Additionally to this the dog must pass a TAN (Test d'Aptitude Naturelle) which is a breed suitability temperament test, in the case of the dobermann it would be similar to our WAE, but for a gundog breed the test would include also the dog's natural ability and desire to retrieve an object, gun shyness, how they are with water etc. Until recently the TAN for the Dobermann was accepted by the DV in lieu of a BH to be eligible for the ZTP. On top of this, the dog must also have some kind of working result for working breeds (I believe a CSAU is sufficient for Dobes) as well as DNA and/or Health test results (such as eyes and hips), which are all determined by the national breed clubs.
Germany demands 5 CAC, 1 at an international show, some regional shows count for 2 CACs and I think they also have breed suitability and health results as a criteria to be capable of earning their Champion titles.