The dog competition was first held at the Melbourne Royal® Show at the St Kilda Showgrounds in 1872. In 1874, the competition was run under the auspice of the Department of Agriculture which had 213 entries.
The 1928 Royal Melbourne Show was the first time that the dog section was conducted under the rules of the Canine Control Council (which developed into the Australian National Kennel Club). This attracted 801 exhibits to the Show, which was a record at the time.

Today the Melbourne Royal All Breeds Championship Show attracts more than 3,700 entries across 200 breeds, competing over nine days at the Melbourne Royal Show.