2016 Scholarship Winner Eden Destache

My Trip to the Biggest Dog Show in North America
By: Eden Destache

I was able to go to The Royal Canin Dog Show because I entered a contest and was asked to write an informational slide presentation about a pure bred dog. Although I was allowed to write about any dog, I choose the Akita because my family has owned two of them. Not only is an Akita my pet, but I know they are great dogs. After the Waukesha Kennel Club announced that I had won the $500 scholarship, everyone in my family was excited and we didn’t even know that my trip to Florida was included!

The first morning in Florida we met with Jeri El Dissi and she showed us around the dog show. There was so many different dog activities that we couldn’t stop at them all. We went over to one of the agility shows and we got to watch an Akita run the course. I was so fascinated by what a dog can do because this was the first dog show I ever attended. We also went to the grooming area and we saw some of the dogs being bathed, brushed, and blow dried. There were so many dogs and they all looked so beautiful.
After Jeri showed us around we went to the Akita booth. At the booth I met a long haired Akita named Kibby and hung out with all the other people that were working there. I got to answer some people’s questions like “What was the Akita breed for?”, “When did Akita’s come to America?” etc. Everyone was so nice. I was able to walk around, look at all of the other booths and learn about all kinds of other dogs. I watched one of the dock jumping events and I got to see a couple of the beagles being shown. After my dad and I were worn out, we headed back to the hotel and had the chance to enjoy the pool and the sun. Later, we went back to the convention center and watched the toy group being shown which was pretty cool because we got to see all these little dogs that I’ve never seen before. We headed back to the hotel about an hour later because the next day was going to be busy.
Then next day we woke up early, ate a big breakfast and then we went down to the dog show again. We stopped by the booth when we got there, said hello to a few people we met the day before and then we went to one of the rings to watch the Akita’s being shown. This was definitely one of my favorite parts because I’d never seen so many Akita’s at one time! We saw a couple of the dogs that were at the booth the day before and I got my picture taken with the Best in Show dog. After the Akita show we went back to the booth again and walked around for a bit before it was time for us to return to Milwaukee.
As we sat in the airport and I went through the 200 or so pictures I had taken, I noticed how proud and dedicated the dog’s owners were to them. I know you have to practice a lot to achieve a certain skill but you have to practice even more to teach you dog how to jump rope!
I would encourage other students to enter this contest and write about their favorite pure bred dog for multiple reasons. One reason that sticks out is that you could win the opportunity to go to Florida, which is pretty awesome and you could also win a $500 scholarship! But winning the trip and the money isn’t what made this experience so special to me. It was the fact that I got to meet all these new people (and dogs) and I learned so much from all of them. Writing the presentation was so much fun for me because I love to write and I love to research. I had no idea what Akita’s were bred for or why they came to America until I did this report. People say knowledge is the greatest gift and I too, think that is true. I am so thankful for the people at the Waukesha Kennel Club for giving me the opportunity to attend the biggest dog show in North America which allowed me to learn so much.


Thank You Letter

Dear Jeri and Waukesha Kennel Club,
Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to go down to Orlando, Florida
and see the dog show. I had never been to a dog show before and I’m so happy that this was the first one I got to see. I also hope that it wasn’t my last. I learned so much about the Japanese Akita and so many other dogs while I was there. I have always loved dogs and this opportunity showed me so many different activities I can do with dogs. I just want to say thank you again. I will remember this trip for the rest of my life and I am so thankful.

Eden Destache


Eden’s winning presentation: The Japanese Akita