Rebekah ("Mikie") Woodworth
"I have always been interested in watching dog shows on Animal Planet and the Discovery Channel. Honestly, I never imagined that I would have this wonderful opportunity to be able to show. We have always grown up with dogs in our home. Our family got our first bitch from BRF's Danes (Breeder of Merit), Ray and Betty Streeter in the Fall of 2005, which we called, BRF's America's Hope because she was born on 9/11/05, but to us she is "Emily". My mom and I took her to handling class with our breeders to learn how to show her and then Betty offered to show her in Breed. I, of course went to all the shows that Emily and Betty were in. Betty has always helped, guided, gave advice, and prime mentor to date. While we were learning how to show Emily, we then went to dog show training class and met Beth Brock, (who handled Flat Coat Retrievers and a very good friend) from 2005-2007 and had helped teach me how to handle.
My first show was back in 2006 at UKC and showed "Buddy" there to get his UKC Championship title and then went into AKC. During this time, I watched the professional handlers in the breed ring as well as the Junior Handlers. Each handler had their own style and I wanted to know why and how they developed this in order to succeed. So, I guess the best answer is my mom who wanted to show, took me to the shows: Betty Streeter who encouraged me, helped me to gain confidence and watched me. She also assisted when she saw that a different approach with the handling of our dog in the ring was warranted, and finally, Joel Rosenblatt, whom I would like to best emulate as he has taken the time to critique me each time I went into the ring. He has worked with me on how to show a Dane, and has a gentle approach to his work with Danes in addition to the people he associates with. I wanted to handle because I thought this sport was very interesting when Betty was handling Emily and went to all the dog shows.
When I became somewhat experienced, I decided to learn with our new dog, "Buddy", UKC CH. Maitau's America's Dream , known as "Buddy". This was the beginning of a good experience. Buddy and I quickly bonded together and learned as a team. Joel felt I had a natural gift of showing dogs and encouraged me and showed me different techniques on how to handle our stubborn dog, Buddy. So, I kept on going with my showing and I have been learning from my mistakes as I go on and improve the way I handle each time I step out of the ring.
My primary goal right now is to become a top Great Dane handler in the USA when I'm older and continue to get hands on as many different breeds. At present, I am a member of the Great Dane Club Of America, Associate Member of the Windham County KC and Great Dane Club of Oxford. I have been trying to get my hands on as many different breeds as possible so that I can be well rounded and helpful to other professionals as I try and perfect my skills as a handler. To date, John Mark and I finished "Lily", GCH CH. BRF's America's Ray of Sunshine and I finished her sister, Kellie - GCH title! I am also handling "Ben", who finished his championship title on 1/26/19 - CH. America's Call To Freedom, AOM from the Open Fawn class breeder-owner handled. I also handle "Abbie", Bronze GCH America's Let Freedom Ring, AOM in the Best of Breed ring as well as in the Owner Handler series. Currently, I am handling/training three Great Dane puppies from our Levi x Abbie litter - Oliver, Thora, and Ellie (1 pt). In my spare time, I assist with Staffordshire Bull Terriers and other Breeds, continuing to help John Mark on how to handle and assisting Betty Streeter, Karen Pacino or anyone else that needs help. My first love will always be Great Danes because they are a challenging, and not just stackables. People mostly call me as "Little Girl, Big dog", but I can show Great Danes because I have enough experience with this large breed for almost a decade. The Dane is hard to work and even if they are champions, but this breed is magnificent and as one of my judges reminded me that when I show my Danes to always keep in mind to present my Danes as "The King of the Breeds". Danes will always be my primary breed because they have captured my heart and this gentle giant is a part of me forever.
I graduated from MCC (Manchester Community College) to obtain my Associates Degree in Biology LAS and transferred to UConn where I received my Bachelor's Degree in Agriculture and Natural Resources. On May 11th, 2019, I graduated from UConn's Neag School of Education to earn my Master's Degree (1 year teacher preparation program) in Curriculum and Instruction where I am certified to teach Agriculture Education K-12. Currently, I am working at Northwestern Regional High School District #7 as an agriscience middle school and high school teacher.
Showing Great Danes is what I truly love to do and I will continue to show in the breed ring as an adult. I am planning on becoming a Professional Handler in all breeds down the road, especially in Great Danes".
*Connecticut Agriculture Education K-12 (040)
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