Akiko is our foundation bitch here at Ounoki Kensha, and she truly was the perfect introduction to the Kai for us.

Akiko joined our family in October 2018 and we cannot imagine life without her. She is an active, obedient and intelligent dog who is always willing to learn and wants to work with you. She is aloof when meeting new people, but once she has time to give you a good sniff, she will be your new best friend. She is fantastic with other dogs, engaging in play but remaining polite and respectful of dogs who are not interested.

She is truly the greatest companion we could’ve asked for.

Akiko does her part as a breed ambassador for the Association of Nihon Ken, travelling to events and shows to promote and represent her breed.


For all of Akiko’s health certificates and imagining, please click here!

  • BVA Eyes: Clear – May 2019
  • PRA PRCD: Clear
  • PRA CRD4/CORD1: Clear
  • Degenerative Myelopathy: Clear
  • Embark DNA: Clear of 172 other health conditions
  • OFA Dentition: Normal
  • OFA Patella: Normal
  • OFA Cardiac: Normal
  • OFA CHIC Qualified
  • OFA Hips: Good
  • OFA Elbows: Normal
  • BVA Hips 7/5 (Total 12)
  • BVA Elbows 0/0
  • BVA Eyes Clear (2021)
  • BVA Gonioscopy 0/0 (2021)
  • Spine: Transitional Vertebrae

Genetic Data

Tested with Embark

  • COI: 0% Pedigree | 12% Embark
  • Coat: Akiko does not carry the long coat or cream gene found in Kai.
  • MHC Class II – DLA DRB1: High Diversity
  • MHC Class II – DLA DQA1 and DQB1: High Diversity


In the UK, the Kai Ken is not currently a recognised breed under the Kennel Club. This means that Akiko cannot be shown in conformation at ‘official shows’. That doesn’t stop us from enjoying ourselves at companion dog shows however!

  • At a fun show, Akiko was judged by FCI Judge Mr Shaun Watson, and placed 3rd in the Utility group above two KC recognised breeds!
  • At the Honiahaka Wolfalike Show, Akiko was judged by a KC Judge, and placed as Nihon Ken Junior Bitch. Judge’s comment: Won class on maturity. Lovely head piece, with feminine expression. Good blunt muzzle with correct dentition. Good body shape. Moved with Drive.
  • On the Czech Republic Online Dog Show, Akiko took Best of Breed and achieved virtual CAC, CACIB and CW.

Other fun facts about Akiko!

  • Akiko is the first medium Nihon Ken to ever attend Crufts
  • Akiko is the first Kai Ken to be registered on the Kennel Club Activity Register
  • Akiko is a PupPal with the American Kennel Club
  • Akiko is the eighth Kai Ken to achieve a CHIC number with the OFA