Akita

Breed Akita breed head image

Akita breed originally from Japan. Also known as Great Japanese Dog, Japanese Akita, American Akita.

Breed information

Rank by UKC (2020 year) 48 of 195
Name Akita
Other names Great Japanese Dog, Japanese Akita, American Akita
From country Japan
Standards Kennel Club 🔗; FCI 🔗
Breed groups Working (AKC),Herding (UKC)
Type Purebred
Size Large, Giant
Life span 10 - 14 years
Temperament alert,courageous,dignified,docile,friendly,intelligent,responsive
Height female 24-26 inches (61-66 cm)
Height male 26-28 inches (66-71 cm)
Weight female 70-110 pounds
Weight male 85-130 pounds
Colors black,fawn,red,white
Litter Size 3 - 12 puppies
Puppy Price Average $800 - $1200 USD

Akita breed image

Breed Akita image

Breed Characteristics

Sensitivity Level

High-sensitivity dogs can take some of the owner's actions close to the heart. If you shout too loudly at the dog, ignore the dog or your kid pulls its tail It may take offense. Low sensitivity dogs or "tolerant" dogs take it easier. If you are an emotional person, too busy, sometimes ignore the dog, have young kids, then we don't recommend taking a high-sensitivity dog.

Kid-Friendly

Kid-friendly dogs are tolerant to kid's behavior like hugs and attempts to saddle and other "games". It behaves kindly to kids. A no-kid-friendly dog doesn't tolerate such an attitude. You need to know that it's possible to teach dogs of any breed to be kid-friendly. But anyway You mustn't leave the kid and dog alone!

Dog Friendly

Dog-friendly characteristics highly depend on dog socialization, breed isn't the only factor. Dogs with high friendliness will play with other dogs or just be calm. Low-friendly dogs will try to fight, bark or run away.

Friendly Toward Strangers

The stranger-friendly dog will show nice behavior when your friends or visitors come to you. No stranger-friendly breed can be aggressive and attack them. Others will be shy or even afraid of your guests. But anyway if your dog has got good socialization lessons It will be stranger-friendly no matter what breed. And also if you have found that breed has a five-star rating of Stranger-friendly and you are not going to train this dog It can be aggressive to your visitors.

Amount Of Shedding

Dogs tend to shed, and it is completely normal for a certain amount of dog hair to end up either on your clothes or inside your house. Importantly, the amount of shedding differs from breed to breed. For example, some dogs shed throughout the year, others shed at key seasonal times, and some may do a little bit of both. However, some dogs barely shed at all. Depending on your preferences and standards, be sure to pick a dog breed with this in mind.

Easy To Groom

It is important to remember that some dog breeds require more maintenance than others. While some can be brushed on the go, other breeds may benefit from regular clipping, grooming, and bathing. Assessing how much time and money you are willing to spend on maintenance needs is certainly something to consider.

General Health

Some dogs are victims of irresponsible breeding practices, and this may cause them health problems down the road. One example of this is hip dysplasia, which is a genetic health problem. However, keep in mind that not every dog will develop these issues, although they are more likely to. If you decide to adopt a puppy, it is best to find out about any genetic illness that may be associated with its breed. For more information, you may also wish to consult with a shelter or rescue that can supply you with the knowledge of the physical health of the puppy’s parents or siblings.

Easy To Train

Interestingly, some dog breeds are easier to train than others. For example, select breeds may form a greater number of associations between words (“stay”), actions (staying), and outcomes (receiving a reward). Others may take more time and attention to train. Dogs are extremely intelligent but may want to know what is in it for them if they comply with your request. This is where games and rewards may come in handy.

Intelligence

Certain dog breeds are adept at specific jobs. For example, a dog that is bred for its intelligence, concentration, and quick decision-making may be used to successfully herd livestock and need more mental stimulation than a dog that is bred to be a runner and needs more physical exercise. Knowing your dog’s needs helps you know how to keep them properly engaged and out of mischief (such as chewing and digging). Examples include interactive toys and activities, including obedience training for those who need mental engagement, as well as search and rescue activities for those who are meant to be more active and employ their keen senses.

Tendency To Bark Or Howl

It is important to note that vocalization differs among dog breeds. Some are more vocal, and all of them bark and howl with different pitches. One example to consider is a hound. Would the pitch of their barking and howling get on your nerves or would you think it was somewhat musical? Is your dog breed notorious for hunting and would constantly chase and howl at nearby wildlife? If your dog is more alert and makes a good watchdog, will it bark at everyone it meets? These are some elements to consider when choosing a dog breed, as well as whether you have neighbors, or any noise restrictions are in place.

Energy Level

Dogs who have a lot of energy may have been bred for certain jobs, including herding livestock or retrieving game for hunters. Therefore, they will need quite a bit of interaction and exercise. They will be more energetic and probably engage in activities like playing, running, tumbling, and checking out new smells and sights. Conversely, other breeds may be low-energy and like to lounge on the couch with you, nap, and watch Netflix. Whichever dog breed you choose, simply consider what your own activity level and lifestyle are like and pick a dog breed that suits it.

Exercise Needs

Different dog breeds require different levels of exercise. Some may be content with a leisurely stroll in the evening, and other breeds may want to make several vigorous laps around the block. Depending on what they were bred to do, such as hunt or herd, their energy levels will match those activities. Dogs who are high-energy and do not have enough exercise might gain weight and engage in behaviors such as digging, chewing, and barking. High-energy dogs will likely match the best with individuals who are active and love the outdoors or are interested in training their dog for competitions.

Potential For Playfulness

Personalities of dog breeds vary widely. Some are always up for playing and stay in a puppy state of mind. Other breeds tend to be more serious and enjoy their downtime. It is best for individuals to consider whether the thought of a playful puppy is exciting or whether they mainly just want a couch companion. Other factors to consider include whether you have children or additional pets. Another option is adopting a dog that is a bit older and less demanding but still enjoys interacting and playing.

Akita inu breed

Basic moments

  • Akita Inu doesn’t like other dogs, especially his own gender.
  • Proper upbringing, long-term socialization, competent training are extremely important, otherwise the animal is able to grow up aggressive.
  • They are noble and restrained, but only when they recognize the owner as the unconditional leader.
  • Akita sheds strongly twice a year.
  • Dogs feel good in the house and apartment, but they require frequent walks, physical activity.

History of the Akita Inu breed

According to information from ancient historical sources in Japan, the ancestor of modern representatives of the breed is the Matagi Inu (Matagi is an ethnic group of hunters, Inu is "dog"). Akita prefecture on the island of Honshu is considered the region of origin of Akita Inu. Matagi-inu and her ancestors served people as irreplaceable assistants in hunting, allowing them to hunt even very large or dexterous animals: Japanese macaques, bears, wild boars.

In the XII-XIII centuries, a new popular entertainment appeared in Japan - dog fighting. It became a cruel selection for these dogs, leaving only the strongest, evil and hardiest. In the 19th century, a wave of industrialization swept across the country, many residents moved, the number of crimes increased. Because of this, the Matagi Inu were retrained to guard property. At the same time, bullmastiffs and mastiffs, Great Danes were brought from Europe to Japan, reviving the tradition of dog fighting. Increasingly, the Akita was crossed with these dogs in order to get more aggressive and larger dogs.

Akita inu head

This caused the concern of Japanese dog breeders, because the breed began to lose its features, so in 1931 Akita Inu were transferred to the status of a natural monument at the state level. Breeders actively engaged in the revival of the breed, selecting only its best representatives for breeding. In 1934, the first official standard was introduced, but over time it had to be adjusted. Around the same time, the breed received its modern name, and in 1967 a thematic museum was opened.

Akita Inu suffered serious damage during the Second World War - these dogs almost disappeared. They suffered from hunger, became victims of barely surviving people, their skins were used for clothing. At the end of the war, a government decree was issued to exterminate all dogs unsuitable for military use, since a real rabies epidemic began in Japan. For this reason, breeders hid some of the breed in remote settlements, breeding them from the Matagi Inu. Also, amateurs bred hybrid generations of Akita with a German shepherd to adapt them for military service.

After the war, a new round of restoration of the Akita Inu breed began, the greatest contribution to which was made by Morie Savataishi - it is thanks to him that these unique dogs have survived to this day. Purebred individuals had to be collected throughout the country, but this bore fruit. The American military liked the charming and proud Akita, so the breed was brought to the United States.

Akita inu breed
Smiling Akita inu

The appearance of the Akita. Weight, height

The American Akita is a huge dog. People actually compare him to a grizzly bear due to his size and looks. The American Akita’s weight is between 75-130 lbs (34-59 kg) for males and between 70-110 lbs (32–50 kg) for females.  His height will range from 26-28 inches (66-71 cm) for males, and 24-26 inches (61-66 cm) for females. (According to the FCI). The coat is of medium length, with a developed, dense and soft undercoat. Often these dogs are compared to cats: their coat looks impeccable and there is no specific dog smell at all. The musculature is very developed and requires regular training.

Unlike the Japanese Akita, the American Akita comes with a bigger color variations such as:

  • White
  • Red
  • Red Brindle
  • Silver
  • Silver Brindle
  • Black
  • Black Brindle
  • Brown
  • Brown Brindle
  • Blue Brindle
  • Fawn
  • Fawn Brindle

Character and habits

Dogs of this breed have impeccable manners, which makes them wonderful family members. Patient and affectionate towards children. Very loyal to the owner. But, despite their loyalty and dedication, Akita Inu have a strong character and willpower, so training such dogs is not easy and needs to start at an early age of seven to eight weeks. This breed is best suited for experienced dog breeders, as an ordinary person may not cope with her temper and harm the dog.

Barking? Not going to happen with an Akita Inu

Who doesn’t hate hearing his dog barking in the middle of the night for no reason? The Akita, however, almost never bark. They rather have the “Strong and silent” personality. The only times an Akita will bark are when he really needs to. So, unless an intruder break into your house, prepare for a bark – free life and enjoy sleeping!

You should really keep him on a leash

If you always dreamed about a dog you could run free with in a park; Watching him playing with other dogs and fetching sticks, then maybe the Akita isn’t the perfect dog for you. You should never let your Akita Inu roam free around the neighborhood.

Make sure you don’t have any small pets at home

Due to his hunting instincts, the Akita tend to conceive small animals as prey. He will not show any sign of aggression, he won’t show his teeth or send any warning signal as well. He will attack. And not just attack to show dominance or who’s boss. He will go for the kill. However, Not all Akitas are extremely aggressive. If trained correctly, the Akita Inu can be a friendly dog to all animals.

Overall, the Akita Inu is a majestic creature. But with that being said, it’s not perfect. Consider the following before buying one:

Akita Inu PROs

  • One of the most beautiful dog breeds
  • Come with various different colors
  • Almost never bark
  • Center of attraction – A very impressive dog
  • Doesn’t require a lot of exercise
  • Loyal, calm and family oriented dog
  • Excellent guard dog

Akita Inu CONs

  • May show aggression toward other animals
  • Hard to train, stubborn, bored easily and dominant
  • Doesn’t like to stay alone at home for too long – Very attached to his owners
  • Not suitable for off-leash walking
  • Crazy amount of shedding
  • Usually doesn’t like to play too much

After reading this article, if you are sure that an Akita Inu is the ideal dog for you, read next section about How to Choose an Ideal Akita Inu Puppy. 

You can buy a puppy of this beautiful breed from breeders or in a specialized kennel, since only in this case you are guaranteed to get not only a beautiful dog, but also a friend with good genetics.

How to choose an Akita puppy?

When choosing a puppy, you should pay attention to the following:

  1. it is recommended to choose an animal from a small litter, where all puppies are of medium size;
  2. ask the breeder to familiarize you with the dog's pedigree; Find out about the availability of awards, as well as possible genetic diseases and allergies;
  3. you can learn more about the appearance and character of a future friend by getting to know his parents;
  4. a healthy puppy is mobile, has a good appetite, playful character, shiny eyes, smooth coat and clean ears.

Care

Akita Inu care does not require much effort. It can be kept both indoors and outdoors. You should not bathe your dog often, once or twice a year is usually enough. It is recommended to comb out wool a couple of times a week to reduce the amount of wool in the house. The main thing for this dog is daily walks.

Disease susceptibility

Akita Inu are robust animals with good health. They live on average about 12 years. However, they are still predisposed to a number of hereditary diseases. Among the problems with the musculoskeletal system, hip dysplasia is quite common. To detect pathology in the early stages, at the age of 6 months, it is worth showing the dog to an orthopedist.

Gastric dilatation volvulus (GDV) - a life-threatening situation associated with the structural features of the ligamentous apparatus of the stomach. It is important to remember that you cannot walk with these dogs immediately after eating, so any feeding should be carried out after the next walk.

Also common among this breed are eye diseases: eyelid volvulus, progressive retinal atrophy, glaucoma, cataracts. Therefore, the condition of the dog's eyes should be monitored regularly.


References:
  1. https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/dog-breeds/the-most-popular-dog-breeds-of-2020/
  2. FCI standard
  3. Kennel club standard
  4. Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akita_(dog)
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