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Japanese Akita Breed Summary

Docile, Friendly, Protective, Gentle and Independent Doggies

These dogs come from the northern mountainous regions from mainland Japan. There are two breeds of Akita; the American and the Japanese Akita, differentiated by the colours of their coats! They are both however extremely powerful dogs and are very noble in stature.

They don't make the best choice for everyone and are not the best breed for first-time owners as they must be handled and trained by someone with expert knowledge and experience with the breed. Training must start as soon as possible as they have very dominating natures and also very strong prey drives!

Fun Fact: Akita's are the national dog of Japan and are considered a 'national treasure'!

Kennel Club Group Utility
Lifespan 11 - 15 Years
Height (at the withers) Males 63cm - 68cm, Females 58cm - 63cm
Weight Males 34kg - 54kg, Females 34kg - 50kg
Coat They Have a Double coat. Outercoat is Course and Stands Well Off The Body, Longer at the Withers and Rump and More Profuse at the Tail. Undercoat is Much Softer and Denser
Colour Brindle, Red Fawn, Sesame, White
Eye colour Dark
Common health issues Hip Dysplasia, Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), Congenital deafness, Autoimmune Disease, Pemphigus, Uveitis, Anterior Uveitis, Intermediate Uveitis, Posterior Uveitis, Glaucoma, Lupus Erythematosus, Leukoderma, Thrombocytopenia, Hypothyroidism, Hemolytic Anemia (AIHA), Von Willebrand’s disease, Sebaceous Adenitis, Cutaneous Asthenia, Bloat/gastric torsion
Other Names Akita Inu, American Akita, Japanese Akita, Great Japanese Dog

Japanese Akita's are very bright and independent thinkers, they also develop strong characters, which doesn’t make them ideal for first-time owners. Their high intelligence means they can easily perceive ‘hoomans’ who have both good and bad intentions, making them excellent guard dogs. However, their protective nature means that new people that come into the home will need to be carefully introduced to the dog to avoid any un-wanted behaviour. They do, however, tend to make fantastic therapy dogs and are often seen in retirement homes as they are very calm and gentle around elderly people. If you want to get one of these dogs and you have children, you will need to see how they react with younger ‘hoomans’ first, before making the choice to bring one into your home. But with lots of training and socialisation, they will make lovely family pets.

Although these guys have a relatively blurred history, similar-looking dogs have been around since 1150 A.D. They were highly-prized hunting, fighting and herding dogs. Japanese Akita's are also thought to be from a time in history where only Japanese rulers were allowed to own an Akita and were given unique collars that determined their owners rank. They have gone through many highs and lows in their time, with the lows being WW2 and the popularity of both their fur and meant and highs during the 20th century, during the reign of Empower Taisho. During this time, the breed had become loved all over the world and was used as status symbols to the Royals. Nowadays, there are two main breed lines associated with the dogs; Japanese and American. The American dogs were heavier and larger, whilst the Japanese concentrated their breeding onto smaller dogs.