Akita Dog Breed: Pictures, Info, Care Guide & Traits

The Akita is an ancient Japanese breed of dog with an outstanding temperament and a strong, independent nature.

Known for its loyalty and boldness, the Akita makes a great companion and guardian, as long as its needs are met.

This guide will cover all you need to know about this unique breed!

Akita dog

Overview of Akita Dog Breeds

UTILISATIONCompanion dog.
FCI-CLASSIFICATIONAsian Spitz and primitive type.
HEIGHT23-25 inches/60-71 centimetres 
WEIGHT65-120 pounds/29.5-54.5 kilograms
TEMPERAMENTComposed, faithful, docile and receptive.
COAT LENGTH/TEXTUREOuter coat harsh and straight, undercoat soft and dense.
COLORSRed fawn, sesame (red fawn hairs with black tips), brindle
and white.
SUMMARYAffectionate with families.
Very sensitive.
Not very friendly towards other dogs or strangers.
Tolerates cold weather. Does not tolerate hot weather.
Tendency to bark, shed a lot and drool.
Doesn’t adapt well to apartment living.

Akita dogs are highly popular with their owners and come in two varieties – the American Akita and the Japanese Akita.

The American Akita is much larger than the Japanese variety, reaching up to 28 inches tall and can weigh up to 130 pounds. The Japanese Akitas tend to be smaller, with heights ranging from 23-25 inches, and weights on average around 90 pounds.

Both breeds require proper socialization, training, nutrition and regular exercise for them to grow as healthy individuals.

Read more about the differences between Japanese and American Akitas here and its history here.

A pack of akitas running

Physical Characteristics

Akita dogs have strong, muscular bodies and an overall sturdy look about them that make them appear larger than they are.

They are a longer breed with shorter fur coats – typically ranging from tan, brindle or white in color – that demand minimal grooming for their upkeep.

Akitas are also protective by nature and will fiercely protect their family if necessary – due to this trait, owners should ensure they are teaching the dog early on how to appropriately greet people, so as to prevent any potential issues later down the line.

Personality Traits

Akitas are full of personality and have become a much-loved part of many families since their development in the 1930s.

This ancient breed possesses a strong prey drive, which means they have an urge and desire to hunt, so it is important to provide them with stimulating activities when out on walks or exercised frequently.

Akitas do best when living in a home environment and won’t be content either living outside or living inside all the time – they should ideally be an integral part of family life because they crave attention, love, and companionship from their owners.

Akita pup

Health Considerations

Despite their robust and active nature, Akitas are prone to certain health issues like hip and elbow dysplasia, eye problems, luxating patella (where a kneecap slips out of place), heart conditions, skin allergies, thyroid issues, bloat (gastric torsion) and deafness.

Regular veterinary check-ups are essential to ensure any underlying health issue is identified early and treated properly.

It’s also important to provide quality nutrition as this breed can tend to overeat if presented with the opportunity.

Training Tips

Training an Akita doesn’t have to be a challenge – in fact, this breed is incredibly smart and eager to please.

Positive reinforcement (praise and treats) are the most successful methods for training, and your pup should respond best when exercises subtly progress from the basic commands.

Other than obedience training classes, you can channel your dog’s energy through activities such as agility, tracking, and lure coursing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is an Akita a good family dog?

The Akita dog breed is a loyal companion and makes an excellent family pet, especially if it can be part of all activities.

They have a protective nature and require lots of patience and attention in order to form strong bonds with their owners.

While they may not always be the easiest dogs to train, they are very intelligent and resilient, making them great family pets.

But before you bring one into your home, it’s important to do research on the breed and make sure everyone in your household is compatible with an Akita.

What is the personality of an Akita dog?

The Akita is known for its regal, dignified personality. They are fiercely loyal and form strong bonds with their owners.

They can be friendly and loving but also independent and aloof, tending to be warier of strangers.

While they may not be the best breed for small children, they make great companions when properly trained and socialized at an early age.

What two dog breeds make an Akita?

The Akita is a Japanese dog breed whose lineage can be traced back to two foundational strains: the Matagi and the Sakhalin.

The former is a strong and hardy hunting dog from the mountains of Japan, while the latter was bred for protection and watch-dogging purposes in northern Japan’s harsh climate.

Can you get Akita in Australia?

Yes, it is possible to import an Akita dog into Australia. The Australian Government does not allow for the importation of unregistered dogs and so individuals wishing to bring an Akita into Australia must follow the regulations set out by the Department of Agriculture.

These regulations involve obtaining approval from the relevant Australian state or territory government, having all necessary vaccinations completed, meeting quarantine requirements and then registering your dog with the local council.

Akita dog price

The price of an Akita dog can vary depending on the breeder, bloodlines, and other factors but generally you can expect to pay more than $4500. Akita puppies that have been bred and raised responsibly by a reputable breeder will often cost more than this.

Are Akitas dangerous?

While Akitas can have quite a powerful bark, they are not generally considered to be dangerous. They are loyal and alert guardians and make excellent family pets, but their size and strong will require an experienced owner who is firm but gentle. Proper training, socialization, and positive reinforcement can help keep them well-behaved.

Akita vs Shiba

Akitas and Shibas are two Japanese dog breeds that are often mistakenly confused for one another.

Though both shares similar temperaments, there are some distinct differences between the two breeds.

The Akita is a larger breed with a more independent nature, while the Shiba is small and obedient. Both breeds possess a courageous spirit and are loyal to their owners, but the Akita is better suited as a guard dog, while the Shiba is better for families or individuals looking for a loyal companion pet.

Overall, Akitas have a more protective temperament, while Shibas are known for being more social and playful.

Final Thoughts

The Akita is a noble breed that boasts a rich history and a robust, loyal character. They make fantastic family pets and devoted companions when trained and socialized properly. Remember, they thrive on mutual respect and a firm, consistent leadership.

Health care and grooming are essential, but manageable, aspects of owning an Akita. This breed is not for everyone, but for those who understand and appreciate their unique traits, an Akita can be a truly rewarding pet to have by your side.

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