The doog breed Akita is a large dog breed which originates from the native highlands of northern Japan. There are two strains, the Japanese and the American. The Japanese has a specific range of colors, while the American has bigger variety. It is short-haired with double fur.
Akita is known from the true story of Hachikō, a loyal dog that lived in Japan before the World War II.
In 1999 the International Kennel Club (FCI) acknowledged the division of the breed into two strains: The "Japanese Akita" and the "Great Japanese Dog".
Since 2001, according to the FCI, the Japanese Akita, known as "Akita Inu" has been officially renamed "Akita" and the American strain was renamed "American Akita" in January 2006.
In several countries, except from US and Canada, the two strains are recognized as two separate dog breeds.
According to some people´s tales, an Akita dog went to the station every day waiting for its owner to return from work. One day, his boss never came back. Unfortunately he died. Hachikō however, kept going to the same place every day for twelve years, waiting for its owner. When the dog died, the Japanese made a bronze statue of the Akita in its honor.
These dogs have a strong character and personality. They exceed the standards of a companion dog. This feature probably finds its roots in its ancestors who were either hunters or guardians, two conflicting qualities in which the dog had to make decisions and act.
This feature gives often the false impression that the dog doesn´t pay any attention to you and therefore it is not suitable for owners who do not have the amount of time that is necessary to establish a strong relationship with their dog. If the relationship and leadership is not built, this dog will forever be a permanent "reactionary teenager" with characteristics that could be fatal.
Like all large dogs, the akita needs regular exercise and daily walks.
The male Akitas´ weight is 38-54 kg and the females´ 38-50 kg. The height in males ranges between 61-71 cm, and in females between 61-66cm.
Average lifespan: 11-15 years
This breed is very protective of family members and its owner, which is why they are very hesitant with strangers. They can be trained not to be dangerous, but it is very important that they consider their trainer the "pack leader" in order to obey him. In fact, many times, they do not even need to bark, because their presence shows their ability for defense.
They are also very hesitant with other dogs and one moment can be enough to turn them from a playful behavior to an aggressive.
In a family with other dogs it will manage that there are no fights and aggressive behaviors between them.