Japanese Akita - Information and NZ Breed Standards

Membership ID

Japanese Akita

General Information - Japanese Akita



10-12 years




Watchdog ability:
very high

Protection ability:

Area of Origin:

Date of Origin:

Other Names:
Akita, Akita Inu

Original Function:
Large game hunting, dog fighting


This breed derives its name from an island north of Japan, known as the Prefecture of Akita. The Akita, dating back some 300 years, descends from the Spitz family of dogs. It was originally used as a hunting dog, tracking black bears, wild boar and deer. So admired were they, that only the Japanese royalty and nobility were permitted to own them. Later on, the Akita also served as a police and guard dog, and finally as highly-esteemed house pet and family protector. The breed's popularity increased in the United States after WWII when servicemen returning from Japan brought the Akitas home with them. These dogs and a few imports formed the basis for the breeding lines in America. The Japanese Akita and the Akita are basically the same dog. It comes down to where the breeding lines of the dogs originate from. The "Japanese Akita" is comprised of dogs imported from Japan or dogs from stock that was recently imported. Stock that descends from earlier exports primarily to the US and Canada is known as the Akita.


The Japanese Akita's character has several admired qualities: he is alert, courageous, and friendly with people, although occasionally aggressive with other dogs. Early obedience and wide socialisation is required to be assured that it will be well behaved with children and other dogs.


The Japanese Akita appreciates mental and physical exercise every day. It needs the chance to run in a safe area or on leash for a long jog. Given ample exercise and training, it can be a quiet and well-mannered house dog. The Japanese Akita is able to live outdoors in temperate or cool climates, but it is happiest if it can spend most of its time with its family. The coat needs brushing about once a week to remove dead hair, more often when shedding. Japanese Akitas tend to be somewhat messy drinkers!

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