Akita Dog Breed

 

Akita Dog Breed


Akita Dog Breed


The Akita Inu is also known as the Akita-ken, the Japanese Akita, and the Japanese big dog. These dogs are native to the mountains of northern Japan, in Akita Prefecture. Akitas are among the oldest domestic dogs in Japan, and the breed remains unchanged for centuries. His ancestor is the dog Matagi, which is a dog that accompanies the traditional winter hunter of northern Japan, Matagi. The breed was developed to help the Matagii hunt wild boar, Japanese deer, and Asian black bears, while dogs hunted the animal until the hunter could come and kill it.


The breed became widely known after the story of Hachiku, an Akita Inu who drew the attention of people around the world, which led to the official proclamation of the breed as a Japanese national monument in 1931. Hachiko was born in 1923 and is owned by a Tokyo teacher who lived outside the city and traveled daily by train to work. Hachiko walked daily with the owner to the station, waiting to return by train at four o’clock. Its owner died at work one day, but Hachiko went to the station hoping to return every day for 9 years. 


The Akita became a Japanese symbol of loyalty and devotion, associated with the emperor’s institution, and in 1934 a bronze statue was erected in his honor at Shibuya station. Also, the Akita statue is traditionally given to a newborn as a symbol of health and long and happy life.


In 1937, Hellen Keller visited Japan and became interested in the Akita Inu. He was given two Akitas (since the first died of a storm shortly after returning to the United States). These were the first Akita dogs to come to America.


During World War II, the breed almost became extinct because there was not enough food for them, they were eaten by hungry people or killed after a government order to prevent the spread of the disease sacrificing all non-military dogs. Through the efforts of some people, the Akitas were released into distant mountainous areas, where they continued to breed with their ancestors, surviving the war. Others began breeding them with German Shepherds, to turn them into military dogs and avoid being killed. In the early 1900s, the Akitas were also crossed with other breeds, such as the English Mastiff, Great Dane, St. Bernard, and Tosa Ina, to give them certain characteristics of fighting dogs.


After the war, the Akitas began to rise again and efforts were made to make them more standardized to reverse some of the damage from the previous paragraph. So U.S. military personnel have been bringing Akita dogs to the United States since you envisioned the breed. They preferred larger dogs, with heavy bones and bear heads. These were the first dogs to later evolve into another breed, the American Akita. The American Akita is considered a different species of Akita in the United States and Canada and is considered a different breed in other countries.


In Japan, the topic is quite controversial and since Akita is the national symbol of the country, there are models of breeds created for careful breeding that clearly distinguish the Japanese Akita from the American. Akitas were recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1955. It was introduced in the United Kingdom of Canada in 1937, although it became more popular only in 1980. Akitas arrived in Australia from the United States.


Character and temperament:


Akitas are beautiful, intelligent, and strong dogs, known for being brave and stubborn. They are also dominant, spontaneous, and independent in their behavior. They remain calm and quiet most of the time and tend to “think” first and react later as they evaluate things before reacting to situations. This feature makes them unpredictable and difficult to read.
Because they are not raised to live in groups, but to live and work alone or in pairs, they are not animal friendly and are also reserved for strangers. 


They are prone to aggression towards other animals and are especially intolerant towards animals of the same sex. Due to Akita's calm and cautious temperament, he shows no signs of aggression, and his attacks are sudden, unexpected, and quite violent. Therefore, they must be kept as a pet.


The Akita Inu is a powerful dog with a strong and complex personality, which makes it difficult to own and difficult to raise. They are not suitable for dog owners for the first time because they need someone who can be firm around them and allow them to fall below the dog hierarchy. The owner must confirm himself as the alpha leader, as this is the only way to control the dominant characteristics and possessiveness of the Akita.


When properly bred and trained, Akitas are excellent pets, extremely loyal and devoted to family. This is a dog that the owner can trust and he will do anything to protect his family. It is said that Japanese mothers would leave their children in the care of their Akita, which shows the level of trust that can be placed in Akita. They are also good to watchdogs, as they are territorial and protective, defending their territory from any intruders. However, they are calm and rarely bark.


Akitas are very serious and possessive when it comes to food and toys and usually do not tolerate provocations. People should be taught, especially children, to stay away from the Akita that eats, because they can be aggressive when they say "this is my food, wait your turn!"


The public perception of the Akita Inus is not too positive, although the owner of the Akita considers it obedient and reliable. They are also clean animals, have some characteristics reminiscent of cats like cleaning the face after eating, kindness at home, and very difficult to please, they get bored easily. In addition to being pets, Akitas are also used as a police or military dogs, therapy dogs, and they are also excellent athletes participating in various dog competitions: conformation shows, hunting, agility, tracking, drying the dog weight, obedience, good programs for civil dogs and personal protective dogs, also known as Schutzhund.


Training:


Akitas are very intelligent and loyal, but they also have an independent and stubborn nature. As large and very powerful dogs, it is essential that they are constantly trained to begin with at the puppy stage. They are instinctive teachers, so Akitas must have extensive and early socialization in youth. They must learn to accept a wide range of strangers and must not perceive them as a threat. 


Because of their independence and strong dynamics about dams, they should never be left without leadership in a dangerous area. Akitas are aggressive towards other dogs, especially the same sex, and care should be taken in the interaction between dogs.


Health statistics:


Like many dogs, the Akitas can suffer from bloating, a sudden, life-threatening condition in which the stomach can twist without veterinary intervention. Swelling is an emergency medical aid and Akita owners must learn to recognize the signs. Potential owners should work with a reputable breeder to examine their reproductive population for health problems such as eye and thyroid disorders and hip dysplasia, a hip joint deformity that can cause serious damage pain and arthritis.


Health tests recommended by the National Breeding Club:

  • Hip assessment
  • Ophthalmic assessment
  • Thyroid assessment



Be careful:


The Akita should work well with high-quality dog ​​food, commercial or homemade, under the supervision and approval of your veterinarian. All food must be adapted to the age of the dog (puppy, adult, or adult). Some breed experts recommend Akitas aged 7 years or older to follow a “light” or low-calorie diet as a defense against the possible occurrence of kidney disease.


Some dogs may be overweight, so watch your dog’s intake and weight. Treatments can be an important training aid, but overeating can cause obesity. Find out which human food is safe for dogs and which is not. Check with your veterinarian to see if you are concerned about your dog’s weight or diet. It is important to remember that some Akitas may eat food and receive meals or treats away from other animals or children.


Exercise:


The Akita is generally not a very active breed but requires moderate exercise. A brisk run or walk around the block at least once a day can meet the needs of most people who run. Akitas also like to play energetically. Although these are large dogs, males usually weigh more than 45 pounds with sufficient daily exercise. The Akitas can work well in a relatively small home. They are tough dogs bred to withstand the harsh outdoor conditions of northern Japan, but they are bred as domestic dogs and guard dogs, as well as hunters and, are very suitable for domestic life.


Cleaning:


Akitas are usually clean and have a slight canine odor. They don’t need thorough care, but their thick, luxurious double coat needs to be brushed at least once a week to look its best. Although the Akitas will shed as little as possible most of the time, expect their thick undercoats to “smoke” twice a year, where they will spread so abundantly that they will gather around the house. 

During this time it is useful to brush the dog more often to get rid of any dead hair. Nails should also be cut regularly, as long nails can cause a dog pain and problems. Remember to brush your teeth often to ensure his oral health.


Conclusion:


Akitas are strong and muscular dogs covered in fur! Because of their Japanese pedigree, these dogs are valued for their strong heart and unsurpassed loyalty. That is why they are a symbol of good health, wealth, and longevity in Japanese culture.


However, you cannot expect your child to become a different version of Hachika. Not only do you need to meet your dog’s needs, but you also need to spend time with him. As you would expect from a smart dog, he can also be a little stubborn. Akitas, in particular, require frequent mental and physical challenges to stay healthy and friendly. They have a strong desire to attack and do not tolerate other animals. However, Akitas will be happy to share its crazy side with loved ones. These dogs thrive best when surrounded by family members.

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