Last Updated on August 7, 2023 by Pets Feed
The American Akita is a variant of the Akita Inu from the northern and mountainous regions of Japan. The American strain is known simply as akita. This variant of the breed shows all kinds of colors unlike the Japanese akita. It is a breed that stands out for being a very protective type of dog with its family and having a high resistance to cold.
Its character is somewhat independent and is generally territorial, so it requires intense education and socialization.
American Akita photos
The American Akita is a large dog with impressive weight and heavy bones. The muscles are well developed in all parts of the body. The growth of adults is 61-71 cm, weight is about 45-65 kg.
- Head: This is the hallmark of the breed. Large, proportional to the body. If the animal is in a calm state, there are no wrinkles on the head. Seen from above, the head resembles an obtuse triangle. Broad, flat skull with a shallow groove running along the forehead. The stop is well defined, but not clear.
- Eyes: Relatively small, dark brown, deep set, almost triangular in shape. Tight fitting black eyelids.
- Ears: Small, triangular in shape, broad at base, slightly rounded at tips. Seen in profile, the ears extend the top line of the neck and tilt slightly forward above the eyes.
- Muzzle: Deep, broad with powerful square jaws.
- Jaws: Correct scissor bite. A direct bite is allowed. Strong teeth, complete dentition present
- Nose: Wide black nose, wide open nostrils. In individuals of white color, a liver color of the lobe is allowed.
- Legs: Forelimbs. Seen from the side, they look straight with strong bones. Strong shoulders sloping slightly back. Elbows look strictly back. Metacarpus slightly inclined.
- Hind limbs. Strong, with developed muscles and strong bones. Strong thighs are well developed. The knee joints have moderately pronounced angles, seen from behind they are parallel.
- Body: The length is greater than the height of the dog at the withers. Chest wide, voluminous and deep. The ribs are quite convex. The belly is moderately upturned. Straight back with muscular, strong and slightly arched loins. The elastic skin adapts perfectly.
- Coat: Double coat with dense undercoat. The outer coat is straight and coarse, the undercoat is dense and soft, slightly shorter than the outer coat. The head, ears and limbs are covered with short hair. At the withers and croup, its length is about 5 cm, which is slightly longer than along the body. The tail has the longest and most abundant hair (more than 6 cm).
- Colour: The standard authorizes all colors (white, red, fawn, brindle). Let’s say a mottled color, the presence or absence of a mask. Instead of a mask, there may be a spot on the forehead or a flame on the muzzle. The mask is absent in white individuals. They have black lips, pads and noses. All colors are clear and clean, spots are evenly spaced. The undercoat may have a different color from the main coat.
Character and behavior
The American Akita is a territorial dog that tends to patrol the house or property. He generally has an independent character and a very reserved attitude towards strangers. Some people find similarities to the behavior of cats.
These dogs they love freedom and independence very much. Thanks to a stable psyche, they behave with restraint and dignity. They are calm, affectionate and balanced animals who never bark for no reason. Even when kept in an apartment, you will not hear complaints from neighbors. Representatives bark if someone encroaches on the territory of the owner.
He is an excellent guardian who, like a samurai, keeps everything under control. Even when an American Akita roams their territory, there is something bewitching and unattainable in their eyes.
With the children
The children are treated well, but, again, a disrespectful attitude is not tolerated.
With other animals
Since there are many hunting genes in the blood, small animals are poorly perceived, rather as prey. They also don’t get along very well with other pets, especially when the gender of the other pet is the same.
Representatives of the breed are naturally endowed with good health and immunity. Compared to other breeds, American Akita puppies are less susceptible to infections. But there are genetic diseases:
- Hip dysplasia.
- Retinal atrophy.
- Inversion/Eversion of the eyelids.
The average life span of the American Akita is 10-14 years.
The American Akita breed has a thick coat, and therefore requires regular combing, at least once a week, and preferably twice. Always make sure the pet’s ears and eyes are clean, bathe your pet once a month and trim the nails as needed.
- Due to the hunting instinct, the American Akita can suddenly attack a dog while walking or even a cat, with which she grew up in the same yard since childhood.
- Too independent BLS themselves set the time of play, rest or training. Therefore, without proper education, representatives of the breed turn into uncontrollable pets, which is fraught with unpleasant and even dangerous situations.
- In some countries (Great Britain, Canada), American and Japanese Akitas are still considered the same breed.
- The American Akita does not tolerate the smell of alcohol and behaves extremely aggressively with not sober people.
- In Japan, Akita is declared a national treasure.
- Every year at Shibuya Station, connoisseurs of a devoted Akita named Hachiko hold celebrations in her honor.
History of the breed
The word “American” in the name of the breed can be confusing when it comes to its origins. The second name – a large Japanese dog – is more eloquent in this regard: its homeland is the Land of the Rising Sun. But how did it happen that Akita suddenly became American?
The ancestors of the American Akita are the Japanese Akita Inu, originally used for hunting and security purposes. Several centuries ago, they were called differently: matagi-akita. Later they began to be used in dog fights, which became especially popular at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. In pursuit of monetary gain, the owners sought to “improve” their dogs, to make them larger and stronger. For this purpose, they were crossed with such breeds brought to the islands as mastiffs and shepherds.
However, as a result of these manipulations, the classic features of the breed began to blur, deteriorate, or even completely disappear. The damage caused by the matagi-akita was noticed at a dog show held in Tokyo in 1914. Soon the pure representatives of the breed were declared natural monuments, and their crossing with representatives of other species fell under a categorical ban. Breeders added work: they did everything possible to return the matagi-akita to their original characteristics.
No sooner had these magnificent dogs, which became the subject of national pride of the Japanese, to recover from the blow inflicted on the breed by irrepressible human greed, as the Second World War broke out. By order of the government, all breeders donated their pets for the needs of the front. The end of the war, as you know, was put by the surrender of Japan in 1945. Returning to their homeland, the US military decided to take with them several vending puppies. It was they who became the progenitors of the new breed a few years later. And actually the classic Akita Inu on the Japanese Islands after the war, there were no more than 20 individuals.
At the same time, overseas, the breed began to gain widespread recognition and developed at a rapid pace. At first it was called the big Japanese dog. But in the States, work on the breed with the Japanese was not synchronized – it went in parallel and, as they say, its own way. Japanese breeders have tried to negotiate with their American counterparts about her common ancestry, but in vain. They did not even allow the export of dogs declared on the islands as natural monuments to the United States. All these measures did not stop the Americans. As a result, over time, the overseas Akita began to differ from the Japanese in both appearance and character. And then it got a new name – American Akita.
In 1956, a new breed club was formed, recognized by the American Kennel Club only in 1972. The “war of breeds” with Japan continued until 1992: for two decades, the dog breeding clubs of both countries did not recognize each other – only the Japanese Akita Inu was registered with the International Cynological Federation (FCI). The official division of the breeds took place only in 2000, when the FCI approved the standard for the overseas Akita.