Is An Akita Inu The Right Dog For You?
By Lee Dobbins
The Akita, or Akita Inu hails from the Akita region of Japan where they breed has been revered for centuries. Throughout history they’ve been used as flood dogs, fighting dogs and for hunting deer and bear but today many people keep them as loving companions. Introduced to the United States in 1937 by Helen Keller the Akita Inu became even more popular after World War II when many American servicemen brought them back.
A member of the American Kennel Club working group, the Akita Inu was admitted to the AKC in 1972. It is a spitz type dog with the car and a triangular shaped head who weighs in at between 75 and 120 pounds. This dog has a powerful strong build with a deep, broad chest and level back. His ears stand erect on his head and he has dark brown eyes and a black or brown nose. The tail is carried high over the back. The Akita is a great swimmer due to his webbed feet. This dog has a double coat made up of a thick insulated undercoat and a waterproof outer coat and comes in white, red, sesame or brindle.
The Akita Inu is very affectionate with his family and while docile and home, can be aggressive towards other animals when he is outdoors being taken for walk. He is intelligent and fearless – a dog faithful to his family that craves companionship. This dog can be willful, however, so training will require patience as well as diversity since he can also become bored easily.
Like many purebred dogs the Akita does have some health issues that he is prone to. Hypothyroid and autoimmune thyroiditis can come up in this breed as can hip dysphasia. They can also suffer from terrible skin problems in immune diseases such as VKH. They can also have problems with their knees and our eyes.
Although they are a large dog, the Akita Inu can adapt well to apartment life as long as he gets sufficient exercise. In fact, a moderate amount of exercise is all this dog needs to keep in shape than happy.
This dog does not have any excessive grooming considerations, however the thick coat does shed heavily twice a year. They should be brushed with a firm bristle brush as often as needed and, of course, daily when shedding. Do not bathe your Akita unless it is necessary as giving him a bath will cause the natural waterproofing on their coat to be disrupted.