HISTORY OF THE AKITA

The Akita breed of dog has its roots from Japan. Indeed, the breed’sorigins can be located on ancient Japanese tombs, which demonstrate usthat present day Akita is the consequence of concerted initiatives ofthe 19th century to reconstruct seven of Japan’s ancient breeds. Thedogs utilized for these breeding attempts were primarily fighting dogbreeds, some purebred and a few mixed.


Soon enough, Japanese breeders worked hard to distinguish most of thetraits from all of these fighting dogs out of the Akita, specificallythe pinto pattern, black mask, and the dog’s incredible size.However, American breeders were interested in these traits and inactual fact encouraged them. To preserve the original Akita, theAkita-inu Hozankai Society of Japan was formed in 1918. Approximatelya decade later, in 1931, the Akita was proclaimed an official monument


in Japan.Probably the most known story of the Akita breed is regarding a dognamed Hachiko. Hachiko had met his owner on a daily basis at the train



station after work. The moment the owner died at work one afternoon,


station after work. The moment the owner died at work one afternoon,Hachiko continued to wait for him to return, at that very place, tillthe dog died – 9 years later!

BODY AND TAIL



General Description: American Akita: Compact, solid, and goodsubstance. The body is well-put-together, substantial, and powerfullymuscled. It is never slight of bone or rangy. Width at forequarters is


approximately equal to the width at the hindquarters.Japanese Akita: The body is sturdy, balanced, and well-muscled withmoderate bone. It is never slight of bone or rangy. Width atforequarters is approximately equal to the width at the hindquarters.Neck: American Akita: Moderate length to allow for proud headcarriage, powerfully muscled with a slight arch. The neck taperssmoothly from the deeper and broader body toward the head. The neck is


clean-cut, without excess skin, throatiness, or dewlap.Japanese Akita: Moderate length to allow for proud head carriage,strongly muscled with a slight arch. The neck tapers smoothly from thedeeper and broader body toward the head. The neck is clean-cut,without excess skin, throatiness, or dewlap.Chest: Long, well-sprung, well-laid-back, oval-shaped, neverbarrel-chested or slab-sided.


Topline: Level from withers to croup. The back is short, broad,strongly muscled, and straight, yet supple. The loin is short, firm,and strong. The topline is never swayed or roached.Croup: The croup is powerful, well-muscled, and may be level with thetopline or just slightly (almost imperceptibly) sloped.Underline: American Akita: A slight to moderate tuck up may bepresent, or the underline may run parallel to the topline. The


underline is taut and firm, without any indication of sagging orexcess weight.Japanese Akita: The underline is moderately to well-drawn up, butnever wasp-wasted or excessively drawn in. The underline is taut and



firm, without any indication of sagging or excess weight. firm, without any indication of sagging or excess weight.Tail: Set high on the croup, thick at the base, and tapering towardthe tip. Carried in accordance to the dog’s mood and energy level,but never tucked or carried up over the back. The tail is of a mediumlength, with the tip of the last vertebrae extending to the hockjoints when held down. The tail is carried curved or curled over theback

TEMPERAMENT WITH OTHER PETS AND TRAINING



primitivedogs.com Ok, now you know I’m not Japanese :)The _American Akita_ is often calm and quite, but that doesn’t meanit won’t bark. On the contrary, it can be as loud as every otherdog, but it’s _NOT PRONE TO EXCESSIVE BARKING_. Besides, _this dogcan literally mutter using various sorts of grunting and mumblingvocalizations_, which can be quite funny and amusing :) However,things are not so bright when it comes to other dogs and pets. The_Akita_ is after all a HEAVY AND POWERFUL DOG FULL OF DIGNITY, whowon’t hesitate to confront anything. This behavior is not surprisingat all since _Akita dogs_ have been, after all, _USED FOR HUNTING ANDFIGHTING_ in some places. He usually tends to be _very dominant withother dogs_, which can lead to aggressive behavior, especially, withdogs of the same sex. Also, _American Akita_ should be kept away fromsmall pets like cats since it has a _strong prey drive,_ and willgladly chase and kill them. So, it is mandatory to _socialize andtrain your dog in obedience as soon as you bring him home_.The _American Akita_ demands a FIRM AND VERY DOMINANT LEADER, who isable to submit this extremely proud dog. Otherwise, your _Akita_ willtry to take over control, which is something you want to avoid. It isthe reason this breed is _NOT RECOMMENDED FOR THE NOVICE OWNERS_. Thebest way to train a _Great Japanese Dog_ is through the use of_POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT TECHNIQUES_. _Any use of force or bullying isabsolutely unacceptable_. This way only your _Akita_ will respect andobey you. _You should be very patient, persistent, and consistent withthe training_ since this dog is definitely NOT EASY TO TRAIN. Althoughhighly intelligent and able to easily learn every command, the _Akita_is very hard to get invested into training and be focused for a longerperiod of time. Also, it is important to know that _American AkitaMUST BE TRAINED BY ITS OWNER ONLY_! The reason for that is that thisdog usually CREATES A STRONG BOND WITH ITS OWNER and thus won’t
tolerate any other trainer.

FOREQUARTERS AND HINDQUARTERS



Forequarters: : Forequarters are always in balance with thehindquarters. Forequarters are well angulated with well-laid-backshoulder blades. Shoulder blades are approximately equal in length tothe upper arm and forearm.Elbows: Elbows are close to the body. The point of the elbows isapproximately half the dog’s height at the withersForelegs: American Akita:Frontal View: Straight, of good muscle, somewhat heavy bone, andparallel to one another.Side View: The forelimbs appear straight with strong pasterns.Japanese Akita:Frontal View: Straight, of good muscle, moderate bone, and parallel toone another.Side View: The forelimbs appear straight with strong pasternsPasterns: Never weak or brokenHindquarters: American Akita: Upper thigh and lower thigh are equalin length, strong, sturdy, of somewhat heavy bone, and well-muscled.Rear View: When viewed from the rear, the rear pasterns are parallelto one another.Side View: Good angulation will allow the rear toes to align with thepoint of the rump, or within one to two paw-lengths behind the pointof the rump, with the rear pasterns remaining perpendicular to theground and parallel to one another.Japanese Akita: Upper thigh and lower thigh are equal in length,strong, sturdy, of moderate bone, and well-muscled.Rear View: When viewed from the rear, the rear pasterns are parallelto one another.Side View: Good angulation will allow the rear toes to align with thepoint of the rump, or within one paw-length behind the point of therump, with the rear pasterns remaining perpendicular to the ground andparallel to one another.Stifle Joint: Well-angulated with a good bend to well let-down rearpasternsAngulations: Angulation of hindquarters is always in balance withangulation of forequartersFeet: Oval to round, compact, with well-arched toes and tough pads

COAT



Skin: American Akita: The skin is well-fitted, pliant, neverappearing saggy or loose. It should allow for some flexibility withoutobscuring the outline of the dog.Japanese Akita: The skin is tightly fitted throughoutCoat Type: Harsh, straight, weather-resistant outer coat with a soft,dense undercoat. Hair on head, ears, and lower legs is shorter. Hairon withers and rump slightly longer (approximately two inches). Hairon tail is longest and most profuse. Never with profuse ruff orfeatheringCoat Color or Pattern: American Akita: CKC recognizes two colorvarieties of the American Akita breed: the standard color andnonstandard color variety.Standard coat color variety: Any solid color ranging from lightsilvery cream, red, or dark brownish red, all with or without blackmask (called fawn). Various shades of brindle, ranging from sparselight brindle, to medium brindle, to heavy or reversed brindle.Various shades of sabeling ranging from light sabeling (with blackoverlay) to dark sabeling or seal, all with silver, cream, or redundercoat, all with silver or black overlay, solid colors black, allwith or without white markings covering less than one-third of thebody (pinto), markings on the head and less than one-third of the body(called hooded), solid white, or white with silver, cream, red,silver, or black overlay. All with or without white markings (urajiroor sesame), all with or without black mask and mask extension overlay.Nonstandard coat color variety: Liver, blue, silver, Isabella solids,sables, brindles, fawns; all with or without white points (urajiro) orcreams or tans with the non-standard colored masks and mask extensions(fawn), overlays with listed non-standard colors.Japanese Akita: Black, goma sesame (black sable with white points),red sesame (red clear sable with white points), brindle, and solidwhite. All colors must have urajiro (white points). White patches arenot permissible.

TEMPERAMENT



The American Akita has a docile temperament and is known for beingintelligent and fearless. While this breed is typically a pack leader,it is extremely affectionate when part of a human family. However, itis essential to establish dominance over the American Akita at anearly stage and follow strict training to prevent the breed frombecoming aggressive when confronted with other dogs. All of themembers of a family including children will need to assert authorityover the American Akita so that it quickly learns its place in thepack and does not try to take control. Although the breed likes tovocalise, it does not bark excessively.

MOVEMENT



American Akita: Powerful, brisk, energetic, effortless, efficient,agile, and resilient. The characteristics of healthy structure areevident: when moving away, the forelegs and rear pasterns shouldremain parallel to one another. When viewing movement from the front,the forelegs should remain parallel, with elbows and paws movingneither moving in nor out. From the rear, the back pads should bevisible when the rear legs are extended. As speed increases, theforelimbs and hindlimbs will converge to the center line of gravity.From the side, the topline should remain firm and level. Good reach ofmovement in the front allows the forepaw to extend out in a line withthe nose. The width between the forefeet when extended should beapproximately equal to the width between the hindfeet when extended,indicating balance, good reach, and good drive. Dogs that exhibit anysign of breathing or locomotive difficulty shall be disqualified fromthe show ring. Japanese Akita: Powerful, brisk, energetic, effortless,efficient, agile, and resilient. The characteristics of healthystructure are evident: when moving away, the forelegs and rearpasterns should remain parallel to one another. When viewing movementfrom the front, the forelegs should remain parallel, with elbows andpaws moving neither in nor out. From the rear, the back pads should bevisible when the rear legs are extended. As speed increases, theforelimbs and hindlimbs will converge to the center line of gravity.From the side, the topline should remain firm and level. Good reach ofmovement in the front allows the forepaw to extend out in a line withthe nose. The width between the forefeet when extended should beapproximately equal to the width between the hindfeet when extended,indicating balance, good reach, and good drive. Dogs that exhibit anysign of breathing or locomotive difficulty shall be disqualified fromthe show ring.

TEMPERAMENT



American Akita: The Akita is dignified and an independent thinker. Henobly keeps watch of all that he surveys and deems to be “his”property. Fiercely loyal and courageous, he makes an excellentcompanion and watch dog. The American Akita was once notoriously knownas the Japanese Fighting Akita because it was developed from Akitastrains that were used in the dog-fighting rings. While breeding fortolerance and acceptance of people and other dogs has been one of theimprovements that Akita breeders have strived for, some individualsmay be prone to intraspecific and same-sex aggression if earlysocialization and obedience are not implemented. The Akita is animmensely intelligent breed, so long as the subject he is being taughtinterests him. Otherwise, he can become disinterested in a task, whatmany people consider “stubborn.” Keeping tasks and activitiesinteresting, motivating, and engaging is certain to gain his attentionand compliance. While devoted and loyal to his people, he can benotoriously intolerant toward other dogs and animals, possiblydisplaying indifference or disinterest toward strangers as well. Anyunprovoked aggressive or fearful behavior toward people is incorrectfor this breed. Japanese Akita: The Japanese Akita is a docile,self-composed, receptive, and devoted dog breed. He is dignified andan independent thinker. He nobly keeps watch of all that he surveysand deems to be “his” property. Fiercely loyal and courageous, hemakes an excellent companion and watch dog. While breeding fortolerance and acceptance of people and other dogs has been one of theimprovements that Akita breeders have strived for, some individualsmay be prone to intraspecific and same-sex aggression if earlysocialization and obedience is not implemented. The Akita is animmensely intelligent breed, so long as the subject he is being taughtinterests him. Otherwise, he can become disinterested in a task, whatmany people consider “stubborn.” Keeping tasks and activitiesinteresting, motivating, and engaging is certain to gain his attentionand compliance. While devoted and loyal to his people, he can benotoriously intolerant toward other dogs and animals, possiblydisplaying indifference or disinterest toward strangers as well. Anyunprovoked aggressive or fearful behavior toward people is incorrectfor this breed.

PERSONALITY



The Akita Inu is an independent dog. This causes it to become stubbornat times. It is wary of strangers. It generally prefers to be given ajob to do. It is loyal and protective, but its aloofness withstrangers can sometimes become troublesome. The American Akita, likethe Akita Inu, does not do well with other smaller pets. It does,however, get along with other dogs of the opposite sex. Same sex dogssometimes will have problems. Like the Akita Inu, the Akita isprotective and loyal, but not as suspicious of strangers, especiallyif they are properly invited into the household. As a general safetyprecaution, both breeds should always be supervised around childrenand other pets.By Camira Bailey-------------------------





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