American Akita is a breed of dog originally from Japan where it was bred for hunting and guarding. Dogs of this breed are large in size, yet show great agility, speed and special endurance. One of the distinctive characteristics of the breed is its broad, obtuse triangle-shaped head.
The breed has a large size and a balanced structure. Males can weigh between 44 and 59 kg, while females range between 32 and 45 kg. The height in males is between 66 and 71 cm and in females between 61 and 66 cm. Its life expectancy is 10 to 14 years. It belongs to FCI Group 5, which includes Spitz and primitive type dogs.
Breed history in brief
The origins of the American Akita go back to the Akita Inu, which was bred in Japan for hunting and fighting. After the end of World War II, some American servicemen stationed in Japan transported several dogs to the United States. These dogs were crossed with breeds such as German Shepherd and Great Dane to obtain robust and powerful looking dogs.
As time went by, American Akita developed its own look and behavior that differentiated it from the Akita Inu. For this reason, in 1956, the American Kennel Club recognized American Akita as a breed distinct from the Akita Inu. Today, the breed is still an excellent working dog, but also an affectionate companion animal. Nevertheless, it is a relatively rare breed.
The American Akita is a large-sized dog with an imposing appearance due to its broad and muscular body. Its head is large and broad, in the shape of an obtuse triangle with a strong jaw. The eyes are relatively small and dark in color; and its ears are erect. The tail is strong, shaggy and curled.
The coat of the American Akita is thick and slightly rough, with a dense undercoat that serves as thermal insulation against the cold and differentiates it from the coat of the Akita Inu. The breed can show different colorations such as black, white, brindle and fawn, and sometimes has a black mask.
American Akita dogs are characterized by being imposing and striking, however, they are also friendly and loyal, which makes them excellent companion animals for those who can provide them with the proper attention and training. They also stand out for their agility, endurance and intelligence. They have a dominant character, which is why they can sometimes show some disobedience.
Common health problems
The American Akita breed has a certain disposition to suffer from some diseases or disorders that can affect its health. The most common conditions in this breed are progressive retinal atrophy, hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism, volvulus-gastric dilatation and uveodermatologic syndrome.
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