Kai Ken Dog Breed Facts & Information

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Adopting a dog is a huge commitment. Before settling on a breed, you need to find the right one for you. One that fits your lifestyle! Details like size, energy level, and personality can really affect not only your home but the happiness of your new pet.

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If you have the right kind of life for an intelligent, loyal, and at times reserved dog, then you might want to consider the Kai Ken.

The Basics

The Kai Ken is a medium-sized dog with an adult weighing 30-50 pounds, according to the American Kennel Club. An adult Kai Ken can be up to 22 inches tall and their life expectancy of the Kai Ken is 15 years.


The History

The Kai ken is a native of Japan. The Kai was wild and living in the mountains in the province of Kai, which is on an island. The Kai were geographically isolated by mountains and is therefore believed to be the purest of all Japanese breeds.

Traditional writings describe the Kai as a natural hunter, and they have been known to swim and climb trees in pursuit of their prey. They were first used by the hunters for tracking deer and wild boars.


The Kai was recognized in 1934 by the Japanese Kennel Club. An interesting fact is that because of the language barrier there is very limited information on the Kai dog.

The Kai ken is in the working class breed group alongside the golden retriever, Labrador retriever, and the Siberian husky.

The Personality

The Kai is highly intelligent and learns quickly. They are similar to other Japanese breeds in the fact that they are highly intelligent, however, they are not as independent and are more willing to please their owners.


In Japan, the Kai is highly regarded. The Japanese describe the Kai as a trustworthy guardian and extremely devoted to his master. There is a high regard and admiration for this breed.

Some say a Kai will lay down its life to protect its master. In Japan, the Kai is very loved and protected. The Kai is considered a "natural treasure" in Japan.


The Kai ken is a sturdy, medium-sized dog with a wedge-shaped head and a tapered muzzle. They have muscular shoulders and thighs and their sturdy legs are quite powerful. They Kai ken has a thick tail and a double coat.


Kai Ken essential facts:

  • Personality: Athletic, intelligent, friendly
  • Energy Level: Active
  • Barking Level: Barks when necessary
  • Shedding: Seasonal
  • Grooming: Occasional
  • Good with Children: Yes
  • Trainability: Eager to please
  • Height: 22 inches
  • Weight: 30-50 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 15 years

Interested in other breeds? Check out this article about German Shepherds and this list of different working dogs.