Characteristics of Akitas

Akitas are sizable working dogs that come from the Land of the Rising Sun. These spitz canines are highly celebrated in Japan, where they have a long past in hunting, often of bears and elk. Akitas today are beloved companion animals, and many of them still have "jobs," whether in law enforcement or helpig people with eyesight impairments navigate their environment.


Akita Basic Information

Akitas are big and majestic canines, with heights of 23 to 28 inches at the shoulder. Male Akitas are usually a little taller than the females. They weigh, on average, between 65 and 130 pounds; just as with height, males usually are heftier than females. Akitas have double coats that exist in all colors. Many Akitas are brownish with striping in other shades, some are totally white and others feature speckled coloration. In Japan, the beloved pooches are frequently associated with strong fortune, longevity and physical soundness.


Akitas often exhibit self-sufficient behaviors. They are not particularly clingy or needy dogs. At the same time, they are relatively tranquil and quiet animals. It isn't common for them to bark without having a reason. Overly exuberant and noisy behavior just isn't usually a big thing to them.

Tough Guys

Akitas sometimes display dominant behavioral patterns to those around them, including their owners. This frequently results in lack of obedience and following of commands and is a common consequence of inadequate training or perhaps training gone wrong. These tough guys sometimes perceive themselves as running the show. If an Akita demands to always walk ahead of you or barks loudly to get you to do something for him, he's probably acting dominantly. Thankfully, this behavior is nothing that training and rectification cannot change, whether you go about it yourself or seek the expertise of a doggie trainer.


Vigilant, watchdog-style behaviors are common in the Akita world. It often is innate for Akitas to carefully look over their home turf. If an Akita seems especially vigilant and wary of everything he hears and sees, he's just being an Akita. Because of this aspect of the breed's behavior, Akitas often are extremely cautious around people they've never encountered. If an Akita behaves in an unusually cool manner around house guests, it usually means he's just being protective.

Love for Family

Where the people in their lives are concerned, Akitas are usually affectionate and unwavering creatures. They tend to cherish those close to them, and often go out of their way to defend and look out for them. This sometimes can even manifest in fierce behavior around strange canines, however. Due to this possibility, it is vital to always supervise Akitas around other animals.


For safety purposes, always carefully monitor Akitas in the presence of young children. Akitas tend to be laid-back and mellow dogs, but they can get excited when the mood strikes. Even if your Akita is the sweetest little guy on the planet -- which he probably is -- caution is always a smart idea.

By Naomi Millburn


About the Author
Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.