Originating from Japan, the Akita is an ancient breed that is believed to have been used for hunting and fighting. Japanese Akitas are only permitted in the show ring with a fawn, red, brindle, white or sesame coat where as the American Akita can be any colour including pinto (black and white). The American Akita also tends to be a large, bear like dog where as some Japanese Akitas can be small and fox like. The breed is a strong willed, independent dog. Loyal to his owner he can be aloof with strangers. The breed can also be aggressive either with other dogs or people and care should be taken to make sure they are well socialised as puppies and well trained to avoid any accidents. Of course no dog should be left unattended with small children but it is particularly important that the Akita is not.
The Akita is not a dog for first time owner. The breed also tends to be intolerant of other dogs so care should be taken not to let them run free in parks or public areas. Akitas can reach up to 70cm in height at the shoulder and can weigh up to 54kg. They have big heads with pointed ears, fairly long muzzles and well balanced muscular bodies. They need up to an hour or more exercise a day and has a life span of up to 12 years.