Akita Inu Washington State

History of the Akita Inu

December 20, 2013 – 12:36 pm

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The Akita is an ancient breed of spitz-type dog from the mountains of northern Japan. Its ancestor was the Matagi dog of Akita prefecture, in the north of Honshu, which was used to track and hold Asian black bears, wild boar, and deer. The Japanese Akita Inu (inu meaning "dog") is a handsome, clever, independent dog that may bond strongly with its master, but distrusts strangers. It has a long and interesting history.

Matagi Ancestors:

The Matagi dog first emerged as a hunting dog during the Tokugawa period (1603 - 1868). It was used as a sporting companion by the elites - the shogun and various daimyo. In 1783, a terrible famine gripped northern Japan, leading to widespread unrest and rioting. Wealthy families began to use their Matagi Inu as guard dogs to protect their food stores and other valuables, as well as hunting dogs. As a result, they began to select larger, more commanding looking dogs for breeding.

By the late Tokugawa era, a breed of imposing dogs called Odate after the capital of the Akita region had emerged. These were the first examples of what we today call the Akita dog. They were popular as fighting dogs. Dog fighting became a common public spectacle during this era, with purpose-built arenas springing up in various towns. Besides the Odate Inu, the Tosa Inu from Kochi prefecture on the southern Shikoku Island were famed fighters.

After Japan opened to foreign trade in the wake of Commodore Perry's visits, the Tosa dogs were crossed with larger European breeds such as mastiffs, Great Danes, and St. Bernards. These cross-bred Tosa dogs overmatched the pure Odates in fights, so during the Meiji Era, some owners began to mix the Odate dogs with foreign breeds as well. The resulting dogs lost some of the classic Akita characteristics - the curled tail and the perked ears.

As the Meiji Era progressed, many Japanese elites rejected indigenous dogs altogether, preferring to own pure-bred European dogs as status symbols. Soon, Japanese breeds were targeted for extermination.

Source: asianhistory.about.com


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Any Shiba Inu owners?

I've googled info and read a lot but I was hoping to get some feedback from a Shiba Inu owner. We went to a shelter this evening to look at, what was listed as, an Akita but after seeing her I'm pretty sure the she's a Shiba mix.
To make a long story short, they are spaying her tomorrow so I will be bringing her home tomorrow evening. Is there anything in particular about the breed that I need to know? Anything to watch out for? Any common issues? We have an Akita already and it sounds like the Shiba temperament may be similar to the Akita's in a lot of ways.
Any advice that you can offer will be greatly appreciated.

Temperament

I wonder if the shiba and akita and chow have similar genetic codes when it comes to their personalities
my akitas were aloof to anyone outside of the family and people they bonded with, especially those first two years
the chow i'm fostering has so many similar characteristics
he is so respectful
such a gentleman
but i could see that his personality is similar to my akitas
with them our relationships were based on a mutual respect
even though other dogs respond to this
with akitas it was the basis for everything
if the shiba inu is at



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  • Avatar Holly The real Hachiko. Akita or Shiba Inu?
    Nov 16, 2010 by Holly | Posted in Dogs

    Ok, so I was at my local pet expo and was showing my mother the Shiba Inu dogs. I told her how the puppy from the movie "Hachi" was actually a Shiba playing an Akita.
    Anyways, the breeder heard me say that and I e …d better or something. I've looked it up and found nothing to support her theory. So, my question is, has anyone else heard something like this? WAS Hachiko in fact a Shiba?

    I might add, I love both breeds.

    • Hachiko was an Akita. No Japanese would mistake the two breeds.

      In the Richard Gere movie, the puppy did appear to be a Shiba Inu puppy, which I thought was ridiculous; surely they could have found an Akita puppy to film that one scene.