Who doesn’t remember the dog and the film Hachi? If you’ve ever seen it, you were probably mesmerized by the unique-looking, intelligent dog that was featured so prominently in that film. The question is, what kind of dog was it? More importantly, what is this particular breed like, and is it the best dog breed for you?
The Akita Breed
The dog that was featured in that particular film was an Akita, one of the most revered Japanese breeds to ever exist. In fact, these dogs were bred to protect the Royal Japanese Family and they have been bred for that particular reason for centuries. The dog looks strong because it is. They also possess a remarkable level of intelligence that allows them to gain a clear advantage over many other dog breeds. There are many questions that you may have about the Akita, especially with regard to its overall personality and demeanor. On the other hand, perhaps you’ve never even heard of an Akita before. It’s much more likely that you have heard things about them that make you apprehensive about being around them. The good news is that you have come to the right place to find out factual information about this unique breed as opposed to just listening to hearsay.
A Breed Like No Other
There is no doubt that these dogs are extremely unique. After all, any dog that has been bred with the intention of protecting the Japanese Royal Family has to be special. These dogs are large in size, intelligent, and perfectly capable of holding their own against various threats. As you might have guessed, that’s precisely what they were bred to do. The Akita is not a breed that was originally intended to spend a lot of time around people as a pet. Instead, the dog was bred to serve as a guard dog that is always on duty. Obviously, this can make it rather difficult for the dog to differentiate between the times when it needs to be on guard and when it can be more relaxed. This has caused many people to fear the breed. Even individuals that are accustomed to having large dogs are often apprehensive about getting an Akita.
Akita Mixed Breeds
Despite fears within the community of dog breeders, there is a number who have started breeding Akita mixes. There are many different breeds that are frequently utilized for this purpose. For example, some breeders might choose a German Shepherd Akita mix. Others prefer the Golden Retriever Akita mix. In reality, it’s possible to crossbreed the Akita as with many other breeds of dogs ranging from Border Collies to Huskies, the Husky Akita mix being a popular one. The question is, what is the breeder trying to accomplish, and is the owner capable of handling that particular dog?
It’s important to note that Akitas can sometimes be aggressive, especially if they haven’t been properly trained or socialized. Therefore, it can be rather challenging to mix a breed like this with other dogs who also have a reputation for being unruly without firm guidance. While it’s certainly possible to breed an Akita with a German Shepherd, it takes an experienced dog owner to handle such a breed. Both breeds are extremely intelligent, but both were bred to be guard dogs in one capacity or another. It doesn’t mean that the end result is going to be a vicious dog, but it does mean that the particular dog in question should only be handled by someone who has a great deal of experience with large dogs. It’s also crucial that any such dog be well trained and that the training is reinforced on a regular basis.
If breeding an Akita and a German Shepherd is likely to result in a dog that needs a firm hand, what happens when an Akita is bred with a Golden Retriever? This can be one of the most effective ways to get the best qualities of both breeds. The intelligence and protectiveness of the Akita typically shine through while the gentle nature of the Golden Retriever tempers the potential for aggression in most cases. That is one reason why some breeders have turned to mix Akitas with other breeds of dogs. It’s all with the hopes of getting that perfect dog that possesses the best qualities of both breeds, depending on the particular breed in question.
How Do Breeders Ensure a Good Match?
As previously mentioned, it all comes down to carefully choosing the qualities commonly associated with each breed. There is no doubt that Akitas are smart, loyal dogs who will protect you until their very last breath. However, they have a tendency to be extremely headstrong and they can sometimes display signs of aggression, especially if they haven’t been trained properly. Make no mistake about it, even a well-trained Akita may lose his patience after a relatively short time. Remember, these dogs have a tendency to want to do things their way. They can be stubborn and that can make it difficult to train them to stop engaging in bad habits like lunging toward other dogs or even people.
The idea is to find a breed that is comparable in size that can help temper some of those qualities. That’s one of the reasons that Golden Retrievers are such a good match. They don’t tend to be aggressive in the slightest, yet they are intelligent in the extreme. Golden Retrievers have a reputation for being great family dogs and they’re typically very loving. They also win the award for patience. A Golden Retriever will typically follow the commands they’ve learned throughout training, even when all kinds of distractions are present. As a result, they are usually good candidates for cross-breeding with Akitas to get the Golden Akita. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule. In this way, dogs are not so different from people. They each have their own unique personalities and they don’t always fit into a tiny little box. Therefore, it’s important that breeders select individual dogs that have good personality characteristics when choosing which dogs to crossbreed.
Is the Golden Retriever the only breed that can be used for cross breeding with an Akita? Of course not. As previously mentioned, it all comes down to considering which qualities are desired and then carefully choosing both the breed and the individual dogs. While no one in their right mind would breed an Akita with a Chihuahua because of the enormous size difference, virtually any dog of comparable size will work, provided that the other dog has a good temperament. However, it’s not advised to breed an Akita with an, especially aggressive dog, as this could potentially create a litter of puppies that are very difficult to train in the long run.
Training the Akita Mixed Breed
Effective training of an Akita mixed breed isn’t really different from training any other breed of dog. First of all, it requires finding someone that possesses the necessary skills to effectively train a dog and then sticking to that particular schedule. It’s also important that you as the owner do your part. It’s not enough to merely take your dog to an obedience class once a week and then let him do whatever he wants the rest of the time. If that’s what’s happening, you’re just wasting your money and you’re going to end up being frustrated in the long run. Dogs need repetition. Even a dog that has already learned all of the basic obedience commands needs to repeat those commands on a regular basis. Otherwise, they tend to stop paying attention to your commands in their entirety. Therefore, it’s up to you to spend time working with your Akita mix in order to make sure that he understands what you want and that he follows your direction.
What About Health Concerns?
Typically, Akitas have a tendency to be relatively healthy. However, other dogs that they are bred with may not be so lucky. For example, the German Shepherd routinely suffers from a disease called hip dysplasia, something that makes it very painful for the animal to walk. In extreme cases, it becomes all but impossible for the German Shepherd with hip dysplasia to use his back legs. By the same token, Golden Retrievers are predisposed to cancer. This is another important aspect that should be taken into consideration when determining which breed of dog will be used for an Akita mix. The idea is to get a dog that is healthy and possesses good longevity as opposed to making chronic conditions worse.
At the end of the day, it’s important to learn something about the Akita. If you’re thinking about getting one, try to find a way to spend time with one so that you can see what their personality is like firsthand. If you’re thinking about getting an Akita mixed breed, see if you can find someone else who has a dog of the same breed and ask them questions about anything that concerns you. By taking time to do a little bit of homework, you’re ensuring that you and your Akita mix will be happy for years to come.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Akita mixes aggressive?
Depending on the breed in question, it’s possible that Akita mixes could potentially be aggressive. That said, there are no guarantees that the dog will be aggressive, either. A great deal of a dog’s temperament comes down to the way he’s treated and how he has been trained. It isn’t all dependent on breeding. In fact, virtually any breed of dog can be taught to be aggressive. By the same token, almost any breed of dog can be taught not to act that way.
Is an Akita a good family dog?
Traditionally, Akitas have a habit of not getting along well with other dogs. This is especially true if your Akita is a male and you have another male dog in the house. Whether or not an Akita would be a good fit with children largely depends on the individual dog in question. Some of the more well-trained Akitas do fine with kids while others simply can’t tolerate them. Almost any dog that is well trained can make an acceptable family dog. However, there are many other breeds of dogs that fit the bill for being a good family dog far better than the Akita. Remember, Akitas were bred to protect people. They were not bred to be family pets. Many of them reflect those tendencies, so it’s important to get to know the individual dog in question before bringing it home into a family setting.
Why is Akita banned?
First of all, it’s important to note that the Akita is not banned in all places. In the United States, there are a number of cities that place bans on Akitas, Pitbulls, Rottweilers, and German Shepherds. Depending on where you live, there may be bans on virtually any extra-large dog breed. Does that mean that Akitas are so aggressive they simply cannot be trained? No, it doesn’t. These dogs have a tendency to be more aggressive than other breeds as a whole. However, that doesn’t mean that every dog will be aggressive just because it’s an Akita. Again, proper training and socialization are the keys. If you’re worried about whether or not an Akita is banned in the area where you live, find out from local authorities whether or not you can even consider getting such a dog.
Are Akitas dangerous?
Just like any dog, the Akita can be dangerous under the right circumstances. Even the gentlest, sweetest dog will lash out if you put her in a corner and make her feel like she has no way out. Akitas are no different. As a breed, the Akita has a reputation for being more aggressive than some other breeds and they’re not always easy dogs to train. It was bred to be brave, loyal, and to protect other individuals. This breed of dog tends to protect people to the point of sacrificing their own lives in order to do so. However, they’re typically not thrilled with the idea of being constantly petted or being expected to engage in other activities that many family dogs routinely participate in. As such, your Akita may not want to play fetch. He may not want to be bothered at all unless you’re giving him food or water. The more important thing to remember is that every dog has a unique personality. If you want to get an Akita, get to know the particular dog in question before bringing him home. You may be pleasantly surprised.