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Akita Information

KC & FCI Breed Standards

Side-by-Side Comparison


The Kennel Club of England - Utility Group

Akita Breed Standard

March 1994


General Appearance
Large, powerful, alert, with much substance and heavy bone.



Large, broad head, with relatively small eyes and erect ears carried forward in line with back of neck; large, curled tail, in balance with head.



Dignified, courageous, aloof; tends to show dominance over other dogs.


Head and Skull

Large, in balance with body, skull flat, forehead broad, defined stop and clear furrow. Head forms blunt triangle when viewed from above, free from wrinkle. Muzzle broad and strong, cheeks well developed. Nose large and black, bridge straight. Lips tight and black. In white dogs flesh colour pigmentation is permissible on nose and lips. Length from nose to stop is to length from stop to occiput as 2 is to 3.



Relatively small, almond-shaped, clean, moderately set apart and dark brown. Eye rims dark and tight.



Relatively small, thick, triangular, not low set, carried forward


(Updated - July 2004 carried forward in line with the back of the neck when viewed in profile.)


over eyes in line with back of neck, firmly erect. Moderately set apart; slightly rounded at tips.



Jaws strong, with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaws.



Thick and muscular, comparatively short, widening gradually toward shoulders. Pronounced crest blends with back of skull.



Shoulders strong and powerful, moderately laid back. Elbows very tight. Forelegs well boned and straight when viewed from front. Pasterns inclining at approximately 15 degrees.



Longer than high, as 10 is to 9 in males, 11 to 9 in bitches. Chest wide and deep, depth of brisket is one-half height of dog at shoulder. Well developed forechest. Level back, firmly muscled loin, moderate tuck up. Skin pliant but not loose.



Strong and muscular, well developed thighs, moderate turn of stifle. Strong hocks, with only moderate angulation, well let down, turning neither in nor out.


(Updated - July 2004 Strong and muscular with only moderate angulation and turn of stifle. Well developed thighs, strong hocks, well let down turning neither in nor out.)



Thick, well-knuckled, very tight, turning neither in nor out. Pads hard. Nails hard. Dewclaws on hind legs customarily removed.



Large and full, set high, carried over back, full or double curl, always dipping to or below level of back. On a three-quarter curl tail, tip dips down flank. Root large and strong. Hair coarse, straight and full with no appearance of a plume. Sickle or uncurled tail highly undesirable.



Resilient and vigorous with strides of moderate length.


(Updated - July 2004 Vigorous, powerful and fluent with strides of moderate length.)


Back remains firm and level. Hindlegs move in line with front legs, whilst gaiting will single track.



Outer coat coarse, straight, and standing off body. Undercoat soft and dense. Coat at withers and rump is approximately 5 cms (2 ins), slightly longer than on rest of body more profuse on tail. No indication of ruff or feathering.



Any colour including white brindle or pinto. Colours are brilliant and clear. Markings are well defined with or without mask or blaze.



Height at withers: dogs: 66-71 cms (26-28 ins); bitches: 61-66 cms (24-26 ins).


Faults - Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree. (Updated - July 2004 and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.)  Note - Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

F.C.I. - Federation Cynologique Internationale

Publication of Original Valid Akita Breed Standard

March 13, 2001 Companion Dog

Group 5 Spitz & primitive type, Section 5 Asian Spitz & related breeds - Without working trial

ORIGIN : Japan


Historical Summary:  Originally Japanese dogs were small to medium in size and no large breeds existed. Since 1603 in the Akita region, Akita Matagis (medium-sized bear-hunting dogs) were used as fighting dogs. From 1868 Akita Matagis were crossed with Tosas and Mastiffs. Consequently, the size of this breed increased but characteristics associated with Spitz type were lost.


In 1908 dog fighting was prohibited, but this breed was nevertheless preserved and improved as a large Japanese breed. As a result, nine superior examples of this breed were designated as ? Natural Monuments ? in 1931.


During World War II (1939-1945), it was common to use dogs as a source of fur for military garments. The police ordered the capture and confiscation of all dogs other than German Shepherd Dogs used for military purposes. Some fanciers tried to circumvent the order by crossbreeding their dogs with Akita Dogs.


When World War II ended, Akitas had been drastically reduced in number and existed as three distinct types;

1) Matagi Akitas, 2) fighting Akitas, and 3) Shepherd Akitas. This created a very confusing situation in the breed.


During the restoration process of the pure breed after the war., Kongo-go, a dog of the Dewa line, which exhibited characteristics of the Mastiff and Akita


However, sensible learned fanciers did not approve of this type as a proper Japanese breed, so they made efforts to eliminate the strain old foreign breeds by crossbreeding with Matagi Akitas for the purpose of restoring the original pure breed. They succeeded in stabilizing the pure strain of large sized breed as known today.


General Appearance

Large-sized dog, sturdily built, well balanced and with much substance ; secondary sex characteristics strongly marked, with high nobility and dignity in modesty ; constitution tough.


Important Proportions: The ratio of height at withers to length of body ( from the point of the shoulders to the point of the buttock) is 10 : 11, but the body is slightly longer in bitches than in dogs.


Behaviour & Temperament: The temperament is composed, faithful, docile and receptive.


HEAD - Cranial Region:  Skull : The size is in proportion to the body. The forehead is broad, with distinct furrow. No wrinkle.  Stop : Defined.  Facial Region: Nose: Large and black. Slight and diffuse lack of pigment accepted in white dogs only, but black is always preferred.  Muzzle: Moderately long and strong with broad base, tapering but not pointed. Nasal bridge straight.  Jaws/Teeth: Teeth strong with scissor bite.  Lips: Tight.  Cheeks: Moderately developed.  Eyes: Relatively small, almost triangular in shape due to the rising of the outer eye corner, set moderately apart, dark brown : the darker, the better.  Ears: Relatively small, thick, triangular, slightly rounded at tips, set moderately apart, pricked and inclining forward.


Neck: Thick and muscular, without dewlap, in balance with head.


BODY - Back: Straight and strong.  Loin: Broad and muscular.  Chest: Deep, forechest well developed, ribs moderately well sprung.  Belly: Well drawn up.


TAIL: Set on high, thick, carried vigorously curled over back ; the tip nearly reaching hocks when let down.


LIMBS - Forequarters: Shoulders: Moderately sloping and developed.  Elbows: Tight.  Forearms: Straight and heavy-boned.


Hindquarters: Well developed, strong and moderately angulated.


Feet: Thick, round, arched and tight.


Gait: Resilient and powerful movement.


COAT - Hair: Outer coat harsh and straight, undercoat soft and dense ; the withers and the rump are covered with slightly longer hair ; the hair on tail is longer than on the rest of the body.


Colour: Red fawn, sesame (red fawn hairs with black tips), brindle and white. All the above mentioned colours except white must have *urajiro* = whitish coat on the sides of the muzzle, on the cheeks, on the underside of jaw, neck, chest, body and tail and on the inside of the legs.


Size: Height at the withers : Dogs: 67 cm, bitches: 61 cm.  There is a tolerance of 3 cm more or less.


Faults: Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree.  • Bitchy dogs / doggy bitches • Undershot or overshot mouth • Missing teeth • Blue or black spotted tongue • Iris light in colour • Short tail • Shyness


Eliminating Faults: Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.  • Aggresive or overly shy • Ears not pricked • Hanging tail • Long hair (shaggy) • Black Mask • Markings on white ground - N.B. Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.




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