FCI-Standard N° 344/14.02.2001 / GB
GREAT JAPANESE DOG
PUBLICATION OF THE ORIGINAL VALID STANDARD :
: Group 2
: Pinscher and Schnauzer type,
Molossoid breeds, Swiss Mountain and
BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY
the beginning, the history of the American
Akitas is similar to the history of Japanese Akitas. Since 1603, in the
Akita region, Akita Matagis (medium-sized bear-hunting dogs) were used as
fighting dogs. From 1868, Akita Matagis were crossbred with Tosas and
Mastiffs. Consequently, the size of Akitas increased, but characteristics
associated with Spitz type were lost. In 1908 dog fighting was prohibited,
but Akitas were nevertheless preserved and improved as a large Japanese
breed. As a result, nine superior examples of Akitas were designated as
« Natural Monuments » in 1931.
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
German Shepherd 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
3) Shepherd Akitas. This created a very
confusing situation in the breed.
restoration process of the pure breed after the war, Kongo-Go of the Dewa
line enjoyed a temporary, but tremendous popularity. Many Akitas of the
Dewa line, which exhibited characteristics of the Mastiff and German
Shepherd influence, were brought back to the United States by members of the
The Akitas from the Dewa line, intelligent and capable of
adapting to different environments, fascinated breeders in the United States
and the line was developed with increasing number of breeders and a great
rise in popularity.
Club of America was established in 1956 and the American Kennel Club (AKC)
accepted the breed (inscription into the stud book and regular show status)
in October 1972. However, at this time, the AKC and the JKC (Japan Kennel
Club) did not have reciprocal agreements for recognizing each other’s
pedigrees and therefore the door was closed for the introduction of the new
bloodlines from Japan. Consequently, Akitas in the United States became
considerably different from those in Japan, the country of origin. They
developed as a type unique in the United States, with characteristics and
type unchanged since 1955. This is in sharp contrast with Akitas in Japan
which were crossbred with Matagi Akitas for the purpose of restoring the
original pure breed.
Large-sized dog, sturdily built, well balanced, with much substance and
heavy bone. The broad head, forming a blut triangle, with deep muzzle,
relatively small eyes and erect ears carried forward almost in line with
back of neck, is characteristic of the breed.
ratio of height at withers to length of body is 9 to 10 in males and 9 to 11
depth of the chest measures one-half of the height of the dog at withers.
distance from tip of nose to stop corresponds to the distance from stop to occiput as 2 to 3.
BEHAVIOUR / TEMPERAMENT
Friendly, alert, responsive, dignified, docile and courageous.
Massive, but in balance with the body, free of wrinkles when at ease. Head
forms a blunt triangle when viewed from above.
Flat and broad between ears. A shallow furrow extends well up on forehead.
Stop : Well defined, but not too
Nose : Broad and black. Slight
and diffuse lack of pigment on nose is acceptable in white dogs only
but black is always preferred.
Muzzle : Broad, deep and full.
Lips : Black. Not
Jaws not rounded, but blunt, strong and powerful. Teeth strong with regular
and full dentition; scissor bite preferred, but level bite acceptable.
relatively small, not prominent, almost triangular in shape.
Eye rims black and tight.
Strongly erect and small in relation to the rest of the head. If the ear is
folded forward for measuring length, tip will touch upper eye rim. Ears are
triangular, slightly rounded at tip, wide at base, not set too low. Viewed
from the side, the ears are angled forward over the eyes following
the line of the neck.
and muscular with minimal dewlap, comparatively short, widening gradually
toward shoulders. A pronounced crest blends harmoniously into the base of
Longer than high. Skin not too thin, neither too tight nor too loose.
Wide and deep. Ribs well sprung with well developed brisket.
and well furnished with hair, set high and carried over back or against
flank in a three-quarter, full, or double curl, always dipping to or below
level of back. On a three-quarter curl, tip drops well down on flank. Root
large and strong.
terminal bone of tail reaches hock when let or puled down. Hair coarse,
straight and dense, with no appearance of a plume.
Forelegs heavy-boned and straight as viewed from front.
Strong and powerful with moderate layback.
Slightly sloping forward in an angle of approximately 15° to the vertical.
: Strongly muscled, width and bone comparable to forequarters. Dewclaws on
hind legs customarily removed.
Stifles : Moderately bent
Hock joints : Well let down, turning neither in nor out.
: Straight, cat feet, well knuckled up with thick pads.
GAIT / MOVEMENT
: Powerful, covering ground with moderate reach and drive. Hindlegs move
in line with forelegs. Back remaining strong, firm and level.
: Double-coat. Undercoat thick, soft, dense and shorter than outer coat. Outer coat straight, harsh/stiff and standing somewhat off body. Hair on
head, lower legs and ears short. Length of hair at withers and croup
approximately 5 cm, which is slightly longer than on rest of body, except
tail, where coat is longest and most profuse.
: Any colour like red, fawn, white, etc; or even pinto and brindle. Colours
are brilliant and clear, and markings are well balanced, with or without
mask or blaze. White dogs (solid in colour) have no mask. Pinto have a
white ground colour with large, evenly placed patches covering head and more
than one-third of body. Undercoat may have a different colour from the
Height at withers
: For males : 66 to 71 cm (26-28 inches), for bitches : 61 to 66 cm (24-26 inches).
: 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
Narrow or snipey
Any missing tooth
(except 2 of the PM1 and/or M3)
Blue or black
In or out at
Any indication of
ruff or feathering.
· Totally unpigmented nose. A nose with unpigmented
areas (Butterfly nose).
Drop, hanging or
Dogs under 63,5
cm (25 inches), bitches under
58,5 cm (23 inches).
: Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended
into the scrotum.