The Akita can trace its roots to northern Japan’s mountainous regions. However, it is important to note that the name can refer to two kinds of dogs. One would be the Japanese Akita while the other would be the American Akita. Generally speaking, these dogs are not considered to be the same dog breed. The American Kennel Club is rather unusual in that it considered these dogs to be different varieties of the same dog breed for quite some time. As such, it is a good idea for interested individuals to make sure that they know whether people are talking about Japanese Akitas or American Akitas when they seek out these dogs. In any case, the Akita started out as a hunter. Given the size of these dogs, it should come as no surprise to learn that they were meant to take on bigger prey such as elk, bears, and boars.
Other than that, the Akita is said to have served as personal companions to the samurai from the 1500s to the 1800s, which is notable because the warrior class rather than the noble class were the de facto masters of Japan throughout most of that period. Later, the opening of Japan resulted in these dogs being crossbred with imported dogs, thus causing notable changes in their appearance such as drop ears, loose skin, and straight tails. The Akita returned to its earlier spitz-like appearance through restoration efforts carried out using Matagi dogs as well as Hokkaido dogs. This can be considered one of the major sources of the differences between the Japanese Akita and the American Akita, seeing as how the latter were developed using pre-restoration dogs. Furthermore, this is the reason that the latter is sometimes seen as just a mixed-breed dog rather than a purebred dog in its own right.
Personality-wise, the Akita is not a good choice for first-time dog owners. They are alert, smart, and courageous, which makes sense because hunters are hunters. However, they are also very willful, meaning that they need someone who can take charge. This is particularly important because Akitas can become aggressive if they don’t get the proper training as well as the proper socialization. Even then, these dogs tend to be suspicious of strangers as well as hostile towards other dogs. Still, if interested individuals can work their way through these things, they can count on their Akita to be a very friendly as well as very affectionate animal when it comes to their own family members. Something that a lot of people find very likable.
What Can You Expect to Pay For an Akita?
Buying a purebred dog from a reputable dog breeder is always expensive. However, some purebred dogs tend to be more expensive than others, which makes sense because both the demand and the supply for these animals can see enormous variation from dog breed to dog breed. The Akita is on the more expensive end of things. Buying one of these purebred dogs from a reputable dog breeder can cost $1,000 to $2,500. As mentioned earlier, the Japanese Akita is seen in a more prestigious light than its American counterpart. Thanks to this, interested individuals can count on the former to lean towards the higher end of this range and the latter to lean towards the lower end of this range. There are numerous factors that can influence the price of a purebred dog. For starters, it is safe to say that the price of a purebred dog reflects the costs that have been spent on that same purebred dog.
This is because dog breeders tend to be business owners, meaning that they can’t keep their operations running unless they are making a profit on them. As a result, if interested individuals seek out a lower-priced dog, they should know that there is a very real chance that said animal will have had less training, healthcare, and less comfortable surroundings. Something that can have a huge impact on the dog. In most cases, this shouldn’t be too much of an issue. A lower-priced dog is still very much capable of becoming a loyal, loving companion that will live a happy, health life like its higher-priced counterparts. The issue is when people go too far while seeking out the lowest-priced dogs that can be found out there.
One dog breeder can be more efficient than another dog breeder. As a result, they can spend less on their dogs, which in turn, means that they can sell their dogs for less. However, there are serious limits to how much dog breeders can improve their efficiency without having a direct impact on the well-being of their dogs. If it helps, interested individuals should be familiar with the concept of factory farms. Those facilities don’t exist for the purpose of deliberately causing suffering to their animal inhabitants. Instead, those facilities exist for the purpose of extracting value out of their animal inhabitants as efficiently as possible, with that suffering being considered an acceptable consequence of doing so. The same logic can be found with puppy mills, which churn out purebred dogs at much lower prices than otherwise possible because they are willing to make cuts that have a very negative effect on their dogs that reputable dog breeders will not allow. Something that makes for higher chances of both physical issues and behavioral issues showing up in those dogs, which would be a major trade-off for those who buy them.
Having said that, it is very much possible to buy a lower-priced Akita without seeking out a puppy mill. For starters, it is a good idea to check out a number of dog breeders that offer Akitas. Simply put, different dog breeders offer different prices, so this is a very easy way to find a price that is more in-line with what interested individuals want. Indeed, they might want to check out dog breeders situated at a distance from where they live, which will make it difficult for them to check out their operations but can nonetheless provide them with a better deal. Please note that transportation can mean some serious costs of its own. Moving on, interested individuals might also want to check out dogs that are lower-priced than other dogs for reasons that don’t hurt their chances of being loyal, loving companions that will live happy, healthy lives. Japanese Akitas and American Akitas are quite different from one another, but if people don’t particularly care about those differences, they might want to seek out an American Akita that is being sold at a lower price because it is seen as being more prestigious.
Similarly, Japanese Akitas are supposed to have either red, fawn, sesame, brindle, and white coats, all of which are supposed to have the so-called urajiro color pattern. As a result, if they don’t, it might be possible for interested individuals to buy the dog at a lower price. For comparison, American Akitas are allowed to have any coat color, which makes sense because those additional colors and patterns are supposed to be a product of mixed-breeding. Another factor that might be worth looking into would be the age of the animal. Older dogs tend to sell for less because most people want puppies. Of course, it is possible for some Akitas to be much more expensive than others because of individual factors as well. This can be seen in how those with prestigious backgrounds can go for $3,500 to $5,500, which is a huge jump even when compared with other dog breeds.
If people don’t insist on buying an Akita, they might want to look into other options for getting their hands on one of these dogs. Generally speaking, that means adopting one from either an animal shelter or some similar organization. Price-wise, this is a much better option. At most, interested individuals will be expected to pay a few hundred dollars, most of which will go towards training, healthcare, and other costs that they will need to pay for at some point anyway. However, there are various downsides that will need to be taken into consideration as well. For example, there is no guarantee that they will be able to find a suitable candidate for adoption even if they use online resources that are meant to help out with exactly that because Akitas aren’t the most common dogs around. Similarly, it is very common for dogs to be sent to animal shelters as well as similar organizations because they have some kind of issue, which as mentioned earlier, is a huge concern for this dog breed because they need someone who can offer them the proper discipline.
Still, there are various ways to deal with both of these issues. Akitas aren’t particularly common but they aren’t extremely rare either, so interested individuals should be able to come upon candidates for adoption so long as they are willing to wait as well as continue searching. Furthermore, animal shelters and similar organizations tend to be very upfront about what their dogs are like, so interested individuals should have plenty of time to prepare for them. Other than this, there is the option of looking for someone who is seeking to give away an Akita, which can happen before they decide to give said dog to either an animal shelter or some similar organization. Once again, the cost is low. However, the other issues are if anything, even more severe with this option than with looking for candidates for adoption from such organizations. As such, it isn’t a very practical option unless people are open to waiting for a very long time.
What Are Some Other Costs of Owning an Akita?
Moving on, there are other costs of owning an Akita that interested individuals should take into consideration. For starters, there are a lot of supplies that they are going to need to get ready for their dogs. The cost of these supplies can see enormous variation depending on what people buy as well as where people buy, so much so that the range can go from $245 to $925. Still, the average is apparently $495, which is more reasonable than what the high end of that range might make it seem. Fortunately, a lot of these supplies won’t need to be purchased again and again, so the costs of supplies will fall in subsequent years to $105 to $410.
There are plenty of other costs that need to be considered as well. To name an example, training for an Akita can get quite expensive at about $1,050 to $1,400. Generally speaking, this wouldn’t too important because there are a lot of dog breeds that can do fine even without it. Unfortunately, the Akita is more problematic than a lot of dog breeds because of its willful nature, meaning that this might be something that interested individuals will want to look into. Meanwhile, the healthcare costs for these dogs are much less avoidable. Yes, they are expensive. Unfortunately, if dogs get a serious medical problem without it being caught in time, their healthcare costs can skyrocket within a very short period of time. If dog owners are lucky, those costs will remain within the hundreds of dollars; if dog owners aren’t lucky, well, suffice to say that those costs can hit the thousands of dollars with ease.
As a result, a few hundred dollars on an annual basis for preventative healthcare seem much more reasonable in that context. For the first year of dog ownership, the costs are estimated to be $425 to $855. Subsequent years of dog ownership can cost $475 to $1,025 in this regard. Due to this, it is very common for people to buy pet insurance so that their dog’s healthcare costs will be covered in case something happens. There is an estimate of $565 for pet insurance. The issue is that a dog’s premiums can see quite a bit of range depending on their perceived risk, so interested individuals might want to look into whether there is any way for them to lower their dog’s perceived risk to their insurance company.