The Akita Shepherd is not a purebred dog breed and thus it is not recognize by any national kennel club. It is a crossbreed, or designer dog breed if you wish, which means it is a mix of two purebred dogs, in this case, of a German Shepherd and Akita. The Akita Shepherd is sometimes also nicknamed as Shepkita.
2) Working dog
Most Akita Shepherds are companion dogs, but after its parents, this is very hard working and strong dog breed that is capable of serving many different purposes. These dogs are typically courageous and alert, so they can make very good protectors and guards. If they inherit more from the Akita, they can also make excellent hunting companions. Overall, this is very versatile breed that likes to work, and even if they are living the life of spoiled companion pet, they will love to have some kind of a fake job in their life, such as task oriented playtimes, fun training sessions or some dog sport.
The Akita Shepherd is not a dog for everyone, as they need good early socialization and training, quite a lot of exercise and outdoor times, but if the owner have some previous experiences with dogs and is ready to invest some time and energy into its new dog, than the Akita Shepherd can be just extraordinary loyal and devoted companion dog. These dogs are known as lively, playful and smart, but also quite independent, alert and protective. They can live with other dogs, especially if socialized from the puppyhood and the Akita Shepherd can be a great playful partner for older kids, but of course, you should never leave any dog breed with a very young child unsupervised.
Both parent breeds, the German Shepherd and Akita, are known for alertness and most Akita Shepherd are alert and reserved with strangers as well. It typically take some time before Akita Shepherd accepts a complete stranger as a friend. But they should definitely not be agressive towards anyone without a reason. They are just not overly affectionate towards people they dont know.
Just like with any other crossbreed, even the appearance of Akita Shepherd is unpredictable, as some of them will look more like German Shepherds and others more like Akitas, but majority of Akita Shepherds have narrow muzzle, small-ish head with pointed ears, thick coat, broad chest, brown eyes and black nose, sturdy forequarters and relatively big paws. Very often, these dogs have a spitz like tail, which curls upwards and has a plush coating. But again, it is impossible to predict the exact appearance of your new Akita Shepherd puppy.
The Akita Shepherd is a result of crossing two relatively large, muscular and athletic dogs and the height is typically between 22-25 inch, which is 55-64 cm and weight is usually between 60-85 lbs which is 27-39 kg. Females are typically little bit smaller than males.
7) Coat and color
The coat of Akita Shepherd is very dense and thick and it is very practical for working outside for long hours. Akita Shepherds can fare well in chillier weather, thanks to their fluffy double coats. Akita Shepherds coats are often a mix of their German Shepherd and Akita parents' coats and colors. Commonly you can find these dogs in brindle, red, gray, brown, black, sable, white or silver and the coat can be both, solid or mixed.
The grooming of Akita Shepherd is not hard, but it is important to know that they do shed quite a lot all year long and that they will seasonally blow out their coat. To minimize the shedding and to keep the coat in best condition, regular frequent brushing is recommended. No other grooming needs are necessary. Just like with any other breed, you should regularly check their eyes, ears, nails and teeth and clip them or clean them if needed.
As a rather new crossbreed, the Akita Shepherd does not have very long history and it is more interesting to look at history of its parent breeds. The German Shepherd is also rather younger breed, that originated in 1800s in Germany as a sheep herder, but Germans quickly recognized the breeds intelligence, versatility and trainability and started using this dog for military and police work or for guarding. On the other hand, the Akita is an ancient breed from Japan where it was mostly used for hunting medium and large game such as elks or boars.
The Akita Shepherd has an average lifespan around 12 years and as a crossbreed, it is predisposed to some of the same conditions that the German Shepherd and Akita also face. Most Akita Shepherds are rather healthy dogs, but they may suffer from hip and elbow dysplasia, bloating, congenital heart deffect, some allergies or eye problems.