The Japanese Spitz is a young breed from Japan, where it was developed from different white Spitz dogs, most likely from German Spitz, and probably from White Russian Spitz, American Eskimo and some other small Spitz dogs as well. This breeding started in 1920s and the breed was developed in the 1920s and 1930s and the first breed standard was written and accepted by Japan kennel club after the Second World War.
This is a small dog breed, but different breed standards mention sightly different sizes. For example the Japanese standard say, that they should be between 30-38 cm tall, which is 12-15 inch, but for example the New Zealand Kennel Club say, that they can have height between 25-40 cm. But the average height is always somewhere around 33 cm, plus or minus few centimeters. Females tend to be slightly smaller than males, but the difference is rather small.
I said in the beginning of the video, that this is a small breed with a big personality and that is certainly true, because this is quite active, bold, high spirited, bright and alert breed that can actually make very good watchdog. Of course, because of their small size, they are not good for real protection work, but they will most likely alert you when they will hear or see something suspicious around your home. But first and foremost, this is just excellent companion dog.
It is because the Japanese Spitz is a cheerful and affectionate dog that just loves human companionship and attention from their owners and family. They are also quite loyal and devoted to them. These little dogs are known to be pretty intelligent and eager to please, which is why they typically do very well in training and they learn new tricks quite fast. They are also good partners for older kids, but of course, the kid should be old enough to know how to treat smaller dogs properly. Overall, these dogs make excellent companion and apartment dogs, as long as their exercise needs are met.
And these dogs are definitely not coach potatoes. They might be small, but they have pretty high energy, they are lively, playful and they are almost always ready for a walk. Thanks to their small size, it is not extremely hard to fulfull their exercise needs, but they do need few daily longer walks accompanied with some playtime, toy puzzles or fun training sessions. You can also try some dog sport with the Japanese Spitz, as they can compete in for example obedience trials or agility.
6) Coat and color
One of the reasons why this breed gained quite a lot of popularity, especially in showring, is its beautiful white fluffy coat. The doublecoat consists of a short, dense undercoat that is shot through with a straight outer layer that extends out from the body. The tail is typically well feathered and carried curled up over the body. The color should always be white.
Speaking of the coat, it is important to talk about the grooming and maintenance as well. When you see the Japanese Spitz, you probably think that the grooming is quite hard, but these dogs actually have rather low grooming needs. Their fur repels most debris and dirt, and they rarely need baths, because they do not have much of the typical doggy odor. You should brush their coat regularly, to prevent matting and tangling, but no other grooming is required. Just like with any other breed in the world, you should also regularly check their ears, eyes, nails and teeth and clip them or clean them if needed.
For some time, the Japanese Spitz lived only in the isolation on Japanese islands, but that changed in 1960s, when few of them were exported to Sweden, from where they got into England and later to most of other countries around the world. Today, the breed is recognized by all the major kennel clubs.
Japanese Spitzes like to bark, and they have a bark that is louder than what you might expect from their size. They have tendencies to bark when they see something suspicious, when they want your attention or when they greet someone. Most of them just like to bark and you should be prepared for it.
The Japanese Spitz is usually very heatlhy breed with only few genetic health problems. They can suffer from patellar luxation, which is the biggest health concern with this breed, also from runny eyes, ear infections and different allergies. The typical lifespan of Japanese Spitz is around 14 or 15 years.