Akitas are incredibly huggable dogs with their thick and luxurious fur coat meant to protect them against cold and wet weather conditions. They have two coats of fur: an outer coat and a dense undercoat. The result is an adorable ball of fluffy that can easily handle cold but has some trouble with hot and humid weather.
Do Akitas shed? For most of the year, Akitas do not shed very much, but there are two times in the year when their thick coat will shed profusely and leave clumps of fur around the house. Generally, you will need to brush an Akita daily to keep their coat well-groomed and prevent as much shedding as possible.
Keep reading to learn about the shedding cycle of the Akita to prepare you for those intense shedding times, how to manage their shedding, and learn more about what you can do to manage their shedding without causing other problems like skin allergies.
Do Akitas shed?
Akitas don’t shed as much as you might think, given how much fur they have. They are generally moderate shedders for most of the year, but they start to shed their blow coat during spring and fall. This shedding season can cause quite a mess around the house.
The good news is that they are easy to groom, and a good brushing once a week, or more regularly during their heavy shedding months, will help keep the shedding down.
It might be tempting to shave them to prevent shedding, but it will cause more problems than it solves. It would be best never to shave or cut their fur very short because this will expose the skin to sunlight and result in skin problems and even cancer. Shaving can also disrupt the shedding process and can trigger skin allergies.
However, they are still going to shed all year round, even if it’s only moderately. So if you’re looking for a way to avoid clean dog hair off your furniture, Akitas is not the choice for you.
Are Akitas hypoallergenic?
Akitas are not hypoallergenic. They don’t shed as much as some dogs their size, but that doesn’t mean they won’t cause problems for those with allergies. Even when they aren’t going through seasonal shedding, they are still going to shed moderately.
By having a shedding season that usually happens in the spring, there’s a chance you would have to deal with seasonal allergies along with an excess of dog hair since there’s no way to entirely avoid the shedding if you have any allergies or breathing issues. You might want to reconsider adopting an Akita.
How to reduce shedding
You will never be able to escape shedding fur altogether, but there are things you can do to reduce and manage it. Here are some things to try:
- Brushing: Brushing your dog regularly, even daily during the heavy seasonal shedding, is the best way to keep your home hair-free. It will also help keep your dog’s fur healthy, which makes it less likely to shed. Brushing also helps keep their skin from drying out by distributing their skin oils.
- High-quality dog food: How healthy your dog’s fur is usually reflective of how good their diet is. Feeding your Akita high-quality food with digestible protein with make their fur healthier and more robust.
- Fatty acid supplement: Adding a fatty acid supplement to your dog’s diet can help improve their fur.
- Cover your upholstery: Sometimes, the best you can do is cover your furniture with a blanket whenever your dog wants to snuggle up. Remember to do a similar thing to your car seats when your dog is riding with you.
- Allergy control: Your dog may seem to be shedding more because they are constantly scratching due to an allergy. Please speak to your vet about the possibility and find a solution they recommend.
- Bathe more often: Akitas are relatively clean dogs as they like to clean themselves much like a cat. However, bathing them during their seasonal shedding could help reduce how much fur ends up around your home.
- The right brush: Shedding dogs is not a new problem, and there are plenty of brushes out there made explicitly for double-coat dogs and heavy shedders. Invest in having the right brush for your dog so you can get the fur before it gets everywhere else.
Talking with your vet about your specific Akita is the best way to find out what you can do to improve their health and prevent shedding as much as possible.
Are Akitas heavy shedders?
Generally, Akitas are not considered heavy shedders except for their shedding seasons for their blow coat. There are plenty of other dogs of a similar size that shed a lot more than the Akita regularly throughout the year.
Shedding is a natural process for Akita as they prepare for the changing seasons. During this heavy shedding season, it would be best if you brushed your Akita at least once a day so you can remove any dead hair, fur balls, or clumps and prevent them from scattering around your house.
However, if you’re looking to add an Akita to your family, you might want to invest in a good vacuum cleaner. Even daily brushing won’t entirely prevent dog hair from getting on your furniture, in your car, and on your clothes.
Akita shedding cycle – When do Akitas shed the most?
Akitas aren’t heavy shedders because they don’t shed year-round, even if they sometimes feel that way. As a double-coated breed, Akitas shed twice a year with about six months in between. Expect plenty of shedding come spring and autumn.
Double-coated breeds, like St. Bernards and Huskies, shed during the changing of the seasons. Akitas originally lived in colder climates, so they want to shed their summer coat to prepare for the new winter coat coming in and then shed the winter coat when the warmer months arrive.
This shedding season only lasts about two to four weeks, so at worst, you can expect about two months of the year to involve finding clumps of fur all over the place. Keep your Akita well-groomed is the best way to reduce how much hair ends up on your floor and furniture.
Grooming an Akita
Akitas don’t require much grooming to keep them clean since they groom themselves like a cat. Usually, brushing them once a week and bathing them every four weeks is enough to keep them clean and happy.
However, if you want to keep dog hair out of your house as much as possible, then you might want to consider daily brushing, especially during their seasonal shedding.
You can use a slicker brush for the outer coat, which will remove any dead fur and get rid of any matts. You will then want a de-shedding tool to remove loose hair in the undercoat. Make sure it’s a larger de-shedding tool so you can reach through their undercoat.
You can also bathe your Akita more frequently in warm water with a high-quality shampoo. Since Akitas groom themselves, their not a very smelly breed, so the extra washing is mainly to ensure their fur is healthy and less likely to shed.
Do American Akitas shed more than Japanese?
The key differences between American Akitas and Japanese Akitas are more aesthetic than anything else. While their coat might come in different colors, they are the same. Both have a double coat of fur and have seasonal shedding as a result.
You may find that a particular American Akita sheds more only because they can be bigger than Japanese Akitas, so they could have more fur to deal with. However, there’s no noticeable difference between the two regarding how much their fur coats shed.
There is no getting around Akitas shedding entirely. You can keep them properly groomed and even try some tricks to keep their fur coat as healthy as possible, so there’s less shedding, but it won’t ultimately save you from finding dog hair on your furniture.
Prepare to have dog hair be a part of your life, and stick to a grooming routine so you can at least manage seasonal shedding. Five to ten minutes of brushing can save you hours of vacuuming and trying to brush dog hair off your car seat. An Akita is a very loyal and loving dog that can make a fantastic companion.