Reading time: 7 minutes.
The Akita is a large, spitz-type dog originally bred to hunt large game. Today, they are typically used as a guard or police dogs and being a loving family pet. Classified as a large or giant breed, this dog stands at 24-28 inches tall and weighs 65-115 pounds at maturity. To keep its robust body in optimum condition, as well as its vitality and character, the Akita requires a proper diet, which should contain protein with moderate fat content and supplement with joint-supporting nutrients. The type and amount of food this dog needs differ depending on their age, healthy, weight, activity level, and general lifestyle. Today, I’ll take you through the standard considerations to include in your Akita’s diet plan.
So, how much should Akita eat? An adult Akita will need 5-6 cups of quality dry food divided into two meals daily. Even so, a slight deviation from this amount may be necessary depending on their activity level and health status. That being said, you may want to start small, like one and a half cups in one meal, and see how they eat.
These large-sized dogs have very high metabolism rates, thus needing special dietary to meet their calorie requirements. Any compromise with their diet can lead to serious health concerns. The good news is there are plenty of options on the market for feeding your dog pet. Therefore, it’s up to you to choose the highest quality ingredients that are still within your budget. Generally, the more you invest in your Akita‘s diet plan, the better overall health outcomes they’ll have. This means longer, healthier, and happy life, with minimal trips to the vet. Keep reading to learn more about Akita’s food considerations.
How Much Should Akita Eat?
This is an important question to ask, but it doesn’t have a straightforward answer. The amount of food your Akita needs will vary depending on their age, weight, metabolism, activity level, etc. Like people, dogs are individuals, and they all don’t eat the same amount of food.
How Much Should an Adult Akita Eat?
An adult Akita will need anywhere from 4-6 cups of quality dry dog food every day. You can use the following amounts as guidelines based on your dog’s weight:
- 66-88 pounds(30-40kg): 500 to 590 grams
- 110 pounds or more (50+ kgs): 590 to 800 grams
That being said, you should start with small portions, especially if you’ve just gotten a new dog, and see whether they eat everything or leave food in the bowl. You can then increase the portion gradually. It goes without saying that if your Akita is highly active, they will need more food than a couch potato dog.
Keep in mind that not all dog foods are made equally. Some contain added fillers and preservatives that ultimately result in empty calories, thus leaving your dog hungrier throughout the day. Needless to say, the quality of food also makes a difference. The better the quality, the more it goes towards nourishing your dog, and the less of it you’ll need to put into their bowl.
How Much Should an Akita Puppy Eat?
Puppies are at a developing stage and need food to promote optimal development and stimulate the immune system. The amount of food they’ll need will also vary depending on their age. For instance, 2-5 months old Akita puppies should be given 150-250 grams per day divided into 3-4 portions. At 6-8 months, they should get 300-400 grams per day spread over two meals. Please do not feed your Akita pup more than is required, as this will lead to obesity and make them grow faster, which can hurt their development.
It’s important to monitor your pup’s growth. Once they have reached 90% of their ideal adult weight, you’ll need to switch to an adult diet.
What Do You Feed Your Akita?
American Black Akitas eat what most dogs eat, a diet consisting of all the nutrients, including proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals. Protein is an essential nutrient as it helps this large breed of dogs to build and maintain strong muscles. It’s also crucial for the development of organs and tissues, not to mention preventing diseases. Animal-based proteins like beef, mutton, chicken, and fish are the best for your Akita as they contain all the essential amino acids.
Healthy fats are vital for your dog as they increase energy levels and help maintain healthy skin and fur. Since dogs can’t produce enough fat on their own, their food needs to contain fat. This, too, should come from animal sources as much as possible.
The Akita has no specific need for carbohydrates, but grains provide dietary fiber, which helps digestion.
Vegetables and fruits should also be in their diet to ensure they get enough vitamins, minerals, and even fiber. Some safe options are carrots, sweet potatoes, celery, Brussel sprouts, apples, bananas, and blueberries.
Above all else, always ensure your Akita has access to plenty of fresh, clean water to keep them hydrated and prevent a host of diseases.
What Shouldn’t Akita Dogs Eat?
These dogs can eat a wide variety of foods, from human food to a raw diet to commercial dog food, but there are some foods that they shouldn’t eat. For starters, chocolate, caffeine, raw dough, and alcohol are toxic for them. They also can’t tolerate fruits and veggies like onions, garlic, mushroom, avocados, grapes, and raisins.
Then there is another set of food items that Akitas can eat but are never recommended. For example, while there are several human foods that this dog can eat, most tend to contain lots of oils, spices, and salt, which can affect the dog by causing stomach upsets and diarrhea. Dairy products tend to cause diarrhea, digestive problems, and allergic reactions. You should also avoid food items with a high sugar content as they can cause weight gain, which leads to thyroid problems, elbow, hip dysplasia, and other serious health issues.
How Much Raw Food Should I Feed My Akita?
When deciding on the best type of food for your Akita, it’s important to consider the canine anatomy and digestive system. Most commercial dog foods are filled with grains, fillers, and preservatives, all of which a dog doesn’t need. A natural diet based on raw meat and vegetables is highly digestible and free from additives or chemicals, thus providing a complete and balanced diet for your Akita at every life stage. There are several reasons why raw food is the best food for your Akita, from ensuring gut health to boosting immunity, maintaining a healthy weight, smelling and looking better, and overall well-being.
So, how much should Akita eat when it comes to raw food? Generally, dogs should eat about 2-5% of their ideal body weight in raw food per day. This difference is based on your Akita’s weight and activity level. For example, if your dog is overweight and needs to lose a few extra pounds, give them closer to the 2% of their body weight in raw food. For an underweight pet, closer to 4% should suffice. For a dog with an average activity level, 3% per day is generally acceptable. In contrast, highly active ones will need up to 5% of body weight per day to replace all the lost calories.
In addition to the weight and activity level, how much raw food you feed your Akita will also depend on their metabolism, age, and food quality. This may seem like a lot to remember, which is why you should talk to your vet to come up with the right diet plan for your dog.
I recommend feeding your dog their required daily amounts spread over two meals per day for adults and 2-4 times per day for puppies. This is better for their digestion as it helps prevent bloating and the chance of overfeeding, which can quickly lead to obesity.
What Is A Healthy Weight for An Akita?
How much your dog should weigh varies depending on their age and gender. Here’s a weight chart at different ages:
- Two months – 8-20 lbs
- Three months – 29-33 lbs
- Four months – 40-44 lbs
- Six months – 60-66 lbs
- Nine months – 68-75 lbs
- 12 months – 79-85 lbs
Akitas generally reach their full size at two years, with fully grown males weighing between 100 and 130 pounds while their female counterparts’ weight 70-100 lbs. The weight chart above represents male Akitas, and females generally weigh less at any given age. There are two types of Akitas, the American Akita, and the Japanese Akita. The digits above represent the American Kennel Club Official Akita Standards, so if you have the Japanese Akita, their average weights are 65-75 pounds for full-grown males and 50-65 pounds for full-grown females.
Keep in mind that these weight projections only serve as a general guide. Don’t be quick to judge your dog if its weight is slightly different from the ones above. However, if it’s far from the average, it’s a sign of an underlying issue. A dog that’s too thin or too fat will have all kinds of health complications, which can even reduce its lifespan. It’s best to talk to your vet about the right weight for your specific dog.
Even after an Akita makes it to its full growth potential, it’s still possible for them to add weight if they eat more and are less active. To ensure they maintain a healthy weight, you should provide a proper diet with all the necessary nutrients and keep a regular exercise routine.