The Akita is a Japanese breed of dog and they are fairly large and muscular. These hunting animals are well-bred to be tall and well balanced. There are two types of Akita: the Japanese Akita and the American Akita.
Although both will grow to be about the same size, they can have very different coloring. Bred for hunting and fighting, especially bears, they are sturdy and protective, which added to their large size makes them a good fit for a particular type of owner.
How big do Akitas get when fully grown? A fully grown male Akita will be around 26 to 28 inches (66-71 cm) tall, while a female will be a bit smaller at 24 to 26 inches (61-66 cm). While a male will weigh 100 to 130 pounds (45-59 kg), the female will be only 70 to 100 pounds (35-45 kg).
There is a great history to the Akita breed, and they are a strong and capable animal skilled at many tasks. This is largely due to their size and brute strength.
They were recognized in America as a working-class dog for their ability to be trained for many purposes, from hunting to service animals. Their size makes them especially suitable for service animal tasks.
As they are large enough to reach things such as crosswalk lights and counters, they can be fully trained to assist anyone who needs a service animal, and they are also known to protect their family and remain fiercely loyal.
As they are such a large size animal, they have specific health concerns and their growth and weight should be monitored and maintained at healthy levels to protect their joints and bones from carrying excess weight or hip damages.
Continue reading to learn more about the size and weight of the Aktia breed as well as some frequently asked questions.
How Big Do Akitas Get When Fully Grown
There are two types of Akita: the Japanese Akita and American Akita. The average height will be slightly lower for the Japanese Akita than for the American, and the female is only slightly shorter than the male.
The Japanese Akita will grow to about 25-27.5 inches (64-70 cm) with a weight of 70-85 pounds (32-39 kg) for males and 22-25 inches (58-64 cm) with a weight of 48-64 pounds (23-29 kg) for females.
On the other hand, an American Akita is slightly larger at 26-28 inches (66-71 cm) and 100-130 pounds (45-66 kg) for males and 24-26 inches (61-66 cm) and 70-100 pounds (36-54 kg) for females. They will be near their full size by 10 months of age and are considered a mature dog by 4 years old.
The following table is a summary of height and weight of both Japanese Akita and American Akita when fully grown.
|Type of Akita
|Male: 25-27.5 inches
Female: 22-25 inches
|Male: 70-85 pounds
Female: 48-64 pounds
|Male: 26-28 inches
Female: 24-26 inches
|Male: 100-130 pounds
Female: 70-100 pounds
Once an animal makes it to their full growth potential, it is important to maintain their weight. As dogs age, they tend to gain weight by eating more and being less active, but this added weight on their already fully grown frames can create damage to their joints and the bones.
Akitas have a common occurrence of hip problems so it is important to monitor their growth both as a puppy and as an adult.
Average Height and Weight By Age: What to Expect?
When seeing a litter of Akita puppies for the first time, it may be hard to imagine that the small puppies will grow into hundred-pound dogs, so it can be helpful to have a chart to follow the first year of growth.
The following table shows both the weight in pounds and kilograms as well as the height in inches and centimeters, from the age of 2 months up to one year.
|Male: 14-15 inches
Female: 12-14.5 inches
|Male: 18-20 pounds
Female: 15-18 pounds
|Male: 15-17 inches
Female: 13.5-15.5 inches
|Male: 29-33 pounds
Female: 24-30 pounds
|Male: 17-20 inches
Female: 16-19 inches
|Male: 40-44 pounds
Female: 35-40 pounds
Female: 19-21 inches
|Male: 48-55 pounds
Female: 42-49 pounds
|Male: 22-24 inches
Female: 21-23 inches
|Male: 60-66 pounds
Female: 52-55 pounds
|Male: 24-25 inches
Female: 23-24 inches
|Male: 68-75 pounds
|Male: 25-26 inches
Female: 24-25 inches
|Male: 79-85 pounds
Female: 75-79 pounds
This is a guideline only as there are various factors that can affect the size and weight of each puppy, so there will always be a few that do not fit within the average range. This is no cause for concern unless they are far off track or are showing other symptoms or signs of illness.
This is the average growth chart for the Akita breed by month, including height and weight.
Factors That Can Affect the Size of an Akita
The Akita is a tall, large, and strong dog that has been bred as a working dog. This creates a general guideline for how large the dog breed is in general, but there are several factors that affect how large any particular dog gets.
These are some of the factors that can affect the size of an Akita:
- Genes: The parents of each dog will affect their growth and size greatly, if both parents are the larger of their breed then the offspring will be as well, and the fully grown dog will be about an average of its parents’ sizes. This averages in such a way that one smaller parent plus one larger parent will birth a dog that should grow to be a size in between the sizes of the parents.
- Gender: Added to the factor that male dogs will be slightly larger than their female siblings, simply due to the bone structure and the hormones of each sex. Both the father and the male puppies will be larger than the females, and the male puppies should grow to be larger than their mother as well.
- Diet: They will also grow according to their situation, so more room with more food and exercise can cause a dog to grow larger than one with a smaller yard and less exercise. More nutritious food provides the dog all of the nutrients that it requires to grow larger and stronger. It may be necessary to provide supplements for the health of the dog and to help them to grow to their average height and weight.
- Activity Level: A dog who is provided with appropriate daily exercise that is not excessive or for long stretches of time will grow to a healthy height and weight. A dog who is exercised excessively or who is left to become overweight may cause damage to the growth plates. This damage can stunt their growth and lead to them being smaller than they would have.
- Spaying/Neutering: Especially in the cases of males, being neutered can affect the hormones in such a way that they grow for a longer period of time and may end up taller and larger than they otherwise would have. The effect seems to be less on female Akitas, but it is recommended to wait until they have had at least one full heat cycle to protect the growth process and the growth plates.
At What Age Do Akitas Stop Growing?
An Akita dog will be almost fully grown by the time it reaches ten months of age but will continue to grow slightly until it is around two to three years old. By four years old, they are considered a mature dog and entering their middle age.
These dogs live for around ten years but usually no more than twelve years of age. It can be hard to pinpoint an exact age when a dog stops growing due to the several factors that affect its growth, from genetics to exercise and health.
A general guide would suggest that your Akita will be fully grown by twelve to eighteen months, but there is an expected curve from ten months to twenty-four months that would not cause alarm.
Growth spurts are more common with a younger puppy, but they may have growth spurts up to a year old, and you may find they need more rest and food during these times.
Will My Akita Still Grow After Being Neutered/Spayed?
Having a dog neutered or spayed will affect the growth by changing the hormones that are created within the dog. For a female dog, this is most likely going to affect her weight, as a female dog is more likely to gain a bit of weight after being spayed.
A male dog may find that the change in hormones affects when his body stops growing. He may grow longer than he would have, in the end, being taller than he may have otherwise and taller than his siblings.
In neither case should there be a large change in expectations, they should still be within the average height and weight for their age and type, and even being slightly off the expected average is not by itself a cause for concern.
When neutered or spayed at the appropriate time, as discussed with the veterinarian, an Akita will grow slightly longer after the procedure, but may not grow into the second year.
Why Is My Akita Puppy Not Growing?
There are a few reasons why a puppy will stop growing, and they are generally the same no matter what breed it is.
The most common reasons are genetics, a health issue such as worms, malnutrition (though rare, it may occur in some circumstances), neuter or spay, and excessive exercise can affect the growth of a puppy.
It is also important to remember that just as puppies have growth spurts, periods of rapid growth that can last a few days or up to a week, they will also have slow growth periods in between.
During these periods, they may not seem to be growing as quickly, and it may even seem their growth has stunted or halted completely, but they may just be preparing the body for the faster growth to come.
Unless the period of slow growth lasts longer than expected, there should be no worries at this time. They may sleep more and even eat less than they will in preparation, and as the next growth spurt hits, they will eat more and rapid growth can be seen.
A dog who has parents that are smaller will be smaller dogs themselves, while a larger parent will usually lead to a larger puppy and a larger dog when fully grown.
In the same way, if the parents of the puppy stopped growing earlier in their development, then the puppy is likely to stop growing sooner as well.
In contrast, a dog who has parents that grew later than their siblings will likely grow longer as well, sometimes into their second year of life and occasionally into their third year as well.
Worms are easily treatable and common among all animals, but dogs and cats especially. They are present in the digestive system of the dog and they will become an infestation of many worms before they are detected.
If enough worms develop, they will use the calories that the puppy is eating, causing the puppy to have a calorie deficit and the puppy may slow the growing process or stop.
Other symptoms are bloating, diarrhea, unhealthy coat, and appearance, and they will eat more than they grow. Once treated, the dog should return to normal and growth should proceed on schedule.
In some instances, malnutrition may also cause a stunt in growth, but this is very uncommon in a home where the dog is cared for and fed regularly. Changing from puppy food too soon or waiting a bit longer than necessary is unlikely to affect the growth of the dog, or the health in any other way.
However, a dog who has no home and does not have regular access to nutritious food can stop growing earlier and become too thin, tired, and enter starvation mode.
Spaying or neutering a dog is unlikely to change its growth much, but it does alter the hormones and that may cause the growth plates to be affected which in the long term can affect the growth of the puppy.
A veterinarian should be consulted to determine the correct age and time to proceed with a spay or neutering on a puppy, as there is a time frame of a few months where it is best to do the procedure.
Neutering or spaying of a smaller dog is usually done at around 6-8 months, but for a larger dog, it is generally suggested to wait longer to reduce the effect on the growth plate and any chance of joint concerns.
Excessive exercise is another factor that can affect the growth of a puppy. While the exercise alone will not stunt the growth of a puppy too much and too hard exercise for the puppy, it will affect the growth plates and can even fracture the growth plates in some instances.
As there are so many factors that affect how long an Akita will grow, how fast it will grow, and what size it will be when it stops, it can be hard to say if they have stopped growing simply because they are the size they are meant to be, or if there has been an issue that has stunted or stopped that growth sooner than it would otherwise have stopped.
One way to measure this is the size of the other puppies in the litter. There will be one that is smaller than the rest (the runt) and one who is larger than the rest, but they should average out as they finish growing.
While they will not all be the same size, they should fit in the same general order they did as puppies. That is to say, the largest puppy will likely grow into the largest adult and the smallest puppy will likely remain smaller as an adult.
Is My Akita Too Fat or Too Thin?
It is important to keep your Akita at a healthy and maintainable weight. A puppy that is too thin or too fat will have complications and health issues for its whole life. Akitas are susceptible to problems with the hips and any extra weight will increase that risk.
A puppy should be slightly chubbier than an adult dog and will eat more during a growth spurt than on other days. Occasionally a puppy will eat more than a grown dog of the same breed to supply the energy that it needs to grow properly.
You should not be able to see all the individual ribs on a puppy but should be able to see where they are. There should be a thin layer of fat over the ribs but they are able to be felt through it.
For overweight Akitas, the ribs will have a large layer of fat covering the ribs and you may not be able to feel the ribs through it.
You should be able to see the abdomen of the dog raise up by the back legs and angle down towards the front, and from the top, it should appear to have a waist that is slightly pulled in with a wider space at the hips and the shoulders.
An Akita will have broad shoulders and broad hips that can carry the weight of the dog well, and strong bones to hold the weight, but they will develop joint damages and particularly hip problems if they are carrying too much weight.
To maintain proper weight, it is important to keep a regular exercise routine for your Akita as well as maintain a proper diet. Good quality dog food is essential in providing the necessary nutrients, and in some cases, a supplement may be necessary.
Keeping a balance between food and exercise is paramount to maintaining a healthy growth rate in any dog, and this can be achieved by following feeding guidelines for the food you have chosen and exercise recommendations from the veterinarian.
Either exercising too little or too much can affect the health of the dog negatively and lead to it being underweight or slow its growth.
How to Measure your Akita’s Height?
To measure the height of your Akita, one must measure from the floor at the side of the paw to the top of the shoulders right at the bae of the neck. A normal tape measure will due for this process, and it should take only a few moments.
The tape measure should begin flush with the floor at the foot of the dog and pulled upwards to the base of the neck in the middle of the shoulder. Doing so consistently is important to have proper comparisons and patterns of growth.
This is useful in tracking the growth of the dog and how tall it becomes when it stops growing. This information is a great way to keep track of the health of the dog as well as to judge how tall its offspring might be.
To measure your Akita:
- Step 1: Have your Akita standstill with head up.
- Step 2: Place a tape measure or ruler against the paw on the floor.
- Step 3: Straighten the ruler or the tape measure to follow up the dogs’ leg to their shoulder.
- Step 4: The number on the measure which is from the floor to the top of the shoulder is the height of your dog.
You can read this step-by-step guide to learn more on how to measure your dog’s height accurately.
My Final Thoughts
The Akita is a large, intelligent dog, which can be trained to complete many tasks and to be either a work animal or to be a family pet. It is important to train them and to keep a balance between healthy food and exercise to help them grow into their full potential.
As a hunting dog, they were bred to grow around 100 pounds each. The American Akita will grow slightly larger than the Japanese Akita, and the male dogs will grow to be larger than the females.
Their size is greatly affected by genetics and their own family tree but will also be affected by health issues, food choices, exercise routines, and the homes they live in.
Any concerns with growth or health should be consulted with a veterinarian, as they do have a history of hip problems and improper growth can add to this risk factor.
If appropriate food can not be located, supplements can be considered. This dog is not generally considered a beginner pet but is well known in the show circuits and can make a wonderful show dog.
As this dog lives to be between ten and twelve years old, it is important to be certain that it is a good fit for your lifestyle and your home before bringing one home.