19×24 colored pencil on pastel paper. Original available.
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NOTE: for anyone who loves fact based stories about animals, the movie “Hachi” with Richard Gere should fill the bill. It’s about an Akita who loyally waited for his dead master’s return for 9 years. The “real” dog’s name was “Hachiko” and there is a statue erected of him at the train station where he kept his vigil. I’m not sure about the spellings but I’m sure you’ll figure it out. Wonderful movie!
The Akita Inu is a Japanese large breed dog. Named for Akita Prefecture, where it is thought to have originated, it is sometimes called the Akita-ken based on the Sino-Japanese reading of the same kanji. In most countries (with the exception of the American and Canadian Kennel Clubs), it is considered a separate breed from the American Akita, as requested by the Japanese Kennel Club. “Inu” means “dog.”
Appearance The breed stands anywhere from 60–66 cm (24–26 in) at the withers. Females weigh anywhere from 30–45 kg (70–100 lb) and males are 35–54 kg (75–119 lb). The Akita Inu comes in only five colors: Red, Fawn, Sesame, Brindle, and Pure White. All except white must have whitish hair on the sides of the muzzle, on the cheeks, the neck, chest, body and tail. Black masks, as seen in the American Akita, are not permitted in the Japanese Akita Inu.
All colors are accepted in the American Akita. The Pinto color is not accepted as a Japanese Akita color, but is as an American Akita color. In the U.S., some breeders interbreed the original Japanese type with the heavier American type, which is larger, and allows more colors. It is felt by some that combining the two types leads to improved appearance and genetic health by increasing genetic diversity. It has often been commented that the Japanese Akita has an extraordinary elegance. There is only a single Akita breed registered by the American Kennel Club; in all other countries besides Canada the breed has been separated into two breeds: the Akita Inu and the American Akita.