Training of Akitas requires consistence as well as loving and patientattitude from the owner. Do not try to force your Akita to do something as this way you can just support its stubbornness. With love, patience, friendliness and sensible strictness (if necessary) you can make your dog obey your orders. Akitas can do anything just because of love to their owner although sometimes it is not possible all at once. They are very clever, intelligent but also independently thinking dogs. Therefore the training and socialisation better be carried out during the first year of life – this is possibly later too, but always better made it as soon as possible . A young inidividual obtains basic habits and socialisation at the early age. Approximately from the 6.-7. week you can start training gradually. It should finish together with socialisation until 7.-8. month of the age. During this period there must be a contact with people and dogs and you should visit crowded places if you want to train a reliable and sociable dog. Not keeping these rules is a big mistake. Akitas never forget what they have been taught in the first year of life. They do not lose the ability to guard when they are in contact with strangers and asindependent dogs they can estimate the situation very quickly and act by that. Despite of the fact that Akitas are stubborn, when ledproperly they are obedient and docile, able to fulfill all the orders. Another important thing is to instill the dog its position in a human”group”.
The owner is always a leader (alpha), the family is beta and only after that comes the dog. In this point you must be vigorous. If you are weneglected, you might have problems and your dog will not respect you (depending onnature of an individual). If necessary, the best method is to grab the dog’s skin on the nape/neck, shake it and warn: “Don’t!”, ” Pfuj!” or “Yuck!” It is also possible to turn the dog in the position lying on back andimitate a bite with your fingers together with a strong warning. Do not ever use punch or hit the dog with any objects!!! Using mentioned methods you can win respect (not fear) from your dog and enforce your position in the group hierarchy.This method can be used also for other breeds but Aitas have a steady postion in a group. An owner who is consistent, devoted to his dog, is experienced and obeys advise from skilled trainers, does not have to go to a training centre. On the other hand, it can be an advantage, as your dog can be contacted with people and other breeds.
However, you must remember that you have to choose a centre where they have some experience with this breed, otherwise they can do more harm than good. If there are any problems, it is better to ask the breeder and if he orshe cannot give you advice, seek for help of a skilled a trainer in a centre. In relation with other dogs be careful because Akitas are dominant dogs in a group and might not be tolerant to some plays or dominant behaviour. Another simple but effective helping tool for training is to teach a dog that the owner and members of family can touch anything in the bowl with food (sometimes feed it from your hand). This should be started in an early age, then the dog gets used to it and in later age there is not a problem to take away any undesirable objects or delicacy from it. You can fortify your position this way, the dog respects you and puts itself into a subordinate position. In a group hierarchy, dominant dogs are fed first so you make the dog aware of your superiority in this natural way. Well behaved dog must let its owner to take any favourite things away from it without expressing any displeasure or growling.
Generally speaking,the Akita Inu does not need a training that is different from the others, but it needs a different attitude. The training cannot be too tough. It is vital for the owner to love the dog and show it and if his orders are fulfilled in the right way, it is necessary to praiseand award. Well trained Akita is an unique, friendly, reliable and docile dog, emotionally dependent to the owner. This breed has been the human’s companion for thousands years and comes from a totally different culture and nation. Let us learn to respect this heritage to make it easier for the Akita to respect you.