Chow Chow vs Akita What’s the Difference

The Chow Chow and the Akita are medium and large dogs respectively. They originate from Asia. While the Chow Chow is a Chinese dog with a low energy level and little need for exercise, the Akita is a high-energy dog with a higher need for exercise.  

However, the Chow Chows can be aggressive and will die protecting their territory. Meanwhile, it can be trained not to bite. Akitas tend to be more stable and mature.  

In this Chow Chow vs Akita comparison article, we’ll see the history, essence and character, appearance, training needs, and health life of the two dog breeds.  

In the end, we’ll leave you a comparison chart that should help you differentiate between them and discover which will be the best for you. 

The Chow Chow 

The teddy-like appearance, the characteristic blue tongue, and the plush fur make the Chow Chow a real eye-catcher. Here in the profile, you can find out everything about the origin, nature, and attitude of the dog breed. 

Chow Chow History

Chow Chow History
Chow Chow History

The Chow Chow is an indigenous breed of dog from China, which probably came to the German Empire via Siberia and Mongolia.

As early as the eleventh century, there were similar heavily built Tatar dogs with brushed hair, perfectly straight hind legs, and a blue tongue.  

Its Chinese name means something like “fluffed lion dog”. It is also known there under the names Wonk Lang Kau (wolfhound), Hsiung Kou (bear dog), and Hek she (blue tongue).  

The Chinese used sturdy dogs mainly in the northern provinces for hunting. According to genetic studies, there is evidence of an admixture of Chinese gray wolves in the breed. 

It was not until 1880 that the first representative of the breed came to Europe and seven years later the first specimens were bred in England.  

There is also a short-haired version of the breed, but it is rarely found today. The origin of the name Chow Chow has not yet been clarified.  

Internationally, the breed belongs to FCI group  5 “Spitz and primitive dogs” in section 5 “Asian Spitz and related breeds”. 

Chow Chow Essence and character 

The Chow Chow is a relaxed and calm dog. The breed is generally considered to be headstrong and the dogs have their thick skull.

The dog usually fixes on a caregiver in the family and is an absolute one-man dog. With proper upbringing, it is loyal to that person without being submissive.  

As a rule, it doesn’t get on well with children. It is dismissive towards strangers and is vigilant. Coupled with its territorial behavior makes it a good watchdog.  

The restrained dog is also considered to be extremely clean. In many ways, it is a proud and independent dog. It is more like a cat than a dog. At home, the “lion dog” is rather cozy and exudes great calm and serenity. 

Chow Chow Appearance

Its unique appearance makes the Chow Chow distinctive. Its tongue has a characteristic bluish color. The lion-like and strong dog exudes pride and has a strong, short upper body and stocky legs with round paws.  

The tail is carried curled up over the back, as is usual with Spitz-like breeds. Its long and straight coat with a soft, dense undercoat is special. It forms a mane or collar around the neck.  

According to the standard, the fur can be monochrome black, red, blue, fawn, cream, or white. Light shades are allowed, but no stains. 

Chow Chow Health and care 

With their lush fur, the Chinese bear dogs are not particularly easy to care for. The thick fur needs daily care with a brush, which can quickly become matted, especially behind the ears or on the ruff.  

The coat should not be cut, except for the growth on the feet. The lesser-known, short-haired types of the breed are not quite as maintenance-intensive.  

Some overbred dogs require special care for facial wrinkles, otherwise, they become easily inflamed. These dogs can barely see properly and have difficulty breathing. So it is best to make sure that your dog has little or no wrinkles on its face when buying it. 

The Akita  

After the film “Hachiko – A Wonderful Friendship,” many people became familiar with the Akita dog breed from Japan. The hunting dog is a symbol of loyalty in its homeland. Here, you can find out everything about the history, nature, and attitude of the proud dogs. 

Akita History

Akita History
Akita History

The Akita Inu is an ancient breed of dog from Japan. The term “Akita” stands for the Japanese province, while “Inu” means dog.  

The history of the dogs goes back a long way because there is evidence of them in depictions on clay vessels and bronze bells from the second century BC.  

The Japanese originally used the dogs for hunting wild boar, game birds, and collar bars. They were later used as guard dogs.

In the 19th century, the enthusiasm for dogfighting increased worldwide, which is why strong breeds, such as the mastiff, were mated with Japanese dogs. In 1931, the government officially declared the dog breed a natural monument of Japan. 

During the Second World War, the military conscripted all dogs like meat and fur suppliers, which almost led to the extinction of the dog breed.  

After the end of the war, two lines had developed independently of one another. The Japanese tried to bring the dog’s original appearance back to life. They crossed the remaining dogs with Japanese sled dogs and the Chow Chow.  

From this emerged the somewhat smaller, often reddish or sesame-colored dog. The narrow and larger dogs that were crossed with German Shepherds came to the United States and formed a breed of their own, the American Akita.  

The two breeds have been officially owned by the FCI since 1999 accepted. They count in group 5 “Spitz and primitive dogs” in section 5 “Asian Spitz and related breeds”. 

Akita Essence and character 

The Akita Inu is a self-confident and calm dog who likes to act independently. It is not submissive and has a mind of its own. It is neutral to indifferent towards strangers and only attacks when it sees its family in danger.  

Like the Chow Chow, the loyal dog fixes itself on a caregiver and develops a strong bond with this person. Once you have earned its loyalty, you will have a cooperative and courteous partner for life.  

The lofty and proud dog behaves calmly in stressful and hectic situations. However, as soon as it sees a potential prey, the primordial ferocity comes up and it is difficult to hold back. Many males are also incompatible with other conspecifics. 

Akita Appearance

The Akita Inu is a muscular dog with a majestic appearance. The dog’s coat is rough and hard with a soft, dense undercoat.  

It can be red-fawn and sesame, but also brindle or white. The coat must have whitish hair, in many parts of its body.  

The furrowed forehead is very broad and the characteristic triangular erect ears give the dog a cute appearance. The eyes are brown with clearly accentuated black eyelid rims. 

Akita Activities

The stubborn Akita needs its daily exercise but only participates if it feels like it. If it does not feel like moving, it is difficult to convince the dog to do so. It also likes to lie in its basket and sleep.

The dog’s athletic motivation mainly depends on whether it sees any point in the exercise. What is decisive is the owner’s motivation to convince the dog that obedience is beneficial. The serious purebred dog is hard to get excited for silly games or sporting tricks. 

Akita Health and care 

The Akita is an easy-care dog that doesn’t need a groomer. The clean dogs hardly smell and are otherwise rather clean.  

The hardtop hair is self-cleaning and does not need to be washed or specially cared for. During the change of coat in spring and autumn, the dog loses a large part of the thick undercoat.  

At this time, it needs your support and you should comb it every day. Seriously bred dogs are not particularly susceptible to disease and it is not uncommon for them to be over twelve years of age. 

Chow Chow vs Akita: a side-by-side comparison 

 Chow Chow Akita 
Dog size Medium-sized (46-56cm) Large (58-68cm) 
Weight 25 to 32 kg, Female: 20 to 27 kg Male: 32 to 39 kg; 23 to 29 kg 
Function guard dog guard dog 
Character balanced, loyal, vigilant, strong-willed balanced, obedient, loyal, strong-willed 
Origin China Japan 
Life expectancy 9 to 15 years  10 to 15 years 
Colors black, blue, cream, red, and fawn black, white, white and other colors, chocolate, brindle 

Conclusion 

If you want to get a Chow Chow, you should have enough experience with dogs and an understanding of the peculiarities of the breed. The self-confident and stoic medium-sized dog is suitable as a guard dog.  

If you want to bring a pretty Akita home, you also need dog experience and an understanding of the peculiarities of Asian dogs. 

In general, the pedigree dog is only recommended for people who have the time and inclination to deal seriously and intensively with their dog. The headstrong dogs need strong and self-assured leadership to become good companion dogs. 

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