Japanese Spitz

15-17 lbs

The Japanese Spitz breed is a newer breed out of Japan; a small but bold companion animal with a sharp mind and a communicative nature. They are typically very agreeable animals although they may have a tendency to chase smaller scurrying critters. Although this breed is not yet recognized by the American Kennel Club, they are recognized by other Kennel Clubs throughout the world, including the Japanese Kennel Club, the United Kennel Club, and the American Rare Breeds Association.  This breed of small, all-white dogs is slowly gaining in popularity here in the United States as well, and the Japanese Spitz Club of the USA is striving to receive that recognition from the American Kennel Club.  

purpose Purpose
history Date of Origin
ancestry Ancestry
Spitz-Type Dogs

Japanese Spitz Health

Average Size
Male Japanese Spitz size stats
Height: 14-15 inches Weight: 18-19 lbs
Female Japanese Spitz size stats
Height: 12-14 inches Weight: 15-17 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Patellar Luxation
Minor Concerns
  • Ear Infections
  • Contact Allergy
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Epilepsy
  • Obesity
Occasional Tests
  • Ear Examination
  • Skin Evaluation
  • Knee X-Rays

Japanese Spitz Breed History

The Japanese Spitz is a fairly new breed of companion dog, developed less than a hundred years ago in Japan, but their ancestry is still heavily debated. Although most experts have concluded that these little white spitz-type dogs are a descendant of the German Spitz crossed with other spitz-type dogs such as the American Eskimo dog and the Russian Spitz, a few aficionados maintain that these dogs are actually Siberian Samoyed dogs that have been bred down to a much smaller size. It wasn’t until after World War II that a breed standard was able to be drawn up for these little white dogs and they were recognized by the Japanese Kennel Club in 1948. Exports of this breed from Japan to England and to Sweden became highly sought after for not only their stunning appearance, but also for their loyalty, intelligence, and cheerful demeanor, gaining them a great deal more popularity outside of Japan as well. Since that time, this happy little dog breed has grown in popularity throughout the world and has been recognized by almost all of the kennel clubs of the world, with the notable exception of the American Kennel Club. The official website of the Japanese Spitz Club of the USA lists only four breeders in the country, making them still a relatively rare breed in the United States, but they have been recognized by the American Rare Breeds Association and the Japanese Spitz Club of the USA is striving for recognition by the AKC as well.

Japanese Spitz Breed Appearance

The Japanese Spitz is a small white-haired spitz-type dog which is very slightly longer than they are tall. This little canine is sturdy and has a fairly deep chest and muscular hindquarters for their size, but small, cat-like feet. Like other spitz-type breeds, this dog has a moderately broad head with a slightly rounded skull and moderately long, pointed muzzle with tight, black lips and a small, black nose. Their eyes are almond-shaped with black rims that usually come in dark brown although they can occasionally come in more amber-like hues as well, and their small, triangular, prick ears are set closely together, standing erect from the top of the head. They sport a profuse double-layer coat that consists of a short, dense undercoat that is shot through with a straight outer layer that extends out from the body. They have a long, well-feathered tail that they carry curled up over their back.

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Japanese Spitz eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Japanese Spitz nose
Coat Color Possibilities
white Japanese Spitz coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
coat density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
coat texture
Japanese Spitz straight coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Japanese Spitz Breed Maintenance

While this dog may look like it takes a great deal of grooming effort, the Japanese Spitz has only moderate grooming requirements – both in difficulty and in time required. They are fairly clean-smelling animals and their fur is resistant to mud and dirt, so bathing is only required occasionally, just a few times a year unless they get into something sticky or smelly. Bathing them can be a somewhat lengthy affair as their coat often requires brushing both before and after a bath and their dense fur typically takes more time than average to completely dry. Brushing with a pin brush or comb should take place two or three times a week to keep the coat healthy and tangle free and tear stains should be wiped away with a wet washcloth or cottonball as soon as they appear.
Brushes for Japanese Spitz
Pin Brush
Pin Brush
Nail Clipper
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
fur daily fur weekly fur monthly
Japanese Spitz requires daily brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Japanese Spitz Temperament

The Japanese Spitz is a bold and high-spirited dog who loves to play. They are typically cheerful and affectionate companions who are up for anything, at any time, but they do require socialization at an early age to prevent suspicion or timidity towards strangers. While they are generally friendly, the Japanese Spitz is also attentive, and they tend to make very good watchdogs but can be prone to over-vocalization if their behavior is not corrected quickly. This little dog is a highly intelligent canine who is extremely willing to please, and while a few of them are a little strong-willed, most of them are easily trained. They do not enjoy being left alone for too long and can be prone to separation anxiety, becoming uncharacteristically destructive and noisy if they are lonely. Games and toys that stimulate the mind should also be offered on a frequent basis to keep their active minds busy.

Japanese Spitz Activity Requirements

These dogs are more active than most dogs their size and should receive at least 45 minutes of vigorous activity per day, although most of them would be happier with a little more. Exercise sessions for little dogs like the Japanese Spitz are most effective if they are split up into several shorter sessions throughout the day. Along with neighborhood walks and games of fetch, include activities like agility sports, trick training, and advanced obedience, although this little dog is not often fond of water sports. This breed is very adaptable and is often just as comfortable in a smaller apartment home as a larger home with a yard, as long as their tendency to bark is curbed early.
Activity Level
low activity medium activity high activity
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
7 miles
walk mileage
Minutes of Activity Per Day
45 minutes
activity minutes

Japanese Spitz Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1 cups
cup per day cost
Daily Cost
$0.90 - $1.00
food bowls daily cost
Monthly Cost
$25.00 - $30.00
food bag monthly cost

Japanese Spitz Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Japanese Spitz size stats at six months
Height: 13.5 inches Weight: 15.5 lbs
Female Japanese Spitz size stats at six months
Height: 12.0 inches Weight: 14.0 lbs
12 Months
Male Japanese Spitz size stats at 12 months
Height: 14.5 inches Weight: 18.5 lbs
Female Japanese Spitz size stats at 12 months
Height: 13.0 inches Weight: 16.0 lbs
18 Months
Male Japanese Spitz size stats at 18 months
Height: 14.5 inches Weight: 18.5 lbs
Female Japanese Spitz size stats at 18 months
Height: 13.0 inches Weight: 16.0 lbs

Japanese Spitz Owner Experiences

4 Years
4 People
House & Yard
tummy rubs
Lucky is super cute and cute (I can’t press anything other than the health grooming: 2 friendliness: 5 energy:5 trainability: 3) lucky loves tummy rubs
1 year, 2 months ago
5 Months
3 People
House & Yard
1 year, 2 months ago
1 Year
5 People
My dog loves belly rubs and attention seeker
2 years, 7 months ago
12 Years
5 People
She is so lovely gentle but brave and strong. She always listening and very caring. Also, she look after my son for a bit but its a big help for me. We love her so much even my mom treat her as her youngest. đź’•
5 years, 10 months ago
6 Years
1 People
Walking, going to the beach (he loves SHALLOW water
Shopping (
Playing with toys
Car rides
Agility training
Playing in the snow
Super sweet and loyal dog. Very protective of me and my home, but quite friendly with other dogs and people went outside. He just wants to be with me. He loves to play take walks and run in puddles in the edge of the ocean. Surprisingly easy to maintain.
3 years, 1 month ago
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