Your Akita is a smart and strong-willed dog. He is confident. Novice Akita owners might see that confidence as stubbornness, but you can build on your dog's natural confidence and desires to learn and train him to be obedient to you.
Obedience training has a few basic elements like 'sit', 'stay', 'down', 'come', and leash manners or learning the 'heel' command that are imperative to training your Akita to be an obedient dog. An obedient dog is one you can nurture and love for a long time. When your Akita is trained basic obedience, he will not only listen to these foundation commands, but he will also be open to learning other commands as well. You can give him advanced obedience training and teach him more difficult commands, or you can teach him fun tricks for entertainment. When you work hard with your Akita to train basic obedience, you are building your relationship with him and setting your expectations for how your relationship will be in the years to come.
Because basic obedience training builds a strong foundation for any future training, you are going to go about training your Akita several different ways. The first thing you will be doing with your Akita is potty training if he is not house trained. Once he's old enough to socialize with people and other dogs, socialization will be the next step to obedience training. Teaching him the appropriate physicality between him and humans or other dogs sets expectations. Your Akita will need to know how to act with you as well as when you're not around. He will need to know how to behave when he's in public around people and other animals and when he's on a leash or off a leash.
Set your expectations high with your Akita because he can certainly handle them. Whether you’re starting at puppyhood or with an adult Akita, focus your training on positive input and output and rewards for good behavior.
When you train positive reinforcement with any dog, especially your Akita because his personality is so strong, you will need to have lots of tasty treats on hand for rewarding positive behaviors. When time allows, schedule quiet distraction-free training sessions to work on basic obedience commands one-on-one. Other times during the day, think of moments you can turn into learning opportunities. Your Akita is open to always learning.
Hi we are looking for our first puppy as a family. We currently have 2 cats and 1 child aged 8 who is used to dogs. We fell in love with a American akita at a rescue shelter. I’ve heard a lot of stories on how hard Akita’s are to train, but once trained they are rewarding dogs. Do you think it’s wise to get a Akita as a first puppy. We are all animal lovers but these to us seem to be another level of dog. We are more than happy to put the time and effort into training but we also both work. My wife who is a teacher will have six weeks off in the summer and that’s when we plan to purchase the puppy.
Hello Chris, Not knowing you personally I cannot say for sure. I can tell you that Akitas do tend to be more prey driven and not all of them are alright with cats, even when raised with them. They can also be more dominant, strong-willed, and have more of a tendency toward aggression toward people and other dogs if not raised with enough structure, socialization, and consistency. They can be a lot of dog, but they can also be very loyal. That loyality can be wonderful but it can also make friend's kids coming over difficult if your dog feels protective of your child. Akitas were orginally bred to hunt powerful, large game like bears. Each dog is different though. The Akita at the rescue may not fit the typical characteristics, and might turn out to be mild mannered, but that is very hard to predict in a puppy without knowing the parent's temperament. It might be worth contacting members of your local Akita club if you have one, or a pure bred Akita rescue and asking honest questions about the temperament from those who have them to help you decide. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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