Akita German Shepherd Mix Dog Breed – What You Need To Know




Akita Shepherd - brown in snow

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The Akita German Shepherd Mix is a cross between the Akita and the German Shepherd. This mix is a versatile dog that is known for being loyal, protective, and intelligent.

Akita Shepherd breed - laying brown side profile

The Akita German Shepherd Mix is also called Akita Shepherds or Shepkitas and has a beautiful coat that makes this mixed breed dog stand out.

Akita German Shepherd Mix breed characteristics

They can build a strong bond with their owners and make great family pets but may be too much for small children. Akita German Shepherds need plenty of exercise and can be quite active.

They are also known to be independent and stubborn at times.

Some Akita Shepherd owners believe that male akita shepherds are also more likely to bark and howl than female akita shepherds.

General Breed Attributes

The breed is a blend of the best qualities of both the German Shepherd and Akita, so they come in an array of colors — from light tan coat color, to pitch black, and everything in between.

However, the dominant traits of how the dog’s appearance will vary depending on its genetic makeup.

To understand this mixed breed as a whole, it’s good to study both parents.

This will be a factor in the dog’s weight, height, shedding, grooming needs, health concerns, and overall temperament.

The Akita Shepherd is a great dog with high energy. Learning more about the breed characteristics will help determine if it is right for you and your family.

Akita Shepherd - brown in grass

Background and origin

The Akita was originally bred in Japan to hunt bears and other large game.

The German Shepherd is one of the most popular breeds in the world. They are known for being loyal, intelligent, and protective.

Max von Stephanitz is the founder of the German Shepherd breed. He is considered to be the father of the breed.

They were used in the German military and were working dogs and were used for herding sheep and guarding property.

What’s the difference between Japanese Akita Inu and American Akita?

There are two different types of Akitas – American and Japanese.

Akita Inus are a Japanese dog breed that is considered to be the ancestor of the Akita German Shepherd Mix.

However, Akita hybrid breed dogs can be either American Akita or Japanese Akita Inu.

  • The Akita Inu is a smaller dog and has a smooth coat.
  • The American Akita is a large sized dog and has a thicker coat.
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Akita Shepherd - black _ brown

Common traits of both breeds

Akita Shepherds are a mix of two very different breeds but they share some common traits. They are loyal, protective, and intelligent. Akita Shepherds or Shepkitas need plenty of exercise and can be quite active.

Akita Shepherd dog breed characteristics

Weight and Height

Male Akita Shepherd compared to female Akita Shepherd

Male Akita Shepherds are typically larger in size than female Akita Shepherds.

The Japanese Akita Inu mix female weighs between 60-80 pounds with a stand height of about 22-24″ at the shoulder.

The male Japanese Akita weighs between 80-100 pounds and stand up to 28 inches. The average height is between 24-28″ from the shoulders.

American Akita’s average between 80-100 pounds for females, and 100-130 pounds for male Akitas.

American Male Akitas can grow to 28″ at the shoulders, and female American Akitas, on average are a couple of inches shorter.

Akita Shepherd - puppy


When given proper training and conditioning, the Akita Shepherd breed can be a great family companion. They’re serious, protective and make great guard dogs.

This mixed breed dog is also very social, loveable, loyal and playful.

While they do love to please their owners, Akita Shepherd mixes tend to be headstrong. They can also be very stubborn and intentionally obstinate.

Part of it is due to their playful nature and the other part is a behavioral issue. But, with the right care this will be minor.

However, behavioral issues will be difficult to quell. Unfortunately, females tend to be worse than males in this regard.

The independent nature of Akitas combined with the bold autonomy of German Shepherds equate to an a dog that may need to be reigned in.

Family and children

Akita Shepherds make great family pets but maybe too much for small children. Akita Shepherds make great guard dogs and are protective pets when it comes to their family.

Also, it isn’t in their nature to tolerate children and other pets. You can train them to, but it’s advisable that you get this dog when children are three years old or older.

Along with adequate and consistent training, the dog will be more than amenable and affectionate toward the child.

Still, never leave an Akita Shepherd alone with other pets or children without supervision.

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Exercise requirements

Akita Shepherds are usually more independent dogs and they need regular exercise to work off pent up energy. This breed will enjoy everything from playing fetch in the back yard to taking an hour long walk.

As with any dog, you want to start training regularly and early socialization are important.

Grooming requirements and Shedding

Because both Akitas and German Shepherds are dogs with fairly thick coats, your Akita Shepherd probably will too.

This means you have to do daily maintenance brushing along with a weekly thorough brushing. You will have to brush quite often during the dog’s seasonal shedding.

Plus, it’s important you go to a regular dog groomer so that the dog can get a thorough wash to make sure they stay clean. Use a slicker brush and pin brush for grooming in between sessions.

The dog will also probably need the fur cut down on its coat. This is ideal during summer, to help the dog tolerate heat better.

After your precious pooch has been outside, you have to check its ears and coat for pests and fleas.

Of course, you want to keep the dog’s nails trimmed and ensure the tail stays clean. Ideally, daily brushing of your Akita Shepherd’s teeth or use of dental sticks is important.


The life expectancy of an Akita Shepherd breed is around 10 to 13 years old. While these are robust, strong and healthy dogs, they do experience some health problems.

The most important of these health problems will be things like:

  • hip dysplasia
  • bloat
  • congenital heart defect
  • PRA (progressive retinal atrophy)
  • Von Willebrand’s disease
  • autoimmune thyroiditis
  • degenerative myelopathy.

These can be very serious but they are also very manageable with regular checkups and visits to the vet.

However, because of their mix, they can also experience elbow dysplasia, hemophilia and pancreatic insufficiency, among others.

So, if you are planning on getting this dog, it’s important to inquire about the health conditions of the parents.

Warm weather care

The Akita Shepherd has a double coat, so they are on the bushy side. This means that the dog will overheat in summer or warmer weather if you don’t have ways to develop properly cool down.

It may be necessary to keep the dog indoors with air conditioning on hot days.

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Is it possible to adopt an Akita German Shepherd Mix puppy?

If you’re looking for an Akita Shepherd Mix puppy or Shepkita puppy, be sure to do your research.

Akita Shepherd puppies are adorable, but they’re also a lot of work. Be ready with some chew toys to keep your new pup busy.


If you’re interested in adopting an Akita Shepherd, contact your local animal shelter to discuss your options. They should be able to help you find the perfect Akita Shepherd puppy for your family.

However, because you will be looking for such a specific hybrid, it’s best to not get your hopes up.

It is worthwhile contacting a few shelters inside and outside of your area to express your interest, and you never know what may come up.


If you’re not prepared to commit to the adoption process, it’s best to find a reputable Akita German Shepherd Mix breeder.

If you choose to go this route, it is best to find dedicated akita shepherd breeders who can provide detailed records of the parent breeds.

Why does the breeder matter?

First, when getting a dog from a breeder, it is important to ask about the parent breeds.

This will give you an idea of what to expect in terms of temperament and size.

It is also important to find a reputable breeder who has healthy dogs and can provide documentation of health clearances for both parents. They should be able to confirm that both breeds have purebred parents.

Akita German Shepherd Mix Roundup

An Akita Shepherd is a beautiful hybrid that was widely bred as a working dog.

They are a blend of a German Shepherd and Akita Inu, the national treasure and popular dog from Japan.

They make great dogs that are generally big sized dogs. They have a protective nature and are considered to be good guard dogs.

They are also known as Akita Shepherds and can have a variety of coat colors, but the most common are black and tan.

Akita German Shepherd Mixes are generally smart and trainable dogs. The Akita mix needs a lot of exercise and should not be left alone for long periods of time.

Akita Shepherd Mixes make good family pets if they are properly trained and socialized.

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