White Akita: Facts, Appearance, Genetics & Pictures

White Akita Inu smiling

The Akita breed features various coat colors, but the white Akita is among the most eye-catching. The white Akita is the same Akita that Japan considers a national treasure.

That said, if you’re fortunate enough to acquire an Akita with a completely white coat, you’ll own one of the breed’s most sought-after coat colors.

In this article, you will discover more about the white Akita. Here, you’ll learn about their temperament and demeanor, know more about their rarity, and find places where you can acquire them. Read along to learn more!

Can Akitas Be Pure White?

White Akita Inu resting outdoors

The white Akita is a purebred Akita that sports an all-white coat. Unlike other Akita colors, white Akitas don’t have the so-called urajiro markings. Urajiro markings are the distinctive pattern of the Akita breed. Other than their color, white Akitas share most of their traits with other Akitas.

Pure white Akitas exist; they are a popular variation of the Akita breed that is recognized by some kennel clubs, including the American Kennel Club (AKC).

The AKC breed standard requires that white Akitas have no other colors or markings on their bodies. Meanwhile, The Kennel Club requires that all Akitas must have the urajiro markings, except for the white Akita.

Additionally, the lack of any kind of markings or blemishes, even the tiniest ones, is the most distinguishing trait of white Akita dogs. 

It’s also worth noting that Akitas with completely white coats are not albinos since they still have pigment. Albinism is a hereditary disorder characterized by a lack of pigment in dogs.

Are All White Akitas Rare?

White Akitas are not that rare. However, they are not as common as some of the other Akita coat colors.

Only one in every ten Akita litter is a white Akita. This makes it harder for breeders to come across pure white Akita puppies.

Hence, these white dogs can be harder to get a hold of compared to other Akita colors. Consequently, this makes white Akita slightly costlier than other coat colors. 

Fortunately, coat color has nothing to do with the overall worth or excellence of an Akita dog. That said, if you can’t find a white Akita, you’ll surely be equally satisfied with other Akita colors. 

In fact, regardless of the color of their coat, Akitas are highly regarded for the type of breed that they are, as well as their temperament and conformation.

White Akita Appearance

White Akita Inu on white background

The only distinct feature of the white Akita is its coloring, which is pure white. Nevertheless, it is identical to the standard Akita in every other aspect.

White Akitas are a type of dog recognized for their thick, fluffy coats and powerful, muscular bodies. Hence, they are distinctive and elegant canines.

Normally, white Akitas have short, thick coats. However, they may also sport a long coat if they are born from a long-haired Akita parent.

Their thick coats have two layers: a shorter, finer undercoat and a longer, more tightly packed outer coat.

White Akitas are large dogs, with males weighing anywhere from 100 to 130 pounds and females weighing around 70 to 100 pounds.

In addition, they have a powerful and confident demeanor. They have beautifully curled tails and triangular-shaped ears that are held in an upright posture. Their small eyes make them even more charming.

Furthermore, the color of their nose usually fades because of their naturally light pigment. The majority of white Akita puppies have black noses at birth. However, their noses typically change to light brown as they mature.

Watch this video of adorable white Akita puppies to learn more about their appearance: 

White Akita puppies - 6 months

White Akita Coat Color Genetics

The color of an Akita’s coat is determined by its genes, particularly the secretion of the pigment called melanin.

Akitas can come in various coat colors, including white, fawn, and brindle. The lack of pigment in the hair shafts produces white coloration, whereas the presence of pigment produces fawn and brindle hues.

The complex coat color genetics of Akitas is affected by multiple genes. One gene that constitutes the white coat color in Akitas is the K locus

Ironically, the K locus is the dominant black gene in dogs. However, a specific combination of K locus genes is what makes white fur in Akitas possible.

Particularly, the K locus affects tyrosinase — a crucial enzyme in the formation of melanin pigment. If this enzyme tips in the opposite favor of the dominant black gene, the resulting dog can be a pure-white Akita.

Simply put, they are the result of a mutation in the K gene that leads to a partial loss of pigment. 

It is also important to point out that white Akitas are not the result of albinism. Hence, these white dogs do not carry the health issues associated with albinism.

However, keep in mind that white dogs are more susceptible to sunburn and skin cancer, so it is critical to protect them from excessive sun exposure.

White Akita Temperament and Personality

White Akita Inu resting on the grass

White Akitas, similar to other Akita colors, are noted for their devotion, intelligence, and strong personalities. 

They naturally have a fiercely protective nature toward their family and territory since they were raised in Japan as hunting and guarding dogs. Thus, they are excellent watchdogs.

White Akitas are known for being calm and collected, but young Akitas, in particular, can be very active and playful.

They are known for their independence and stubbornness; therefore, they need to be trained with consistency and firmness from a young age.

In general, they get along well with kids, but because of their size and protectiveness, it’s vital to watch over interactions and teach kids how to act around them.

Furthermore, white Akitas can be cautious or aloof with strangers, so socializing them from an early age is essential to preventing anxiety or aggressive behavior.

Because Akitas want to be in charge, it’s important that you take the lead when introducing them to new dogs and establish yourself as the pack leader to avoid dominance problems.

White Akita Lifespan and Health Issues

A white Akita or any type of Akita can live for 10 to 12 years on average, although this can vary. 

Some Akitas enjoy a long and healthy life beyond the age of 13. However, some dogs aren’t so lucky and don’t live more than 10 years due to unexpected tragedies or illnesses.

It’s essential to keep in mind that white Akitas, like all dog breeds, are susceptible to particular diseases. 

The most common health issues in White Akitas are as follows:

  • Hip Dysplasia: Hip dysplasia is a frequent genetic condition in Akitas, and it can affect both white Akitas and different colored Akitas. It is a disorder characterized by abnormal hip joint development, which leads to discomfort, immobility, and pain. Although hip dysplasia can’t be cured, it can be addressed and controlled with medication, a proper diet, exercise, and surgery in extreme situations.
  • Hypothyroidism: Hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland does not generate enough thyroid hormones. The proper levels of these hormones are crucial to a dog’s metabolism and stamina. Hypothyroidism can cause a variety of symptoms in dogs, including a lack of energy, hair loss, skin issues, and an overall increase in body fat.
  • Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV): White Akitas can be susceptible to the life-threatening illness known as bloat, which can affect any other canine. GDV happens when the stomach twists, referred to as volvulus, after becoming bloated. This limits the gas from escaping, which can result in shock and organ damage.

The oldest Akita reported died in Japan at the age of 26. This is roughly 125 years old in human years. This only shows that you can make your Akita live longer by making good diet, nutrition, and exercise choices.

Regular visits to your vet are also helpful to ensure that your white Akita is healthy and free from any diseases. 

How Much Does a White Akita Cost? Puppy Prices & Expenses

White Akita Inu indoors

If you’re determined to purchase a white Akita puppy, you should expect to pay between $800 and $2,000.

Many factors influence how much a white Akita puppy costs, such as location, the breeder, the puppy’s gender, and how prestigious its bloodline is.

Furthermore, you may need to spend between $3,500 and $5,500 on a white Akita puppy from top breed lines with a champion lineage.

Also, remember that the initial purchase of a puppy is just the beginning of the costs associated with dog ownership. The following are the initial costs to consider when owning a white Akita:

Type of ExpenseCost
Food and Treats$80 – $150
Bowls$15 – $40
Toys$30 – $100
Beds$50 – $300
Collars and Leashes$15 – $50
Crates and Carriers$60 – $500
Grooming Essentials$50 – $250
Initial Vet Visits$100 – $500
Initial Vaccine Shots$50 – $300
Deworming, Flea, and Tick Medications$40 – $300
Neutering or Spaying$50 – $500
Microchipping$40 – $60
Dog License$10 – $20
Other Essentials$30 – $80
Total Initial Cost$620 – $3,150

Akita ownership is a long-term financial commitment, and as such, you should be prepared to spend several thousand dollars annually on your white Akita.

An important consideration for pet owners, especially those with expensive breeds like Akitas, is pet insurance. This can help cover expensive medical bills that may arise unexpectedly.

Places to Find White Akita Puppies for Sale and Adoption

To ensure you get a healthy pup, you must research reputable sources from where you may acquire a white Akita. 

The purpose of this section is to simplify your search for a white Akita by providing a list of some of the reputable breeders as well as rescue organizations that may have this breed available.

  • AKC Marketplace – The AKC Marketplace is a digital platform for buying and selling AKC-registered purebred dogs. You can browse through a variety of dogs on this website, including white Akitas. You can find comprehensive details about each puppy available in the AKC Marketplace, including details about their parents, medical clearances, and photos.
  • Lancaster Puppies – Lancaster Puppies connects prospective dog owners with reputable dog breeders. It is an online marketplace that serves more than two million people every single year. They sell puppies of various breeds, including white Akitas.
  • Greenfields Puppies – Greenfield Puppies is a reputable website that connects aspiring dog owners with breeders. Visitors to their website can use the search filters on their platform. This will help you locate white Akitas for sale in your region at prices that are within your budget.

Meanwhile, if you’d rather adopt than buy, here are some organizations where you might be able to find a white Akita:

  • Petfinder – Petfinder is one of the most popular sites dedicated to finding homes for abandoned pets. This database contains the contact information for roughly 11,000 animal shelters and adoption groups located in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. There are dozens of reputable breeders listed on Petfinder, so it shouldn’t be that difficult to discover a white Akita that is up for adoption.
  • Adopt-a-Pet – Adopt-a-Pet is a website that can assist you in locating adoptable animals in your region. You can check out their website to see whether they have a white Akita that meets all of your criteria for a healthy dog. They also have search filters to make your hunt for a white Akita more convenient. 
  • Big East Akita Rescue (BEAR) – Big East Akita Rescue is a nonprofit organization that helps unwanted, harmed, and neglected Akitas in need. Their service areas include the Northeast and the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Hence, they have white Akitas available for adoption from time to time.

You can also leverage the social networking sites you are using, like Facebook and Instagram. Just use the correct hashtag, and you’ll see a list of rescues and breeders.

Frequently Asked Questions

White Akita Inu during golden hour

Do White Akitas Shed?

As with all Akitas, white Akitas have a thick, double coat that sheds throughout the year, especially in the spring and fall.

The excessive hair loss that occurs during the shedding season in white Akitas gives the impression that the pooch is “blowing” its coat. 

This process can be most intense when they lose their winter coat in the spring. Thus, regular grooming and brushing may reduce shedding and maintain a healthy coat.

Are White Akitas Hypoallergenic?

White Akitas are not hypoallergenic, meaning their hair might trigger allergic reactions in some people. All Akitas, whatever their coat color, share these characteristics.

Akitas also release dander, a protein in their skin and hair that can potentially trigger allergies. It’s possible that some people can tolerate white Akitas despite the breed not being considered hypoallergenic.

If you’re thinking about bringing one into your household but are worried about allergies, it can be a good idea to spend some time around a white Akita first to see how you react to the breed.

Final Thoughts

White Akitas are extremely attractive and noble dogs renowned for their bravery, loyalty, and strength. They are a one-of-a-kind Akita because they are the only Akita color without urajiro markings. 

If trained, socialized, and given lots of love and attention, white Akitas can become wonderful family members and faithful companions.

However, they tend to be stubborn and dominant like other Akita colors. Therefore, you must begin training your white Akita at a young age.

If you want a large, fluffy, charming dog that will protect you and your family at all costs, a white Akita may be your perfect match.

Do you plan to get this eye-catching dog soon? Feel free to comment below with what you think about the white Akita!

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