Let’s face it. Pet hair is an immense pain in the butt for most dog owners. When searching for purebred dogs, you likely want to know all the ins and outs of owning them. If somebody in your home suffers from allergies or you don’t like cleaning up bulk shedding, this might be one significant category for your household.
Unfortunately, although the Akita has many excellent qualities that make them spectacular pets, they shed tremendously. So if a low-shedding breed is part of your criteria, there are better ones than this breed. However, there are ways to manage shedding to lessen the impact of cleanup in your home!
Understanding an Akitas Coat
Often, the appearance of the Akita draws many people to the breed in the first place. These dogs have stunning thick spiral cascading tails, sporting meaningful expressions, and exuding confidence.
Akitas have thick double coats that shed heavily. Even though they have easy-to-brush coats, they still require heavy maintenance. It doesn’t matter what season it is. You must keep up with their shedding. You have to stay ahead of the game.
Because of their beautiful double coats, Akita puppies can have multi-color choices, including contrasting colors and underlay.
How Often Do Akitas Shed?
Akitas shed every day. You can anticipate getting a few strands of hair on your work clothes or your new sofa. While you can put measures into place to protect your things, you will always have to be diligent about it.
In addition to daily shedding, they have bulk shed seasons in the spring and fall months. Their coats are changing to adapt to the seasons and experience what is called blowout. Blowout is where they lose bulk fur at one time, typically in handfuls for a few weeks.
It can be a challenging time to groom, as you have to do it so heavily and so frequently. So make sure you’re up for the challenge before you welcome one of these cuties into your home.
Seasonal Blowout: What Does It Mean?
As we mentioned, a seasonal blowout is when double-coated breeds lose a tremendous amount of shed simultaneously. It is an excessive shedding period, as the old fur gives way to the new undercoat. After these stages pass, your Akita’s coat will be more beautiful than ever. But they do get rather mangy looking during this phase.
Seasonal hair loss lasts for roughly 2 to 4 weeks, depending on the individual dog. Typically this is common in spring and fall months when seasons change drastically in temperature. The hair follicles go into what is called the telogen phase.
Other Double-Coated Breeds
Akitas aren’t the only dogs that have these unique coats. Several very popular breeds have double coats as well. They come in all shapes and sizes, and we’ll need to manage just the same.
What is interesting is that not all dogs with double coats shed profusely. In fact, some of them barely shed at all. When you have little dogs like the Shih Tzu or Miniature Schnauzer, they have thick double coats but rarely lose any fur at all.
Can You Prevent Shedding With an Akita?
No matter how annoying you might think the seasonal shed is, there’s really no way to prevent it. No matter the measures you put in place to reduce and clean up the shed, it will still happen regularly. The only surefire way to protect your home from Akita shedding is not to have one.
So if someone in your home has allergies or you are just not a fan of bulk shedding, definitely check out other breeds instead.
Factors that Affect Shedding
Several things play a role in how much your Akita is shedding. You can get shed under control most of the year with a few different tactics.
Ideally, it would be best if you brushed your Akita every day. This practice will help keep your Akita fresh and shed less in the home. You won’t have a lot of trouble with mats and tangles, as Akitas have very smooth, straight fur that is easy to comb.
When seasons change, you can always anticipate a blowout. If you prepare for it properly, you can brush your Akita religiously during this time to keep everything cleaned and tidied.
Even though your Akita will need daily brushing anyway when you know that bulk shed season is coming, you can prepare the home to battle the balls of fluff.
Your Akita already sheds pretty profusely. The last thing you want to do is make it worse. Giving your Akita a protein-rich, nutritional diet will decrease shedding, creating a more lustrous and silkier coat. The dog food you choose should be rich in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins and minerals, and other healthy nutrients.
If your Akita lacks in any of these areas, it can lead to a brittle, drab coat that sheds a lot more often.
Use Furniture Covers
To protect your furniture and other valuables, keep your furniture covered, your closet shut, and your laundry baskets put up. You can buy furniture covers at virtually every online shop and in-store. The type that you purchase will depend on functionality and personal style.
Use the Correct Tools
Make sure that you have the correct grooming tools to take care of your problem. Below, we will discuss the different types of grooming tools you can have in your home and how they can help you out on a routine basis.
Alternately, some grooming tools are designed to improve the overall look of the coat and not so much combat shed. It’s nice to have several on hand that serve different purposes.
Control Parasites and Allergies
Both parasites and allergies can lead to hair loss. If your pet is losing hair, you will notice an increase in shedding all over the house. Routine parasite treatment and a proper diet and environment can keep your Akita free of these issues.
Offer a Fatty Acid Supplement
Giving your dog a fatty acid supplement is always a good idea! Fatty acids improve your dog’s overall skin and coat. It will create proper oils to help your Akita’s skin stay healthy and create a shiny coat.
Unfortunately, getting your Akita’s shedding under control will cause some extra work for you sometimes. But if you keep things clean, like rolling the couch or vacuuming daily, you can reduce a lot of the shed lingering around on your belongings.
Grooming Your Akita
Grooming your Akita should be relatively easy! They have very straight, thick coats that tend to resist mats and tangles. Here are some tools you need to get you started.
There are a few different brush types to choose from. Slicker brushes typically have the same length of bristle, curved at an angle to scoop up any dirt, dander, debris, and dead fur. They are extremely easy on your Akita’s fur and skin.
You can use these tools for everyday brushing, and many of them have a self-released mechanism to make cleaning easy.
You can also use synthetic or animal hair bristle brushes. These brushes collect some shed, but they’re very good at distributing the oils throughout your Akitas fur to make them look shiny and smooth.
Deshedding tools work to get out very tough tangles, bulk shed, and dead undercoats. Using this tool roughly every month or longer is a good idea. If you do it too often, it can cause skin irritation. These are a godsend for families with double-coated breeds, but you can use them on any dog that sheds.
You can purchase deshedding tools on sites like Chewy or Amazon. You can also buy them in-store at virtually any pet shop and some department stores.
Brushing gloves might be a little less effective than some of the other options. However, these are good to have on hand if you have a dog that doesn’t care too much for brushing. These glove brushes are also excellent for bathing.
They really get a grip on the hair, pulling off a bulk of it while you’re getting a thorough cleaning.
Regular Bathing Schedules
Like most other dogs, your Akita will need a bath once every 4 to 6 weeks. It isn’t a good idea to bathe them any sooner than 4 weeks because it strips the coat of its natural oils. If you keep up with routine bathing, you can really work to get out any loose or dead hair.
However, taking a long time in between baths can increase the amount of shed happening at one time. There is more time to build up dander and dead fur in the coat, which can lead to increased shedding around the home.
The Akita is a noble, brave, fierce guardian that will loyally protect your family. So now you know if you’re looking for a low-shedding breed, there are better options than the Akita. But if you think you can combat the excessive shed, these are rewarding dogs to own.
Remember that some apartment complexes don’t allow this breed, as they are sometimes prone to aggression, so always check with your landlord accordingly.