Pet Insurance for Akitas

Find out all about Akitas and their common health conditions, and then compare your pet insurance options from some of Australia’s leading insurers.  

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, updated on September 14th, 2023       

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Price range







Loyal, dignified, reserved

Coat type

Long, thick double coat

Exercise needs

Very high



Life expectancy

10 - 12 years



The Akita, a large, majestic and powerful breed, originates from the prefecture of Akita, in Japan. With a history of being a fisherman’s companion, they are known for their webbed paws, water-resistant coat, their strength, loyalty and devotion to their owners. Akitas have a dignified demeanour and may be reserved around strangers, but they form strong bonds with their owners. They first arrived in Australia in 1982. 

Their thick double coat provides effective insulation, making them well-suited for colder climates, but less so for the hot Australian climate. They may need shelter and shade in summer and plenty of water to keep them cool. Their intelligence is coupled with independence, which can require patient training and consistent socialisation from an early age. Prolonged eye contact with an Akita is considered a threat, and they can be aggressive with other dogs if they feel threatened.  

Due to their large size and tendency to chase anything small, Akitas will thrive in homes without young children where owners appreciate their loyalty, are willing to invest a lot of time in training, and can provide a structured and loving environment for this large, dominant heavy-shedding dog. 

Common Akita diseases and conditions

Akitas are known to be susceptible to specific health issues, and responsible breeders often screen for these conditions:

  • Hip Dysplasia: A common orthopedic condition affecting the hip joint's development, which can lead to discomfort and mobility issues.
  • Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (Bloat): A serious condition where the stomach twists, potentially causing a life-threatening emergency.
  • Hypothyroidism: A thyroid disorder that can impact metabolism and overall health.
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA): A hereditary eye condition that can lead to vision impairment or blindness.
  • Autoimmune disorders: Akitas may be prone to autoimmune disorders, where the immune system mistakenly attacks the body's own tissues.

Breed-specific issues:

Akitas can exhibit dominant behaviour and may not always get along with other dogs of the same gender. They can be used as guard dogs. Early and frequent training is crucial to ensure they are well-behaved and good with other family members. They need to be clear who is their ‘pack leader.' A strong and secure fence is vital to keep them contained in a large garden. Akitas shed their coats twice a year, so they are not suitable as indoor dogs as their thick coat comes out in large handfuls while they are shedding. 

How much does pet insurance cost for an Akita?

There are many factors that can influence the cost of pet insurance for your Akita, including the following:

  • Age: The older your dog is, the more pet insurance is likely to cost. This is because senior dogs tend to have more physical health conditions and illnesses due to age, and so present a higher insurance risk.    
  • Type of insurance you choose:  There are three basic types of pet insurance available in Australia; accident-only, accident and illness, and comprehensive insurance. An accident-only policy is the cheapest type available, with comprehensive coverage costing the most.  
  • The policy annual limit: Each pet insurance policy has an annual limit, which is the maximum amount that will be paid out on the policy in one financial year. Annual limits range from around $10,000 up to $25,000 or more.   
  • Sub-limits: In addition to an annual limit, there may also be sub-limits that apply to the policy, for example, a $300 sub limit for consultation fees, or a $5,000 limit for cruciate ligament conditions.   
  • Benefit percentage: Pet insurance does not cover 100% of the cost of your vet bill. Instead, it may pay a percentage of the total bill. This can range from 50% for cheaper policies, up to 90% for top-of-the-range cover.  
  • Excess amount: This is the amount you’ll need to pay out-of-pocket each time you make a claim on your policy. Some pet insurance policies do not come with an excess amount, whilst others do.  
  • Any add-ons you choose: It’s possible to add on more cover options to a basic policy, such as emergency boarding fees, routine care and dental care. These add-ons extend the scope of your pet insurance, but do increase the overall cost of the policy.  
  • Discounts: some insurers offer discounts of between 5% and 15% if you have multiple pets insured together, if you pay your premium annually, or if you bundle your pet insurance with other forms of insurance with the same company.   

Types of pet insurance you can choose from

Why compare pet insurance with Savvy?

Common questions about Akitas

Are Akitas naturally aggressive?

Yes, Akitas can exhibit aggression, particularly towards other dogs and small animals, owing to their protective nature. Early socialisation and training are pivotal in managing their behaviour. They are not suitable for households that have cats, guinea pigs, rabbits or other smaller animals the Akita may regard as prey.  

How much exercise do Akitas need?

Akitas require a high amount of exercise, ideally around 1-2 hours per day. This can include brisk walks or runs, playtime, and mental stimulation activities to keep them healthy and content. 

Is it easy to train an Akita?

Training an Akita can be an enriching yet demanding experience. They have a strong-willed and independent nature, which can make them a bit challenging to train, especially for first-time dog owners. Early and consistent training is crucial to establish boundaries and reinforce desired behaviours. Positive reinforcement methods work best with Akitas. 

How often should I take my Akita to the vet?

Regular veterinary check-ups are crucial for Akitas, with a minimum of one visit per year. This will help monitor their overall health condition and address any potential issues promptly. Since Akitas are prone to certain health concerns, including hip dysplasia and progressive retinal atrophy, regular vet visits are essential for early detection and prevention. Maintaining a proper vaccination and preventive healthcare schedule is also vital for their well-being.  

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