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Akita vs. Pitbull: The Differences (With Pictures)

Written by: Ed Malaker

Last Updated on June 12, 2024 by Dogster Team

Akita vs. Pitbull

Akita vs. Pitbull: The Differences (With Pictures)

Dog lovers need to make many tough decisions when selecting a new pet, and one of the first is which breed to choose. Two popular breeds are the Akita and the Pit Bull, but which one is right for you? Keep reading as we compare and contrast these dogs and look at their appearance, temperament, health, and training requirements to help you decide which is best for your household.

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Akita vs Pitbull: Visual Differences

Akita vs Pitbull - Visual Differences
Image Credit: Left – Aleix Plana, Pexels | Right – Lee Hardy, Unsplash

At a Glance

  • Average height (adult): 24–28 inches
  • Average weight (adult): 70–130 pounds
  • Lifespan: 10–14 years
  • Exercise: 1 hour a day
  • Grooming needs: Moderate
  • Family-friendly: Yes
  • Other pet-friendly: Sometimes
  • Trainability: Intelligent, loyal
Pit Bull
  • Average height (adult): 13–24 inches
  • Average weight (adult): 25–80 pounds
  • Lifespan: 10–15 years
  • Exercise: 1+ hours a day
  • Grooming needs: Low
  • Family-friendly: Yes
  • Other pet-friendly: Often
  • Trainability: Intelligent, eager to please

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Akita Overview

Japanese Akita Inu dog standing in the forest
Image Credit: Botond Horvath, Shutterstock


The Akita is a dignified and loyal breed with an independent personality. They are known for their courage and protectiveness toward their family, which makes them excellent watchdogs. However, they can also be stubborn and have a strong-willed nature, which requires firm but gentle training and socialization from an early age.

They can be wary of strangers and may be aggressive toward other dogs, especially of the same sex, if you don’t socialize them with plenty of people and other dogs. They are also known for their affectionate and playful side with their family members, whom they enjoy spending time with and will fiercely protect.


Akita Inu dog enjoying the winter and snow
Image Credit: Ana Bencina Kosmac, Shutterstock

The Akita is a large and powerful breed with a broad head, triangular, erect ears, and a thick, muscular neck. Their eyes are small, deep-set, and almond-shaped, which gives them a piercing expression. The coat is thick and plush and can come in several colors, including white, brindle, red, fawn, and sesame.

They have sturdy legs and webbed paws, so they are excellent swimmers. They also have curled tails that they carry high over their backs.

Health & Care

The Akita is a relatively low-maintenance breed when it comes to exercise. They require moderate daily exercise, such as brisk walks or playtime in a fenced yard, but you should always keep them on a leash outside to prevent them from running off or getting into fights with other dogs.

They also need regular brushing to maintain their thick coat. They shed heavily twice a year, and during this time, they require more frequent brushing to manage the extra fur. Common health problems that Akitas may develop include hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy, and hypothyroidism. They may also be prone to bloat, a potentially life-threatening condition where the stomach twists on itself.

Suitable For:

The Akita is a breed best suited for experienced and responsible dog owners willing to dedicate time and effort to training, socializing, and caring for their pets. They are a loyal and protective breed that thrives on attention and companionship, and they do best in homes where they are a valued family member.

Owners should have a secure, fenced yard where they can exercise and play safely, and they are not well suited to small apartments.

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Pit Bull Overview

brown pitbull dog lying in the grass
Image Credit: Anna Krivitskaya, Shutterstock


The Pit Bull is a medium-sized breed with a muscular and athletic build, known for their strength, agility, and loyalty. They are misunderstood and stigmatized since the media often portrays them as aggressive and dangerous dogs, but in reality, they can be loving and loyal when properly trained and socialized.

However, a Pit Bull requires a responsible and experienced owner who can provide them with the training, socialization, and attention needed to thrive.


a grey pitbull standing on snow
Image Credit: Annabell Gsoedl, Shutterstock

Pit Bulls have broad, flat heads, strong jaws, and powerful neck muscles. Their eyes are round and dark, and their ears are usually cropped or left natural, depending on the breeder and the owner’s preference. Their short, smooth coat comes in various colors, including black, blue, brindle, fawn, and white, and their muscular and athletic build gives them a powerful and agile appearance.

However, it’s important to note that not all Pit Bulls look the same, as several breeds, each with unique physical characteristics, fall under the Pit Bull category.

Health & Care

Pit Bulls require regular exercise and benefit from daily walks, playtime, and other mental and physical stimulation activities. However, Pit Bulls may have a strong prey drive, so it’s best to keep them on a leash to prevent them from chasing after other animals. They also need regular grooming to maintain their coat and prevent skin infections.

Regular dental care is crucial for Pit Bulls to prevent dental disease, which affects many breeds. Common health problems that Pit Bulls may develop include hip dysplasia, allergies, skin infections, and heart disease. They are also prone to obesity if you don’t provide a proper diet and exercise.

Suitable For:

Pit Bulls can be suitable for various households but require responsible and committed owners. They are affectionate dogs that thrive on attention and companionship,  and they can be in households with children. They do best in homes with secure, fenced yards where they can exercise and play safely.

However, they require proper training and socialization to prevent aggressive behavior and may not be suitable for apartment living due to their size and exercise requirements.

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Akita vs Pitbull: Which Breed Is Right for You?

The Akita and the Pit Bull both make fantastic pets. An Akita may be the right choice if you are looking for a loyal, protective, independent, and reserved dog. However, they require a great deal of attention and training and may not be suitable for households with small children or other pets.

If you are looking for a strong, athletic, and affectionate dog, a Pit Bull may be a good choice. However, a Pit Bull may not be suitable for households with other dogs and requires a great deal of training and attention. Ultimately, you should decide between an Akita and a Pit Bull only after carefully considering each breed’s characteristics, along with your lifestyle and preferences.

See Also:

Featured Image Credit: Dogster/Shutterstock

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