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Are Hokkaido Inu really the "wildest" of Nihon Ken?
  • tsukitsunetsukitsune
    Posts: 6468
    For those of us on the forum either just discovering this rare breed or trying to decide if its really a dog we can handle someday, I'm wondering if you Hokka owners out there wouldn't mind putting down some info about what its really like to OWN a HOKKAIDO INU.. the good, the bad, the ugly, how they are with you, with crating, with socialization, with your other pets, with strangers, quirks, funny stuff, anything!
  • jmaxwelljmaxwell
    Posts: 287
    Its funny you say that because I cant believe they would write that about Hokkas. I mean, even though ive only had Kangai for a month or so now, she actually very well behaved. The only thing she does that she is getting a bad habit of is wanting table scraps and she wont take NO for an answer. Im sure she will get better as we correct her more and more and because shes still a puppy. I do know that after reading about Ewas and Roberts Hokkas, early socialization is key, but I think for all of these breeds it is. They do have a very destint howl. It is very funny. They have differnt howls, such as when they are happy, sad, hungry, ect. Keira howls, but its nothing like the Hokka. They do very much have a mind of their own, but they are such beautiful dogs. They will follow you wherever you go the minute you walk into the door and hate if you leave them for just a few minutes without being able to see you in their vision. She hasnt been mean to any dogs, so I cant say she is agressive, but she plays with Keira and Kenji all day. Once we start taking her to obediance class and to the dog parks and gets intoduced to other dogs will we know and only then, but we want to make sure we can correct that as much as we can so she doesnt learn to be agressive. She is pretty much a dog puppy. Honestly, a very easy puppy to take care of. She isnt too high maintence just as long as you love her, play with her, and give her attention. She hasnt wrecked anything...yet...either. I love Keira and Kenji to death and think they are beautiful dogs, but I must say that there is something very more intreguing about the Hokka which in my eyes and makes her I think the most beautiful dog. Ohh I just love her to pieces =)

    I wonder if maybe the male Hokkas are more agressive and teritorial? SHe has learned very fast that Keira is the Alpha of the house, well besides me, and she respects that which is pretty funny to watch. She doesnt even go near Keira when she is eating because she knows Keira will get mad. She learns very very quick. Speaking of which, I taught her how to sit in about 2 days. She also does very well with my other 3 cats. She tries to play with them and realizes that they dont want to play with her and then she ignores them. I think if we didnt have Kenji and Keira to keep her occupied, she would be a little devil, but so far so good =)

    Hope that helps tskitsune! Once she gets older I will be able to answer more about her behavior and such. =)
    Post edited by jmaxwell at 2008-05-15 14:13:02
  • EwakaEwaka
    Posts: 16
    hi :)
    give me a time to this weekend and I write You all all my experiences with hokkas (Jamie knows some of this stories already :)...). I try to describe all the super-sides of being its owner, and some risks that You should be prepared to not do any mistake. I think I can tell a lot, because I have various experience with this breed. The first hokkaido whe have came from adoption, and was a 9 months old devil. Lancelot (his name) was so coddled by the earlier owners (they made all the mistakes you can only do by bringing up the dog) and he became a king of the world, and became so mad and so bad that he was purposed to euthanasia... He was so agressive, that no one could handle with him, even in the shelter.
    Many people had appetence for him and wanted him to pick up to their kennel (you know - he was the son of the "World Winner" :) ) but any one can stand his behavior. All the people were affraid of him, and he used it :)))
    I laugh now, but that was really horrible then..

    We were his last chance, and we decided to take him home. No one in Poland belived, that this dog can be back to the normal life. All said he is mad and ill.The first days were horrible, but we didn`t give up.

    Ok. More - later ;)
    Now I tell You only shortly - that after some weeks we`ve already have the most lovely dog in the world :) Dog, who trust us (only us), who watch us, who has so much love and fun inside, that we fall in love with hokkaido so much, that we even
    not expected!!! When we took him, we just wanted to save him and try to socialize him, give him a home and try to use him to live normal way. We expected he should be separated to the end of his life...

    But the effect of this history was incredible, because whe change him in a house angel ;) and he proved to be the
    most loving and faithful dog, that we every had. IN some weeks!!!!! (and You know, that we had and have a lot of dog :) I love my huskies, but trust me - huskies dont make such a special bond with their owner as hokkas do. When hokka once fall in love with her owner, he will love you until your death, and every separation is a tragedy for him. So, Lancelot was our shadow. He event went to the job and "worked" with my husband :)

    The story of Lancelot shows, that it was not his fault, but just the faults of the stupid people.
    So, when he gone behind the rainbow bridge, in our house WE HAD TO HAVE A NEXT ONE, and we did it :) - but it is another story that I tell you by the way. His younger brother - Kai was by us from 3 month of age, and from the first sight - was an opposite to Lancelot, but the funds of the strong but smiley character are the same.

    ok. I promise - to write during the weekend all the adventages and disadventages and some special behavior of this breed I`ve ever noticed, and try to describe why hokkas are so one in a thousand :)

    Jamie, she looks really pretty on this small picture :) I see the tiredness after playing on her face. Isn`t it? ;)))
    Post edited by Ewaka at 2008-05-15 15:22:34
  • ktreborktrebor
    Posts: 196
    From our experiences I could tell that hokkas are both angels and devils in one body. When you are living with them you simply forget that this dogs were breed for thousand of years for mainly one purpose - to fight with big game in the frozen mountains of northern Japan, and it is still in them.

    Kiba and JaJa are very lovely dogs in our household, but when they are running in our garden, every strange animal which they found is an object of hunt, and it is not a simply fun but real hunt for kill. The more big game is the more fierce hokkaido gets.

    But when introduced early with other animals in house, they are going quite well with them - Kiba ignores totally our cats, sometimes even he licks them, JaJa is chasing them, but without grabing or bitting.

    In comparision to shiba or akita they are also going quite well with other dogs in house.

    Bonding with master. Oh my, this could be a problem. As were said hokkaidos are sometimes like a shadow to a person which they choose to be master / owner. With Kiba we have made several early mistakes so we now have a dog with extremelly big separation anxiety - he must sleep with us, he gets crazied when he is without us. JaJa is more independent but she also tries to be around us.

    Kiba and JaJa were socialized from puppyhood, Kiba is very friendly to all people which are coming to our home, he must touch everyone, but after first minutes he loose all interests in our guests. JaJa is more caoutions - she barks and howls for every strange to her person on her property, she is running around them and she dsn't want to be touched.

    Everything is changing when we are on neutral or strange to hokkaido grounds. JaJa is very friendly to other peoples and Kiba is starting to guard us. A month ago a drunken man has come to Kate with question if she could spare him some money - Kiba went berserk - he have made some long strange growl from depths of his lungs (Kate has told me that she never heard this sound before), he has stand between Kate and this drunk man with head lying very low and ears pointed back, when this man pointed with his finger at Kiba, Kiba attacked. Thanks gods he was on short leash, and nothing bad happened.

    One more thing hokkaidos both JaJa and Kiba have never show any sight of aggression toward us or our familly (my mom, dad, even my aunts :) Both Amandil (shiba inu) and Buffy (siberian husky) have some bad behaviours on their accounts:) Amandil is sometimes growling at me when he is near his food or toys, Buffy could grab my hand with her teeths when I'am brushing her.
    Post edited by ktrebor at 2008-05-16 07:52:33
  • SangmortSangmort
    Posts: 1361
    Bumping this up :O!~
  • TheWalrusTheWalrus
    Posts: 101
    Hokkas and Ryukyuus are genetically the most primitive Nihonken. The reason for it being that the dogs originally in Japan (brought over from Southeast Asia) during the Jomon period interbred with the dogs that were brought over by the Yayoi during the Yayoi period. The dogs in Hokkaido and Okinawa, because of their geographic isolation, were left untouched.

    The Hokkaido is famous in Japan for being the only Japanese dog breed that was not 'created' by humans. It is believed they have been living with the Ainu for thousands of years in their 'natural' state. These are probably some of the reasons why alot of information classifies Hokkas as the most 'wild' Nihonken.

    The Ainu word for dog is 'Seta', and their dogs were primarily used for hunting. As a result of living in a colder climate, they have smaller ears than most other Nihonken, and broader powerful chests to break through snow. At Hokkaido ken exhibitions (Tenrankai) they still have 'hunting tests' to show the working abilities of the breed.
    Post edited by TheWalrus at 2008-08-17 11:08:29
  • tsukitsunetsukitsune
    Posts: 6468
    well that makes a LOT of sense in why they are deemed the wildest!
    what other info is there on the ryukyuu? are they considered a nihon ken spitz type? there really isn't that much info circulating about them.
  • TheWalrusTheWalrus
    Posts: 101
    The Ryukyuu doesn't have that much info circulating because they were nearly wiped out during WW2. Because of the geographics of Okinawa, they differ slightly from island to island. There were around 1500 10 years ago, but only around 6-700 at present. A preservation society was set up in 1990, and they've set up breed standards and the like. They've been declared a natural monument in Okinawa Prefecture.

    Ryukyuus are known for being milder in temperament than other Nihonken, and friendlier. Their coats are shorter than other Nihonken, and come in many different colors. 'Toola' means tiger pattern in Okinawan, and the recognized colors are 'kuro-toola' (black-tiger), 'aka-toola' (red-tiger), 'shiro-toola' (white-tiger), and 'akain' (a solid red-brown). Different mixes of the colors can result in solid whites, blacks, sesames, and ivorys (all these colors not recognized at present). Around 60 percent of Ryukyuus have the tiger stripe pattern.

    Ryukyuus have a shorter 'stop' than other Nihonken, are medium sized (roughly the same as Kais), and I would assume are classified as a spitz type. Tails come in two types, point and curl, with most having pointed tails.
    Post edited by TheWalrus at 2008-08-17 12:23:27
  • Wow, that's great information. Thanks!
  • Damn it!!! Another dog to covet that I will NEVER see in a shelter. Not sad that I won't see one in a shelter. Just sad that it means I can not have one due to my self imposed policies.

    Thank you for such cool info!!
  • tsukitsunetsukitsune
    Posts: 6468
    wow!! great info! thanks!
    the aka-toola (first picture) has an amazing color to it! like a fiery sunset...
  • MommyofNikoMommyofNiko
    Posts: 2728
    LMAO Jess...you are so cute. How about someone get one and then surrender it and just happens to let you know??
    So not ok...just wondering...
    Love all the knowledge.
  • SangmortSangmort
    Posts: 1361
    Thanks so much, this was a wealth of great information~! <3~
    Post edited by Sangmort at 2008-08-17 20:50:21
  • AndrewAndrew
    Posts: 55
    wow, beautiful!
  • BradA1878BradA1878
    Posts: 2240
    wow, that's really interesting! Thanx!
  • SarakoSarako
    Posts: 82
    I have no real problem with other dogs with my 2 Hokka...
    No barking problem too (but they are living near Akita... maybe are they more quiet ?)

    Niki and Arashi are really close to us... (My husband is Niki's real God !)

    They like to can see what is happening around, they are hunting all they can (cats of the neibourhood don't enter the garder anymore...). When Niki see a prey, no other thing count for her...
    They are good guards. When persons they dont know comes at home, they first bark a bit and then, go to fest them.

    (I can't really say all I want with my poor english... lol)

    I have a similar history as awaka with my Niki, I get at 9 monthes old too. She never had leave her box... Never wear a collar and never see a leash...
    She was very shy... But with patience, and love... We have teach her how to have a home life. And she was adapting really quickly ! (some weeks too !)
    I think Hokkaido have a real adapting capacity.
  • jmaxwelljmaxwell
    Posts: 287
    Thanks TheWalrus for all of the Hokka and Ryukyuu information! I can see now why Kangai is so energetic than my other two. I do have 3 cats though and she has never tried to attack them (thank god). I'm sure if I let her outside and she saw a stray cat though or other small animal other than a dog she would go after it. Do you think its a territorial trait or just because thats what they were born to do?
  • TheWalrusTheWalrus
    Posts: 101
    I don't know what it is, but a friend has some Hokkas that hunt with him, and they live with cats. They're very friendly with cats in the house, but any cats they meet outside they try to hunt. My brother in law's JRT is the same way... when he comes over he's totally fine with my wife's Persian (that he grew up with) but he goes nuts trying to attack the new little kitten we rescued. Anyone else experience that?
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 4784
    I'm bumping a very old thread on this side, just to say there is now a Hokkaido program in the USA with a successful breeding. The webpage for the Hokkaido Club is www.hokkaidoken.com and blog is at www.hokkaidousa.wordpress.com
    "Common sense isn't so common"
    photo c5d87957-61b6-48af-a440-4187cbfc861b_zps88ccdf88.jpg

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