JACA’s agenda for breed health

The Japanese Akita Club of America is committed to promoting breed health. We encourage our breeders to have their potential sires and dams undergo hip and eye exams, to only breed dogs and bitches that are healthy, to be transparent with owners of littermates should a puppy they produced be diagnosed with a heritable illness, and to provide OFA and PRA results to people on their waiting lists. We encourage our members to make sure they provide appropriate veterinary care to their dogs and to be aware of the conditions and illnesses that Japanese Akitas may be prone to despite careful breeding practices. We also support breed specific research.

One of the biggest problems the breed is facing today deals with the autoimmune system. An autoimmune condition can be as simple as a seasonal allergy or as complex as VKH-like syndrome (also known as Uveodermatological Syndrome or UDS). Unfortunately, there are no vaccinations or cures for many common autoimmune conditions at this time. But there is a glimmer of hope through scientific studies.

The Canine Genetics research team at the UK’s Animal Health Trust (AHT) has a successful track record of identifying mutations responsible for different inherited canine disorders and developed DNA tests that benefit 65 different breeds of dog. You can see some of the current genetic research underway, and an overview on DNA samples, research and funding sources on the AHT website.

JACA has entered a joint effort with the Japanese Akita Inu Club of Great Britain to raise funds for the AHT’s breed specific research on Sebaceous Adenitis (SA). If you would like to make a donation or stay updated on the progress, please read the statements below and follow the Japanese Akita Inu SA Research page on Facebook.