Home Dogs Kai Ken Dog breed – Origin, Characteristic, Personality, Care

Kai Ken Dog breed – Origin, Characteristic, Personality, Care

Kai Ken dog is also known as Nihon Ken or Kai Ken Inu. This is a dog breed originating from the Kai region, where there are many mountains and forests. This breed is considered a national natural treasure of Japan.

Join DailyPets.net to learn about the origin, characteristics, and how to care for the Kai Ken dog breed through this article.

Kai Ken dog origin

Kai Ken is one of six famous native dog breeds of Cherry Blossoms. In 1929, this breed was discovered in Kai Province near the famous Mount Fuji. In 1931, the Kai Ken breed registry was established. In the past, they were used by the indigenous people to hunt bears and pheasants.

Kai Ken Dog.
Kai Ken Dog.

In 1934, the Japan Kennel Club recognized the Kai Ken dog breed. In 1950, this breed was introduced to the United States. From 1990 to 1992, 11 dogs of this breed were imported to the US. They came to the US and are the genetic source for breeding the Kai Ken breed in the US. Today, the Kai Ken dog breed is popular and respected in Japan. The Japanese also consider them as a treasure of nature.

Kai Ken dog appearance characteristics

This Kai Ken dog breed is medium-sized. Their size is also comparable to those of the Akita or Hokkaido dogs. Adult males are usually slightly larger than females.

– Height: 39 – 50 cm for females and 52 – 56 cm for males

– Weight: 9 – 18 kg for females and 11 – 20.5 for males

The Kai Ken dog’s head bears some resemblance to a wolf’s. Their heads are large and round. Kai Ken’s ears are small and triangular, standing erect on his head. Kai Ken’s eyes are large and round and usually have a dark tone. On their forehead, There is a groove in the middle of the forehead. Kai Ken’s snout is relatively long but not too big. Kai Ken dogs are equipped with strong teeth with sharp scissor-shaped teeth. Their tails are short and in an upturned position.

Kai Ken Inu.
Kai Ken Inu.

This Kai Ken Inu dog breed is equipped with quite long and dense fur. Their fur is made up of two layers. The inner layer is short and fluffy. The outer layer is longer and rougher. Thick fur helps them adapt to the icy weather of Japan. Their fur is usually black, brindle, or red.

Personality characteristics of Kai Ken dogs

Kai Ken dogs are considered the most intelligent dog breed in Japan and are active. They are a fairly easy dog breed to train because they are also quite obedient. However, if possible, you should adopt and train them from a young age to easily tame their personalities. These dogs are very resilient and courageous.

The Kai Ken dog breed is very loyal to its owner’s family. They ignore the danger to keep their owners safe. You can trust them as your companions on your journeys. They have good memory and can remember all the roads they have passed.

Kai Ken dogs are sometimes very stubborn and difficult to control. However, they are not too stubborn. They only like to stick to one owner. This breed is very alert but does not become aggressive when strangers enter the house. However, if they feel unsafe, they will warn their owner.

How to take care of Kai Ken dogs

Kai Ken dog food

Provide high-quality food for your Kai Ken dog to ensure long-term health. The frequency depends on the age of the dog. 12 week old Kai Ken puppies need 4 meals and then 3 meals until they are 6 months old.

In addition to 2 meals a day, it is enough for nutritional needs. You can also feed your Kai Ken human foods such as eggs, fruits, and vegetables, but only after consulting your veterinarian.

Snacks are an important part of your Kai Ken’s diet, as they make training easier. However, too much delicious food can cause your dog to gain weight. Therefore, set an upper and lower limit when sharing treats so the dog feels rewarded but does not become obese.

In essence, the Kai Ken is conscious of food and water. So, the amount they consume can vary depending on how the dog is feeling on any given day. At the same time, it loves to drink water. So you have to make sure you always have clean, fresh water.


The Kai Ken dog’s rough coat does not require much maintenance, and the Kai Ken does not require frequent bathing. You must brush Kai Ken’s coat and bushy tail daily to prevent excessive shedding. To avoid damaging its undercoat, you can use a high-quality dog shampoo.

Kai Ken needs exercise

Caring for the Kai Ken requires moderate exercise on a daily basis, such as a 30-minute walk/jog or longer. Allow it to play around the yard on its own as long as it is enclosed and private.

Occasionally, take your Kai Ken out for water sports. Because this breed loves water, your Kai Ken will love splashing to its heart’s content.

Part of the care routine also involves training your Kai Ken dog. Although Kai Ken will do your bidding in most cases, it can sometimes assume a stubborn attitude and simply refuse to respond.

This is where you can use junk food. Aspects that you can include while training include socialization and obedience, which ensure your pet’s safety in the long run.

For best results, follow a consistent training and exercise routine. If you take your Kai Ken dog out for a walk at 6 p.m., keep to the schedule as much as possible. Doing so will discipline your Kai Ken for the happiness and safety of all involved.

If you are having difficulty caring for your Kai Ken dog, consult your veterinarian to find the best option.

Health of the Japanese Kai Ken dog breed

Kai Ken Inu dogs have stable health. They possess high resistance and fight against common dog breeds. However, they often encounter eye diseases, skin allergies, or cancer. Therefore, you should take them for regular health checks to ensure they maintain stable health.

Lifespan of Kai Ken dogs

Kai Ken dogs have an average lifespan of 7 – 10 years old. However, they will be able to live longer if you take care of them properly.

Kai Ken dog price

The Kai Ken dog is considered a national natural treasure of Japan. Therefore, although popular, Japanese state agencies monitor and protect this breed.

To own a Kai Ken dog, you must contact the experts who breed them. On average, you can expect to pay anywhere from $800 to $2,000 or even more for a Kai Ken puppy from a reputable breeder. Prices may be higher for dogs with exceptional lineage or show potential. At this price, shipping fees, taxes, and other costs are not included.

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