My boy Hanzo introduction and some questions.
  • Hello everyone !
    As i said in an introduction post, my name is Vasilis and i am from Greece.
    Before i introduce Hanzo, I would like to say some things about my mindset towards my dog.
    I am an IT homeworker, which means that the dog is with me 24/7. He can't be without me and I don't want to be without him.
    I moved to a house near the mountains so he can have the walks he deserves, I wouldn't move to this house if I didn't have Hanzo. I even used to be a hardcore biker till I got Hanzo (I got a car so I can have him with me..)
    Now, I know that this sounds a bit paranoid, but I also know that hiking is good for me so Hanzo is the best motive I could have.
    Hanzo, since he was 6 months old is walking at least 4-5km daily (most of them off leash), we recently did a 8+ km hike. And now that winter is coming and Hanzo is near the age that I shouldn't be too concerned stressing joints etc.. I plan longer hikes.
    I take Hanzo with me EVERYWHERE , and by everywhere I mean everywhere. Basically if Hanzo is not allowed it means I'm not going.
    I chose this breed because I wanted a dog bigger than a shiba, smaller than an akita, that has strong attachment with its owner, more friendly than an akita and easier to train than shiba inu. So far Hanzo is all I wanted.
    I imported Hanzo from Poland from Hakugetsu kennel, out of pure luck, I was also talking with Itadaki kennel with Krisztina, who I believe has the best dogs outside Japan (at least to my knowledge). Both breeders know their job, they are very helpful and I can't recommend them enough!

    My boy Hanzo, he's 1 year old now, being with me constantly means that he is extremely socialized. He loves everyone, kids, grown ups, animals (including dogs, deer, cats , hedgehogs , foxes, you name it). He is good off leash and always wanna lead the way (50-100m in front of me) but always checks on me and if I hide he searches till he finds me. I keep treats with me on our daily big walk to train him and basically if I have food in my hands he does anything I ask.

    So, now that introductions are done, a couple of questions that I have for other owners :)

    As I said, Hanzo is extremely socialized, does this mean that he won't be a guard dog ? If something happens will he step forward to protect me ? how your hokkaidos behave ?

    If Hanzo sees another animal he wants to go there and say hi, he won't hear anything from me and no matter the animal he will rush full speed (even with cows). is this common ?

    As I said he's just one year old, I am expecting him to change as he grows up (my Akita did), should I expect "some" aggression ?

    Hokkaido off leash , bad idea ?

  • KriszKrisz
    Posts: 145
    Hi Vasilis,

    Thanks for your kindly words about me :-)

    I have experience with my 3 Hokkas, they have different behaviour, despite of they got same raising from me.

    1. Seta is protect me (and my husband), when I take her to dog show and we waiting for the judgement outside of the ring, she sits on my legs and growl for other people. She hates if judge touches her, I need tightly hold her head.
    She is in box at the show and if anybody comes too close, Seta attacks, looks like she would like bite too. When I take her to the vet, I use muzzle.

    2. Maru is a very lovely boy, loves all people, he gives many kisses.

    3. Hatsu is protect us at home, if anybody comes, she barks. On the show she allows the touch, no growl ot bite.

    All 3 hates other animals: other dogs, cats, moles... I take them to the walk around the lake one by one with leash.

    Itadaki Kennels - www.hokkaido-ken.eu
  • WhoBitMeWhoBitMe
    Posts: 1898
    Hanzo is cute! And he sounds like an amazing dog. :) I would love to be able to move closer to hiking trails for Meituo, my Hokkaido (who is also Maru's brother)! Meitou loves going hiking, walking and exploring. I think it is his favorite thing, aside from me. Meitou goes a lot of places with me, too. I wish I could be with him 24/7 like you and Hanzo.

    For me, Meitou is a good watch dog. If he thinks something is suspicious he would give his warning bark. I can tell by watching his behavior when there are people approaching us when we are out.

    Meitou does not like strangers to touch him and is reactive to most dogs. He has made a few dog friends, though. He started becoming more reactive around 9 months old.He likes to chase squirrels, rabbits, cats, and some birds. He is interested by horses and cows but is wary of them if they are close. I don't think he would run right up to them, but he might surprise me.

    I do not hike with Meitou off leash because I don't always know if there are other dogs on the trail. But I think he would do okay. Sometimes I let him drag his leash when we are alone and he does okay.
    1 Human + 1 Hokkaido
    RIP Amy (Border Collie)

    “Anyone can love a thing because. That's as easy as putting a penny in your pocket.
    But to love something despite. To know the flaws and love them too. That is rare and pure and perfect.”
    --Patrick Rothfuss, A Wise Man's Fear

    "Life before death. Strength before weakness. Journey before destination."
    --Brandon Sanderson, the First Ideal from The Stormlight Archive.
  • Thanks for your replies :)
    It's amazing how different hokkaidos are comparing to akitas and shibas.

    My akita, hiking ? - no way! he would love a long walk but that's it. he would definitely prefer a nap on the couch instead. As a guard dog simply amazing, and i'm not talking about barking, im talking about thieves trying to rob my house, where they tried to kill (or restrain) my dog by choking him with a rope (he had marks on his neck), btw, nothing got stolen, i found him staring at the open window when i got back, and i have so many stories to share about his love for the family.
    Rest in peace Kenjo. you were, are and will always be family to me.


    My shiba , so smart and independent, almost like a cat. He's independence was the reason i lost him, but a true athlete, i could be exhausted with throwing the ball all day long and he would only stop to swim at a lake. And when i tried to confront him for not listening ? he bite me.. hard.. (still have marks on my hand)

    Hanzo is an explorer, he will stick his head in every hole he finds. With strong pray drive that you can tell that these dogs once hunted. curious but at the same time cautious, definitely not as fast as a shiba but much stronger and much more willing to please his owner.
  • My experience (with border collies, not Hokkaido inu) is that it's always best to have them on-leash outside the house. One of our BCs lost a leg because he tried to herd a car; I'm concerned about what could happen to any dog that wants to go say hello to an animal as large as a cow.

    Part of the deal we make with domestic dogs is that we'll make good decisions for them. They accept being on leash because we generally do.

    As for protection, it's best to train your dog instead of relying on their natural instinct. I don't know what kind of training is available in Greece, but you might look around and see if Shutzhund training is available... it's basically obedience training focused on protective actions. It will teach your dog the best ways to be protective without putting himself in needless danger, or ramping up his aggression in non-defense situations.
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 3420
    Hi, I have Genko the black and tan girl, and raised her puppies keeping one girl, brindle Umma:

    1) Genko and Umma love people and are both very dog social, they have fun at shows/dog events and are easy to handle at those events. Genko has become more selective and does not enjoy other females or neutered males since having her puppies. Both my girls are very alert and good about warning barks. I can walk them in a group of other dogs with few issues.

    2) Genko and her puppies were all interested in my chickens, but only so they could eat their food. They are becoming more interested in small animals like rodents but not to the same intensity as my Shibas. They are very alert to large game though like deer we may see.

    3) Hokkaido off leash: I would recomend a GPS tracker. Genko and Umma are very good so I wouldn't worry if they got off leash as they are quite obedient that way and want to please, so return quickly.
    info@hokkaidoken.org
    www.hokkaidoken.com
    www.hokkaidousa.wordpress.com
  • Also, things that I've read about Hokkaidos indicate to me that the training methods advocated by the Monks of New Skete (Catholic monks who raise GSDs as working dogs, and have published several books on obedience training) will be effective for Hokkaidos. Anyone have any experience with that method to confirm or deny?
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 3420
    You shouldn't do any of the "alpha rolls" or physical punishment with Hokkaido, they are quite handler soft already and they take any admonishment very seriously as all they want to do is please their people.
    info@hokkaidoken.org
    www.hokkaidoken.com
    www.hokkaidousa.wordpress.com
  • Good to know; thank you, Lindsayt.

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