'/> Amazing Animals: July 2012

Friday, July 27, 2012

The World's Amazing Birds

These birds are really amazing.

Most people just simply love birds. Some are fascinated by its amazing colors others are awed by their behavior. Birds specially those belonging to the same species exhibit a uniform appearance, plumage colors or social adaptability, but there are individuals that show unique features and behavior. Below is a list of these birds that we could tag as amazing birds.

An Unusual Bird

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The Secretary Bird (Sagittarius serpentarius) is a large dove-gray colored bird of prey that is endemic to Africa. It has long legs, wings and a three foot high tail. The odd thing about the Secretary is that it can’t run and instead hops along open areas of plains and savannas.

The Only Bird that has Nostrils on tip of Beak

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The Kiwi is a flightless bird that is widespread in New Zealand. Typically the size of a domestic chicken, Kiwi’s egg is 10 times larger than chicken eggs. What's odd about Kiwi? It is the only bird with nostrils at the tip of its beak. Normally birds hunt by sight or by hearing, Kiwi utilizes its beak nostrils to smell out its meal

Rarest Parrot

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The Spix’s Macaw (Cyanopsitta spixii) native only to Brazil is considered the rarest parrot in the world. This pale-blue colored bird, which can reach 23.5 cm long is conserved through several breeding programs. Currently, around 120 Spix’s Macaws is now in captivity.

Bossiest Bird

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The Kea (Nestor notabilis) is a species of parrot endemic to New Zealand. This amazing bird feed on insects, nectar, roots, leaves and berries. Keas, known for their intelligence, are social and live in a community that is comprised of up to 13 individuals. But what is unique about its community; lowly rank individuals are force by higher status individuals to serve them.

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Biggest Cockatoo

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The Palm Cockatoo (Probosciger aterrimus) is a very large species of parrots belonging to the cockatoo family. It is found in New Guinea and northern Queensland, Australia inhabiting rainforests and woodlands.

This black or smoky-grey parrot can grow up 60 cm (22-24 in) in length and up to 1,000 g in weight.

Fastest Flying Bird and Sharpest Vision

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The Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) is a large falcon having black head, blue-gray back and off-white legs plumage. With a wingspan of around 80–120 cm, Peregrine Falcon can soar to at least 124 mph; and could reach a speed of 168 mph when diving from high altitudes or while catching prey birds in midair. A study showed that under normal condition a Peregrine Falcon was able to spot a pigeon as far as from a 5 miles away.

Biggest Nest

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The Malleefowl (Leipoa ocellata) are hefty, shy and solitary birds endemic to Australia. A typical malleefowl nest on incubation mounds that can reach up to 15 feet tall and 35 feet. And take this, a malleefowl incubation mound is estimated to weigh 330 tons.

Bird that can Move its Neck Up to 270 Degrees

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Unlike humans, the owl has to turn its entire head off to one side to see things because its eyes are fixed to its socket. Thanks to its 14 neck bones, it can move its head with ease 270 degrees in both directions.

Smallest Bird, Smallest Nest and Only Bird that can Fly Backwards

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Hummingbirds (family Trochilidon) holds the record for the only bird that can fly backwards. The male bee hummingbirds (Mellisuga helenae) that is native to Cuba is the world’s smallest bird. It is only about 2.75 inches long. While the vervian hummingbird (Mellisuga minima) is the world’s record holder in terms of building a nest. The nest’s size – about half the size of a walnut shell.

Fastest and Largest Land Bird

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The Ostrich (Struthio camelus) holds a few numbers of bird records. This African flightless bird, possessing a long neck and legs, is the fastest land bird. It can attain speeds of up to 74 km/h (46 mph). Also, ostrich has the distinction of owning the largest eyes among land animal and lays the biggest egg of any bird species. Lastly, the North African ostrich (Struthio camelus) is considered the largest living bird. Males can reach up to 9 ft and weigh 345 pounds.

Check out other Amazing Birds posts:

The World's Amazing Birds 2
Amazing Birds 3
Amazing Birds 4: The Raptors

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The World’s Most Colorful Monkeys: I Am Pretty No Matter What You Say

A list of colorful monkeys.

I know what you are thinking. If I am in front of you right now you might be yelling me this, “What, colorful monkeys? You must be kidding me?" Yes, you have to believe me, there are really colorful species of monkeys. Scroll down and find out!

Red-shanked Douc

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The first colorful monkey on the list is the handsome looking Red-shanked Douc (Pygathrix nemaeus) of Southeast Asia. It is one of the most colorful and most attractive of all primates. It’s a diurnal and an arboreal creature that sleeps and eats up in forest trees. Red-shanked Duoc can grow up to 765 cm tall with a tail that measures about 765 cm long and can weigh up to 7 kg.

Black-capped Squirrel Monkey

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The next colorful monkey species on the list is the Black-capped Squirrel Monkey (Saimiri boliviensis). This cute-looking squirrel monkey can be found is South America, specifically in Bolivia, Brazil and Peru.

Javan Lutung

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The third monkey species on the list is the Javan Lutung (Trachypithecus auratus) of Indonesia. It is native to the island of Java, hence the common name. This golden-colored monkey, which can grow up to 55 cm in length and with a tail measuring about 98 cm long, can also be found in the surrounding islands of Java. It is also known as the Ebony Lutung and Javan Langur.

Golden Snub-nosed Monkey

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The fourth colorful monkey species on the list is the Golden Snub-nosed Monkey (Rhinopithecus roxellana) of China. This Old World monkey lives in temperate mountain forests and can withstand colder temperature than any other non-human primates. In china, it is known as the Sichuan Golden Hair Monkey or the Sichuan Snub-Nosed Monkey. As its common name implies, it is mostly golden in color.

Red-bellied Titi

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The fifth colorful monkey species on the list is the Red –bellied Titi (Callicebus moloch) or Dusky Titi. Although the color of the Red-bellied Titi on the above photo appears to be orange, it is actually red in color. This colorful monkey that has a colorful beard is a type of New World monkey native to Brazil.

Patas Monkey

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The sixth colorful monkey species on the list is the Patas Monkey (Erythrocebus patas) of Africa. This lovely-looking monkey is not just colorful it is also the “fastest runner among primates”. This ground-dwelling monkey can grow up to 85 cm in length excluding the tail which is about 75 cm long. It is also commonly known as the Wadi Monkey or Hussar Monkey.

Golden Lion Tamarin

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The seventh colorful monkey species on the list is the Golden Lion Tamarin (Leontopithecus rosalia). This small New World monkey is native to Brazil. This endangered species is reddish orange to golden brown in color. On the average, this monkey can weigh 600 grams only. It is also known as Golden Marmoset.

Gee’s Golden Langur

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The eighth colorful monkey species on the list is the Gee’s Golden Langur (Trachypithecus geei), or simply the Golden Langur. It is a type of Old World monkey that can be found in Assam, India and Bhutan. This endangered monkey species is considered sacred by many Himalayan people.

Zanzibar Red Colobus

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The ninth colorful monkey species on the list is the Zanzibar Red Colobus (Procolobus kirkii). This monkey is native too Zanzibar, Tanzania. This monkey is not only remarkable for its coloration but also features a distinguishing pink mark on its lips and nose. On the average, Zanzibar Red Colobus monkeys weigh about 11 kg. This endangered species is also known as Kirk’s Red Colobus.

Western Red Colobus

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The tenth colorful monkey species on the list is the Western Red Colobus (Procolobus badius). It is a type of Old World monkey that inhabits the forests of Senegal, Ghana and other western African countries. This monkey is a notable carrier of Ebola virus. Many chimpanzees were infected by Ebola virus when Western Red Colobus were hunted and eaten by chimpanzees.

Sumatran Orangutan

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The eleventh colorful monkey species on the list is the Sumatran Orangutan (Pongo abelii). This unique monkey can only be found on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia. This rare and small orangutan can grow up to 1.4 meters in height and can weigh up to 90 kg.


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The list will not be complete without including one of the sexiest animals alive – the Mandrill (Mandrillus sphinx). This primate possesses one of the most brightly-colored faces and rumps in the world. As the mandrill grows older, its coloration becomes even brighter. It is native to Africa and can live up to 31 years in captivity.

The above list of colorful monkeys might not be as colorful as the most colorful amphibians, fishes and birds but somehow they can still be considered colorful, at the least.

Friday, July 20, 2012

The World’s 10 Toughest Animals

Here’s a list of extremely hardy animals in the world.

The Lion, which is considered as the King of the Jungle, is said to be one of the toughest animals in the world. But I don’t think a lion can survive one month without eating or sleeping.

Let’s find out some of the toughest animals on the face of the planet. Some animals are simply extraordinary. These animals can survive the hottest temperature, the coldest temperature. They can live for an enormously long period without eating or drinking. Others can live a very long life.


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Adult Bedbugs are known to survive up to one year without feeding. Based on studies, they can survive for at least five days at temperature of −10 °C.


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Why are ants among the toughest animals on Earth? Well, it may sound impossible, but ants don’t sleep. There are no other known animals that don’t sleep except ants. These social insects that live in colonies as many as 500,000 individuals are also the strongest animals alive when body size is taken into account. If an ant is as big as human, it can carry on its back the planet Saturn.


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Many studies have shown that Cockroaches, which appeared about 295-454 million years ago, are among the toughest of all creatures. They have not almost changed in appearance since they first appeared on Earth. Would you believe that a headless cockroach can survive a few weeks, especially if it had eaten before it was beheaded?

As one of the toughest insect on the planet, it can survive for months without and in addition, it can survive without air for 45 minutes. Tagged as “inheritors of the Earth”, Cockroaches also have higher radiation resistance than vertebrates with the lethal dose 15 times that for human.


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We have been trying to eliminate mosquitoes for the past centuries because they are responsible for the most human deaths world-wide but we were not able to succeed. That alone is already sufficient to consider them among the toughest animals in the world. Mosquitoes are not just tough but they can smell their target as far as 35 meters away.


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Plagues of the Desert Locusts are considered the most destructive grasshoppers in the world. People have been trying to completely eradicate this pest in Africa, Middle East and Asia but to no avail. They are considered the most dangerous locust and have repeatedly threatened agricultural production.


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How long can you survive without liquid intake? Amazing as it may seem but a Camel can go for 3 weeks or 21 days without water. A loaded Camel can last up 4 days. Camels are also among the animals with the toughest mouth. Its mouth is very sturdy and is capable of chewing thorny desert plants. In addition, Camels can withstand about 25% weight loss due to sweating while most mammals can only withstand 4% only.

Elephant Seal

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Elephant Seals are the largest carnivore in the world. They are among the toughest mammals in the world also especially when it comes to diving because it can hold its breath for more than 100 minutes. It is much longer than any other non-cetacean mammal. The deepest dive record for an Elephant Seal is 2,388 meters beneath the ocean’s surface. In addition, a male Elephant Sea can stay ashore for more than 3 months without food during mating season.

Ocean Quahogs

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If you have the longest lifespan in the world, of course you are the toughest animal on Earth. The creature that holds the record for the “longest lifespan” in the world is the Oceanic Quahog. It can live up to 410 years.

Bar-Headed Goose

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How high can a bird fly? The Bar-headed Goose, which is one of the most amazing birds, is one of the highest flying birds in the world. Bar-Headed Geese have been seen at heights of up to 10,175 meters. It is said that they breathe more efficiently under low oxygen conditions and are able to reduce heat loss. Bar-headed Geese, which migrate to India during winter, can fly their 1000-mile migration route in just one day.


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Snails are among the toughest animals in the world, especially the snail species locally known in the Philippines as the “Golden Apple Snail”. This variety of snail can withstand the effects of pesticides and have been a perennial problem of Filipino farmers because they do much damage to rice plants. Another snail species that do much damage to plants and crops is the Common Garden Snails. This snail variety holds the record for the “most toothed-tongue” – it has 135 rows of teeth.

****Some fish are simply amazing. They can survive at a very high temperature. Tropical freshwater fish are comfortable between 20-35 degrees Celcius but the highest temperature living fish – the Barbus thermalis of Sri Lanka lives in hot spring 50 degrees Celcius.

****The Eskimo people are among the people in the world that can tolerate the coldest climates in the world. But among fishes, the Polar Cod (Boreogadus saida) is the coldest temperature living fish in the world. This highly unique and hardy fish is safe at temperature of 2º Celsius below zero.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Seven Spectacular Animals Whose Names Begin with The Letter U

A list of seven spectacular animals whose names begin with the letter U.

The animal kingdom presents us with hundreds of amazing, odd-looking and spectacular animals. Among these creatures include 7 spectacular animals whose names begin with the letter U. Read on to learn more about them.


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The Uakaris are four extant species of strange-looking monkeys inhabiting rain forests along the Amazon River basin. The four species are: The Bald Uakari, The Black-headed Uakari, The Neblina Uakari, and The Ayres Uakari. They are easily recognized by their bald red face and a short bushy tail measuring around 15-18 cm.

Adults measure 40-45 cm in body length and weigh between 2 to 3 kg. They have long, loose body fur that ranges from reddish brown to orange. These agile and active monkeys live in troops that may include close to a hundred animals. They forage during the day. They feed mainly on seeds, leaves, flowers and some insects. Female Uakaris give birth to one offspring every two years.


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The Crab-eating Mongoose (Herpestes urva) is a species of mongoose native to Cambodia, Lao, Nepal, Myanmar. Vietnam, and southern China. They prefer living near water, in scrubby areas, in deciduous forest, in agricultural lands and near human settlements. The urva is typically grey in color, mark with white stripes running from its neck down to its chest. It has a stout body, a pointed snout, short bushy tail and hind feet sporting hairy soles. It feeds primarily on crabs, but its diet may also include birds, fish, frogs, insects, reptiles, rodents, and snails.


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The Japanese Bush Warbler (Cettia diphone) or the Uguisu, is a small passerine bird native to Japan and is also found in China , the Philippines and Taiwan. It is commonly seen on trees and bamboo thickets during the spring. The bird is olive brown in color, darker wing and tail plumage. It has small dark eyes with pale eyebrows and a straight, tan colored beak. It is about 15.5 centimeters in length. The Uguisu’s diet includes beetles, flies, grasshoppers, moths, and worms.


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The Common Murre (Uria aalge) is a large seabird (auk) that ranges from low-Arctic and boreal waters in the North-Atlantic and North Pacific. A high flyer, it spends most of its time at sea, only coming to land to breed on cliffs and rocky coasts. It makes no nest, where the lone egg is incubated on bare rock. Adult males typically measure 38–46 cm long with a 61–73 cm wingspan. Weight varies from 945 g to 1044 g. The bird is recognizable by its dark head and short wings, white belly, dark head and wings, and dark pointed bill. It feeds on fishes, krill, squid, and marine worms.

Uromastyx Lizard

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The Uromastyx or the Spiny-tailed lizard is a genus of lizard in the agamid family. There are about 18 extant species of Uromastyx duly recognized by taxonomists. These agamids are well-known for the rings of spiked scales covering the top side of their tail. The Uromastyx lizards are found in North Africa, the Middle East and across south-central Asia. These spectacular lizards inhabit hilly, rocky areas rich with accessible vegetation.

Depending on the species, the Uromastyx or sometimes called dabb lizard, can grow to be about 10 to 36 inches long. Color ranges from blue, brown, green, orange, tan or yellow. It has a short snout, muscular legs, and spiny tail. These spectacular lizards are primarily herbivorous, but occasionally eat insects, especially when young. It has a life span of 10 to 15 years.

Unicorn Fish

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Unicorn fish (Naso unicornis) comprises 17 species of marine fishes widespread in the waters of the Indo-Pacific region. These spectacular fishes inhabit coral reefs, patch reef, and rocky tropical areas feeding mainly on leafy brown algae. Adults can grow to around 51-61 cm long. They can easily be recognized by their hornlike appendage protruding in the forehead, right between the eyes.

This bony horn can reach 13 cm in length. A non-aggressive fish, it has smooth skin and a body that comes in flattened, slender, and tubular shapes. Furthermore, this spectacular fish owns a row of sharp, small teeth and a set of sharp forward-pointing spines on either side of the tail. Unicorn fish can instantly change color depending on its environment and its mood.

Ural Owl

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The Ural Owl (Strix uralensis) is any of around 15 species of medium-large nocturnal owl of the genus Strix widespread in Europe and northern Asia. It normally sports a grey-brown plumage, mark with dark brown stripes running from its head up to its belly. It has small black eyes, orange-yellow bill, and short rounded tail. It measures around 50 to 61 cm long and weighs is 500–730 g. It has a wingspan from 110 to 134 cm. Its diet includes rodents and medium-sized to large birds.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Bold and Fearless Japanese Dog Breeds

They may not be the typical beautiful and affectionate house pets, but these Japanese dog breeds pack intelligence, agility, courage and hunting skills. Read on to learn more about them.

Hokkaido Inu

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The Hokkaido (Hokkaidō-inu or Hokkaidō-ken?) is a medium-sized dog breed native to Hokkaido, Japan. Considered by many to be the oldest of the Japanese breeds, this Japanese Spitz breed has small eyes; small, erect ears and a curled tail. It has a long double coat that comes in red, white, black, tiger, sesame, tan, brindle and fawn. Most dogs have black spots on their tongue. Males measure around 46-56 cm and weigh between 20-30 kg. Females are a few centimeters shorter and weigh lighter.

This breed is known for its bravery, loyalty, gentleness and intelligence. An excellent watchdog, Hokkaido Inu is not recommended for apartment life. This breed needs moderate but regular exercise and will do best with a large yard. Life Expectancy: About 11-13 years.

Shiba Inu

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The Shiba Inu, the smallest of the six original Japanese dog breeds, is a small, compact dog. The breed features deep-set, triangular, dark eyes; erect, triangular ears; round muzzles and high-set, curled tails. The double coat (a stiff straight outer coat and the undercoat soft and thick) comes in red, black with tan markings, sesame with red markings, with a cream, buff, or grey undercoat. Males measure 35–43 cm at the withers, and weigh around 8-11 kg. Bitches grow to about 33–41 cm and weigh between 6.8-9 kg.

Originally bred to hunt and flush birds and rabbits, Shiba Inus are good-natured, independent, loyal, loving, and intelligent dog. These dogs are very clean — often be seen licking their paws and legs much like a cat! They are best in a home without other small dogs, Shibas should be walked or otherwise exercised daily. The breed needs regular exercise or daily walks, to live a healthier and happier life. Life Expectancy: About 12-15 years.

Kai Inu

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The Kai Ken (also known as the Kai Inu,, Tora Inu), is a very rare Japanese dog breed that was primarily bred as a ferocious hunting dog. This Tiger dog is a medium-sized one with strong and sturdily built body. It has brindle or the striped coat; a medium-sized head; a pointed muzzle, small, triangular, dark brown eyes; well developed cheeks and tight lips; triangular ears and sturdy feet. Males average around 46-56 cm

Kai Kens are loyal and affectionate to their masters which make them excellent guard dogs. These dogs are intelligent, agile, alert and brave. Most of them loves to swim. Kai Kens suit well in an apartment, provided enough exercise is given. Life expectancy: 12-15 years.

Kishu Inu

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The Kishu, often called Kishu Ken or Kishu Inu, is a medium-sized Japanese breed of dog, originally used to hunt deer and boar. Typically Kishu Kens come in white color, though some sport red, brindle or sesame color. The top coat is short, coarse and straight, while the undercoat is thick and soft. Most have black nose, but can be pink or brownish. The ears are small and inclined forward. Tail curls over the back. On average, the breed measures 43-56 cm and weighs 13-27 kg.

Kishu Kens are extremely clean. They intelligent, affectionate, loyal, strong willed and brave as hunters. They have been known to climb trees to catch prey. They can be aloof with strangers. The Kishu needs large space, thus suit well in fenced backyard. Regular exercise or long walks will make them happy. Usually a healthy breed, Kishu Kens can live up to 11-13 years.

Shikoku Inu

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The Shikoku Inu, is an ancient Japanese breed native to Shikoku island. A Japanese Spitz type breed of dog, it was primarily bred for hunting deer and boar. There are three varieties of Shikoku Inu: the Awa, the Hata and the Hongawa. The Shikoku is a medium-sized dog that generally weighs 16-26 kg. Color comes in solid red, cream, black and tan, or brindle (white, red, black.) The double coat is fairly thick. The dark brown eyes are almond-shaped. The breed has a wedge-shaped head, erect, pointed ears and curled tail.

Shikoku are agile and very energetic dogs. They are intelligent, loyal, well-mannered, cautions and brave. They are the perfect company for active outdoor people. An environment with large fenced yard is ideal for Shikoku Inu. They, too like outdoor activities. Life Expectancy: About 10-12 years.

Tosa Inu

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The Tosa, also known as the Tosa Inu, is a rare Japanese dog breed. The breed varies in size, with the Japanese-bred dogs generally weighs between 36 and 61 kg (80 and 135 pounds, while the non-Japanese breeders generally measures between 62 to 82 cm (24.5 to 32 inches) at the withers and weighs between 60 to 100 kg (130 to 200 lbs). The coat is characterized by its short and smooth appearance and comes in red, fawn, and brindle, or fawn. Maintenance of the coat has been usually minimal.

Akita Inu

A Japanese-style Akita

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The Akita is a large Japanese Spitz breed of dog that was primarily developed as hunting dogs. There are now two separate types: The Japanese or “Japanese Akita” and the American or “American Akita”. It is a medium sized, dog with erect ears and curly tail. Typical Akita has triangular-shaped heads, deep chest, dark nose, pink tongues, and teeth that close in a scissors bite. The short double coat features a waterproof outer layer and a soft undercoat. Colors come in white, brindle, red, or sesame. Akita measures between 24-26 in, at the withers and weighs about 75-110 lbs.

An American-Style Akita

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The Akita Inu breed is known to be gentle, kind, loyal, alert, courageous, and responsive. Furthermore, they are extremely protective of children and family. However, They stay away with strangers, and don’t like to be teased upon. In order to stay fit and healthy, Akita Inu will do well in in an apartment provided it gets daily exercise and frequent long walks. Life Expectancy: About 12-15 years.