Japanese Show Leash & Collar

At AKIHO shows, the Japanese Akita is presented with a traditional rolled leather collar and hand-woven silk leash. This gear dates back to the first AKIHO shows in Japan and is only available from one shop in Tokyo. The store is called Adachiya, and all of the collars and leashes are hand made by artisan crafters. Adachiya wont ship leashes and collars internationally, so Akita enthusiasts in other parts of the world can have trouble getting a set for their show dogs. Often when a local club member is visiting Japan, they will take the opportunity to take orders and purchase leashes and collars for other members of club. If that is not an option, its good to cultivate a working relationship with a breeder or enthusiast in Japan willing to buy and ship the items to you, though you will then be paying shipping fees as well.

JapaneseLeash1

Silk leashes come in gold, silver, and other colors.

The leashes and collars come in two types – either colored or silver/gold. The silver/gold sets are preferred for showing, particularly major shows like the Honbuten (annual HQ show). Gold sets are used for red dogs while silver sets are used for brindle or white dogs. While not a hard and fast “rule” using the appropriate color set presents the dog better and will be better received by the Japanese judge. Colored sets can be red, blue, purple, black, or other colors and have no guidelines for which coat colors they match; it depends on the individual dog what looks best.

Complete silver and gold sets from Adachiya.

Silver and gold sets new in packaging.

At UKC shows in the US, the Japanese show leash and collar are allowed but often cause confusion for the judge. We show our dogs with the traditional gear, and spend a lot of time having to explain it to every new judge we encounter. Nonetheless, we feel that our dogs should be presented in the traditional manner and that judge education is worth a little inconvenience and ridicule.

Gold leash and collar for a red dog.

Gold set for a red dog.

Silver leash and collar for white or brindle dog.

Silver set for white or brindle dog.

It is always good to back up the collar with a chain. At AKIHO shows the additional chain is required for male dogs, though we use it on all of our dogs. Standard hex link or fancy snake link show chains both work well. We prefer show chains that are chrome or gold plated to match the silver or gold collars and leashes. At UKC shows we often forgo the leather collar and use only the chain with the Japanese leash.

Here you can see the collar and show chain a couple inches below.

Collar buckle with visible show chain beneath.

A notable feature of the Japanese rolled leather collar is the position of the buckle opposite the post for attaching the leash. This creates less “bulk” on the dog’s neck and presents a more balanced, symmetrical display of the dog. When the buckle is adjacent to the attachment point, it tends to look clunky and awkward.

When in motion, the collar and chain can be seen.

When in motion, the collar and chain can be seen.

Leash and Collar Sizes

The table below lists all of the sizes available. These leashes and collars are used for the other native breeds of Japan as well, and each breed and sex is noted next to the appropriate size. Hopefully this will help you pick the correct one for your dog. Always measure your dog’s neck if you’re unsure about collar size. Takes this measurement tight against the skin directly behind the ears/jaw and add 10 cm.

Complete silver set along with a few different sizes of show chain.

Complete silver set along with a few different sizes of show chain.

Note: Puppies or undersized dogs use one leash size smaller than the standard female size for that breed (eg. an Akita puppy uses a size 5 leash).

Breed Sex Neck Collar Leash
Shiba Female 27.5 – 32 cm 36 cm Size 7
30.5 – 35 cm 39 cm
33.5 – 38 cm 42 cm
Male 30.5 – 35 cm 39 cm
33.5 – 38 cm 42 cm Size 6
34.5 – 40.5 cm 45 cm
Hokkaido, Kai,
Kishu, or Shikoku
Female 33.5 – 38 cm 42 cm
34.5 – 40.5 cm 45 cm
37.5 – 43.5 cm 48 cm
Male 34.5 – 40.5 cm 45 cm
37.5 – 43.5 cm 48 cm Size 5
39 – 46.5 cm 51 cm
Akita Female 37.5 – 43.5 cm 48 cm
39 – 46.5 cm 51 cm
42 – 49.5 cm 54 cm Size 4
Male 42 – 49.5 cm 54 cm
45 – 52.5 cm 57 cm Size 3
48 – 55.5 cm 60 cm

Leash and Collar Prices

Below are the most recent prices from Adachiya’s website in JPY and converted to USD. Use the table above to determine which size you need for your dog. There is no sales tax in Japan, but shipping and handling fees will apply if you purchase through someone living in Japan and have it sent to you.

The traditional collar presents the dog with a full face.

Hold the leash at 45 degrees, not straight up!

Note: Colored collars and leashes are not currently available for Shibas from Adachiya’s website. Last checked February 25th, 2017. Conversion to USD is automatic based on current exchange rates.

Item Price (Colored) Price (Silver/Gold)
Leash, Size 7 ¥6,400 JPY $59.74 USD ¥12,150 JPY $113.41 USD
Leash, Size 6 ¥6,400 JPY $59.74 USD ¥13,500 JPY $126.01 USD
Leash, Size 5 ¥6,800 JPY $63.47 USD ¥16,200 JPY $151.21 USD
Leash, Size 4 ¥7,600 JPY $70.94 USD ¥20,250 JPY $189.02 USD
Leash, Size 3 ¥8,300 JPY $77.47 USD ¥23,600 JPY $226.82 USD
Collar, 36 cm ¥5,080 JPY $47.42 USD ¥6,480 JPY $60.49 USD
Collar, 39 cm ¥5,400 JPY $50.40 USD ¥6,800 JPY $63.47 USD
Collar, 42 cm ¥6,050 JPY $56.47 USD ¥7,130 JPY $66.55 USD
Collar, 45 cm ¥6,480 JPY $60.49 USD ¥7,780 JPY $72.62 USD
Collar, 48 cm ¥7,130 JPY $66.55 USD ¥9,500 JPY $88.67 USD
Collar, 51 cm ¥7,780 JPY $72.62 USD ¥10,400 JPY $97.08 USD
Collar, 54 cm ¥8,200 JPY $76.54 USD ¥11,250 JPY $105.01 USD
Collar, 57 cm ¥8,640 JPY $80.65 USD ¥12,100 JPY $112.94 USD
Collar, 60 cm ¥9,720 JPY $90.73 USD ¥12,960 JPY $120.97 USD

For example, if you have a large female Akita, you should use a 54 cm collar ($105.01) and size 4 leash ($189.02) which will cost about $294.03 for the set.

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