Best Japanese Dog Names for a Tosa, Akita, or Shiba Inu

Updated on January 7, 2018
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Dr. Mark is a veterinarian. He has been working with dogs for more than 40 years.

Authentic Japanese dog names
Authentic Japanese dog names | Source

Are you looking for an authentic Japanese name for your authentic Japanese dog?

The Shiba Inu was bred to hunt small game, the Akita was bred to hunt large game like boar, and the Tosa? The Tosa is so big that all he is good for is pushing around other dogs in the ring. They may vary in size, and they may vary in purpose, but they are all Japanese, and all of these names are great for Japanese dogs.

This list contains mostly names with two syllables, and a few with one syllable. There are a lot of Japanese names with three and four syllables—fine but nothing you should expect a dog to answer to during training. If you want one of those names you´ll need to look elsewhere.

If you want an authentic Japanese name here are some good choices. First on the list are some great Japanese names that are given to boys and girls. The Japanese word is on the left (in bold) and the English translation is on the right.

· Hiro: This means generous.

· Kin: Gold

· Masa: Elegant

· Michi: Pathway

· Nori: The law

· Sora: The sky

· Yori: Public servant

· Yuki: Snow

· Yoshi: Nice

An Akita puppy.
An Akita puppy. | Source

Names for boys, with great character:

· Goro: The fifth son

· Jiro: The second son

· Juro: The tenth son. This would be a good name for a puppy from a REALLY big litter.

· Kenji: A healthy second son

· Koji: The shining second son

· Kuro: The ninth son

· Shiro: The fourth son

· Taro: The oldest son

· Toshi: Alert and intelligent son

· Yuji: A brave son

A Shiba Inu.
A Shiba Inu. | Source

Names for girls that describe your dog:

· Bunko: Daughter who enjoys literature

· Kami: Daughter with a long life

· Kimi: A noble daughter

· Mana: Affectionate daughter

· Miko: Beautiful daughter

· Riko: A daughter like jasmine

· Yoko: Sunny daughter

· Yuko: Helpful daughter

Does every Akita have to have a Japanese name? No, but should he?
Does every Akita have to have a Japanese name? No, but should he? | Source

Some other great names:

· Fuji: Wealthy

· Ichi: The number one

· Jishin: Earthquake. I like this for a Tosa or big Akita puppy who lumbers around the house.

· Kami: Hair. How about a hairy dog?

· Katsu: Victory

· Kazi: Wind

· Kenta : This is a great name for a Tosa since it means big and strong.

· Kiri: Foggy

· Kuro: Black

· Goji: Five o´clock, as in “Its five o´clock somewhere”.

· Neru: To sleep.

· Shima: Island

· Shiro: White

· Uki: Big

Female names for common objects:

· Chika: Scattered flowers

· Gina: Silver

· Hana: A flower

· Hoshi: Star

· Kiku: The crysanthenum flower

· Mika: Perfume

· Momo: Peach. This sounds like a perfect name for a playful Shiba Inu puppy.

· Saki: Blossom

· Sango: Coral

· Shika: A deer

· Shinju: Pearl

· Suzu: A bell

· Umi: Plum blossom

The Tosa is big, even as a puppy.
The Tosa is big, even as a puppy. | Source

Names for the seasons:

· Aki: For a male or female; it means Autumn

· Kiko: A daughter of the spring

· Shiki: Four seasons

Some good animal names:

· Kuma: Bear

· Tora: Tiger

· Washi: Eagle

And don´t foget about:

· Inu: Dog

I hope you found several names you like. If you choose to use a three-syllable name not on this list, you should call your dog only the first part of it so that your training sessions will go smoothly.

Since you are not writing your dog´s name in Japanese script, do not expect the pronunciation to be perfect. Don´t worry about it. Just have fun with your new puppy.

Good luck with your Japanese dog.

Shiba Inu puppy.
Shiba Inu puppy. | Source

Questions & Answers


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        SamanthaLove 23 months ago

        Got my self a female japenese Akita puppy and named her Yuki. Glad to see that the name and meaning is on this list

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        Japaneseengraving 2 years ago

        I can create a dog tags in Japanese!! Email me at

      • DrMark1961 profile image

        Dr Mark 3 years ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

        Thanks, RaeDawn. If you write more about Shibas be sure to check out the photos available on flickr. There are a lot of great ones--of course, those little dogs are photogenic, as you already know! I appreciate you stopping by.

      • RaeDawn profile image

        Rae Blair 3 years ago from ON, Canada

        Cute article! Voted interesting and useful. :)

        We named our male Shiba Inu Seth, though he responds much better to his Japanese name: Sesu! They are a fantastic breed, like all spitz breed dogs.

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        hachiko 4 years ago

        i love japanesse akitas and american i have american akita named lily but i want a puppy japanesse akita