Kai standard (FCI)


FEDERATION CYNOLOGIQUE INTERNATIONALE (AISBL) SECRETARIAT GENERAL: 13, Place Albert 1er B – 6530 Thuin (Belgique) _____________________________________________________________________

09.02.2017/ EN

FCI-Standard N° 317


FCI-St. N° 317 / 09.02.2017


ORIGIN: Japan.


UTILIZATION: Hunting dog, companion.

FCI-CLASSIFICATION: Group 5 Spitz and primitive type.

Section 5 Asian Spitz and related breeds. Without working trial.

BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY: This breed originated from medium-sized dogs that existed in Japan in the ancient times. It became established as a breed in the Kai district (Yamanashi Prefecture), which is surrounded by mountains. Another name for this breed is « Kai tora-ken ». A distinguishing feature in this dog is its brindled coat. These dogs are used mainly for hunting wild boar and deer. Their strong inclination to form a pack is thought to contribute towards maintaining the purity of the breed. The breed was designated as a « natural monument » in 1934.

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Medium-sized dog, well balanced, sturdily built, muscles well developed. The dog has the characteristics of a dog living in mountainous districts of Japan. Limbs strong and hocks remarkably developed.

IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS: The ratio of height at withers to length of body is 10 : 11, but the body can be slightly longer in bitches.

BEHAVIOUR / TEMPERAMENT: The temperament is keen and very alert.

FCI-St. N° 317 / 09.02.2017



CRANIAL REGION: Skull: Forehead broad. Stop: Abrupt with slight furrow.

FACIAL REGION: Nose: Black, nasal bridge straight. Muzzle: Pointed, not very long, but moderately thick. Lips: Tight. Jaws/Teeth: Strong with a scissor bite. Cheeks: Well developed. Eyes: Nearly triangular and dark brown in colour. The outer corners of the eyes are slightly upturned. Ears: Triangular, slightly inclining forward and firmly pricked.

NECK: Thick, powerful and muscular.

BODY: Withers: High. Back: Straight and short. Loin: Broad and muscular. Chest: Deep, ribs moderately sprung. Belly: Slightly tucked up.

TAIL: Set on high, thick, vigorously curled or carried curved like a sickle over the back. Tip nearly reaching the hocks when let down.


FOREQUARTERS: Shoulders: Moderately sloping with developed muscles. Upper arm: Forming a moderate angle with shoulder blade. Elbows: Close to the body. Forearm: Straight, heavy and muscular. Metacarpus (Pastern): Slightly oblique. Forefeet: Toes well arched and tightly knit; pads thick and elastic; nails hard and preferably dark in colour.

FCI-St. N° 317 / 09.02.2017


HINDQUARTERS: General appearance: Well developed, strong and moderately angulated. Hocks: Tough and elastic. Hind feet: Toes well arched and tightly knit; pads thick and elastic; nails hard and preferably dark in colour.

GAIT / MOVEMENT: Light and resilient.


Hair: Outer coat harsh and straight; undercoat soft and dense. The hair on the tail is fairly long and off-standing.

Colour: Black brindle, red brindle and brindle. As a feature of this breed, solid colour in puppyhood may turn brindle as the dog grows. 

SIZE: Height at withers: Males 50 cm. Females 45 cm. There is a tolerance of + 3 cm.

FAULTS: Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.

• Lack of sexual dimorphism.

• Light-coloured nose.

• Slightly overshot or undershot mouth.

• Light-coloured eyes.

• Long or short hair.

• Shyness.

FCI-St. N° 317 / 09.02.2017



• Aggressive or overly shy.

• Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.

• Extremely overshot or undershot mouth.

• Ears not pricked.

• Hanging tail, short tail.

• Faded colour.

• Coat with many white spots.

• Pinto colour.


• Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

• Only functionally and clinically healthy dogs, with breed typical conformation, should be used for breeding.

Photo:  Lindsay Vangrootenbruel, male Tone No Beni-Fuji (P'Chibi)