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Shiba Inu Information & Dog Breed Facts

Collection of all the general dog breed info about Shiba Inu so you can get to know the breed more.

Group Companion Dogs
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Shiba Inu
OriginJapan
Other Names
What other names does the Shiba Inu have? The dog breed also known as...
Brushwood Dog, Japanese Small-Size Dog, Japanese Shiba Inu, Shiba Ken, Shiba
Breed Type
What type of dog breed is it?
Purebred
AKC Group
Is Shiba Inu recognized by the American Kennel Club?
Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1992 as a Non-Sporting breed.
FCI Group
Is Shiba Inu recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)?
Recognized by FCI in the Spitz and primitive types group, in the Asian Spitz and related breeds section.
Breed Recognition
What kennel clubs and organizations recognize or register the Shiba Inu breed?
American Canine RegistryAmerican Kennel ClubAmerica's Pet RegistryDog Registry of America Inc.Federation Cynologique InternationaleKennel Club of Great BritainNorth American Purebred Registry, Inc.American Canine Association, Inc.Australian National Kennel CouncilContinental Kennel ClubNational Kennel ClubNew Zealand Kennel Club
Price
How much does the Shiba Inu puppy cost? What is the price range of this puppy? What is the average price of this dog in the United States? Is this puppy expensive? How much should I pay for it? Shiba Inu price:
$800-$1000
If you choose to purchase the Shiba Inu, you should know that the mentioned amount of money is an average of the collected data from breeders’ sites and puppy finder places. If you have a Shiba Inu for sale, please advertise it on a reliable website to make sure the Shiba Inu gets to a happy place.

Shiba Inu History

The Shiba Inu’s history goes back thousands of years, and it can be traced back to Japan’s Joman period, which dates all the way back to 7000 BC. According to historians, the ancestors of the Shiba Inu were owned by the Jomonjin or Rope-Pattern people. However, there have been disagreements about whether the breed arrived in Japan from northern Asia or Korea, but most experts agree that the breed has descended from dogs that accompanied people who arrived in the first or second major migration to Japan. This also proves that the Shiba has been present in Japan between 2300 and 10000 years, which makes the breed not only the smallest of Japan’s six original and distinct spitz breeds but also its oldest. Moreover, even Japan’s oldest historical document, called the Sihon Shoki (The Chronicles of Japan) notes the importation of dogs from the Asian continent and it also indicates that these dogs were often used for hunting in the underlying brush in the mountains of Japan. According to the National Geographic, Shibas are also genetically similar to wolves, further proving the point that it is among the oldest domesticated dog breeds.

Furthermore, outside influences did not really have any impact on japan for centuries because the country had closed itself off and effectively kept native dogs relatively pure and true to their original selves. However, by the end of Japan’s Tokugawa period, which lasted from 1603 until 1867, everything has changed. An American naval officer, called Admiral Perry, arrived with gunship, and Japan was forced to enter the global community. Foreigners started to export other breeds to Japan and Japanese enthusiasts enjoyed the new breeds at the expense of their own native breeds. This shows how western influence was one reason why the original Shiba Inu started to become diluted from crossbreeding. Only some rural regions still maintained the integrity of the breed as these areas had less access to foreign dogs.

Inu, of course, is the Japanese word for dog, but where the word “Shiba” came from is still being debated. Shiba actually means “brushwood” in Japanese, red-colored vegetation common in the areas where the Shiba hunted, often by Samurai during the period of the Kamakura Shogunate. On the other side, it has also been suggested that “Shiba” may have meant “small” in an obsolete dialect and that the breed was named for its small size. Whichever is the right answer, the name ‘Shiba Inu’ was officially coined in Japan in the 1920’s. At that time there were not many Shibas left in the original form but a number of Japanese dog lovers acted up to save the breed from extinction. Not so much later in 1928 the NIPPO, the Association for the Preservation of the Japanese Dog, was created by Dr. Hiroyo Saito. In the next three years, the NIPPO successfully campaigned the Japanese government to designate the Akita Inu as a Japanese National Monument. In 1936 the NIPPO achieved its goal in getting the Shiba Inu declared a Japanese National Monument as well. Unfortunately just like among other breeds, many Shiba Inu died during World War II in bombing raids. After the war ended, many breeding programs were re-established using those dogs that survived in remote rural areas. The remnants of the various bloodlines were combined to produce the breed as we know it today.

According to sources, the first Shibas entered the US in the 1950s who went with the military returning from Japan. However, it was not until 1993 that the breed gained recognition by the American Kennel Club, and since that time the breed has become increasingly popular.

Shiba Inu General Appearance

Size
What size is this breed? How big is this dog? Shiba Inu size:
Medium
Weight
How much does the Shiba Inu weigh? Shiba Inu weight:
Male: 18-25 pounds (8-11 kg), Female: 15-20 pounds (6.8-9 kg)
Avg. Weight
What is the average weight of the Shiba Inu? Shiba Inu average weight:
Male: 21.5 pounds (9.5 kg), Female: 17.5 pounds (6.8.5 kg)
Height
How tall is the Shiba Inu? Shiba Inu height:
Male: 14-16 inches (36-41 cm), Female: 13-15 inches (33-38 cm)
Avg. Height
What is the average height of this fido? Shiba Inu average height:
Male: 15 inches (38.5 cm), Female: 14 inches (35.5 cm)

Shiba Inu Hair & Care

Coat
What type of coat does the Shiba Inu have? What does this canine coat look like?
Dense
Colors
What color is the breed's coat? What color is a proper Shiba Inu's coat?
TanRedCreamSesameBlack
Grooming
How to groom the Shiba Inu and how often?
Easy to groom: The Shiba Inu doesn't require a lot of grooming. Seasonal flea treatment is needed, but cutting the dog's hair by a professional groomer isn't necessary. Ears and eyes should be cleaned regularly to avoid infections. Shiba Inu is a good choice if you don't have the time, skill or money to take care of a high maintenance dog. Recommended for beginners.
Shedding Level
How much do Shiba Inu dogs shed? How to control, reduce and prevent the shedding of the Brushwood Dog? Shiba Inu shedding level:
Shiba Inus shed above average. It's a natural process of the hair growth cycle. The amount and frequency of hair loss mostly depend on their health status and breed type. If you don't like vacuum cleaning, you might have to reconsider your choice of having a puppy from the Shiba Inu breed.

Shiba Inu Characteristics

Temperament
What kind of personality does the Shiba Inu have? What characteristics does the breed have?
AlertConfidentFearlessGoingCharmingFaithfulKeen
Intelligent Rank
How smart is the Shiba Inu? Are they intelligent?
Average: Shiba Inu's has average obedience intelligence. Patience is needed for teaching this breed to any tricks and commands though, but it's worth the effort. They understand and memorize new commands in 25-40 repetitions. This breed obeys for the first command 50% of the time or better.
Trainability
Are Shiba Inu dogs easy to train? Do they go well on dog training?
Shiba Inus aren't famous for their trainability. This breed needs more time and repetition to obey. It's challenging to teach them new commands, but not impossible.
Playfulness
How playful is this breed?
Shiba Inus, like any other dog breed, like playing. Sometimes they bark as excitement for playing, but they are not the most playful dog breed.
Sensitivity Level
How sensitive are they? Shiba Inu sensitivity:
Shiba Inus have an average emotional level and are not the most sensitive dog breed. Sometimes it's okay to change the daily routine, have guests and listen to loud music. Some dogs handle moderate punishment very well, while others crumble apart at a dirty look. This breed is not affected emotionally for moderate punishment.
Affection Level
How affectionate are they?
Shiba Inus are highly affectionate dogs. They like being involved in the family's life. This breed isn't considered as an aloof dog.
Social Needs
How much social interaction does the Brushwood Dog need? Shiba Inu social needs:
Shiba Inus need for social interaction is average. This breed likes being around people or other animals, but they don't mind being left alone for a few hours either.
Barking
Do Shiba Inu dogs bark a lot? Why does my Japanese Small-Size Dog bark?
Low to Average: The Shiba Inu rarely barks. This breed could be a good choice if you're looking for a quiet breed. They don't bark unless there is a good reason. Top reasons for barking: protection, alarm, fear, boredom, attention seeking, greeting, separation anxiety, compulsive barking.
Watchdog Ability
Is Shiba Inu good as a watchdog?
Shiba Inus are good watchdogs. Their main job is to observe and they're consistent in their effort. Good vocal cords and sense of hearing belong to them. Usually, they're territorial and protective about their property, so the Shiba Inus will alert you if they sense something different.
Territorial
Do Shiba Inu dogs have an aggressive behavior to protect their territory?
Shiba Inus are extremely protective guard dogs. This breed doesn't hesitate to protect their territory so the Shiba Inu can be a good choice if you want an excellent guard dog. Keep calm and the Shiba Inu will take care of unwanted people or animals.
Biting Potential
Do Shiba Inu bite humans? How likely are you to get bitten from the Brushwood Dog? What are the odds of getting bitten by a Shiba Inu? Why do dog bites happen?
Low
The Shiba Inu has a low chance of biting somebody. Top reasons for dog bite: protection, pain, excitement, herding instinct, being provoked. (Data based on the available online bite statistics.)
Mouthiness
How much mouthing/nipping/play biting does the Shiba Inu do?
Shiba Inus have a higher than average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people. It's a common habit during puppyhood, not aggressive behavior. These "bites" don't hurt, but Shiba Inus need to be taught for a good attitude.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
How likely is the Shiba Inu to run away? Does this breed explore or wander a lot? Does Shiba Inu roam?
Wanderlust potential of the Shiba Inu is strong enough to escape from home. They have a strong desire for exploring the world. Safer to walk them on a leash unless you teach them how to get back to you on command.
Prey Drive
Do this canine have a strong prey drive? Does Shiba Inu have high prey drive?
Shiba Inus have an average prey drive, which means that they don't have a high impulse to chase and catch something like a cat or any other small aminals, but it might happen. Training can help to achieve good behavior.
Apartment Friendly
Is Shiba Inu good as an apartment dog? Can they live in a flat?
Shiba Inus are very apartment-friendly dogs. Besides the daily walk outside they don't require a big garden.
Adaptability
Are they adaptable and easy-going?
Shiba Inus adapt well to lifestyle changes and different living environments. They don't mind moving from one place to another with their owner.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Can you leave this breed home alone?
Just like every puppy, they are prone to panic, cry, bark, whine when they left alone by their owner. With proper socialization and quality time with the dog can solve this problem.
Fighting Dog
Where Shiba Inu dogs used as a fighting dog in the history?
Not really
In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

Shiba Inu Good With

Stranger Friendly
Are they friendly with strangers?
Shiba Inus are not the most stranger friendly dogs.
Child Friendly
Are Shiba Inu dogs kid-friendly? Are they good with young children? Shiba Inu and children:
Shiba Inus are average friendly dogs towards children.
Cat Friendly
How well do Shiba Inu dogs get along with cats? Are they good with kittens? What is this fido's temperament with cats?
Shiba Inus are not the most cat-friendly dogs.
Dog Friendly
Is Shiba Inu good with other dogs? Are they dog-friendly dogs? How well do Shiba Inu dogs get along with other dogs? What is this canine temperament with other dogs?
Shiba Inus are average friendly towards other dogs.
Office Friendly
Are Shiba Inus good office dogs? Do Shiba Inus make good office friendly dogs? Can Shiba Inus be office dogs?
No
Shiba Inu is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
Are they senior citizens friendly dogs? How well do Shiba Inu dogs get along with the elderly people? What is the Brushwood Dog temperament with senior people? Are Shiba Inu dogs good for elderly owners?
Shiba Inus are commonly okay with elderly people.
Pet Friendly
Are they pet-friendly dogs? How well do Shiba Inu dogs get along with other pets? Are Shiba Inu dogs good with pets? What is this canine temperament with other pets?
Shiba Inus usually don’t get on well with other pets.
Good For First Time Owners
Is Shiba Inu breed good for first-time owners? Do they make a good dog for novice owners?
No
Shiba Inus are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.
Service Dog
Are they good as service dogs? Can Shiba Inu be a service dog?
Not really
This breed generally not used as a service dog. A service dog is a term used in the USA to refer to any type of assistance dog specifically trained to help people who have disabilities, such as visual impairment, hearing impairments, mental disorders, seizures, mobility impairment, and diabetes. Service dogs are protected under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). Shiba Inu is not the best breed for service purposes.
Therapy Dog
Are they good as therapy dogs? Can Shiba Inu be a therapy dog?
Not really
This breed generally not used as a therapy dog. A therapy dog is a dog that might be trained to provide affection, comfort, and love to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with anxiety disorders or autism. Shiba Inu is not the best breed for therapeutic purposes.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog
Are they good as detection dogs? Can Shiba Inu be a sniffer dog?
Not really
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones. Shiba Inu is not the best breed for detection purposes.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR)
Are they good as SAR dogs? Can Shiba Inu be a search and rescue dog?
Not really
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people. The Shiba Inu is not the best breed for SAR purposes.
Boat Dog
Are they good as boat dogs? Can Shiba Inu be a boat dog?
Not really
Shiba Inu breed usually doesn't like being on a boat.
Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog
Are they good as cart pulling dogs? Can Shiba Inu be a drafting dog?
Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling. Dogs bred for this work have strong builds and qualities that are needed, strength and determination. Shiba Inu is not the best breed for drafting purposes.

Shiba Inu Health Factors

Health Issues
Is it a healthy breed? Do Shiba Inu dogs have health problems?
The Shiba Inu is a healthy breed, but there are certain health issues that you should check with your vet regularly.
Health Problems
What health problems does the Shiba Inu breed have? What are the health issues and concerns of the Shiba Inu breed? Health risks of Shiba Inu:
AllergiesCancerChylothoraxEpilepsyGlaucomaHip DysplasiaHypothyroidismPatellar LuxationProgressive retinal atrophy (PRA)Spinning
Life Expectancy
How long do Shiba Inu dogs live? What is the average lifespan of this breed? How old can a Shiba Inu be?
12-15 years
Hypoallergenic
Is the Shiba Inu breed hypoallergenic?
No
Shiba Inus don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction. Some of the dog breeds are even considered to higher the possibility of an allergic response. Coat type isn't necessarily relevant, because most people are allergic to dander (flakes on the dog's skin) or saliva, not actually to dog hair.
Energy Level
How much energy does the Shiba Inu have?
Shiba Inus have a higher energy level than other dog breeds. If you want a dog for snuggling on the couch, this breed isn't the perfect choice for you.
Exercise Need
How much exercise does this dog need? How much exercise do Shiba Inu dogs require per day?
Shiba Inus have an average exercise need. This breed is satisfied with short walks every weekday and a long one on weekends.
Sleeping Need
How much sleep does this fido need?
Shiba Inus are quite energetic dogs and they don't spend to much time with sleeping. If you live an active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Avg. daily food consumption
How much food does the Shiba Inu need? How often should I feed my canine? What dog products should I buy?
Recommended daily amount: 1/2 to 1.5 cups of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two meals.
Weight Gain Potential
How easy to gain weight for this dog? Shiba Inu risk for obesity:
Low to Average. The Shiba Inu has a low to the average risk for obesity. To make your dog happy and fit, feed him with quality dry dog food and live an active life together. Try to find the happy medium between exercise and feeding. If you notice any weight change, consult your veterinarian to make a meal plan, and measure the Shiba Inu's weight regularly.
Weather & Climate
Which weather condition is preferred by this dog? Can they tolerate hot and cold weather & climate?
Prefers average to cold weather conditions
The Shiba Inu can adapt to well to cold weather conditions, some dogs even can be a good mountain dog.
Stinkiness
How stinky is this dog? Why does it smell bad and how to get rid of the smell?
Medium
The Shiba Inu has an average chance of bad smell. Top reasons for dog stinkiness: infection of bad tooth/ear/skin folds, gas attacks.
Drooling tendency
Does the Shiba Inu drool?
The Shiba Inu is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency. If you're disgusted by slobber spots on your clothes, the Shiba Inu could be a perfect choice for you. Drooling is the unintentional saliva flowing outside of the mouth. It can be completely normal or a sign of a health problem. Certain dog breeds drool minimal compared to others, just like the Shiba Inu. If you notice any change in your dog's drooling habit, you should contact a vet as soon as possible.

Shiba Inu Reproducibility

Gestation Length
How long does this dog's pregnancy last? How long does this dog pregnant? How long does it take to have puppies?
60-64 days
Reproductive cycle of the female Shiba Inu: The first period called Proestrus lasts for about 9 days. During this time the females start to attract males. You can notice by swelling vulva and bloody discharge. The second part is the Estrus when the bitch is receptive for the male. It lasts for about 3 to 11 days. The sign of the proestrus part is the soft and enlarged vulva. The discharge decreases and lightens in color. The third part is the Diestrus. Normally, it occurs around day 14. In this period the bitch’s discharge changes for vivid red and coming to its end. The vulva returns to average, and she will no longer permit mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time frame between heat periods normally lasts about six months.
How often can the Shiba Inu have a litter? Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy. It is very important not to buy a dog from a puppy mill, where the needs of the pups and their mothers are ignored. It's an inhumane high-volume dog breeding facility, where puppies born several times a year.
Litter Size
How many puppies can the Shiba Inu have? What is the average litter size of this fido?
2-4 puppies

Shiba Inu Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Apartment Friendly: Shiba Inus are very apartment-friendly dogs.
  • Grooming: Easy to groom: The Shiba Inu doesn't require a lot of grooming.
  • Drooling tendency: The Shiba Inu is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency.
  • Weight Gain Potential: Low to Average.
  • Watchdog Ability: Shiba Inus are good watchdogs.
  • Adaptability: Shiba Inus adapt well to lifestyle changes and different living environments.
Cons
  • Trainability: Shiba Inus aren't famous for their trainability.
  • Hypoallergenic: Shiba Inus don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction.
  • Shedding Level: Shiba Inus shed above average.
  • Mouthiness: Shiba Inus have a higher than average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people.
  • Impulse to Wander or Roam: Wanderlust potential of the Shiba Inu is strong enough to escape from home.
  • Cat Friendly: Shiba Inus are not the most cat-friendly dogs.
  • Office Friendly: Shiba Inu is not the best dog breed for office environment.
  • Good For First Time Owners: Shiba Inus are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.

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Shiba Inu Comments, Reviews & Questions

  • Soma

    Sep 29, 2019, 11:09:05 AM: