© Wisent |

Shiba Inu

Also known as: Japanese Shiba Inu

Breed origin: Japan
Original purpose: Hunting small wild game, boar and bear in the dense undergrowth of Japan's mountainous areas.

AKC recognized: 1992
AKC group: Non-Sporting

Size: Weight: males around 23 lbs; females around 17 lbs
Size: Height: males 14½ to 16½ inches; females 13½ to 15½ inches
© Janlee (Jian Qiang Lee) |
Color: Red, bright orange-red, black, black with tan points, or sesame, all with urajiro (cream to white ventral color) and sometimes with white markings.

Life span: 12 to 16 years.

General characteristics/temperament: The Shiba Inu is bold, alert, agile, good natured, dignified, independent, loyal, and affectionate. They can be reserved toward strangers, and may sometimes show aggression toward other dogs, especially intact males. They adapt well to different living situations and make a great watchdog and companion. Early socialization and obedience training are musts.

© Tomaspavelka (Tomas Pavelka) |
Good with other dogs? No

Good watchdog? Excellent

OK in apartments? Yes if given enough exercise.

© Smack (Naomi Hasegawa) |
Intelligent? Yes

Easy to train? No

Good jogging partner? Yes

Grooming requirement: The thick double coat sheds heavily for two to three weeks twice a year. A warm bath and a good brushing will help speed up the process. Outside of shedding season, there is still lower amounts of shedding, but daily brushing will help minimize it. They are naturally clean dogs, and seldom need baths.

Known health problems: Patellar luxation, hip dysplasia, glaucoma, progressive retinal atrophy, cataracts, allergies.

Additional photos of Shiba Inu

Recommended books for further reading:

Shiba Inus (A Complete Pet Owner's Manual)
By Laura Payton
Published in 2003
96 pages

Shiba Inu (A Comprehensive Owner's Guide)
By Andrew De Prisco
Published in 2005
155 pages

The Complete Shiba Inu
By Maureen Atkinson
Published in 1998
175 pages

Japanese Dogs: Akita, Shiba, and Other Breeds
By Michiko Chiba and Lucy North
Published in 2003
96 pages

Show more books

Other websites for additional information:

American Kennel Club breed page
National Shiba Club of America
Wikipedia breed information page
National Shiba Club of America Rescue

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Page Last Updated: February 1, 2018

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