Shiba Inu is a dog with the heart of a lion. Alert, brave, and bold little dog. He is also loving, kind, and highly trainable. The Shiba Inu is very clean surprisingly, he will avoid getting dirty if possible and he is also easily housebroken. They are not noisy dogs, barking very little. They are very playful and get along well with other dogs and children (even without early socialization). The Shiba Inu can be fairly shy around strangers. Training from an early age will benefit the Shiba Inu.
Size: Mature males should ideally stand 14.5 to 16.5 inches at the withers and weigh approximately 23 pounds. Females should stand from 13.5 to 15.5 inches and weigh 17 pounds. They are slightly longer than they are tall, and the proper height to length ratio for males is 10:11 and for females, slightly longer.
Personality: Shiba Inus are alert dogs with fiery personalities. Many owners call their Shibas little “spark plugs” because they are so spunky. They love their families and will want to be included in all activities both indoors and out. They are good with children, though toddlers may not make the best siblings for a Shiba. They prefer the company older kids who understand how to behave around dogs.
Temperament: Charming, Fearless, Keen, Alert, Confident, Faithful. Well-bred Shiba Inus are good-natured, alert, and bold. He is strong-willed and confident, and often has his own ideas about things.
Activity Requirements: Fairly energetic and love to go for walks. They are not so hyper that they will climb the walls if they don’t get daily exercise, but a Shiba owner should be dedicated to exercising the dog, especially if the dog doesn’t have an adequate yard in which to exercise himself. In general, Shibas are not massively destructive if left alone once they reach maturity, but some can suffer separation anxiety and should be able to spend periods of time crated even when the owners are home and at night. Crating guarantees a home will remain intact.
Behavioral Traits: He is loyal and affectionate with his family, though tends to be suspicious of strangers. The Shiba Inu doesn't share well. He tends to guard, sometimes aggressively, his food, toys, or territory. And he doesn't always get along with other dogs, especially if he's intact. He won't hesitate to chase small animals that he considers prey.
Diet: 2 cups cups of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two or three meals. How much your adult dog eats depends on his size, age, build, metabolism, and activity level.
Keeping this all in mind, general guidelines are as follows:
2 to 4 lbs. 1/3 to 1/2 cups per day.
5 to 8 lbs. 1/2 to 3/4 cups per day.
8 to 10 lb. adult = 1/2 to 3/4 cups per day.
10 to 12 lb. adult = 3/4 to 1 cup per day.
13 to 16 lb. adult = 1 to 1 and 1/4 cups per day.
Trainability: The Shiba Inu doesn't share well. He tends to guard, sometimes aggressively, his food, toys, or territory. And he doesn't always get along with other dogs, especially if he's intact. He won't hesitate to chase small animals that he considers prey. This is a smart breed, but training a Shiba Inu isn't like training a Golden Retriever. While a Golden is delighted to come when called, the Shiba Inu will come when he feels like it. Shiba Inu should never be considered reliable off lead unless in a confined area. No amount of obedience training will ever change that. Letting a Shiba off lead or any dog, for that matter—is playing Russian roulette with its life. An open door, an unlocked gate, a moment of inattentiveness, and the Shiba may be gone forever. On the positive side, a Shiba is practically born housebroken. By 4 weeks of age the puppy is trying to get as far away from his sleeping area as possible to eliminate. By 5 weeks the puppy will hold it all night and wait until taken outside to go. Controlling the bladder tales a little longer and depends a lot on immediate access to outdoors and diligence of the owner.
Colors: Black & Tan, Red Sesame, Cream, Black Sesame, Red, Sesame Shibas shed — a lot. It has been said that they shed twice a year, but some owners quip that it lasts for six months at a time. Unless a Shiba is a “long coat,” the coat does not mat, so infrequent brushing doesn’t hurt the dog, but brushing or combing during periods of heavy shedding will reduce the amount of hair around the house.
History: Brought to America from Japan as recently as 60 years ago, Shibas are growing in popularity in the West and are already the most popular breed in their homeland. Their white markings combined with their coloring (red, red sesame, or black and tan) and their alert expression and smooth stride makes them almost foxlike. They’re sturdy, muscular dogs with a bold, confident personality to match.
Life span: 12 – 15 years
Temperament: Charming, Fearless, Keen, Alert, Confident, Faithful
Weight: Male: 18–24 lbs (8–11 kg), Female: 15–20 lbs (6.8–9 kg)
Height: Male: 14–17 inches (35–43 cm), Female: 13–16 inches (33–41 cm)
Colors: Black & Tan, Red Sesame, Cream, Black Sesame, Red, Sesame
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- About 8 weeks