About Shiba Inu? Click Here for the Kennel.com
The Shiba Inu is a small, compact, well-balanced
and muscled dog that is indigenous to Japan.
It is believed this ancient breed was produced
by crossing with other primitive dogs traveling
with immigrants to Japan thousands of years
ago. Six different breeds were created from
these native Spitz-type dogs: the Akita
which is the largest, the The Kishu, Hokkaido,
Shikoku, & Kai which are medium in size
and the Shiba which is the smallest of all.
How the name 'Shiba' came to be is not known
for certain. One theory is that it was given
because the word Shiba at one time in the
Japanese language referred to something
small. Another theory is that name actually
translated to the word brushwood, which
is the type of areas where these dogs hunted
(they were also referred to as Little Brushwood
Dog). Inu in Japanese translates to dog.
The breed's purity was threatened in the
mid to late 1800s and early 1900s when other
English dogs were brought to Japan and crossbred
with the Shiba Inu. Efforts were successfully
put in place to preserve the Shiba Inu and
the first breed standard was established
in 1934. In addition, the Shiba Inu was
declared through the Cultural Properties
Act in 1936 as a national product or monument
of Japan. WWII also put a tremendous strain
on the Shiba Inu's existence. There were
three different bloodlines of the Shiba
Inu and the breed we have today is a combination
of all three.
The first Shiba Inu imported to the United
States was in 1954, but it wasn't until
the 1970s they were imported for the purpose
of breeding. The Shiba Inu first entered
the American Kennel Club Stud in 1992 in
the Miscellaneous Class and then later recognized
in 1993 in the Non-Sporting Group.
The Shiba Inu was originally used for hunting
and to flush birds. Today they are used
primarily as a companion and family pet.
The Shiba Inu is named the National Treasure
of Japan and is also their most popular
The height for a Shiba Inu ranges from 13½
to 16½ inches (34 - 42 cm) tall at
the shoulder. AKC Standard.
The weight of a Shiba Inu can range from
17 to 23 pounds (8 - 11 kg).
The Shiba Inu has a double coat. The outer
coat is straight, stiff and harsh and the
under coat is soft and dense. To keep the
Shiba Inu's coat in good condition, combing
or brushing should be done 2 - 3 times a
week. A bath is only needed when necessary
and on a side note, the Shiba Inu has a
fastidious nature and keeps himself clean
by licking his paws and avoiding puddles,
etc. The coat should be left in its natural
form and not trimmed.
The color of Shiba Inu's coat can be red,
black and tan, sesame, black sesame, red
The Shiba Inu is faithful, intelligent,
alert, independent and bold. The most desirable
characteristics the Japanese look for in
a Shiba Inu include courage, devotion and
a lively spirit. Shiba Inus are very protective
of their family and wary of strangers making
them an excellent watch dog. They are gentle
with children and thrive when they are with
their family. Shiba Inus are easy to train
and need to be with an owner who consistently
portrays himself as his pack leader. This
is an active breed and daily walks are essential.
Shiba Inus have great endurance and can
walk or jog for long periods of time - and
they should be kept on a lease if not in
a secure area.
The Shiba Inu is a healthy and hardy
breed, however, some are prone to patellar
luxation, hip dysplasia, PRA and allergies.
The average life expectancy of a Shiba Inu
is 12 - 15 years.
• The Shiba Inu is Japan's oldest
and smallest breed.
AKC: Non Sporting Group
ANKC: Utility Group 6
CKC: Non Sporting Group 6
FCI: Group 5 Section 5 Asian Spitz and related
UKC: Northern breeds