Shiba Inu, briefly Shiba, is an ancient breed, whose history began in China. From there it was introduced to Japan, where it became very popular.
The breed was almost extinct after World War II, and the remaining specimens were from three bloodlines - the Mino Shiba, San In Shiba, and Shin Shu Shiba. The last one was and still is most famous in Japan.
In the 70's of the last century, a couple of Americans began to import these dogs in the USA. The first puppies for sale appeared in 1979. The official breed standard was recognized in 1992.
Shiba Inu has a compact, muscular body, covered with short, dense fur. Coloration occurs in various colors such as red, yellow, brown or black, with or without white markings. Height of representatives of this breed ranges from 33 to 41 cm and their weight from 6 to 11 kg. Head has broad cheekbones and an elongated snout. Eyes and nose are dark, the ears are erected. Neck is thick, and tail is carried curled over the back.
Character and behavior
The Shiba Inu can be brave when it has to make its own choices, careful not to fall into dangerous situations. The breed representatives learned such thing during centuries of hunting, when it was among animals of all kinds.
Closed in a fenced yard, it will likely try to discover the world, pulling through a slit. But it willreturn home happy and safe. This dog loves an outdoors, but prefers walking in company with its two-legged friend. It never gets tired! It is able to follow its master everywhere and defend him, because it has the temperament of a large dog. It has a wild expression of a fox - a triangular snout, small protruding ears and gorgeous hair. The Shiba is a very pleasant companion, loves to create merriment, one harsh word can upset it, but only for a moment. Sometimes it may disagree with the typical scream of the breed, much like a voice of a wild animal.
Training and education
The Shiba Inu is attached very strongly to its owner, and if this relationship grows stronger in a right way, the dog can become obedient and executive as a soldier. Proper and early socialization is very important, as well as positive training methods. It is not a good choice for people who have no experience in raising dogs.
Representatives of this breed are characterized by very good general health. They are prone to hip dysplasia and eye problems. Average lifespan is about 12 to 15 years.
Grooming and care
These dogs can easily be grown in apartments as long as they are brought outside for a long walk every day. Their fur does not require special care and can be maintained very easily.
Children and other pets
The Shiba Inu does not like a company of other dogs. If, however, you want a second dog, it surely must be of the same breed and an opposite sex. This puppy is not willing to tolerate the slightest sign of rudeness (or lack of respect) from another dog of same sex and easily finds cause for quarrel. The Shiba Inu is very playful, but not a dog, that will entertain your child. This can only happen if it is a grown up and well aware that the puppy is not a toy. Keep in mind that, if a game is very nice and the child's behavior suggests confidence, the Shiba Inu can literally jump on head of its little friend.
This is the smallest of the 6 national breeds of Japan. "Inu" is the Japanese word for dog, but it's not clear what the origin of a word "shiba" is. It is usually referred to a type of red bush. Some believe that "shiba" is used in this matter on one hand because of a fact that the dog is used for hunting through bushes and because its most common shade (red) is similar in color to those bushes. Another meaning of "shiba" is "small", which refers to height of the dog.