Origin and brief history
Of the six original spitz breeds from Japan, the Shiba Inu is the smallest. They are small and very agile and bred for hunting. The Shiba Inu is smaller but resembles an Akita. It is one of the last ancient dogs still in existence. In Japanese the word inu means dog and the word shiba means brushwood. It is thought that the Shiba Inu was named this, because it hunted animals in wild shrubs. The word Sheba in old Nagano means small. The dog is small so it may have gotten its name from that. Little Brushwood Dog is a nickname that was given to the Shiba Inu.
The Shiba Inu has a very strong prey drive that can lead to aggression. They require obedience training and socialization. The Shiba Inu is of good nature and can be independent. They are very intelligent and can be housetrained easily. They will need an owner who is very confident and assertive, since they are very dominant. The Shiba Inu has a type of scream, known to some as the Shiba scream. It is a high pitched scream that can either signify they are unhappy or that someone they love has come home.
The Shiba In is known for its cleanness. They have minimal grooming needs, however because of their double coat they will shed some during seasonal changes. They will require regular brushings with a shedding tool. The double coat acts as a waterproof barrier and it takes no time for the Shiba Inu to become dry. Every month they will need claw clippings and regular ear and dental cleaning.
Specification of breed
The Shiba Inu is muscular and compact. The male ranges from 14.5 in (35cm) to 16.5 in (43cm) and the female from 13.5 in (33cm) to 15.5 in (41cm.) The average weight for males is 23lbs. (10kg) and for females 17 lbs. (8kg.) The Shiba Inu has a double coat with the undercoat being soft and thick and the outer being straight and stiff. The have a variety of colors ranging from cream to red and tan.
The Shiba Inu is head strong and dominant. It will need the proper training and socialization to overcome this. The Shiba Inu is high energy and will need regular exercise and play. They are also intelligent and will need to also have their minds exercised either through games or some sort of sport, such as agility or tracking or lure chasing. They are not very good around young children and small animals; however they can be trained to tolerate them.
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