Shiba Inu

Shiba Inu: Character, Health, Feeding, Price, and Care

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Shiba Inu: Character, Health, Feeding, Price, and Care

Photograph of a Shiba Inu exploring the fall

Shiba Inus is a Japanese dog known for its characteristic red fur. They make great pets because they are loyal and loving but also independent and intelligent. They require relatively little exercise, making them ideal indoor pets for those who live in apartments or urban areas.

However, Shibas can be stubborn and headstrong, so it is important to train them with patience and consistency from an early age. They are also known to be escape artists, so a secure fence is a must if you have one of these dogs.

Read on to learn more about the Shiba Inu breed, including information on their character, health, cost, and care.

What Is Shiba Inu?

The Shiba Inu dog originated in Japan and was first mentioned in 1900. This was when the breed began to take its current form. The word "Shiba" means "brushwood dog" in Japanese, likely referring to their red fur. The word "Inu" simply means "dog".

They were originally bred as hunting dogs and used for tasks such as flushing birds and small game from the underbrush.

Establishing the breed's standard in 1934, the Shiba dog rapidly became popular despite many setbacks. Nowadays, it is a globally recognized breed thanks to its widespread popularity.

The dogs of this breed are mostly gold. Some pups are sesame, with black and unique tan patterns being the rarest. One-year-olds have distinctive white fur on the face and stomach. White fur becomes apparent at one-year-old on the cheeks, under the jaw, in the stomach, inner thigh regions, and on both sides of the muzzle.

What Is Shiba Inu Size?

The Shiba dog is a medium-sized dog that weighs 9-14 kg for males and 8-13 kg for females. They are 37-40 cm tall at the withers. The Shiba's ears are triangular, which has prompted the animal to be compared to a fox.

Shiba Inu: Average Lifespan

The average lifespan of a Shiba Inu is 14 years. Some individual dogs have been known to live as long as 16 years with the proper care.

How to Take Care of Your Shiba Inu's Health?

Although the Shiba Inu is a generally healthy breed, there are some health conditions to be aware of. These include:

  • Food allergies
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Retina degeneration
  • Glaucoma

All these conditions can be prevented or treated with a veterinarian's early diagnosis and proper care. However, it is important to note that Shibas are prone to weight gain, so it is important to monitor their food intake and exercise levels.

In terms of exercise, Shibas only need moderate exercise. A daily walk or short play session will suffice. However, they do require mental stimulation through puzzles or training games. Without this, they may become bored and destructive.

The Shiba Inu is happiest when he has a fenced yard. He's an energetic breed that enjoys playing, going for walks, or jogging alongside you. Giving him the freedom to run about will allow him to release his yayas.

Socialization is essential for this breed. When he's young, like any other dog, he might become frightened or irritable if he hasn't been properly socialized — exposed to various people, sights, and experiences — compared with other dogs.

Always keep your other animals in mind when bringing home a new dog. Your Shiba Inu may not have been raised with other animals and may need some time to get used to them. The best way to socialize your Shiba Inu is to introduce him to different people, places, and other animals often.

What to Feed Your Shiba Inu?

The small but powerful Shiba Inu is known to be very food motivated. As a breed that has been bred for hunting dogs in Japan since ancient times, they need quality foods with enough protein and vitamins so their bodies can grow strong without getting overweight or underweight. 

It's important to measure your pup's meals carefully when cooking at home because too much might cause medical problems such as Arthritis.

Shibas, like other dogs, need a well-balanced diet that includes all essential minerals and proteins. The best options for Shiba Inus are high-quality kibble or dry food.

How Much Does a Shiba Inu Cost?

The cost of a Shiba Inu puppy varies depending on the breeder's reputation, location, and whether the pup is show quality or not. A good rule of thumb is to expect to pay between $1400-$3,500 for a non-show quality dog and upwards of $4,000 for a show-quality animal.

Final Thoughts on Shiba Inu

The Shiba Inu is a loyal and affectionate breed that makes a great companion for the right owner. They are an active breed who loves to play and be outdoors, so they need plenty of exercise and space to run around.

While they can be a little stubborn and independent, they make lovely family pets with proper training and socialization. If you're considering adding a Shiba Inu to your home, be sure to do your research and find a reputable breeder.

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