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Size: Small / Medium

Weight: 20 - 30 lbs.

Height: 16"

Life Span: 12 - 15 years

Health Problems: Generally very healthy. May be prone to a few genetic problems: PRA; hip dysplasia; patellar luxation (knee-cap slips)

Origin: Japan

Also Known As: No Nicknames.

Group: Non-Sporting

Category: Companion Dog, Guard Dog, Hunting

Exercise Needs

Moderate exercise recommended for the Shiba-Inu, at least two walks per day and play sessions to run free. This dog is not reliable when off a leash. This breed makes a good house pet if it receives enough exercise.

Grooming Needs

Your Shiba-Inu's thick, double coat needs daily brushing. This breed is generally neat, clean and easy to groom. Do not bathe regularly.


The Shiba-Inu is a confident, lively, loving, independent and active breed. The breed tends to be alert, playful and affectionate. Early and ongoing training recommended.

Compatibility with Kids

Can be good with kids if socialized early. May not do well with small pets due to an instinct to hunt small animals. Can do OK with cats.


These dogs are descendants of an ancient Asian breed. These dogs are related to the Akita, Chow Chow, Kyushu and Spitz types. They were originally bred to hunt small game and birds. The breed almost died out during WWII, then came to the USA in 1954.

Pet Facts

This breed is extremely agile and resembles a fox. These dogs have great endurance. Generally a neat and clean dog, most Shiba-Inus have white markings on face and chest, as well as a curly tail.