Behind the Breed: Shiba Inu

Shiba Inu

This Japanese breed has exploded online thanks to the meme that is “Doge.” Despite how goofy they look next to phrases like “such wow!” the Shiba Inu isn’t all silly all the time. Interested in learning more about this intriguing breed? We got the inside scoop at the 2014 National Dog Show Presented by Purina.

  1. The owner of competing Shiba Inu “Hatch,” Ann Gorman, compared these foxy dogs to cats. “They want to come to you,” she said. Their independent nature means they might get overwhelmed in a house with other dogs or children.
  2. The Shiba Inu is relatively new in town, as they weren’t recognized by the American Kennel Club until 1993. This breed comes from Japan, where they were originally bred as hunting dogs. This can mean their instincts lean more toward chasing prey than snuggling on the couch.
  3. What does “Shiba Inu” mean? “Shiba” means “brushwood” in Japanese, which is their natural hunting territory, and “Inu” means “dog.” Now you know some Japanese.
  4. The temperament of the American Shiba Inu can vary greatly. You should get to know the temperament of your Shiba’s bloodline to see what his or her family is like. Once you get the right Shiba, you’ve got a friend for life. “He’s got such a wonderful personality,” Gorman said.
  5. Shibas are the smallest of the Japanese breeds, weighing in around 23 pounds for males and 17 pounds for females.

Enchanted by these “brushwood dogs?” Learn more about them here.