Despite their size, Shiba Inus are still considered the smallest of all Japanese dog breeds. They look very much like red foxes with their pointed faces and upright ears, but their personality closely resembles that of a cat. They are fastidious with their appearance and they always want to keep clean. Hailed as the most popular dog breed in Japan, Shiba Inus are extremely intelligent but that doesn’t make them easy to train. Shibas Inus are very independent dogs. That, coupled with intelligence, makes this dog one of the hardest canine breeds to train. Though training is a challenge, it is worth it. Shibas are loyal to their family, good with kids, and affectionate to their owners. Shibas have a very unique temperament. If you’re planning to adopt one, you need to know everything you can about Shiba Inu care.
Shiba Inu Care Tip #1: Leash Training
Shiba Inus must be leash trained as early as possible. Shiba Inus are specifically bred to hunt down small rodents, and if they are not leash trained early, it can be very difficult to stop them once they start running after small animals. Leash training a Shiba Inu at an older age can be very difficult because Shibas are strong creatures. They can easily pull the leash away from your hand or hurt you.
Tip #2: Activities
Intelligent dogs get bored easily and tend to become destructive when not mentally stimulated. Shiba Inus require lots of physical and mental stimulation. Give your Shiba some toys when you’re not around, but don’t forget provide him with lots of physical affection as well. Shiba Inus love to run and play, very much like people. Be sure to give them a toy they can chew on, lest they chew on your furniture. When allowing your Shibas to play in the backyard, make sure you have a six-foot fence surround it because Shibas can jump very high while others were even reported to climb.
Tip #3: Socializing
Shiba Inus must be socialized at a young age. Since Shibas are bred to be hunting dogs, they tend to become very rowdy around children of not trained. Surround your Shiba with lots of people at an early age. Keep a close eye on your Shiba when around strangers for the first time, most especially children who are young. This rule also applies to other pets your Shiba doesn’t know. Shiba Inus learn very quickly but can be quite of a challenge when it comes to obedience.
Tip #4: Grooming
Shiba Inus are very fastidious about the way they look and will take all chances to keep clean. In addition, their coat is tend to be self-cleaning, as it repels dirt. Shiba Inus don’t require much grooming care, but they must be bathed at least once every week. Shibas require some combing to keep their fur shiny and soft. Brushing the hair of your Shiba on a regular basis will prevent hair from floating around your house.