Shibu Inus

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Shibus, especially when young, can look like a teddy bear; however they are an ancient hunting breed and can be quite proud and aloof, bred to hunt small wild game and even bear on the slopes of the Japanese mountains.

Even though Shibus are reserved with strangers, once you have earned their respect they are loyal and affectionate and can even be a bit of a clown (see the picture below).

By the way, though Shibus can be mistaken for a "miniature Akitas" both breeds are equally ancient.

Shibas have a thick, Nordic-style double coat. Regular brushing can keep the shedding down to a minimum; they can be black and tan, red or sesame.


The Shibu Inu is descended from the primitive dogs of Japan. Shibu means brushwood in Japanese, after the dog's hunting terrain or it's tawny color, and Inu means dog.

WW II almost was the end of Shibus, due to bombing raids and distemper. Bringing in some of the few remaining dogs from the countryside, the breed was slowly re-established.

Shibu Inus by the Numbers

Size: 13 1/2" to 16 1/2” at the shoulder and 17 to 23 pounds.

Coat Care: 7 requires regular brushing to keep down mats and banish shedding, but no trimming.

Trainability: 4: independent and courageous, Shibus need the extra time you spend with them in training to become good companions.
Energy level: 6 Shibus have plenty of energy but they also know how to chill. They need more exercise than many other breeds their size, but given enough are then mellow and relaxed.

This Shibu Inu is a mellow and reliable service dog for his owners.

Good with Children: 7
Noise level: low -- 3 
Low Shedding/hypoallergenic: 3 Shibus shed copiously and are not hypoallergenic

To find a quality breeder, first read What is a Responsible Breeder. Then start your search with the National Shibu Inu Club of America.

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