5 Questions to Ask Yourself before Bringing Home a Shiba Inu
Are you considering adopting or purchasing a Shiba Inu puppy? You may be asking yourself, “Is a Shiba Inu right for me?” Before bringing your new dog home, there are a number of things to consider that are unique to this beautiful and majestic breed.
- Am I willing to train my Shiba Inu?
Shiba-Inus are an incredibly intelligent and strong-willed breed. They require strict boundaries, or else will push the limits daily in order to see how much they can get away with. Shibas are considered the cats of the dog world, and can have the same un-trainable and stubborn attitude at times. Shibas which have not been properly socialized can also be aggressive towards other dogs or humans. Attending formal obedience classes from an early age is crucial to help socialize your pup and shape him or her into a (somewhat) obedient family dog.
- How active is my lifestyle?
- Bluntly put, if your ideal day does not include spending quality time engaging in some form of exercise, then a Shiba Inu may not be right for you. Shibas are agile and graceful athletes that require a lot of quality play time or long walks, hikes, or runs. Although a full-grown Shiba Inu is on the small side (20 – 25 lbs), this breed’s exercise requirements are similar to that of a Siberian Husky!
- Is my home life compatible with a Shiba-Inu?
- Shiba Inus do best with spacious yards in which to roam and play. They are master fence-scalers and jumpers, so a tall privacy fence is recommended. Although Shibas are extremely clean dogs (most will even potty train themselves!), an apartment may not be an ideal living situation for a Shiba Inu, unless the owner is committed to daily walks and play sessions. Shiba Inus have a high prey drive, and love to chase smaller animals or children. For this reason, a Shiba is not recommended for homes with other pets or young kids.
- Do I prefer independent or attention-loving dogs?
If your perfect canine companion is one that is content to keep himself and check in for an occasional pat or belly rub, then a Shiba Inu is good for you. However, if you would prefer a lap dog that never leaves your side, perhaps a Labrador retriever or beagle is more your speed. Shibas are extremely independent and would rather not be handled or touched.
- Am I okay with having a vocal dog?
The Shiba Inu has perfected what some call the “Shiba scream.” When agitated, excited, or fearful, a Shiba Inu will let out a high pitched scream that may cause your neighbors to report you to Animal Control. The best course of action is to ignore your dog, because he or she will quickly realize that these vocal stylings elicit a response, and scream even more.
Shiba Inus can make wonderful pets when cared for properly. Although high-maintenance, smart, and stubborn, many people find the quirky and independent personality of the Shiba Inu a perfect complement to everyday life!