A member of the non-sporting group and originally bred in Japan as hunting dogs, the Shiba is a fairly new breed to the United States, arriving in 1954, after spending more than two thousand years in Japan as a popular companion and hunter. Typically standing between 12-16 inches tall, and 15-28 pounds, the Shiba is an independent and aloof breed, very cat-like in his cleanliness behaviors. The breed is known to housebreak fairly easily due to their fastidious personality.
The Shiba is a small dog which many say resembles a small Akita or fox. The breed is quiet, sweet albeit a bit stubborn and willful, and adaptable to a multitude of lifestyles. Requiring little room to thrive, he does well in city living due to his quiet personality and lack of yap. He is devoted to his special person, and wants nothing more than to be near you, as he is not a needy dog. The breed does well with an owner that sets firm boundaries and provides positive training methods and early socialization to ensure a well rounded dog of good character.
The coat of the Shiba is short, thick, and soft. It is easy to care for by brushing and the occasional bath. Shedding is minimal. Colors include red, sesame, cream, black/tan. Average lifespan is 12-16 years.