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Shiba Inu

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Shiba Inu puppies for sale under $500

Shiba Inu for Sale: Mini Japanese Hunter to Household Name

The Shiba Inu dog became a living monument in Japan in 1936 and began making waves on US popularity charts seven decades later. Many cannot deny the Shiba’s charm and adorable foxlike appearance. An active little dog that resembles a miniature Akita, the Shiba Inu makes a great partner for bustling families that like to include their dogs in frequent outings. A Shiba Inu is an excellent companion for homes with a single pet and older children.

Overview of Shiba Inu for Sale


The Shiba Inu is ancient, its ancestors likely originating with the Jomon-jin more than 15,000 years ago. These medium-sized dogs probably crossed with canids that immigrants brought to Japan around 300 BC to help create the modern Shiba Inu for sale. Shibas were originally used much like spaniels, flushing small game and birds from the brush. After the 1100s, they were also used to hunt wild boars and deer.

Brush with Disappearance

There were three types of Shiba Inu, known as the Sanin, Shishu, and Mino. Crossbreeding with Western dogs devastated Shiba numbers between 1912 and 1926. Shiba Inus underwent a phenomenon similar to Old English Bulldogs whereby they were hybridized with other breeds to propagate specific characteristics. Hunters took an interest in reviving the Shiba, but like so many others, the small Spitz came close to extinction again during World War II. Fanciers helped revive the Shiba Inu, and it soon became a National monument of Japan. Shibas came with soldiers to the US in 1954 and were recognized by the AKC in 1992. By 2008, their popularity as pets was undeniable.

Physical Features

Shibas have the classic Spitz characteristics of a wedge-shaped head, dense dual coat, curled tail, relatively small upright triangular ears, and a powerful body. Shibas are like working dogs in that they are slightly longer than they are tall. They resemble foxes in size and expression. Hence, you will notice eyes that approximate a triangle with a slight upward tilt. The forehead is broad and tapers to the tip of the nose. The stop is moderate, and the muzzle is strong and straight. A Shiba Inu’s snout is slightly shorter than the back skull. Its neck is medium in length and is visibly powerful. These dogs have a moderately deep chest, level topline, sturdy limbs, and a pronounced abdominal up-tuck. The tail is high-set and carried in a curl or sickle shape over the back. Shiba Inus are 13 to 17 inches tall and weigh 15 to 24 pounds with females smaller than males.


Shiba Inus have medium-short fur with longer hairs across the withers. The undercoat is soft and woolly, and the tail has hairs arranged to resemble a brush. The undercoat’s density can vary according to the climate and season. With hot weather, Shibas often take on a sleek, flat-coated appearance. Other coat types are possible, but they are serious faults under the AKC standard.

  • Long-haired – guard hairs on the body are longer than 2 inches long
  • Woolly – guard hairs sparse so the coat is mostly comprised of the underfur
  • Exceedingly short fur – guard hairs shorter less than 1.5 inches on the body and shorter than 2 inches on the withers; significantly shorter than the breed standard

Shiba Inus are unique in that they have four standard colors, all of which must be accompanied by a urajiro pattern. Urajiro markings are like the tan points on black and brown dogs but are cream or white. They must be in stereotypical areas on the cheeks, inside the ears, on the sides of the muzzle, on the upper throat and chin, on the belly and insides of legs, and under the tail.

  • Black Shiba Inu – can be black & tan (clearly demarcated tan points in addition to urajiro markings) or black sesame (nonstandard color per AKC)
  • Red – clear red or may have a black overlay across the back and tail
  • Sesame – deep red with black-tipped hairs; sesame must adhere to narrow specifications (an even overlay of black-tipped hairs; black does not encompass over 50% of the hair shaft; no black patches and no black facial mask)
  • Sable – a term some fanciers use for dogs that fail one or more requirements to be classified as correct sesame
  • Cream – not a preferred color for this breed; the urajiro pattern is often indistinct or invisible

A cream or white Shiba Inu is the result of a recessive gene that masks the expression of phaeomelanin (red pigment). It is the same gene responsible for the coat color in white German Shepherds. Therefore, you will sometimes see red on the ears and tail in a white Shiba Inu. A black & tan dog is a black Shiba Inu with red points. The breed does not have a solid black variant. Black sesame is not a black coat but instead involves a red base with such a heavy overlay that the dog appears black.


The Shiba Inu dog has a charismatic personality with a few persistent traits from their hunting days.

  • Alert
  • Confident and even bold
  • Very high prey drive – chase and grab style of hunting
  • Pleasant and good-natured
  • strong-willed and somewhat independent
  • Possessive

If you work hard at socializing your Shiba Inu, she will be great with children. You should teach all kids the importance of proper canine etiquette before allowing them to interact with your Shiba. Shiba Inus are small dogs and susceptible to injury by careless youngsters. They also will not tolerate a lot of teasing or roughness. Shiba Inus can be aggressive, dominant, or territorial with other dogs. They tend to guard resources such as food and toys. Aggression is often worse against dogs of the same gender. Finally, Shiba Inus can get along with cats, but many would just as soon chase them.

Shiba Inu for Sale near Me

As the most popular dog in Japan and among the top 50 in-demand dogs in the US, Shiba Inus are not difficult to find. You cannot spot unethical breeding in Shiba Inu puppies for sale because faults like those in the coat may only show up when a pup reaches six months of age. Therefore, you must work diligently to find a reputable breeder. If you find nearby Shiba Inu litters, take advantage of the fact that you can visit them. Hopefully, you can also see one or both parents or an adult sibling. When you look at a puppy, search for strength, eagerness, activity, and alertness. Avoid withdrawn puppies and those with signs of nasal discharge, drainage from the eyes, or diarrhea.

Mini Shiba Inu

Like the Shiba Inu, the Mini Shiba Inu was developed in Japan, a country as fascinated by dogs tinier than the standard as America. Mini Shiba Inus are also known as Mame Inus. They stand 10 to 11 inches tall at the shoulders and weigh eight to fourteen pounds. Purebred dogs are the result of selective breeding for a miniature size. Be aware that some sellers cross Shibas with Toy breeds to get smaller dogs. Nothing is wrong with this approach unless the breeder is less than forthright. As is true for the coat, you may not be able to tell Shiba Inu puppies for sale are mixed until they reach six months of age or older. Common dogs used to hybridize Shiba Inus and miniaturize them are Chihuahuas, Yorkshire Terriers, Pomeranians, and Toy Poodles. A Mini Shiba can be more vulnerable to specific health issues like low blood sugar, heart disease, and weakened bones. Such challenges are more likely to affect dogs on the smaller side of the spectrum.


The Shiba’s lifespan of 12 to 15 years reveals a relatively robust and healthy dog.

Food Requirements

A Shiba Inu needs 550 to 700 calories or 1.25 to 2.0 cups of food a day. For raw or homemade diets, you should feed about 6.5 to 9.5 ounces to a 20-pound dog. A puppy between four and six months old may require up to three times the food an adult would need. You also need to increase the food intake of active or hunting dogs as well as pregnant or nursing females. Seniors need fewer calories. All Shiba Inus require meat as a top protein source as well as a moderate intake of fats. Carbohydrates are not essential, but in the form of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and sweet potatoes, can provide important benefits.


On top of monthly nail trims and baths, you should maintain your Shiba Inu’s coat. Shiba Inus have short, soil-resistant fur that only needs weekly brushing. The exception is during the spring and fall when your Shiba exhibits copious shedding of her underfur. At such times you will have to use a rake or other deshedding tool daily. Other grooming tasks include brushing the teeth, cleaning eye boogers, and checking the ears for excess wax or signs of infection.


Shiba Inus need an hour of exercise or better. You should vary long walks with playing and running. Shibas benefit physically and mentally from competitive dog sports, like flyball and agility, or Fetch and romping with other dogs. As young puppies, Shiba Inus require training and socialization to take a large portion of their exercise allotment.


True to its Spitz heritage, Shiba Inus are among the most difficult dogs to train despite their intelligence. Possessing an independent spirit, a Shiba needs persistence and repetition to learn basic skills such as recall and “sit,” “stay,” and “down.” The problem does not seem to be understanding commands but rather choosing not to follow them. Harsh or forceful training methods only disrupt the trusting bond you try to establish with your dog