Shikoku Inu vs Shiba Inu: Which Breed Is Right For You?

Deciding which breed of dog is right for you can be a difficult decision, but when it comes to comparing the Shikoku Inu and the Shiba Inu, there are several factors to consider. Both breeds have their unique characteristics and qualities that make them desirable companions.

shikoku inu

Breed Comparison Table

BREEDShikoku InuShiba Inu
Restricted Breed?NoNo
Coat TypeDouble coatDouble coat
Grooming NeedsRegular brushing, occasional strippingRegular brushing, occasional hand stripping
Male Height17-20 inches17-19 inches
Male Weight35-50 pounds23-27 pounds
Female Height16-19 inches16-18 inches
Female Weight30-45 pounds20-24 pounds
TemperamentIndependent, loyal, protective, reservedIndependent, loyal, protective, reserved
Energy Level3/54/5
Exercise Needs3/53/5
Good For Novice Owners2/54/5
Amount Of Shedding4/54/5
Easy To Groom4/54/5
Prey Drive4/53/5
General Health5/53/5
Tolerates Being Alone3/55/5
Tolerates Cold Weather5/54/5
Affectionate With Family4/54/5
Dog Friendly2/53/5
Friendly Toward Strangers2/53/5
Tolerates Hot Weather4/53/5
Lifespan10 to 12 years12 to 16 years
Price$1,500 – $3,000$1,000 – 2,500

About Shiba Inus

Shiba Inus, one of the oldest and smallest native Japanese breeds, are small to medium-sized dogs with a distinct fox-like appearance. They have a compact, muscular body and a curled tail that rests over their back.

Their almond-shaped eyes are expressive, giving them an alert and intelligent look. Despite their smaller size, Shiba Inus are quite sturdy and agile dogs. They are known for their spirited and independent nature, possessing a strong sense of confidence that can sometimes come across as stubbornness.

Although they are not always eager to please their owners like some other breeds might be, they are incredibly loyal once they form deep bonds with their family members. Shibas have a reputation for being clean and fastidious dogs.

They have an innate instinct for cleanliness and will often groom themselves like cats do, which helps them stay relatively clean compared to other breeds. These active little dogs require regular exercise to keep them physically and mentally stimulated, with daily walks or interactive play sessions being part of their routine.

One important aspect to consider is that Shiba Inus can be prone to separation anxiety if left alone for long periods. They thrive in homes where they have constant companionship or some form of mental stimulation during their alone time.

About Shikoku Inu

The Shikoku Inu, also known as the “Kochi Ken,” is a majestic and ancient breed originating from the mountainous regions of Shikoku Inu is a Japanese breed with a striking appearance and unique characteristics.

They have a medium-sized sturdy frame, well-developed muscles, and a double coat that comes in various colors. Shikoku Inus are known for their loyalty, intelligence, and protective nature, making them excellent watchdogs.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Size and Weight

When choosing between Shikoku Inu and Shiba Inu, size is a crucial factor to consider. Shikoku Inu is a medium-sized hunting dog with a strong, muscular build. Males stand around 20-22 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh between 44-55 pounds.

Females measure around 18-20 inches in height and weigh between 35-44 pounds. On the other hand, Shiba Inu is a small but well-proportioned breed. Males usually reach a height of about 14.5-16.5 inches at the shoulder and weigh between 17-23 pounds.

Females stand at around 13.5-15.5 inches tall and weigh between 15-21 pounds. Other factors besides size, such as genetics, nutrition, exercise levels, and overall health maintenance, are also essential to consider when deciding which breed is right for you or your family’s lifestyle and living situation.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Coat Type

Shikoku Inus and Shiba Inus have some noticeable differences in their coat types. Shikoku Inus have a double coat that provides excellent protection against various weather conditions.

The undercoat is plush, while the outer coat is harsh and straight. On the other hand, Shiba Inus have a straight and coarse outer coat that provides good protection against dirt and water, and a dense, soft undercoat that serves as an insulating layer during colder months.

Both breeds shed moderately throughout the year with heavier shedding occurring during seasonal changes. Regular grooming is necessary to keep their coats healthy and looking their best.

Are Either Breed Hypoallergenic?

Unfortunately, neither breed is considered hypoallergenic. Both breeds shed moderately throughout the year and their coats can trigger allergic reactions in sensitive individuals due to their double coat.

Grooming Needs

Grooming is essential for both Shikoku Inus and Shiba Inus to maintain healthy and beautiful coats. Shiba Inus have a double coat that sheds heavily twice a year, while Shikoku Inus have longer guard hairs that require regular brushing to prevent tangling and matting.

Both breeds require occasional baths, regular nail trims, teeth brushing, and ear cleaning for optimal health and appearance.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Colors

Shikoku Inus and Shiba Inus offer a range of stunning coat colors. Sesame is the most common color for Shikokus, while red is another popular variation. Shibas have iconic red coats, as well as black and tan varieties with distinctive markings.

Both breeds can also display white markings. When choosing a furry companion, consider factors beyond color such as temperament and compatibility.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Diet

Both Shikoku Inu and Shiba Inu have similar nutritional requirements, but there are some differences to keep in mind. A well-balanced diet that meets their size and energy levels is critical for their overall well-being.

For their active lifestyles and strong muscles, high-quality dog food rich in protein, such as chicken or fish, is essential. Healthy fats from sources like fish oil or flaxseed oil are also beneficial for healthy skin and coat.

Portion control is also necessary because both breeds have a tendency to gain weight if overfed or given too many treats. Feeding guidelines provided by the manufacturer of chosen dog food brand should be followed, and portions should be adjusted based on your dog’s age, weight, and activity level.

Some owners prefer a raw or homemade diet, but consulting with a veterinarian or canine nutritionist before making any significant changes is critical to ensure proper nutrient balance. Access to fresh water at all times is essential in maintaining overall health and preventing urinary tract infections.

A well-balanced diet tailored to their individual needs will contribute significantly towards the long-term health and happiness of both breeds.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Health Problems

Both Shikoku Inus and Shiba Inus are generally healthy, but each breed has unique health concerns. Shikoku Inus may be prone to hip dysplasia and patellar luxation, while Shibas may have allergies and eye conditions.

Responsible breeders conduct health testing, and regular vet check-ups and a balanced diet are important for both breeds’ well-being.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Temperament

Both breeds possess unique personalities. Shikoku Inus are loyal and independent, with a natural instinct to guard and protect. They form strong bonds with their owners, but may be stubborn at times.

Shiba Inus are proud, confident, and mischievous. They have an independent nature and demand consistent training from an experienced owner. Both breeds benefit from mental stimulation and regular exercise.

Ultimately, choosing a breed should involve considering which temperament aligns better with your lifestyle preferences and ability to meet their specific needs.

Which Breed Is More Playful?

When it comes to playfulness, both the Shikoku Inu and the Shiba Inu have unique personalities. However, Shibas are more playful overall, with their spirited and mischievous nature, natural curiosity, and keen sense of humor. On the other hand, Shikokus exhibit a more reserved and dignified demeanor, preferring activities like long walks or hikes.

Are Shikoku Inu Good Family Dogs?

They are loyal watchdogs that require regular exercise and early socialization with both people and other animals within your household. Proper training and guidance are necessary to establish boundaries and ensure everyone’s safety.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Trainability

Both Shikoku Inus and Shibas can be stubborn during training, but with consistent positive reinforcement techniques, they can be effectively trained from a young age. Early socialization is also important for good behavior around people and other animals.

Every dog is unique, so patience and a consistent routine are key to training success.

Are Shikoku Inu or Shiba Inus Harder to Train?

While both breeds are intelligent, Shikoku Inus are known for their independent nature and can be more challenging to train due to their strong-willed personality and inherent sense of self-reliance.

On the other hand, Shiba Inus tend to be more responsive and eager to please during training sessions, making them quick learners who enjoy mental stimulation and problem-solving tasks. Both breeds benefit from early socialization and consistent positive reinforcement methods during training.

However, due to their different personalities, it is essential for owners of Shikoku Inus to establish themselves as confident leaders while providing clear boundaries and consistent training routines.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Life Expectancy

While both breeds generally have good health and can live long lives, there are some differences to note. A Shikoku Inu typically lives for 12 to 15 years, while a Shiba Inu usually lives for 13 to 16 years. Proper care, nutrition, exercise, and healthcare are essential for extending the lifespan of both breeds. 

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Prey Drive

Prey drive refers to a dog’s instinct to chase and hunt small animals. While both breeds have a strong prey drive, there are differences worth noting. Shikoku Inus have an intense prey drive, while Shiba Inus tend to exhibit it in slightly different ways.

It’s crucial to provide them with proper mental and physical stimulation to prevent their prey drive from becoming problematic behavior. 

Are Shikoku Inu or Shibas Better With Other Pets?

Shikoku Inus and Shibas have different tendencies when socializing with other pets. Shikoku Inus can have a strong prey drive, making it challenging to coexist with smaller animals.

Proper socialization can help them live in peace with other pets. Shibas tend to be more assertive and independent. Although they generally get along well with other dogs, their relationship with smaller pets may vary.

Are Shikoku Inu or Shibas Better With Kids?

Shibas are independent and may not be ideal for young children, while Shikoku Inus are patient and gentle with children. However, it’s important to note that every dog is an individual and behavior can vary within a breed.

Early socialization and proper training play critical roles in shaping a dog’s behavior around children. Parents should teach their children how to interact respectfully with dogs, regardless of the breed.

Additionally, interactions between dogs and young children should always be supervised to ensure everyone’s safety.

Ultimately, the choice between a Shikoku Inu and a Shiba Inu as a family pet depends on various factors such as the child’s age, lifestyle, and the ability to provide proper training and socialization for the dog.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Intelligence

Both Shikoku Inu and Shiba Inu are intelligent and quick learners, but they differ in their approach to learning. While Shiba is independent and stubborn, Shikoku is cooperative and eager to please their owners. Both breeds excel in various tasks with proper training techniques and mental stimulation.

Shikoku Inu Vs Shiba Inu: Popularity

Both the Shikoku Inu and the Shiba Inu have their own fanbase. The Shiba Inu has gained immense popularity due to its association with internet memes and viral videos, while the Shikoku Inu retains a more niche following. 

Shikoku Inu Vs. Shiba Inu: How Much Do They Cost?

Shiba Inu and Shikoku Inu are unique breeds with varying price tags. Shiba Inus are more popular and widely available, costing between $1,000 – 2,500 on average. Shikoku Inus are rarer and less commonly found outside of Japan, with an estimated cost of $1,500 – $3,000 or more.

It’s important to note that the initial cost of acquiring a dog is not the only expense associated with owning one. Ongoing costs such as food, veterinary care, grooming supplies, training classes, toys, and other essentials should also be considered.

Adopting from a local animal shelter or rescue organization is a more budget-friendly option.

Conclusion: Should You Get a Shikoku Inu or Shiba Inu?

Making a decision between a Shikoku Inu and a Shiba Inu can be difficult as both breeds have unique characteristics that make them great companions. Your personal preferences and lifestyle are key factors in the decision.

If you prefer an independent smaller dog, the Shiba Inu may be a perfect fit with its boldness, alertness, and loyalty. However, for a larger dog with protective instincts and loyalty, the Shikoku Inu could be the right choice with its endurance, intelligence, and affectionate demeanor.

Both breeds have thick double coats that require regular brushing to minimize shedding. Although the Shiba Inu’s coat sheds more heavily during seasonal changes, the Shikoku Inu’s coat is slightly less prone to shedding. However, neither breed is hypoallergenic.

While Shibas can be stubborn and independent-minded, Shikoku Inus respond well to training with positive reinforcement. Both breeds do well with families, but their temperaments may differ around children or other pets.

Shibas tend to be less tolerant of young children or unfamiliar animals due to their independent nature, whereas Shikoku Inus exhibit more patience around children but require early socialization with other pets.

Shibas have become more popular recently due to their cute fox-like appearance and spirited personalities, but Shikokus are still relatively unknown outside Japan despite their striking appearance.

It’s important to consider the costs associated with owning either breed as Shibas tend to be less expensive and more readily available, while Shikokus are rarer and come with a higher price tag.

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Colby Adkins

I am a proud Shiba Inu owner who is just looking to share any tips, tricks, or advice I have to help others.

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