Is the Shiba Inu the doge for you?Corey Farrugia
Excuse me sir, do you have a moment to talk about the doge? Not just any dog but that doge that took the internet by storm, the dog that became a meme for our collective, sarcastic amazement. In case you haven’t, let me talk to you about our dear Shiba Inu.
Some history about the doge
It hasn’t been all fun and games for the doge. In the past, Shiba Inus were used as hunting dogs, where their job was to flush small game from brush and other vegetation. Some speculate that having fulfilled this role for centuries, might have lent the dog with the prefix “shiba” that in Japanese means “brushwood”. Other scholars think that “shiba” might actually have another meaning, which is “small”, and is referring to this ancient breed’s diminutive stature.
Nineteenth century Japan saw an increase in western influence, and along with this also came western dog breeds. Although the Japanese weren’t very forthcoming to westerners back then, one couldn’t say the same for their dogs. Soon, Japanese hunters starting replacing and interbreeding English setters and English pointers with their dogs. Like with every novel thing, Western dogs had become so popular that the Japanese forgot about their dogs and the local Shiba Inu suffered a sharp decline between the mid-1800s and the start of the 20th century. It was not until 1928, that hunters and intellectuals realised what they were about to lose, and decided to do their best and bring the breed back to its former glory. It was only in 1934 that the Japanese Dog Preservation Society (日本 犬保存会) was formed, and the pure bloodlines of the Shiba Inu and other Japanese dog breeds were protected. Having scraped the bottom of the barrel, the doge and its fans only had upwards to go, and in 1936 it was officially declared that the Shiba Inu was to be considered a Japanese natural monument.
Since then, the doge has come a long way. With love for the breed and tenacity, Shiba Inu breeders relentlessly reinvigorated the breed’s ranks with new fluffy additions. Dream they did, but they had no idea that a Shiba Inu called Kabosu would take a series of pictures in 2010, only to go viral by 2013 making that year the Year of the Doge.
“So what are we waiting for? Please dad! Let’s get the dog. ”
It is understandable that one loses every shred of reason when faced with such wow, but it is best to be a responsible person. Take your time and consider this breed carefully in a calm and measured way.
The Shiba Inu males can weigh about 10kg and could measure approximately 39.5cm at the withers. Females tend to be smaller weighing 8kg and measuring 36.5cm at the withers. Slight differences that fall in line with the breed standard are allowed. Slight differences can also be found in different Shiba Inu populations in different Japanese localities. Armed with a double coat and bushy fox like appearance, the modern Shiba Inu has changed its game, and is now mostly out to hunt hearts. Its coat can come in red, brown, and black variations of what is called a sesame coat pattern.
There is no type of dog that is good for every kind individual or family, and the Shiba Inu is no exception. The Shiba Inu is renowned for its heightened awareness, faithful predisposition, and good nature, but just as every rose has its thorns, this highly independent dog can be wary of strangers and aggressive to other dogs. It is therefore not suggested to keep the Shiba Inu with other dogs, but they are surprisingly agreeable with cats. It is important to note that female Shibas are particularly prone to dog aggression. Due to its bold and fastidious predisposition, it is best not to get a Shiba Inu in a house with very young children who would surely pester it and make its life miserable.
If your house could do with some burglar stopping baw, and your life needs that much deserved wow, then a Shiba Inu might just be the right amount of doge for you.