Adorable Shiba Puppy in Japan. Interesting to see them all off leash while outdoor.
It has been awhile since the last post, the site was hacked by spambot but it is finally back in commission. A lot has happened since May, most important being that Glaucoma finally claimed Macâ€™s left eye. Or maybe Mac has been without sight for awhile already but it was never clearly diagnosed until our trip to UPenn in August.
In August I took Mac to UPennâ€™s vet department and met up with Sandie & Tom from Rodel Shiba, they were bringing some of their dogs there for preventative checkups. We consulted the highly acclaimed Ophthalmologist Dr. Gustavo Aguirre and it was determined then that Mac is definitely blind in his left eye and we should focus on comfort and preventative to his still perfect right eye.
For awhile we have always questioned just how much sight Mac has left in his left eye as we have received different answers from different vets, unfortunately now we know. The good news though is that as long as eye pressure is kept in check (currently still being managed by daily eye-drops), the lack of sight in one eye really did not affect Mac much. He is still trail blazing on hikes like nobodyâ€™s business.
In the past months we have went on numerous hikes, had friendsâ€™ dogs and even a kitten staying over, and have sampled many, many new food and treats (yes, Mac definitely gets spoiled now!). I canâ€™t wait to start sharing these new stories with you guys!
A few friends shared the same video with me, thought I would spread the Shiba Rejection love too! 😉
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A super sweet collage of Shiba + Baby photo has been floating around online. If you have not seen it yet, prepare your "awwwwww~" sound!
Warning: Heart-wrenching music video, don't watch if you do not enjoy cutting onion!
An extremely touching short m
usic video of the animal rescue effort in Japan after the tsunami disaster. These amazing people brave the radiation at Fukushima (ç¦å³¶) to rescue the pets that were left behind.
PS - It's amazing to see how many Shiba / Shiba-mix there are.
Cesar's Way recently published an article on what your dog breed says about you, and of cours
e, they left out the Shiba Inu.
How dare they!
So lets try to put our head together and come up with a typical Shiba owner profile, shall we? Here's my attempt:
Shibas are independent, stubborn, and trust and respect has to be earned. People who own Shibas tend to be opinionated and have strong wills. They are also clean and organized people who enjoy exercise - but not to the point of sweat. Shiba owners could get a little bit snobby, being guilty of just a little bit too proud of their dignified little dogs. 😉
What's your take on the typical Shiba owner?
In their February issue, National Geographic (NatGeo? Not a fan of the new name) published a story about how we came to have so many different dog breeds and what we can learn from their genetics. Among the great story is this chart on the right that generated quite a buzz in the Shiba Inu community. The reason? Shiba Inu is the dog breed that is genetically closest to the wolves. Chow Chow and Akita came in second and third, Malamute 4th. You can click on the chart thumbnail to see the complete chart.
The descriptions for each of the 4 categories are a bit vague, with the description for the Wolflike category as follow:
"With roots in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, these breeds are genetically closest to wolves, suggesting they are the oldest domesticated breeds."
I would not misinterpret this as Shiba Inu having the most wolf-like mentality (pack order, alpha... etc), for me this conveys that Shiba Inu did not have as much human tinkering along the way and stayed relatively true to how nature intended. At least that's how I read it. What do you think?
Saw this little chart for Akita Obedience, figure it is applicable to their smaller relative Shiba as well. 😉
Cute video of a Shiba playing with his cat buddy. I sometime see Mac "freak out" like the beginning of this video when we play!
Are you interested in bringing a Shiba Inu into your life? Who could resist the teddy bear like puppies that grow up into dignified adults? But before you pull the trigger, here are a few very important things to consider.
1. They may look small but they shed a LOT. It is advertised that Shiba blow their coat (replace all their fur) twice a year but in reality they shed constantly â€“ it is just that when it comes time for the bi-annual coat blowing it is like Armageddon! From that perspective, I suppose the everyday shedding is nothing in comparison. If you have black furniture, enjoy wearing black clothing, hate vacuuming, you may want to reconsider.
[Case: Sheepa Inu?]
2. As loyal as Shiba Inu are, they should be kept on a leash when out in the opening at all times. The problem is not that they may not come back, it is rather that they have very strong prey drive and if they take off after a small animal, it would be difficult to stop them. This may not be as big an issue in the country but when you are living in the cities with traffic it is putting your dog and other people at risk. As a result, Shibas typically need to be leashed whenever they are out in the open. This may not sound like a big deal initially but if you are very active outdoor and plan to bring your dog with you, maneuvering with a leash gets old fast.
[Case: Run Away Mac]
3. These Shibas, they have a mind of their own. If you want a dog that obeys your every command with the sole purpose in life of pleasing you â€“ forget it. Sure they pick up tricks but it will require patience â€“ not due to lack of intelligent but more in bribing them into thinking they want to learn the trick. If obedience and willingness to please is important to you, there are many other breeds out there better suited for your purpose.
[Case: Dog Trainer I am Not...]
If these three points are something you can live with for 13+ years, congratulations, you are about to make one of the best decisions in your life!
PS â€“ Many people have asked for breeder recommendation. If you are on the East Coast, please visit Mac's breeder Rodel Shibas (PA). They have a stellar reputation in the Shiba Inu scene and is extremely caring and knowledgeable when it comes to their babies!