Shikoku Dog Breed: Info, Pictures & Traits

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The Shikoku is also very loyal and submissive to his owner. He loves to be touched and often likes to give kisses.

But he may be slightly aloof with strangers. He needs socialization early to avoid becoming aggressive toward other dogs.

Dogs that do become dog-aggressive need a competent owner or trainer who knows how to communicate to the dog that this is unacceptable behavior.

Shikokus get along great with young kids if they are trained and socialized properly, and vice versa. They have a high prey drive and therefore may not be for everyone.

They should not be trusted with non-canine pets such as guinea pigs and hamsters.

The Shikoku is a typical Spitz breed and is cautious around strangers. He has a courageous and devoted heart and will protect the people he loves no matter what.

He does need a strong leader to show him his proper place within the family.

Shikoku Puppies – Before You Buy…

A Shikoku standing in the snow
The Shikoku Dog is a natural watchdog.

What Price are Shikoku Puppies?

The price of Shikoku puppies is anywhere between $500 to $700.

How to Find Reputable Shikoku Breeders?

The question that any potential puppy buyer would ask is how to find a reputable breeder.

There are so many ads in the newspaper, and most of the books you read only mention the positive characteristics of the breed.

How do you find someone who will be honest with you about their puppies and help you make a truly informed choice?

You can tell that a breeder is reputable if they only produce a litter to improve their breed and with the full intent of keeping a puppy from the litter with which to continue their efforts.

They do not breed to make money, to supply the pet market during a wave of breed popularity, to give the kids sex education, or simply because they happen to have two dogs of the same breed on the premises.

Reputable breeders nearly always belong to a local or a national breed club and are active in showing or training their dogs.

They are willing and eager to spend time with you, explaining, teaching, and advising you about their breed.

They will make the disadvantages of owning their breed crystal clear, and it may be the first topic of conversation!

No breed is perfect, and there is not one breed that is well-suited for everybody. Good breeders want to make sure that you want and are prepared to take care of this kind of dog.

Reputable breeders will ask questions to make sure that you are suited to own the breed that you are eyeing.

They will not sell a giant and energetic dog who lives in an apartment or someone who lives in a house without a fence.

He will also not give a tiny toy breed to a home filled with small kids. Reputable breeders sell only healthy stock which has been tested for genetic deficiencies.

Most offer, or even require, that the dog be returned to them if your situation changes so that you cannot keep the dog.

Reputable breeders stay in touch with their puppy buyers regularly to see how they’re getting on with their new dog.

They do not just sell you the dog and then disappear, leaving you to cope with problems on your own. This is probably the greatest advantage of buying your dog from a responsible breeder.

You not only get a happy, healthy, and well-adjusted dog, you also get a lifetime of advice, assistance, and information from someone who is an expert about your dog.

Talk at length with as many breeders as possible. Quiz each one about their breed and look at lots of dogs.

A reputable breeder will be impressed and reassured that you are concerned about what you are doing because they will know that you are not buying just out of impulse.

Find a breeder that you feel comfortable with and whose dogs you truly like. Pick out your dream dog, and it’s a win-win situation.

3 Little-Known Facts About Shikoku Puppies

  1. The Shikoku is also known as the Kochi-ken, “ken”, or “inu”, which means dog in Japanese.
  2. Kin to the smaller Shiba and larger Akita Inu, the Shikoku-Ken is a rare breed of dog, even in its native Japan.
  3. In 1937, the Shikoku was established as one of Japan’s national treasures.

Physical Traits of the Shikoku

A side view of the Shikoku
The Shikoku has a well-balanced and elegant appearance.

The Shikoku has a thick, double coat. It has a curled tail, and his feet are compact. This dog has erect ears and has sharper features compared to some Japanese breeds.

The Shikoku has a scissor bite, just like the Akita. His eyes are slanted, almond-shaped, and dark brown.

The colors of his coat can be red, black, red sesame, or black sesame.

He sheds once or twice a year. But grooming is quite easy with these dogs, especially when you use a good undercoat rake.

A bath every few months will suffice because overbathing will dry out their coat and skin. This dog does not have a strong doggy smell.

How Big is a Full-Grown Shikoku?

The Shikoku can grow to 7 to 21 inches in height and weigh 35 to 50 pounds.

What is the Life Expectancy of the Shikoku?

The life expectancy of the Shikoku is approximately 10 to 12 years.

Intelligence, Temperament and Personality Traits of the Shikoku

Shikokus are very intelligent and are fast learners. They need firm, confident, and consistent leadership from the humans around them.

Otherwise, they will become somewhat stubborn and quite relentless in attitude and play.

But they are said to be easier dogs to handle than their smaller Shiba and larger Akita cousins. They like to learn! They are quick and agile and may do well in agility or obedience.

The alert Shikoku makes him a good family watchdog.

Shikoku puppies can be quite vocal at times. They have a terrific sense of smell, which serves them well when they’re tracking quarry.

Quiet indoors, the Shikoku loves exercise outdoors and is very energetic. Socialize them well while they’re young. Obedience training is also recommended.

The Shikoku’s Diet

A Shikoku with a multicolored lead
The Shikoku is very loyal and submissive to his owner.

Shikoku puppies that are 8 to 12 weeks old need to be fed about 4 meals a day. Puppies that are between 3 to 6 months old need three meals a day.

As they grow older, particularly between 6 to 12 months old require two meals in a 24-hour period. When Shikoku puppies turn a year old, one bowl of food a day will suffice.

Some adult Shikokus prefer to have two smaller meals. You can learn your Shikoku’s eating preferences and schedules by observing his eating habits.

High-quality dry food provides balanced nutrition for adult Shikokus and may be mixed with canned food, broth, or plain water.

They may also be served fruits, vegetables, cooked eggs, and cottage cheese but they should only be less than 10% of their daily food intake.

You should limit giving ‘people food’ to your Shikoku because it can cause mineral and vitamin imbalances, and teeth and bone problems.

This may also lead to picky eating habits and obesity.

How Much Exercise Does a Shikoku Need?

Shikokus do best with a good amount of exercise. They need to be taken on a daily walk or jog.

Do not let him roam free in an unsafe area. He has a high prey drive and may get himself into trouble.

He is a resilient and athletic dog and shows skills in agility or obedience utility.

Shikoku Health and Conditions

The Shikoku is a healthy dog because it has evolved through natural selection with little or without human meddling.

There are no known congenital or hereditary diseases that these dogs can suffer from.

But they can be susceptible to some more common health issues, such as digestive and urinary problems, weak heart, and hip and elbow dysplasia.

He can also suffer from anxiety, but only if he is treated inappropriately and recklessly.

My Final Thoughts on the Shikoku MixA Shikoku licking snow off its nose

The Shikoku is an intelligent, loyal, and versatile dog that is best known for its hunting prowess.

He has a well-balanced and elegant appearance. He is light on his feet and very quick and dexterous.

The Shikoku is incredibly courageous, determined, playful, hardy, tough, and fearless. He is also more than eager to please.

This dog is truly a wonderful companion that will always strive to spend as much time as possible with his human family.

He will welcome all members of the household with great affection, joy, and respect.

But he will be loyal and devoted only to his primary owner.

The Shikoku Dog is a natural watchdog. Your Shikoku will sound the alarm when a stranger comes near your property.

In such situations, this dog can be very vocal. He can use different types of howls and growls to express his excitement or to communicate with his owners, which can sometimes be very funny.

The Shikoku can become a reliable guard and protective or defensive dog, but only through long and rigorous training.

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