Post Reply Mame-shiba: Beware of mini shiba inu
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Posted 10/4/09 , edited 10/4/09
I'm sure most of you out there are dog lovers, and a lot of you probably think the mame-shiba dogs in this anime are cute. Well, they are. But the thing is... this "breed" shouldn't really exist. Up until a few years ago, it didn't.

I mean, it's not as bad to purposefully breed big shiba inu dogs to become toy versions of themselves, as it is to purposefully breed, say, cats that can't walk. (Which has been done. There are creepy people out there.) But reputable shiba inu breeders are very distressed by this trend, and how quickly dogs are being downsized.

The reputable toy dog breeds that we have today have to be bred very carefully, or you get things like brains that don't fit inside skulls, or females being too small to bear puppies safely. Also, many people underestimate the amount of energy that toy dogs have, and the amount of playtime and walktime they need. If you have a big dog in a small dog's body... well, you get lots of problems. Any genetic problems in the original breed are bound to get worse, because "new" breeds are generally inbred to fix the desired characteristics. And so on.

The more demand there is for "mini-shibas", the less incentive there will be for breeders to breed carefully, and the more likely it will be that puppy mills will get into the game. (And puppy mills are every breed's nightmare. I used to own a dog rescued from one, one of the few to be healthy and sane enough to save. It took her years to learn to look up, because she'd been confined in a cage all her life.) And of course with any new breed or any breed starring in a TV show, you get lots of people trying to own one as an accessory and not as a dog; and lots of those people try to breed for money, without having the faintest idea how to raise healthy dogs. It's not pretty when it happens.

So enjoy the fictional cuteness, but please don't run out and buy the real version. Full-sized shiba inu are intelligent and faithful dogs, but they barely survived WWII and there's not a ton of genetic lines to work with. More inbreeding they do not need.

Thus endeth the sermon.
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Posted 10/4/09 , edited 10/4/09
Wow....I honestly learned something new today. After reading your post, I looked it up in the net and it is pretty freaky. ^^;;;;

I actually prefer the normal sized Shiba Inu rather than the Mame Shiba. ^^;;;; In general, I prefer big dogs (preferably working dogs species) rather than toy dogs. But going back to these Mame Shibas, I just hope the Shiba Inu breed doesn't get extinct because of dog enthusiasts / breeders who play God and mess the whole gene pool. ^^;;;
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Posted 10/13/09 , edited 10/14/09
The other aspect is to see how industrialization in Japan has created this demand. Small apartments and high demands for a Japanese breed of dog due to Japanese ethnocentrism and cultural preservation make it likely why this is happening at the rate it is. With culture it is not as simple as "Thou Shalt not" it's often a lot more complex than that.

Because Korea isn't as restricted on dog breeds because of willingness to import (sometimes extreme willingness to import), the dog that's most popular is usually the Maltese. They don't shed and are small which make them good for apartment living. The difference here is just one. That's the willingness to import over not.

Just pointing it out. Not saying that makes it right... just pointing out that it often gets more complex.
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