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Pug Shiba (Pug & Shiba Inu Mix): Info, Pictures, and Traits

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By Nicole Cosgrove

Pug Shiba

Height: 11 – 15 inches
Weight: 14 – 18 pounds
Lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Colors: Red, tan, white, fawn, black
Suitable for: Active families or apartment dwellers looking for a dog with spunk
Temperament: Lively, loyal, affectionate

The hybrid, Pug Shiba, is an interesting mix. While the Pug has a royal connection, the Shiba Inu is a canine of the country. The former enjoyed the luxury of this life. On the other hand, the latter was a hunter, flushing birds, and even going after wild boars. These two different histories had a profound effect on the personality and temperament of this adorable pooch.

There are several common traits that the Pug and Shiba Inu share, which makes them worth a look for those in search of a smaller pet. They are energetic and devoted companions for the right home. Both have a willful streak with plenty of playfulness to match. Because of the divergence of the personalities of the two breeds, it’s essential to remember that each Pug and Shiba Inu mixed pup is his own dog.

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Pug Shiba Puppies – Before You Welcome One Into Your Family..


A hybrid puppy isn’t necessarily a 50-50 mix of its parents. However, there are several statements we can make about what you can expect as a pet owner, based on their shared traits to help you make an informed choice about bringing a Pug Shiba into your home. Both breeds are active and will do best in households that can match their energy levels. That means regular walks and playtime.

Both Pugs and Shiba Inus shed, making weekly grooming essential. While they are generally healthy, the Pugs are prone to several genetic conditions, both serious and minor. Each one brings challenges to training. That means early socialization is imperative for a well-behaved pet. On the positive side, they are devoted to their families and willing to share their love lavishly.

3 Little-Known Facts About Pug Shiba

1. The Shiba Inu is native to Japan.

The Shiba Inu, with its fox-like appearance, is one of six breeds of three size classes that are native to Japan. It is the only one in the small group. Its name, Shiba, means brushwood, a nod to its early purpose as a hunting dog.

2. The Shiba Inu nearly became extinct.

World War II was disastrous for the world. It certainly didn’t help that the Shiba Inu typically lived in remote areas at the time. The tough character of this feisty breed certainly helped. A military family stationed in Japan brought their dog back to the United States, giving the Shiba Inu a fresh start. The American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized the breed in 1992.

3. The Pug lived the good life from the beginning.

The Pug or “Foo Dog” was prized by Chinese royalty from its origins over 2,000 years ago. Their storied life was one of luxury and pampering for these devoted companions. Traders brought this cute canine to the Netherlands and eventually to England. There, Queen Victoria fell in love with them, continuing the royal tradition.

The parent breeds of Pug Shiba
The parent breeds of Pug Shiba: Left – Pug (Erin Minuskin, Unsplash) | Right – Shiba Inu (FRA v, Pexels)

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Temperament & Intelligence of Pug Shibas 🧠

Stubbornness is one of the defining personality traits of the two breeds in this mix. Positive reinforcement is the best way to encourage good manners and obedience. A few treats won’t hurt, either. But the Pug and Shiba Inu are active dogs and quite intelligent. They’ll soon learn the routines of your home.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 🏡

The Pug Shiba loves family life, which is a reflection of their backgrounds. Both also have a charming side to them that will win everyone over, enthusiastically. The Pug side of the hybrid is the more kid-friendly of the two. The Shiba Inu has the potential to be nippy. Therefore, it’s vital to teach your children to treat your pet with care and give him his space if he seems uncomfortable with their attention.

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets? 🐶 😽

Again, the two breeds bring different characteristics to the table. The Pug is more open to other dogs or pets in the home than the Shiba Inu. The latter also has a stronger sense of protectiveness over his toys and food. He has a greater prey drive, due to his hunting history. He may chase children or cats that run from him. The Shiba Inu also has a keen sense of wanderlust.

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Things to Know When Owning a Pug Shiba

Knowing what to expect from a Pug Shiba and his personality is an excellent start toward determining if this hybrid breed is right for your family. Let’s move on to the practical, day-to-day matters that will also play a role in your decision.

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

The essential point with the food requirements for a Pug Shiba is matching his intake with his activity level. The other thing to bear in mind is that you are dealing with a smaller dog. With a faster metabolism, hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar is a risk. If his blood levels drop too low, your puppy will become lethargic. To keep them stable, you should feed him small meals three times a day.

Of course, this plan won’t carry over into adulthood. You can cut back to two times per day. The Pug side of your pup is prone to weight gain. Therefore, it’s essential to monitor his diet and make adjustments as necessary. Preventing obesity is imperative for the good health of your Pug & Shiba Inu mixed dog.

Exercise 🐕

There are two points in your favor with a Pug Shiba. The Pug in him is playful by nature. He’ll be eager to join in on a game of fetch. The Shiba Inu is an active dog, anyway. The important thing is to engage your pet and encourage this active behavior to keep him healthy, both physically and mentally.

If he doesn’t have a lot of space in your backyard, take your pooch out for daily walks. However, because of his protective nature, keep your Pug Shiba on a leash.

Training 🦮

Neither the Pug or Shiba Inu are overly sensitive breeds. Both are intelligent. That makes this hybrid relatively easy to train. The nippy potential, along with a tendency to bark, are two challenges that you may face. Getting control of these undesirable behaviors early will go a long way toward a more rewarding pet-pet owner relationship.

Grooming ✂️

Regular brushing is essential since both breeds shed. We’d also recommend handling your pup’s paws often to get him used to nail trimming. Overall, grooming is easy. Because of the risk of allergies, you should examine his coat occasionally. Often, these conditions don’t develop until your puppy gets older. Pug Shibas generally have healthy coats with only routine grooming necessary.

Health Conditions ❤️

The Pug Shiba shares some health concerns with other small breeds. Unfortunately, overbreeding has increased the prevalence of some of them, especially in Pugs. We recommend buying from breeders who take the precaution of some health screenings such as OFA Certifications for hip and elbows. We’d also suggest pre-screening for eye problems from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF).

Minor Conditions
  • Fold dermatitis
  • Allergies
Serious Conditions
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Patellar luxation
  • Canine Glaucoma
  • Legg-Calve Perthes Disease
  • Cancer

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Male vs Female

Male and female Pug & Shiba Inu mix dogs are similar in temperament, especially if they are neutered or spayed around five months of age. Both sexes are equally sweet and affectionate companions. The size difference is minimal if that is a consideration.

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Final Thoughts

The Pug Shiba is an excellent choice for active families willing to take charge of socialization and training early in his development. In return, he will reward you with a loyal and affectionate companion. He is an active dog that will look forward to daily walks and bonding time with you. While there are some health concerns, regular examinations will help you identify issues quickly to keep your canine friend healthy.

The long history of both the Pug and Shiba Inu is a testament to the joy this hybrid can bring to your family. With his playful and alert personality, you’ll find more reasons to love your Pug Shiba every day.

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Featured Image Credit: Dora Zett, Shutterstock

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