Breed Rating

family friendly:
Dog friendly:
Watch/guard dog:
Affection / Dependance:
Exercise needed:
Space needed:
Tendency to bark:
Grooming Requirements:
Tendency to bark:
Grooming Requirements:

Breed Attributes


Breed group: Working    Type: Pure Breed    Talent: , , , , , ,


Size: Medium     Weight: 35-55 lbs     Fur length: Short    Ears: Pointy    Fur type: Straight    Fur Color: Black & Brown, Black & White


Life Expectancy: 10-12 years    Rarity: Uncommon    Availability: Hard to find    Climate: Not good for cold climate.

Breed Details


The Shikoku is one of the Spitz type dog breeds from Shika Inu category of Japanese dogs. This is a medium size dog that is in existence since centuries. Mainly developed as a hunter of large game, deer and wild boar are among its quarry.

The Shikoku has descended from a very primitive breed, Nihonken, along with other Japanese breeds of today like Akita, Kesho, Hokaiddo, Kai Ken and Shiba Inu. The Nihonken dogs were present during Jomon Period which dates back to 10000-300 B.C.

The Shikoku is a medium size dog that stands between 17-21 inches and weighs around 35-55 lbs. It is a Spitz type dog with a double coat, prick ears and curled tail. This well balanced dog comes with a broad skull, long and wedge-shaped muzzle with straight nasal bridge that leads to black nose. Dark brown, relatively small eyes are triangular in shape and well set apart. Small, erect ears are slightly inclined forward. It comes with a thick and powerful neck. The body is slightly longer than tall with a deep chest and well sprung ribs. Straight and strong back with muscular loin gives the dog a well balanced and muscular look. The belly is slightly tucked up. Thick tail is set high and carried curled over the back. The harsh and straight double coat comes in beautiful sesame, black sesame or red sesame.

This dog is NOT recognized by AKC however it is recognized by FCI and UKC.


This breed comes in very beautiful and attractive sesame (equal black and white), black sesame (more black than white) and red sesame (ground colour of red mixed with black hair).


The Shikoku has a double coat. Outer coat is harsh, straight and undercoat is soft and dense. Tail is covered with rather long hair.


The Shikoku is a passionate hunter as well as a loyal and devoted family pet. Sufficiently agile and tough, the dog is very active outside but calm and quiet inside the house. This breed is very intelligent and can take part in different dog activities like agility and aptitude competitions. It is very kind and playful with children and can handle rough handling to an extent. This breed will get along with other dogs well but due to high prey drive, it is unsuitable around other non-canine pets. The dog is inherently wary of strangers and will make an excellent watch and guard dog. This is an energetic breed that will need an active owner and atleast a yard to play and run. The Shikoku makes an excellent hiking and jogging partner besides being a dependable family pet and guard dog.


The Shikoku has low grooming needs with once a while brushing of the coat to keep it clean. Ears, eyes and teeth should be regularly checked for infection and cleaned. This healthy breed sheds once or twice a year and will need extra care during shedding season.


The Shikoku breed will need a firm and consistent owner who can train this sometimes willful and stubborn breed with consistent and positive training methods. A weak or inexperienced owner will not suit this dog. The Shikoku is intelligent and will learn quickly if dealt in the right way.


Like all working dogs, the Shikoku also has high energy levels and will need to be taken for daily walks as well as provided with ample playing time in a secure and open area. This energetic breed will make a very good jogging and hiking companion.

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