Shiba Inus are a somewhat mysterious dog, and certainly not a common sighting in Perth, so you can imagine our excitement when we had two beautiful Shiba puppies booked in for a photo shoot last weekend!
A small Japanese breed, the Shiba Inu is stocky, neat, a little fox-like in appearance and altogether quite an independent sort of animal, though very loyal and affectionate to its owners. This became immediately apparent when Haru and Kuma arrived through the door and showed little to no interest in sniffing our photographer’s bottom, instead favouring to sit closely to their owner who apologetically described them as “A little tenacious…”.
She followed this by describing them as “Cat Dogs”, a term that we’d never come across before.
What on earth is a Cat Dog?
Immediately, we wonder if it’s because they’re a little foxy looking? Do they stand at the door after you’ve opened it for them and then just look up at you? Do they chase mice?
And then the first clue arrived in the form of the treat bag. It appears that the Shibas are as food driven as any cat we’ve ever seen, and were much more easily coaxed into sitting nicely together when a big juicy scrap of jerky was at hand. This boded well for the shoot and we took some really gorgeous photos, though at one point Kuma decided that he’d rather hide under the ottoman and poke his head from under the blanket (incidentally, a perfect photo opportunity).
“They basically think that they’re cats” she continued. “They sit there and look at you like they’re silently judging you…they obsess over cardboard boxes and are real stubborn like cats too, they’re so independent and aren’t overly affectionate like most dogs”.
As she says this, we’re starting to wonder why such a breed would be so sought after, but before we even get the to question mark, Haru has decided to come up to our photographer for a sniff and licks her hand, simultaneously melting our hearts and winning us over big time to Cat Dogs.
“Even though they can be a handful, you can’t help but love them. They’re like my kids.”
“So…like a Cat Dog Baby?” our photographer asks.
“Yeah, I guess like a Cat Dog Baby!”