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Grooming your Shiba Inu 😅

Shiba Inus are known for their gorgeous coats.

Shiba Inus are also known for blowing their gorgeous coats as any other double-coated dogs making them shed heavily twice a year, typically during the spring and fall. During this time, your Shiba will “blow” aka shed all of its undercoat in a period lasting two to three weeks. The undercoat is very light and will fly all over the place. You’ll find it on your clothes, on your sheets, and yes, sometimes in your food. But don’t worry, with the right tools and strategies, shedding can be completely manageable. During non-shedding times, your Shiba should normally be brushed at least twice a month However when spring and fall shedding season comes around at least twice per week. Ideally during the heavy shed periods a daily groom is optimal and you will be amazed at the amount of coat which is shed during coat blowing periods. Honestly, you would be able to make at least two extra shibas out of just one you have! 😅 It’s also a good idea to give your Shiba an extra bath or two during the shedding season, as all the extra fur can contain more of your Shiba Inu’s dead skin cells and debris. Bathing will also help with loosing the undercoat so the coat-blowing can be shortened.

Shibas are typically described as “cat-like” dogs that are fastidiously clean and have no doggy odour issues. As a breeder, I have multiple Shiba and can basically attest that these descriptions for the most part are true. But do remember this is not the most easily trained dog breed so start grooming your dog as early as possible you will benefit hugely from this as the dog grows older, so start when they are puppies. Otherwise, you will be going through exorcism every time you need to groom your Shiba.

So let's get into the equipment needed! Don't fall into a marketing scheme you really need just a bare minimum for in-house coat maintenance.

Slicker brush

Metal comb

Nail clipper or Dremel

pH-balanced dog shampoo (conditioner is optional)

Hair dryer (setting should be set on cool)

A few microfiber beach towels

‼️ Always before washing your Shiba give him/her a good brush to lose up the undercoat and prevent mats.

Shibas have water-resistant coats so make sure your dog's fur is fully wet all the way to the skin. Then apply the shampoo and knead it thoroughly into the coat and the undercoat. If your dog is extremely dirty you may need to repeat this process. Now this is important when rinsing the shampoo out you must ensure that all shampoo is rinsed away as any residue can cause itchiness.

When the coat is thoroughly rinsed it is time to brush and dry, firstly remove most of the excess water with the towel all over your dog. Then using a dryer on a cool setting dry and brush the coat. If you get your hands on a high-velocity dryer you'll cut the drying time in half and it will also help you blow the loose undercoat and lessen the need for brushing! Use the comb or a rack brush to brush and lose the remaining undercoat followed with the slicker brush for a smooth and luscious top coat.

‼️Remember to make sure your Shiba is completely dry all the way to the roots paying particular attention to the armpits, groin and tail crown (where the tail sits) to prevent the greenhouse effect, fungal skin infections and hot spots.

Complete your shiba's grooming routine by giving them the perfect pawdicure. This involves trimming and filing their nails to keep them looking neat and tidy. Not only will this make your shiba's paws look great, but it will also help prevent any discomfort or injuries that could be caused by overgrown nails. So, don't forget to add a pawdicure to your shiba's grooming checklist!

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