Long Haired Shiba Inu or Woolly Shiba Inu Info Guide & Pics

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The long-haired Shiba Inu is commonly known as the woolly Shiba.

It’s understood to be a recessive gene that came from Kawakami-ken, one of the original breeds that was later cross-bred into what would finally become the Shiba Inu.

Long-haired Shiba Inu is much fluffier than the standard Shiba Inu. This version of the Shiba Inu looks like a small Chow Chow.

This unique Shiba is every bit purebred Shiba Inus; however, they have a long coat recessive gene.

Due to the extreme fluffiness of this breed, it’s not recognized by the AKC, FCI, NIPPO, and UKC. So, they can hardly participate in show rings.

This long-haired Shiba Inu guide will take you through the key insights about this unique Shiba Inu dog. Read on!

Is There a Long-Haired Shiba Inu?

Yes, there’s a long-haired Shiba Inu and is an excellent companion and a purebred Shiba. This version of the Shiba Inu results from a gene deviation and is technically considered a defect.

While they’re not recognized, long-haired Shiba Inu have been part of the Shiba Inu bloodline for quite some time.

Besides, Shiba Inu bloodlines across the world carry this gene with them. Since the gene is recessive, it hardly influences the Shibas appearance.

Occasionally, this recessive gene often results in the woolly Shiba Inu in a litter. Although woolly Shibas aren’t a competition to the breed standard, they’re very much purebred Shibas.

When it comes to shedding, the woolly Shiba Inu doesn’t shed any much than the standard coat Shiba Inu. They only have longer hair but shed like usual Shibas.

Are Long-Haired Shiba Inu Common?

Woolly Shiba Inu isn’t that common and are hardly bred by a reputable breeder. Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean that a breeder with a woolly Shiba isn’t reputable.

Long-haired Shiba Inu are common with breeders who hardly do gene testing before breeding. Even the most reputable breeders will get woolly Shibas once in a while.

The recessive gene responsible for woolliness in dogs, FGF5, is common in breeds of the Spitz family. Shibas are in this category of breeds.

Therefore, having a woolly Shiba Inu shouldn’t be a fault against the breeder. Furthermore, the woolly Shiba Inu is an excellent companion and is just a typical Shiba Inu behavior-wise.

Since some consider it a defect, you can also find the woolly Shiba Inu in shelters. However, this breed shouldn’t be viewed as a defect as it’s a purebred Shiba Inu.

Not all standard Shiba Inus with the recessive gene FGF5 have long hair in their body. However, this trait often comes out if these Shibas are used for breeding purposes.

Do Long-Haired Shiba Inus Shed More?

Long-haired Shiba Inus don’t shed more than the standard Shiba Inu. They regularly shed throughout the year but blow their coat twice a year like other Shibas.

The best way to manage the mess during shedding is by brushing their coat more often.

Fortunately, long-haired Shibas don’t shed more than the standard Shibas. However, during the coat blowing season, they’ll lose a lot of fur than standard Shibas.


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Ensure to brush their coat at least once every day and do lots of vacuuming. I’d recommend you have a vacuum as the fur tumbleweeds can mess your furniture.

Also check, do Shiba Inu shed a lot?

Are Long-Haired Shiba Inus Good with Kids?

Long-haired Shiba Inus are good with kids, but proper training and socialization help prevent surprises.

Not all Shiba Inus are good with kids. However, train him if you find out your Shiba Inus isn’t the best dog near kids. Training works wonders in making Shibas good with kids.

Therefore, the level of friendliness between your long-haired Shiba Inus and your kids depends on your training efforts. Although, some Shiba Inus are generally good with kids even without training. You need to observe and know where your Shiba lies.

If your long-haired Shiba Inus is good with kids, then you’re lucky. However, if your Shiba is the opposite, it’s time you begin training your furry friend.

In addition, socialization also helps make Shiba Inus good with kids. In fact, socialization is as important as training to all Shibas. You can do both at a go. The right time to socialize your Shiba with your kids is when the dog’s still a puppy.

Since Shibas are pretty intelligent, spending their time with your kids from a younger age improves their bond.

Therefore, they learn how to relate with kids as they grow up. So, if your Shiba isn’t friendly to your kids, you don’t have to worry but train and socialize them.

That said, training and socializing your Shiba Inus with kids is a must for you to enjoy a good time with both.

Also, during this time, you have to teach your kid what Shibas don’t like, such as loud noises or harassment.

What Are Common Health Problems with Long-Haired Shiba Inus?

  • Glaucoma
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
  • Eye Cataracts
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Seizures
  • Allergies
  • Pyometra
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Cancer
  • Chylothorax

What’s more;


Long-haired Shiba Inus eyes are vulnerable to several complications, including glaucoma. It slowly interferes with the optic nerve in your Shibas eye.

However, it starts with a build-up of a whitish fluid in the front of the eye. This fluid creates pressure on the optic nerve, destroying it in the long run.

There are different types of glaucoma based on the severity. Thankfully, this disease is treatable to some extent. If you notice it early enough and inform the vet, they can do surgery to treat it.

In addition, if you fail to treat it, glaucoma causes partial vision loss. In the long run, it causes complete blindness.

There are drop treatments that treat the fluid building up inside your Shibas eyes. Also, surgery helps remove the fluid to correct the tissue.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)

PRA also affects long-haired Shiba Inu eyes. Besides, it is a degenerative disease. That means it can result from the genetics of your Shibas lineage.

It occurs due to failing photoreceptors at the back of Shiba Inus eyes. When the receptors begin to fail, your Shiba starts to experience difficulties seeing in the dark.

Vision loss continues to worsen as the disease progresses. After some time, the affected Shiba begin to experience difficulties seeing in broad daylight. The result is usually complete blindness.

Although there is no cure, diagnosis helps manage the condition. As such, there is enough time for the owner to prepare for blindness.

Eye Cataracts

Eye cataracts are common to senior adult long-haired Shiba Inus, those with 10+ years. It occurs in the last stages of Shiba Inu’s life.

Cataracts in your Shiba Inus can result from the opacity of the eye’s lens. In the end, the lens tears giving the pupil a “cloudy” appearance.

There are different types of eye cataracts in Shiba Inus. Thankfully, surgeries help manage the condition. In addition, there are treatments that treat eye cataracts.

Patellar Luxation

Patellar Luxation happens when your long-haired Shibas’ knee becomes weak and dislocates from its normal position. You’ll see that your Shibas kneecap shifts in and out of place.

Also, this condition results from being predisposed at birth. Injuries also cause Patellar Luxation. Corrective surgery helps but might not be the final solution.

The symptoms include abnormality of the gait and inability to walk due to pain. Their legs develop a lot of lameness, making your Shiba immobile.

Treatment depends on the degree of hindrance on the kneecaps. Since this condition is common in many dog breeds, various treatments exist.

It isn’t a life-threatening complication.


This condition often occurs to long-haired Shibas when the thyroid fails to develop ultimately. The thyroid is responsible for regulating metabolism.

Therefore, incomplete development of the thyroid directly affects your Shibas metabolism. When Shibas are facing this condition, they become lethargic.

Other common signs include loss of hair and becoming obese. Your Shiba might also be having excess urination

If you observe any of these signs, you might want to test your Shiba Inus for hypothyroidism. If you fail to address it, it develops into a more severe condition.

Good enough, there is a treatment medication that treats this disease.


Seizures in dogs aren’t similar to what humans know. They cause Shibas to run around ceaselessly, find corners to hide in confusion, bark excessively, and freeze.

Seizures aren life-threatening to Shiba Inu. Besides, hardly will you experience a seizure with your Shiba Inus.

Seizures rarely occur and tell of a more severe condition within your Shibas body. They often result from food poisoning.

If your Shiba experiences a seizure, mind seeing your vet. Ensure they diagnose your pooch friend.

Seizures resulting from epilepsy are treatable using medication.


Allergies are a common occurrence in long-haired Shiba Inu. Allergens are likely to affect Shiba in summer-like climates or warmer areas.

When your Shiba has allergies, they develop runny eyes, excess sneezing, and swollen eyes. Also, other signs include clogging of the nasal passage, causing mucus flow.

If you observe the signs above, your Shiba Inu is experiencing allergies. You should take the necessary measures immediately.

Allergies in Shibas spur from various things, including food, products, and airborne components.

See your vet’s assistance as soon as possible. They’ll help you diagnose whether your Shiba is suffering from allergies.


This condition occurs in female Shibas after spaying. When the heat cycle comes, cell growth in the uterus is at its highest, triggers bacteria to migrate there, and can cause a severe infection.

This condition is a bit more prominent with female Shibas.

Hip Dysplasia

This condition affects all dog breeds, not Shiba Inus alone. However, it’s common in heavy dogs with muscular body.

Dip dysplasia results from displacement of the thighbone and hip joint. The effects of this condition on your Shiba Inus include lameness in the legs, the presence of an abnormal gait, and difficulty when walking.

Also, it causes varying degrees of pain to your Shiba Inus, thus resulting in immobility. There are tons of treatments for this condition.

However, dogs normally correct their gait and continue living perfectly healthy lives. Extreme cases require corrective surgery.

Hip Dysplasia isn’t a life-threatening condition. It varies a lot in severity.


Cancer in dogs is an emerging issue of concern. It doesn’t only affect red Shiba Inu but affects all dog breeds.

Cancer isn’t particularly rampant with Shiba Inus and results from an overgrowth of malignant cells. The symptoms include swelling and sores with difficulty healing.

You’ll also observe excessive bleeding from your Shibas openings, difficulty breathing, and bloating.


This disease results from an accumulation of fluid in your Shibas chest. Thus, it causes a lack of appetite, coughing, wheezing, and extreme fatigue. It may also cause general body weakness.

It indicates the presence of a more serious health condition within your Shibas body. Its treatment involves removing the fluid.

Also, you can incorporate a low-fat diet for your fur friend. In severe cases, surgery might be necessary to correct the condition.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Shiba Inus Have Long or Short Hair?

Shiba Inus can either have long or short hair; however, they are double-coats thus should have long outer coat.

The long haired Shiba Inu has longer outer coat than the normal standard Shibas.

Are There Different Types of Shiba Inus?

There are different types of Shiba Inus depending on the genes. However, the common type is the double-coat Shiba Inu.

Deviations in genes result to rare Shibas like the long-haired Shiba.

Is It Safe to Trim Long-Haired Shiba Inu Coats?

You shouldn’t trim your Shibas coat unless you’re doing it for treatment purposes. However, you can slightly trim the outer guard hairs of the long-haired Shiba.

When doing it, be very careful not to temper with the inner soft coat.

Concluding Remarks on Long-Haired Shiba Inu

Long-haired Shiba Inu have been part of the Shiba Inu bloodline for quite some time. They’re not a defect, just a deviation due to genetic differences.

Besides, Shiba Inu bloodlines across the world carry this gene with them. Since the gene is recessive, it hardly influences the Shibas appearance.

Occasionally, this recessive gene often results in the woolly Shiba Inu in a litter. Although woolly Shibas aren’t a competition to the breed standard, they’re very much purebred Shibas.

Thankfully, long-haired Shibas have are good companions, just like the standard Shiba Inu. So, don’t be scared by the misconceptions you come across about them being a defect.

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