The Shiba Inu is a popular breed of dog that originates from Japan. Like all dogs, Shiba Inus have a heat cycle, which is the period of time when they are able to become pregnant.
During this time, it is important for owners to be aware of the signs and behaviors associated with a Shiba Inu in heat so that they take necessary action in time
Shiba Inus go into heat from 6 to 9 months of age. The heat cycle lasts between 2 to 4 weeks. Like other dogs, Shiba Inus show signs of a swollen vulva, bleeding, and frequent urination when on heat. Healthwise, Shibas need more care and attention during this period.
In this article, we will explore the heat cycle of the Shiba Inu in detail and discuss why it is important for owners to understand this process.
By understanding the heat cycle of the Shiba Inu, owners can ensure that their dog is healthy and happy, and can make informed decisions about breeding.
So if you are a Shiba Inu owner or are considering getting one, it is important to read on and learn more about this fascinating breed.
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How To Tell When Shiba Inu Heat Cycle Kicks In
Shiba Inu heat cycle comes after 6 to 8 months from birth and lasts for 2 to 3 weeks from the first day.
With the signs, you can easily tell when your Shiba is on her heat cycle. For example, during the first week of the heat cycle, your Shiba Inu has some discharge from the vulva. Besides, the vulva swells unusually.
If you have a Shiba that’s yet to breed, I’d recommend you to keep her away from males. That way, you’ll easily tell when she is in heat.
In the first week, you begin to see the discharge with blood. However, the discharge significantly reduces to a few drops from the second week.
Moreover, I can advise you to avoid mating your Shiba during her first heat cycle. You can consider mating her from the second heat cycle onwards. You should give your Shiba Inu some time to adapt to her body’s hormonal changes.
She’ll even have her rump raised and the tail off to either side during her first cycle. That signifies your female Shiba is ready to present herself to the male.
Shiba Inus are highly fertile from the tenth day of the heat cycle up to the fifteenth day. So, your Shiba has a high chance of becoming pregnant from the second week if you mate her.
Check out our post on, Shiba Inus with other dogs.
How Long Does the Shiba Inu Heat Cycle Last?
The Shiba Inu heat cycle lasts for approximately 3 to 4 weeks. There’s a heavy flow during the first 5 days, then little spots follow for up to 3 weeks.
Therefore, your Shiba can be on heat for three consecutive weeks. You’ll notice some discharge from her, often some blood that oozes from her vulva during this time. That’s a clear sign that your dog is on heat.
Earlier on in the cycle, the female is hardly receptive. Some dogs are receptive throughout the entire heat cycle period, though.
The heat cycle for Shibas can be short or long; the good thing is you’ll notice the cycle is complete when her vulva resumes to normal size. Also, there is no more discharge.
Annually, Shibas go into heat 2 times. You can bathe her once a month when she’s on heat since they are naturally clean. However, make sure her vulva area is dry.
You should consider crating your Shiba to contain the mess and avoid messing up with your furniture. Alternatively, you can cover furniture with old blankets or towels so that she roams around freely.
Shiba Inus aren’t the best with dog diapers; it makes them miserable and cries around. Also, keep her at home most of the time to avoid meeting stray dogs which can chase after her.
Lastly, spay her early enough if you don’t ever wish to breed your Shiba Inu.
At What Age Do Shiba Inu Heat Cycle Come?
Since birth, Shiba Inus go into heat anywhere from 6 to 9 months.
Your female Shiba might show funny behavior during the heat cycle, like humping and continuously licking your legs. They only do this when on heat to their favorite person at home.
It’s mostly the person who feeds and has more concern for her.
If you stop her from doing it, she becomes aggressive and shows agitation. She’ll cry and start groaning. Besides, you’ll notice the distress on her face. This is a result of sexual frustration during her heat cycle.
When your female Shiba is on heat, expect her to have less energy. Besides, she’s no more active and isn’t doing the zoomies a lot.
The first heat cycle is the worst and generally has more discharge than the following times. The rule of thumb is to keep her away from males and avoid walking her more often.
How Often Does a Shiba Inu Heat Cycle Happen?
Shiba Inus go into heat every 6 months after the first heat cycle. 2 times a year.
Therefore, if you’re planning to breed your Shiba Inu, prepare to do it twice a year. The two Shiba Inu heat cycles happen during the winter and summer.
Of importance, if you want to maximize the chances of your female Shiba having healthy puppies, I’d advise you to wait until she is 2 years.
Shiba puppies on heat become restless and can easily mess things around. Also, you’re expecting them to pace around and whine, seeking attention. They also feel unwelcome in close proximity and might exclude themselves from people.
With that said, let’s go to the signs that tell a Shiba Inu is on heat.
Shiba Inu Heat Cycle Signs and Symptoms
You can observe many signs to tell when your Shiba is on heat.
These signs include;
- Swollen Vulva
- Straw-colored or Discharge from The Vulva
- Urinating Frequently
- Licking Her Genital Area Often
- Receptive To Males
- Change In Tail Position
Now, let’s explore each sign on its own.
You’ll first see a swollen vulva to tell that your Shiba is on heat. During this time, the vulva is usually larger than usual.
The vulva swells slightly before the discharge starts coming out. So, when you observe your Shiba’s vulva is bigger than usual, it’s time to prepare her for mating.
As such, you can begin the selection of a good male for stud services.
Straw-colored or Discharge from The Vulva
As soon as you observe your Shiba Inu vulva swell, the straw-colored discharge comes. This discharge is visible as early as the first week. However, the bloody discharge takes some time.
The discharge starts looking bloody from the second week of her heat cycle. For that reason, this discharge is another way to tell that your Shiba Inu is on heat.
This discharge is what tells males that she’s on heat. The ideal time to take her for mating is when the discharge becomes bloody. That time your Shiba is more fertile.
However hard to tell, when your Shiba Inu is urinating more often than usual, she’s probably on heat.
For example, you can easily tell if she’s frequently urinating when you take her for a walk. Besides, she also shows signs of being restless during the walk.
Licking Her Genital Area Often
You Shiba Inu starts to lick her genital area often from a sleeping position. When she’s on heat, a sensation triggers her to lick her genitals.
Therefore, if you observe that she’s doing it more often, there are high chances the heat cycle is on.
Receptive To Males
Shiba Inus are receptive to males during the heat cycle.
Normally, Shiba Inus are not receptive to other dogs, whether males or females. In fact, Shiba’s are usually aggressive. However, during the heat cycle, she becomes receptive to males.
You can observe this when you take her out for a walk.
Change In Tail Position
Lastly, when your Shiba Inu is in heat, she’ll adjust her tail position to either side. They change the tail position to present themselves to males.
Care Measures for Your Shiba Inus When She’s on Heat?
Like other dogs, Shiba Inus needs good care every day. However, during the heat cycle, Shibas need even more care and attention from their owners.
You can practice several care practices when your Shiba Inu is on heat. Three of these care practices include;
- Mop The Discharge
- Take Her to The Vet for Check-up
- Give Her Attention
See an in-depth analysis below;
Mop the Discharge
This is an act of self-care. You can mop the straw or bloody discharge from her genitals. It helps to keep your Shiba Inu tidy and restore her comfort.
So, you need to keep them company and observe when the discharge is ready for you to mop it. Mopping her discharge keeps your Shiba tidy, a trait that Shiba Inus love most.
However, it is not a must you mop the discharge. Actually, some Shiba’s know how to wipe it away using their tongue.
Take Her to The Vet for Check-up
I’m sure you’re saying in your mind, but only people visit clinics when pregnant! Not only people but also dogs need vet check-ups during the heat cycle.
A vet check-up is useful during the heat cycle. The vet can identify any complication or infection on your Shiba’s titties or genital area and address them.
Give Her Attention
Shiba owners can attest that she can even spend the entire day on your lap when she’s in heat.
During this period, Shiba likes cuddling. We can agree that your Shiba needs attention when she’s in heat.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Do Shiba Inu Periods Last?
Shiba Inu periods last for 2 to 4 weeks, but the duration can vary a bit depending on your dog.
During the initial stages of your Shibas heat cycle, she might not need a male. She spends the most time licking some discharge from her vulva. This discharge is the primary sign that your Shiba Inu heat cycle is on.
Do Female Shibas Have Periods?
Yes, Shiba Inus have periods when they become receptive to males.
It can happen during the first week of her heat cycle. Your Shiba Inu might lick you continuously if you’re around during this time. She needs your attention – you can try cuddling.
Should You Breed or Spay Your Shiba Inu?
For some of us, the period when the Shiba Inu heat cycle is on gets stressful and annoying. So, they spay their Shiba before the first heat cycle.
However, if you have enough reasons to breed, go for it. Spaying also helps prevent unwanted litter, mammary cancer, and other health conditions.
When Should I Get My Female Shiba Inu Spayed?
If you’ve concluded that spaying your Shiba is the way, then wait until she is between 1 to 2 years of age after the first heat cycle.
Also, neutering works best for males to do away with the male sexual drive.
Final Words on Shiba Inus Heat Cycle
As a Shiba Inu owner, I can confidently say that Shiba’s have a complete change of behavior when on heat.
When your Shiba is on heat for 2 to 4 weeks, expect to observe changes. If you’re looking to mate your Shiba, stay keen and present her to the male when her heat cycle is at its peak. That’s the second or third week.
Up to this point, you should be familiar with the Shiba Inu heat cycle and know the dos and don’ts.