Shiba Inu dog standing on wooden floor at home

Shiba Inus are one of the most attractive dog breeds that you’ll come across. Their beautiful fox like appearance, impressive confidence, and independence make them one of the most beloved canines all over the world.

Not only do they have courageous and fiery personalities, but they’re all so proud, graceful, and intelligent at the same time. They’re known for being very loyal, yet dominant, which can make them very interesting to have as a pet.

Planning on getting a Shiba and wondering if it will get along with your cat? Or perhaps you have a cat and are looking to add a Shiba to your home of furry friends. Will this be okay? Or are you setting your living room up for a slugfest? In this article we’re going to discuss the typical temperament of this dog breed and whether it’s a good idea to bring them into the home with cats.

Are Shiba Inus Good with Cats?

So, should you bring a Shiba into your home with the cat present? Maybe, but maybe not without the proper training. Poodles tend to demonstrate very dominant alpha-type characteristics in the home. And we all know that cats are renowned for being pretty independent, and in many cases, assertive about their personal space and food.

So, having these two pets in the home together may be a bit challenging due to their natural instincts. You may find the Shiba and the cat battling for control at times. Or, if you happen to have a family submissive cat, this could trigger the Shiba’s hunting instincts, which can make for a very chaotic home life for everyone.

But it’s not impossible, of course. If your Shiba is socialized or happens to have a more laid-back personality, you may find that your home is surprisingly tranquil with these two living in the same space. And this is definitely the case if you bring the Shiba home as a puppy. Doing so will give them time to become familiar with a cat and develop a rapport and trust.

Choosing The Right Shiba Inus

If you already have a cat and want to add a pool to your home, there are certain dog breeders and rescue operations that can help match you with a Shiba that has been trained or socialized to get along well with cats. Or, if you prefer to get a puppy (which is often recommended), it’s best to ask the breeder if the dog has been around cats or other animals and how the reactions have gone. Adult Shibas that have really aggressive tendencies or overly dominant traits usually won’t be great companions for the typical cat.

shiba inu dog and a tabby cat outdoor
Image courtesy of Shutterstock

Keeping The Peace

Keep Toys and Food Separate

It’s important to know that if you purchase a Shiba pup, it’ll definitely chew on anything it can get its teeth into. They often resort to chewing shoes, linens, upholstery, and any other soft items while they’re in this stage. This also includes your cat’s own chew and scratch toys, which can cause issues.

Note that this breed tends to be really aggressive with their food, toys, and generally any items that they view as theirs. So, you may want to place the dog in another room for supper time or keep its toys contained to a certain area that is separate from the cat’s.

Introduce the Pets Properly

As with most dogs, neutering or spaying will typically reduce the dog’s aggressive urges. Also, be sure to introduce the two pets properly and not just set them in a room together and leave them alone. This is a recipe for disaster. Your Shiba will naturally be very curious of the cat, which can result in a few slaps to the face.

So, don’t allow the dog to physically overwhelm the cat during the first few meetings. Also, note that it can take time for the pets to become acclimated to one another, and just because they have a fiery start doesn’t mean that it’ll always stay this way.

If you have a cat that is a bit moody, try introducing it to your Shiba after mealtime, when it’s likely in a better mood. Try not to introduce it to the dog after it’s just awakened or when the dog is in a hyperactive mood.

Wrapping Things Up

Remember that every Shiba and every cat will be different, and these recommendations are just based on the typical characteristics of Shibas and those of many cats. You may find that the two hit it off immediately or within the first few interactions.

And rest assured that cats and Shibas can become the best of buddies or at least exist together peacefully. However, because this dog breed can be a bit dominant and aggressive you can increase your chances of success with your cat by buying a puppy or an adult dog that’s been trained or socialized.


Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock