Shiba Inu Colors – How Many Variations Are There?
There are various types of shibas (Japanese dog breeds) and they have different characteristics. They all share similar traits such as being small, loyal, friendly, affectionate and so on. However there are many variations within each type of breed. Some breeds vary from one another much less than others do. For example, there are several types of pugs and some pugs vary from one another very little. Pugs are generally considered to be one of the most popular breeds in Japan. Most Japanese people own at least two different kinds of pug dogs. So it makes sense that there would be many varieties within the same breed.
In fact, there are over 100 different types of shibas! Each type of shiba has its own unique features. This means that there could be hundreds or even thousands of possible combinations between any two types of shibas.
When looking at the number of possible combinations, it becomes clear why it’s difficult to tell which ones belong together. There are many different shades and hues within each shade/hue combination. It would be a long and difficult process to try to pair each one together in an organized way.
Some may argue that a particular shade of red is “closest” to another shade of red. They may also argue that some other shade of red is “closest” to a different color. There is no way to tell for sure because it’s all open for interpretation.
Even a professional would have a hard time trying to decide which category a color falls under. You may even see the same dog in different colors, depending on lighting and other factors. Every once in a while, a previously unknown color of the shiba is discovered. This is quite an exciting thing for dog lovers! Each time this happens, it makes the debate about “what is a shiba” even longer and more complicated.
There are far too many different types of shibas to count. Even if a new color doesn’t get discovered, there are still going to be more than enough hues and shades of red to fill an entire rainbow.
It’s important to know all the different types of shibas that exist! The more you know, the better you’ll be able to spot one on the street or down the block. If you see a dog that resembles any of the following descriptions, then it very well could be a shiba inu!
The red shiba inus are the most popular ones. They have a reddish-brown base with black or tan markings on their faces, legs, feet and tails. They also have black noses, eye rims and tall.
The red shibas sometimes have tan markings as well. These red shibas are sometimes called “fox reds” due to the color of their coat being similar to that of a fox.
The sesame shibas have black and gold coats. These dogs are a symbol of luck in Japan. In fact, owning one is good luck and two is even better luck!
The fawn shibas can also be called “apricot sesames” or “apricot silk sesames.” They have a light tan base with black markings on their faces, legs, feet and tails.
Sources & references used in this article:
Effect of seasonality on testicular blood flow as determined by color Doppler ultrasonography and hormonal profiles in Shiba goats by H Samir, P Nyametease, K Nagaoka… – Animal reproduction …, 2018 – Elsevier
… -releasing hormone (GnRH) and human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) on testicular blood flow measured by color doppler ultrasonography in male Shiba goats by H Samir, K Sasaki, E Ahmed, A Karen… – Journal of Veterinary …, 2015 – jstage.jst.go.jp
Genetic structure of the purebred domestic dog by HG Parker, LV Kim, NB Sutter, S Carlson… – …, 2004 – science.sciencemag.org