Shikoku FCI Standard
There are five unique strains that lay in the base of the Shikoku Dog’s lineage. They are distinguished by the particular physical appearance of their dogs and can be traced to two original Shikoku lines: the Eastern Shikoku and the Western Shikoku. The eastern (Mount Tsurugi Shikoku dog) embraced the Tokushima (Lya) and Kochi-Aki strains. The Western (Mount Ishizuchi Shikoku dog) included Hata Uwahara, Honkawa, and Ehime-ken Shuso.
In the past the Shikoku dog was widely used by the Matagi (Japanese hunters) to track chiefly wild boars. There were two techniques to train the dog hunting: «kami-dome» = «biting to keep» and «hoeru-dome» = «barking to keep». The majority of hunters strived to protect the dogs against the fury of a wild boar therefore they used predominantly «hoeru-dome» method of hunting.
Gradually the boarders of Japan were opened to the outside world and many western dogs arrived in the country with their owners. The Japanese started to realise the importance of recording and maintaining their original Japanese dog breeds. During the Showa Era (1926-1988) the Japanese Dog Protective League was formed. The Shikoku dog alongside with other native breeds were seek out in their secluded terrains and gathered in the cities to be put in kennels for protection.
No one can say for certain which strains of Shikoku dogs were imported to the cities or if strains were interbred there. However it can be stated that the major contributors to the present-day Shikoku dog come of the Western bloodlines, Honkawa and Hata.
In 1937 the breed was declared a Living Natural Monument of Japan. However, the population of the Shikoku dog is scarce outside its homeland. Its fanciers are currently trying to maintain and popularize the breed in North America.
The Shikoku dog tolerates unknown people but it’s prone to be standoffish in their presence. The dog has strong territorial instinct and will always forewarn the owner of any probable threat. After the initial training it will become a superb watchdog which will defend the family even if it’s going to cost it a life.
Most Shikokus can be quite dog aggressive, particularly to the canines, which are not considered by it to be the members of the pack. A correct training though can greatly reduce the heaviness of this problem. The non-canine animal is mainly viewed by the Shikoku as prey objects since its prey drive didn’t subside in the wake of domestication. The dog will most likely put up with cats and other small pets if they have been raised together but it’s still no guarantee.
• canine hip dysplasia;
• heart problems;
• ear problems;
• food allergies;
• digestive problems;
• eye problems.
The Shikoku sheds intensely in the springtime, when the undercoat comes out in clumps. The level of shedding depends on how much fur the dog has and how warm your summer is. To alleviate the damage to your furniture and clothing in this period you can do some plucking and brush your dog more often.
The trainer should establish trustful and respectful relationship with the dog right from the start. The Shikoku demands a great deal of patience and dedication from its owner, who should practice firm but gentle approach to the learning process. Socialization as well as obedience training is highly advisable for this breed.
From time to time the dog should be allowed to run and play on safely enclosed area in order to spend its excessive energy. The Shikoku which lacks the chances to exercise is going to find a way to relieve its frustration in destructive behaviour, extreme barking, peeing at home, and chewing.