Common Shiba Inu Problem – Anxiety

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
shiba inu anxiety

Shiba Inu is the type of dog with anxiety issues, and it’s easy to see why those issues can also transfer to the owner. These dogs will end up having lots of stress due to fears. Those fears will eventually lead to constant biting, scratching, or clawing. When a dog owner sees his pet with these issues, he will also feel unhappy and insecure, and the problems will become prevalent for him. Thankfully, there are ways to help with the Shiba Inu anxiety.

Shiba Inu anxiety symptoms

It’s essential to determine if your dog’s anxiety is a severe case or less than a severe one. Some of the most common symptoms include chewing, urination, defecation, pacing, trembling, feeling, and so on. It can be a little hard to figure out if the pet has anxiety or just disobedient. Pets with genuine anxiety will show that before they leave home via panting, whining, and even pacing. A disobedient dog will destroy all kinds of stuff. So it will be easier to spot more often than not.

Shiba Inu anxiety causes

A lack of socialization

You need to understand that a lack of socialization can end up being a problem. That’s especially true for puppies. Even if the breed itself is less domesticated, that doesn’t change anything. They are a social breed, and Shiba Inu puppies, in particular, need to socialize from early on in their lives. They need socialization during the first 6-14 weeks. This is when puppies learn about fear and confidence. It’s important to expose them to stimuli, and noises are essential during this time.

Things like physiology and genetics do contribute to canine anxiety. According to a study posted in the Applied Journal of Veterinary Medicine, 23% of 5235 dogs fear noises. Some breeds like the Shiba Inu are more fearful when compared to others. On top of that, females are 30% more likely to fear sounds. The neutered dogs are 72% more prone to fear sounds than those that were not neutered.

External factors

Just like humans, Shiba Inus can have life experiences that induce things such as anxiety. Any traumatic event will induce either a state of illness or trauma. It can happen for your dog to deal with depression at times.

Types of Dog Anxiety

A dog can experience multiple types of anxiety. These are social, noise, or separation anxiety.

Separation anxiety

When a Shiba Inu has separation anxiety, this appears from multiple factors. Being kenneled in the past is one of the reasons why this happens. If a dog has such anxiety, they will defecate, urinate, chew, and bark when they are alone. The dog owners will also feel this issue, and it can be very problematic more often than not.

Social anxiety

Most Shiba Inu puppies experience social anxiety if they don’t socialize during the first 16 months of their lives. It’s imperative not to remove the puppies from their mother early on to prevent any problems. That’s why you need to keep the puppies with their mother for the beginning of their lives, at least in the first eight months. This helps prevent nutrition problems and social anxiety issues. These dogs will react with aggression most of the time because they are used to being alone.

Noise anxiety

Some dogs like the Shiba Inus are very sensitive, and loud noises can be a problem. Skateboards, fireworks, thunder, or any massive noise can be very problematic for them. The dog will try to hide or flee upon encountering a lot of noise, which is considered.

Treatment and Management for Anxiety Issues

Now that you know the type of issues that can appear, it’s crucial to find the right way to deal with them and treat these without any concerns. Make sure that you are not a contributor to the Shiba Inu anxiety. That means you must stay calm, relaxed, as the dog will feel any sign of stress or irritation. There are no quick fixes to the anxiety problems, so you need to take these things one step at a time, and it will work!

Holistic therapies and proper exercising can help immensely. It all comes down to finding the right treatment and using it accordingly for the best results. It’s not easy to do, that’s for sure, but the payoff can be great in the long run. Even scent therapy is said to work very well, so if you adapt it adequately, it can indeed provide some fantastic results.

Behavior Modification

Changing the behavior of a pet is not as simple as you might imagine. But you do need to focus on things like desensitization and counter-conditioning. An example of the latter would be to add the idea of reinforcing positive occurrences. If there’s a thunderstorm outside, you want to encourage your dog to do something positive every time that happens. If the pet has separation anxiety, offer a treat toy or something to keep him happy. The main idea is to have a positive association with an item, as that can help immensely.  


Desensitization therapy is something you want to use with extra care. It can be risky for the older Shiba Inu because it can lead to even more trauma and anxiety. The focus of this therapy is to expose the dog to the anxiety trigger but in small doses. You want to encourage him to bring in new reactions, positive ones that will make him get over the issues and move on. As we mentioned earlier, this is not going to work every time. It could be ok if you start leaving the dog alone for a short while and then increase the amount of time. But in the end, it’s up to you to make the right pick and go from there.

You may also want to see the way your pet is responding to triggers. Try to adapt and perform different actions instead of just leaving. If the dog has separation anxiety, then you can opt for both desensitization and counter-conditioning. Try to customize your approach and see how it works every time.


If the cases are severe, then medication can be a solution. Don’t use any over the counter solutions without the approval of your vet. Recently, the amount of prescription medicine used for dogs has increased by 30%, and it can help dogs quite a bit. But at the same time, it can also be damaging to your pet. This is why it’s imperative to talk with the vet about Shiba Inu’s anxiety and see how it can be adequately cured.

You can’t use drugs alone; most of the time, you want to use them combined with behavior modification or similar treatment. You may have to use medication in some cases, such as times when the pet will chew on the door, and their teeth fall, or the gums bleed. The medicine you can use for anxious dogs includes Tricyclic Antidepressants (TCAs), Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs), and Benzodiazepines (BZs).

Natural Supplements 

Natural supplements should be your first choice before you go and choose prescription medication. Pheromones, nutraceuticals, and supplements can come in handy here. If we are talking about supplements, a very good option would be the ones listed below.


This particular supplement has Phellodendron amurense and Magnolia Officinalis extracts. It can be 60% efficient when it comes to eliminating noise stress, and it can be purchased as a tablet that your Shiba Inu can chew right away.


This medication has L-Theanine, an excellent amino acid that helps calm down your Shiba Inu naturally. You shouldn’t rely on it for dogs that have aggression issues or severe anxiety. It’s available in the form of a chewable tablet with many flavors.


These are foods that have very healthy additives, and they bring in excellent medical benefits.


This powerful chewable compound has L-theaning, as well as thiamine and C3. It makes it easy for the body to build amino acids, and it makes it easy to restore the neurochemical balance in your pet’s nervous system. C3 is excellent because it helps boost the cognitive system, and it can also be impressive for things like stress removal. It’s coming in many flavors, and there are no known side effects.


Pheromones are odorless, and they are excreted externally by the fertile body. It has compounds and triggers that will provide info to members of the same species with the opposite sex.

D.A.P.- Dog Appeasing Pheromone

A lot of behaviorists and vets recommend this pheromone because it works excellent against canine anxiety. It helps some dogs, and it seems that Shiba Inus react positively to it. Since more research is needed, you can go with a trial and error approach towards this. It will help your pet more than you imagine, but you need plenty of patience to do everything adequately. Yet it will be worth it in the long run.

Final Thoughts

Every dog has the potential to develop anxiety issues. This can be challenging for both the Shiba Inu and his owner. Unfortunately, there’s no general solution for all dogs that face anxiety problems. The first thing you can do is to learn as much as possible about the anxiety triggers. You also need to maintain a lot of calm around your pet!

Plus, you are not alone. Working closely with dog trainers, behaviorists, vets, and so on can help you immensely. You will finally be able to help your pet deal with any anxiety and ensure that he has a normal life. It will take a little bit of time to apply all these different solutions, but it will be worth it if you stick to instructions offered by industry professionals!