AWBI Dog Breeder Registration Number –

Basenji vs Shiba Inu comparison 

5/5 - (1 vote)

The Basenji is often referred to as the “barkless dog” due to its unique vocalization patterns. Originating in Central Africa, specifically the Congo region, the Basenji was historically used for hunting and companionship. The Shiba Inu hails from Japan and is the smallest of the native Japanese dog breeds. This breed has gained immense popularity worldwide, largely due to its striking appearance and spirited personality.Both the Basenji vs Shiba Inu require proper socialization and training from an early age to ensure they grow up to be well-behaved companions.

Basenji vs Shiba Inu comparison 

Basenji vs Shiba Inu: History and Origins

The Basenji is one of the oldest known dog breeds, originating in Central Africa, particularly in the Congo region. They are often referred to as the “barkless dog” due to their unique vocalizations. Basenjis are known for their elegant appearance, small size, and distinctive features, such as tightly curled tails and pricked ears.

The Shiba Inu is a Japanese breed that dates back centuries and is one of the oldest and smallest native Japanese dog breeds. Shiba Inus were initially developed for hunting small game, such as birds and rabbits, in the mountainous regions of Japan. They share some similarities with the Basenji in terms of independence and strong prey drive.

Basenji vs Shiba Inu: Appearance and characteristic

Basenjis are medium-sized dogs with a sleek and elegant build. They have a distinctive appearance, often being referred to as the “barkless dog” due to their unique larynx structure that limits their ability to bark. Basenjis are known for their intelligence, independence, and somewhat cat-like behaviors. They are curious, agile, and excel in activities that require problem-solving.


Shiba Inus are small to medium-sized dogs that have a compact, well-muscled frame. They have a double coat with a soft undercoat and a stiff, straight outer coat. Shiba Inus are known for their spirited and independent nature. They are often described as being “cat-like” in their behaviors, as they are clean, meticulous groomers, and have an aloof demeanor at times. Shiba Inus are intelligent and strong-willed, which can make training a bit of a challenge.

Basenji vs Shiba Inu: Temperament

Basenjis are known for being independent and cat-like in their behavior. They are often described as aloof and reserved, especially with strangers. They have a strong prey drive and a tendency to chase after small animals, which is a characteristic rooted in their hunting history. Basenjis can be affectionate and loyal to their families, but they may not display the same level of outward affection as some other dog breeds. They are intelligent but can also be quite stubborn. Training requires patience and consistency.Shiba InuShiba Inus are known for their independent nature and strong-willed personalities. They are often compared to cats in terms of behavior. They can be aloof or reserved, especially with unfamiliar people and dogs. Early socialization is crucial to prevent them from becoming overly wary or aggressive. Shiba Inus are very clean dogs and will often groom themselves like a cat. They are intelligent and can learn quickly, but they might choose not to obey commands if they find them uninteresting. Shibas can have a strong prey drive, so caution is necessary when introducing them to small animals.

Basenji vs Shiba Inu: Health

This is a genetic kidney disorder that is more commonly seen in Basenjis compared to other breeds. It affects the dog’s ability to reabsorb certain nutrients in the kidney, leading to potential kidney damage. Responsible breeding practices can help reduce the risk of this condition. Some Basenjis can be prone to a type of anemia called immune-mediated hemolytic anemia (IMHA), where the immune system attacks the dog’s own red blood cells.

Shiba Inus, like many medium to large dog breeds, can be prone to hip dysplasia, a condition where the hip joint doesn’t develop properly, leading to pain and mobility issues. Responsible breeding practices and proper nutrition can help reduce the risk. This is a condition where the kneecap dislocates from its normal position, causing pain and lameness. While not extremely common in Shiba Inus, it’s still worth being aware of.

Basenji vs Shiba Inu: Trainability

Basenjis are often described as independent and intelligent dogs, but they can also be quite stubborn and aloof. They have a strong prey drive and are known for their cat-like behaviors, including grooming themselves and being somewhat reserved.
Due to their independent nature, Basenjis might not always be eager to please their owners, which can make training more difficult. Positive reinforcement training methods tend to work best with Basenjis. Using treats, praise, and rewards can help motivate them to follow commands.

Shiba Inus are known for their strong-willed and independent personalities. They were originally bred for hunting, and this independent streak can sometimes make them seem aloof or uninterested in training. They have a tendency to test boundaries and may not always respond well to traditional obedience training methods. Socialization from a young age is crucial for Shiba Inus. Properly socialized Shiba Inus are more likely to be well-behaved and adaptable in various situations.

Basenji vs Shiba Inu: Bark

The Basenji is often referred to as the “barkless dog” because it doesn’t bark in the traditional sense. Instead, it produces a unique vocalization known as a “barroo” or a “yodel.” This sound is a mix of howling and yodeling, and it’s quite different from the typical barking sound of other dogs. Basenjis are known for being relatively quiet and making this distinctive sound only occasionally. They are more likely to make other noises, like growls, whines, and even a chortling sound when they’re excited.

Shiba Inus are known for being a bit more vocal compared to Basenjis, but they also have their own distinct way of communicating. Shiba Inus can bark, but their barking tends to be more controlled and specific. They are known for their “Shiba scream” or “Shiba screech,” which is a high-pitched, loud sound that they may make when they are extremely excited, frustrated, or startled. This sound is quite unique and can be surprising to those who are not familiar with it.

Basenji vs Shiba Inu: Adaptability

Basenjis have short coats and are known to be low shedders. This can make them easier to maintain in terms of grooming and cleanliness. Apartment Living: Basenjis are relatively adaptable to apartment living if provided with sufficient exercise and mental stimulation. They are not excessively active indoors but do require regular outdoor activity. Cleanliness: Basenjis are often referred to as “cat-like” due to their grooming habits. They are known for keeping themselves clean, which can be a plus for some owners.

Adaptable Size: Shiba Inus are small to medium-sized dogs, which can make them adaptable to various living environments, including apartments or houses with limited space. Cleanliness: Similar to Basenjis, Shiba Inus are known for their cleanliness and tendency to groom themselves, which can be a positive trait for some owners. Moderate Exercise Needs: While they are active dogs, Shiba Inus do not have extremely high exercise requirements. Regular walks and playtime can usually meet their activity needs.

Basenji vs Shiba Inu: Nutrition

Protein: Basenjis are active dogs, and protein is essential for muscle maintenance and overall energy. Look for high-quality animal-based proteins like chicken, turkey, beef, and fish in their food. Moderate Fat Healthy fats provide a concentrated source of energy. Look for balanced levels of fats, including omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, to support their skin and coat health. Complex Carbohydrates. 

Moderate Protein Shiba Inus have moderate energy levels, so they require a balanced amount of protein to support their muscle development and maintenance. Limited Calories Shiba Inus are prone to gaining weight, so it’s important to feed them an appropriate amount of food and avoid excessive treats. Grain Sensitivity: Some Shiba Inus may have sensitivities to grains. You might consider grain-free or limited-ingredient diets if your Shiba Inu shows signs of allergies or sensitivities.

video credit – Amazing Dogs

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Basenji?

The Basenji is a breed of dog that originated in Central Africa. Known as the “barkless dog,” the Basenji is unique for its inability to bark like other dogs. Instead, it produces a unique sound known as a “barroo” or a yodel-like sound. They are often described as cat-like in behavior, being very independent, clean, and grooming themselves similar to how a cat does.

What is a Shiba Inu?

The Shiba Inu is a Japanese breed of dog that has gained popularity for its fox-like appearance and spirited personality. They are one of the smallest native Japanese dog breeds. Shiba Inus are known for their loyalty, alertness, and strong-willed nature. They can be reserved with strangers but are generally affectionate with their families.

What are the size and appearance differences between Basenji and Shiba Inu?

Basenjis are typically a bit smaller than Shiba Inus. Basenjis stand around 16 to 17 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh between 22 to 24 pounds. Shiba Inus, on the other hand, stand about 13.5 to 16.5 inches tall and weigh between 17 to 23 pounds. Both breeds have erect ears and a curled tail, but Shiba Inus often have a more pronounced curled tail compared to the Basenji.

What is the temperament of a Basenji?

Basenjis are known for their independence and intelligence. They can be somewhat aloof with strangers but form strong bonds with their families. Basenjis require early socialization and training to manage their independent nature. While they don’t bark, they can still make various vocalizations, and they are generally playful and curious dogs.

What is the temperament of a Shiba Inu?

Shiba Inus are known for their spirited, bold, and confident personalities. They are often described as having a cat-like independence. While they can be affectionate with their families, they might not be as eager to please as some other breeds. Shiba Inus are intelligent but can be stubborn, so consistent training and socialization from a young age are important.

Do Basenjis and Shiba Inus get along with children and other pets?

Both Basenjis and Shiba Inus can get along well with children and other pets when properly socialized from a young age. However, due to their independent nature, they might not always tolerate rough handling or overly intrusive behavior. Supervision and teaching children how to interact respectfully with these breeds are important.

Are Basenjis and Shiba Inus easy to train?

Basenjis and Shiba Inus can be a bit challenging to train due to their independent and sometimes stubborn nature. Positive reinforcement training methods work best with both breeds. Consistency, patience, and early training are key to successfully teaching them commands and good behavior.

What are the exercise needs of Basenjis and Shiba Inus?

Both Basenjis and Shiba Inus have moderate exercise needs. They enjoy daily walks, playtime, and mental stimulation. Basenjis are known for their impressive agility and speed, so they might enjoy activities like lure coursing. Shiba Inus also benefit from regular exercise to keep them mentally and physically stimulated.

What are the grooming requirements for Basenjis and Shiba Inus?

Basenjis have short, fine coats that require minimal grooming. They are known for being very clean dogs that groom themselves like cats. Shiba Inus have a double coat that sheds heavily twice a year. Regular brushing during shedding seasons and occasional brushing throughout the year can help manage their shedding.

Which breed is more suitable for first-time dog owners: Basenji or Shiba Inu?

Neither Basenjis nor Shiba Inus are typically recommended as ideal breeds for first-time dog owners. Both breeds have independent and sometimes challenging personalities that might require experienced handling and consistent training. However, with proper research, dedication, and training, either breed could be a good fit for an owner willing to put in the effort.

Do Basenjis or Shiba Inus have any health concerns?

Basenjis are generally healthy dogs, but they can be prone to certain conditions like Fanconi syndrome (a kidney disorder) and progressive retinal atrophy (an eye condition). Shiba Inus are also relatively healthy but can be prone to hip dysplasia, patellar luxation (knee problems), and certain eye issues. Regular veterinary check-ups and responsible breeding practices can help mitigate these concerns.

What is the lifespan of Basenjis and Shiba Inus?

Basenjis typically have a lifespan of around 12 to 16 years. Shiba Inus have a similar lifespan, ranging from 12 to 15 years on average.


1. Akita vs Chow Chow Comparison

2. Greyhound vs Whippet

3. Border Collie vs Australian Shepherd

4. Cane corso vs Dogo argentino 2023

Post Author

  • Hey pet lovers ! I am Deepali H passionate pet lover and writer who enjoys sharing tips, facts and information about Pets .With 3 years of experience in the pet industry, I have a wealth of knowledge to offer readers. I hope you will like my articles. Thank you !

Leave a Comment