Can Shiba Inu Be a service Dog

Can Shiba Inu Be a Service Dog?

Are you blind, deaf, or lame and need a service dog (ADA)? Despite the type of disability you’re struggling with, you qualify to get a service dog.

Service dogs have specialized training that helps persons with a disability perform tasks their disability makes challenging to achieve. With a service dog, you get public access protections, too.

Though larger breeds, for example, Golden Retrievers and Labradors, are the most commonly used as service dogs, any trained species can qualify to be a service dog. Yes, even the most stubborn dogs.

According to the estimates given by Service Dog Central, the number of registered service dogs in the US amounts to about 100,000 to 200,000.

Can a Shiba Inu be a service dog, too?

Any breed of dog can be a service pet. Shibas can be service dogs, too. A service dog needs specialized training to help disabled persons with tasks which MUST directly relate to their disability. This training qualifies a dog as a service animal. If your dog is trained as a service dog and has the certification, it isn’t illegal to say he is a service dog.

What’s the Duration and Cost of Service Dog Training?

To ensure a service dog offers remarkable services, it requires professional training of not less than 18 months. Regrettably, even with comprehensive training, not all dogs qualify as service dogs.

Research shows that only about 50 percent of dogs successfully become service dogs. That is to say; 50 percent of dogs do not qualify as service dogs even after the training!

Do also note that some dogs are exempted from service dog training. Dogs with behavioral problems and hereditary diseases cannot be accommodated in training.

So, how much does it cost to train a Service dog?

Training of service dogs ranges between $10,000 to $20,000. This also means that buying an already-trained dog costs an arm and a leg.

Besides, since the demand for service dogs, as of now, exceeds the current supply, you might have to wait for at least 3 years before you can get a well a trained service dog.

Can Shiba Inu Be a Service Dog?

Apart from being stubborn, Shiba Inus can also be faithful and friendly to their owners. While stubborn dogs don’t qualify for service roles, loyal and friendly dogs do.

Can Shiba Inu Be a Service Dog?

Most importantly, Shibas are very intelligent dogs that are also considered quick learners.

Therefore, though, Shibas may not be the best service dogs, they can be trained and qualify as service dogs to their disabled owners.

Unlike emotional support, Shiba's service Shibas would require extensive training for them to be great service dogs.

Also, due to the stubbornness, you may have to:

  • Put extra effort into the service training for extraordinary results
  • Train your Shibas while he’s still very young
  • Dedicate more of your time to the training

Can Any Breed of Dog Be a Service Dog?

It doesn’t matter the size or species of your dog; any dog can be a service dog.

However, the size of the dog determines which service they can offer best without straining themselves.

Here’s what we’re saying.

Small breeds would be ideal for persons with hearing impairment. Some work well as medical alert breeds, while others notify their disabled owners of any mood change.  

Large breeds, on the other hand, are best used by persons who need physical help and those with stability problems. Large breeds are also suitable for persons facing mobility health problems.

So, what determines if a dog is a service dog? Training is the primary determinant!

Hence, any trainable dog, regardless of its breed, can be a service animal.

Such dogs should obey the given instructions and be able to understand what is going on around them. Thereafter, they’ll be able to take the necessary action(s) depending on the given training.

What Qualifies a Shiba Inu to be a Service Dog?

Wondering what qualities your Shiba should have to qualify as a service dog?

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has set regulations that determine which dog qualifies to be a service animal.

Even so, here’s what your Shiba should have to qualify as a service dog:

Obedience Training

First of all, your Shiba Inu must be able to hear, understand, and obey the given commands.

It doesn’t matter if he gets professional training from established institutions or any other person; the most vital thing is to be able to obey each given command.

The duration of training depends on how intelligent the dog is, but it should be approximately 10 days to 6 months. Nonetheless, 30 hours of the total training time should be spent in public to make the dog acquainted with the new environment as well as learn appropriate public conduct as a service Shiba Inu.

After successful training, you can then ask for a genuine service dog certification.

During the training, train your buddy to do what you want it to do. So, if, for example, you want your service Shiba to switch lights on or off, you can say, “Switch on” or “Switch off.”

All the same, you have to follow the service dog laws when offering the training to your service dog-to-be.

Appropriate Socialization Skills and proper Behaviour

Service Shibas must have proper socialization skills. Such skills are necessary because they prevent misconduct when you’re in public with your service Shiba.

Can Shiba Inu Be a Service Dog?

To qualify as service dogs, Shibas should not:

  • Bark at other dogs and people or jump on them
  • Sniff everyone or everything they come around.
  • Inappropriately poop or relieve themselves, even when in public areas
  • Borrow food from strangers or other dogs
  • Attack people

Shibas with good conduct qualify for the legitimate service dog certification after the training.

Unless your dog possesses all of the above characteristics that denote he is a well-behaved Shiba, he cannot get a genuine certification.

Ability to Refrain

Whenever there is unusual noise or disorder, Shiba service dogs are supposed to refrain from such situations.

Unlike ordinary German shepherds that may kill other animals that violate ‘their’ rules, Shiba service dogs should not kill other pets or respond to chaotic situations.

Perform the Required Services

Shiba service dogs can only be recognized as such if they offer the necessary services. For example, lead the blind and guide the lame.

Regardless of the complexity of the assignment, if he cannot perform it, he ceases to be a service dog.

Can Anyone Buy a Service Shiba Inu Dog?

Unfortunately, not everyone can be allowed to buy a service Shiba Inu dog.  Persons who wish to buy a service Shiba Inu must:

  • Have documents indicating they’re physically disabled
  • Be able to enroll, attend the training physically every day for at least one hour, and have the ability to understand the given instructions.
  • Have a neurological disorder affecting at least one of their limbs
  • Be able to attend to the emotional and physical needs of their service Shiba Inu dogs
  • Cater for all the financial obligations of the service dog
  • Have the ability to independently instruct the service Shiba Inu dog
  • Live in a home that is stable and conducive for service to Shiba Inu dogs. 
  • Be above 12 years, not unless it’s an autistic child (autistic children aged 6 to 12 years to qualify to own a service Shiba Inu).

Who Qualifies to Own a Service Shiba Inu Dog?

Persons with any of the following health challenges qualify to own  a service Shiba Inu dog:

  • Cardiac-related disabilities
  • Diabetes
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • ALS
  • Chronic back/neck problems
  • Epilepsy/seizure disorders
  • Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome
  • Arthritis

What Do You Get From a Shiba Service Dog?


Depending on the size and weight of your Shiba, he could help you do tasks that are too hard for you due to your physical limitations.

For example, if you cannot carry anything, your Shiba service dog can carry foodstuffs for you. If you cannot fetch letters from your mailbox, your service Shiba could do that for you.

Shiba service dogs also prevent weak persons from falling by supporting them. They’ll also fetch medicine when asked to or when it’s time to do so.  These are not the only tasks Shiba service dogs can do. You can train them to do anything, depending on your disability.

Increases Dependency

A Shiba service dog lowers dependency on friends, relatives, and caretakers. For example, you don’t need a caretaker to take a person sitting in a wheelchair to the washroom; a Shiba service dog could do that.

You also don’t need anyone to switch on the lights for such people; trained Shiba service dogs do that comfortably.  Consequently, family members can work away from home since they’re sure the disabled person is likely not to struggle in their absence.

Lowers Stress

The support that service Shibas offers to their owners helps to lower the stress that comes due to the inability to do specific tasks.

When the Shiba service dog offers the service, they feel happy and relieved. Peace of mind is essential because it makes the disabled forget their miseries and focus on other vital things.

Peace of mind also results in a long life.


Shiba service dogs help disabled persons to move to a safer place on time. This is especially the case if you have a person suffering from seizures. The same applies to people suffering from dysautonomia.

A Shiba service dog could get such persons to a safer place before or after a seizure or a syncopal episode.

Consequently, there will be fewer chances of being hurt or dying.

What Happens If You Pet a Service Dog?

Petting a service dog is unacceptable. Here’s why:

The Shiba service dog could be in the process of offering dire services to his handler.

So, when you pet him, you interfere with what he is doing, which might inconvenience the handler or, worst, cause death.

So what’s the proper behavior around a Shiba service dog?

Proper Behavior Around a Service Shiba Dog

Shiba service dogs are unique dogs that need special handling to ensure that they offer the necessary services to their owners.

So, what should you not do with a service dog?


  • Give him praises, clap, or tap your feet because of the service he has offered or is offering.
  • Allow children to play or get close to your Shiba service dog
  • Whistle, shout, bark, or talk to the service dog
  • Engage the owner in regard to his disability.

Can You Get in Trouble For Faking a Service Dog?

Yes, you can get yourself into trouble if you fake a service dog. You cannot pretend your dog is a service dog, as there are hefty penalties for faking. For example, you risk 6 months imprisonment.

 Else, depending on your state, you risk a fine of about $1,000. Different states have different laws for faking a service dog.

Faking a service dog also means you’re pretending to be disabled.

That, too, might earn you an extra fine or imprisonment if in case your state considers it illegal. 

Is It Illegal to Say Your Dog is a Service Animal?

If your Shiba is legally a service dog, then it’s not illegal to say that your dog is a service animal. Also, some public employee requires that you confirm if indeed your dog is a service Shiba Inu.

Therefore, it’s advisable to carry all the necessary documents that prove that your Shiba is a service dog when going public.

This is necessary as it confirms that your Shiba is well-behaved and is only there to help you out in whatever area he has been trained in.

In some cases, it may also be necessary to have a special uniform or vest for your service Shiba Inu so that everyone who sees him understands that he is a working dog.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can you tell if it's a real Shiba Inus service dog?

Fake Shiba Inu service dogs are easy to identify. You can tell if it’s a real Shiba Inu Service dog if:

  • He barks at other pets and passers-by.
  • Sniffs everything he sees
  • Attacks people and other pets
  • Poop anywhere he wants
  • Borrows other dogs’ or people’s food

Can you self-train a service dog?

According to ADA, you don’t have to seek professional help to train your Shiba Inu to become a service dog. Suppose you cannot afford professional training; no need to worry. The law allows you to self-train a service dog.

Do Service dogs have to go everywhere with you?

It doesn’t matter where you want to go; you can always go everywhere with your service dog. Whether it’s a hospital, a public office, a restaurant, or any other place, you have your Shiba service dog with you.  

This is because he is a service dog, and while there, you might need his help.

Should my service dog sleep with me?

Depending on the level of disability, you can sleep with your service dog! If, for example, your Shiba Inu service dog cannot access your bed due to the medical equipment around your bed, it’s necessary to have an extra bed in your room for him to sleep.

What’s the Closing Word?

Can Shiba Inu be a service dog?

Absolutely, your Shiba can be a service dog as long as he is trained and is able to follow the given instructions. He also qualifies to get legal documents to prove that he is a service dog after completing the training.

You, therefore, don’t need to buy another dog if you already own a Shiba. You also don’t have to seek a professional assistant to have your dog well-trained. You can always train him if you have enough time and know-how.

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