Why Do Shiba Inus Scream?

Why Do Shiba Inus Scream?

I wanted to add a new dog to the ones I already have. I precisely wanted a dog that is not noisy. I specifically loved the Shiba Inus. In my research, I bumped into a breed called Shiba Inus. Some called it “The Drama Queen”!

It sounded funny and weird at the same time. Upon further research, I realized that the breed had obtained the name because of how it dramatically screams.  This made me want to know why this breed screams often.

Here are my findings.

So, why do Shiba Inus scream?

Shiba Inus are naturally vocal; it’s in their DNA! Shiba Inus scream because they’re in danger, hungry, or unhappy with the way you’re treating them. It’s, however, possible to stop Shiba Inus from screaming if you know the triggers. You can give them food, ensure they’re safe, and offer behavioral classes.

The Myth: Shiba Inus Scream!

Most people call Shiba Inus the “Drama Queen”.

The title evolved because of their nature to scream even when you least expect it. For example, when trimming his nails! What’s more? The scream can be too loud that anyone might think he is in serious danger while probably you’re just bathing him.

Many people believe this is mare drama; hence the name, “Drama Queen!”

The History of the Shiba Inus

Shiba inus, just like the German shepherds, inherited their vocalization from their relatives, the wolves. Hence, though Shibas rarely bark, vocalization is their natural way of expression.

Sometimes you may be uncertain if they’re barking or howling as it can be a combination of both. However, their common way of communication is whining and screaming.

According to the American Kennel Club, Shiba Inu originated from Japan. One unique character that distinguishes the Shiba Inus from other dogs is the Shiba Inu’s sound. It’s not just a sound; it’s more of screaming. Shiba Inu screaming can be irritating and disturbing. You see, Shibas can scream for a continuous 30 minutes.

What’s a Shiba Inu Scream?

There’s no one word to describe what a Shiba Inu scream is. In most cases, it’s a combination of whining, barking loudly, and wailing. The sound might change. Usually, the sound is dependent on what he is responding to.

Is he hungry, annoyed, excited, hurt, or scared? Whatever the feeling, the howling will tell.

This is why most experts discourage owning a Shiba as a first-time pet owner because if you’re not used to them, you might not know what is triggering the scream. Consequently, the scream might last too long and cause disturbance to those around him.

So, Are Shiba Inus Vocal?

Shiba Inus are among the breeds known for being barkless. That’s not to say they are voiceless! Indeed, Shiba Inus are vocal.

They not only bark, but they also whistle, groan, yodel, and burp. Shiba will attract your attention through their vocalization even when you’re busy with other things.

However, each Shiba behaves uniquely depending on how they’ve been brought up and how you respond to them when they get vocal.

If you give him your attention when he gets vocal, he might become vocal than other Shiba Inus.

When puppies feel a bit insecure, they often scream.  Adult Shiba Inus also behave the same way when they feel insecure.

Shibas that hate a bath screams often during such sessions. Also, Shibas may scream when you trim their nails or touch them.  

Why Do Shiba Inus Scream?

As aforementioned, there are several reasons why Shibas scream. Some can scream for more than 45 minutes. At times, the scream can be deafening to everyone who hears it.

This doesn’t mean that they’re always screaming. Not so. They are naturally quiet than most dogs.

They only scream and do it with all their might because there’s a trigger.

What are some of the possible triggers?


Whenever a Shiba Inus foresees danger, they’ll definitely scream. Why do Shiba Inus scream when they foresee danger? Of course, like human beings, they feel their lives are endangered.

So, check if indeed he is in trouble or not. If he is, then get him to a safe place. If not, it’s best to make him understand that all is well.

You can do so by gently tapping him to calm him.


When your Shiba Inus feels happy, they scream. Often, this sound is loud and much different from the sound they make when they are unhappy. You can also tell he is happy from how he behaves. What is going on around him could also give you more information about the trigger.

For example, he’ll scream with excitement when he sees a member of the family he has a mutual connection with.


If you take your Shiba to a refugee centre or a new pet owner, he feels isolated and uncomfortable. The consequence is that he’ll start screaming. If there are other pets there, like cats, he is likely to get violent and hurt them. You might have to harmonize them before leaving them together all alone.

However, your Shiba might not feel alone only because you took him to a new home. Leaving him alone at home for as little as half an hour could also make him scream.


If Shiba feels upset by something you’re doing or making him do, he’ll make a loud sound. One of my pets hates baths. It is always a battle whenever I bathe him. If your Shiba Inus is the same type, he’ll scream during bathing sessions.

However, many things can make him upset, for instance, changing his diet to a poor one and leashing him when he wants to walk or run freely.

Plus, locking him in his cage when he wants to play or be where you’re.

Poor Upbringing

If you don’t train your Shiba Inus to socialize with people and other pets, then he’ll scream when he is in public.

Also, when strangers come home, he’ll scream to alert you there’s a stranger or because he feels he is insecure.

To Exhibit Authority

Shiba Inus are possessive dogs. If they realize another pet is trying to get close to what they deem theirs, they’ll respond by screaming.

Normally, the scream is meant to scare the other pet away. They might not necessarily hurt them.

Unwell Or In Pain

If none of the above is true, then your pet is most likely unwell. You need to call a vet and find out if there’s anything wrong with him.

You could try to look for any possible injuries on his body.

How Do You Stop a Shiba From Screaming

Regardless of what you do, Shiba Inus will, once in a while, scream. Of course, triggers never ceases.

For example, he’ll always get excited whenever he sees you. There’s no way you can stop this.

However, you can train him to scream when it’s necessary and for the right period.

You also need to understand what the trigger is. If, for example, he is unwell, the only way is to have him treated. If hungry, give him food. Deal with him according to the trigger.

Parting Shot

So, why do Shiba Inus scream? Every day, there must be something that makes Shiba Inus scream. It doesn’t matter how minor or major it is to you; it will always be there.

Screaming is part of what distinguishes them from other breeds. Even so, it should not be a norm.

Offering your pet the right training while he is young is vital in ensuring that he only screams when necessary.

Plus, he learns never to exaggerate it.

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