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Other names: Kochi-ken


The Shikoku originates from Japan, where it was used to track wild boar and other wildlife. While this breed boasts incredible stamina and an impressive work ethic, it’s also well-loved for its loyalty and affection towards its master. This breed requires a confident owner or family who leads an extremely (and we really mean extremely) active and outdoor lifestyle.

Key facts about the Shikoku

Life expectancy :





Temperament :

Calm Intelligent

Size :

Origins and history

The Shikoku originated in Japan on the island of Shikoku and is still considered a national treasure. It was bred to be a hardy breed, capable of hunting large animals in isolated and mountainous regions on rough terrain. Nowadays, the breed is extremely rare outside its native Japan.

FCI breed nomenclature

FCI Group

Group 5 - Spitz and primitive types


Section 5 : Asian Spitz and related breeds

Physical characteristics of the Shikoku

    Adult size

    Female : Between 18 and 20 in

    Male : Between 19 and 22 in


    Female : Between 33 and 44 lb

    Male : Between 33 and 44 lb

    Coat colour

    Type of coat

    Eye colour



    The Shikoku is a medium-sized dog that is similar in appearance to the Husky. The broad, wedge-like head features slanted almond-shaped eyes, a black nose, black lips, high-set triangular ears and a long, tapered muzzle. The body is compact yet powerful and muscular, with moderately long, strong legs. The Shikoku also boasts a spitz-like curled tail.

    Good to know

    The Shikoku is a real tough-cookie, capable of tracking and hunting deer and boar several times its size.


    • 66%


      The Shikoku is known to be extremely loyal and affectionate towards its immediate family and owner. Expect plenty of love and kisses!

    • 66%


      A clever and energetic dog, this breed appreciates playtime and will happily get involved in fun and games.

    • 100%


      The Shikoku is perfectly capable of being calm and relaxed indoors if its needs are met.

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      This is a highly intelligent dog who learns quickly and is renowned for having a fantastic memory.

    • 66%


      The Shikoku was bred to track wild boar and, therefore, has a strong natural hunting instinct. It is likely to chase (and possibly kill) small animals including cats, rabbits, guinea pigs and hamsters.

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      Fearful / wary of strangers

      This pooch is extremely territorial and suspicious of strangers. With good socialization this can improve, though this breed is likely to always act aloof and reserved around new faces.

    • 100%


      The Shikoku can sometimes be stubborn and impulsive, especially if not well-trained.

      Behaviour of the Shikoku

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        Tolerates solitude

        This breed can manage periods of alone time if her needs have been met.

      • 33%

        Easy to train / obedience

        The Shikoku is smart and capable of learning quickly. However, sometimes stubbornness can get in the way of training sessions. Using plenty of positive reinforcement and rewards, as well as being consistent and patient, is the best way forward.

      • 66%


        She can give voice to dissuade any intruder.

      • 100%