Shiba Inu Poodle Mix-Physical Look, Lifespan and Temperament

Shiba Inu Poodle Mix

The Shiba Inu Poodle mix is commonly referred to as the Poo-Shi. This is a hybrid dog derived from the cross-breeding of two pure breeds: the Shiba Inu and the poodle. Poodles are preferred for this mix because of their hypoallergenic nature and lovable temperament. The origin of the Poo-shi mix can be traced far back to the 1980s.

The Poo-shi is an adorable and loyal dog. Unlike the pure Shiba Inu, the Poo-shi is more affectionate, friendlier, and obedient. Poo-Shis can live up to 15 years (or 12 years at least) if well taken care of. These dogs are highly intelligent dogs with incredible agility. They always love to have a companion around them to give them the attention they need. They can be trained to be great hunters as they yet inherit that high prey drive from their parent Shiba Inu.

Indeed, the Poo-shi mix is an exciting designer dog; there is so much to learn about it. What is the temperament of the typical Poo-shi? Does it need a lot of exercise? What type of feeding does it need? How about its grooming needs? Also, will it require much attention from you? All these we will be learning in detail in this guide.

Physical Characteristics (Size and Physical Look)

The Poo-shi has a welcoming appearance. It could inherit the coat of its parent poodle or the double coat of the parent Shiba Inu. Typically, the Poo-shi’s hair has this beautiful curl like a wave. It is reasonably soft.

The color of your Poo-shi will vary, depending on its parents – precisely their genetic makeup. Most Poo-shis tend to have white coats, golden, black, or creamy coats. From afar, they look wiry.

The genetic background of the parents (Shiba Inu and poodle) will also determine the stature of the Poo-shi. A Poo-shi can weigh as little as 10 lbs or as much as 40 lbs.

There are three prevalent sizes of Poo-shis. These are the Toy, Miniature, and Standard. Interestingly, a typical Poo-shi has a height range of 13-20 inches. Most Poo-shis we have seen are in the small to medium-size category.

Poo-shis – while susceptible to weight gain – are basically slender. Their legs are long, and their ears tend hanging down.


If you take care of your Poo-shi adequately, you can expect it to live between 12-15 years. This proper care cuts across giving it the right quality of food (and appropriate feeding routine), the right medical care, exercise, and grooming.

This brings us to the grooming needs of Poo-shis.

Grooming Needs

We have pointed out that the Poo-shi can inherit a coat that is predominantly Shiba-like or poodle-like. The type of coat it inherits determines the grooming need.

If it gets a poodle-like coat, it will not shed much. However, such a coat has a higher susceptibility to collecting debris.

Therefore, you will need to brush it daily and possibly take it often to a professional groomer who could strip it or clip it. The good thing about such poodle-like coats is that they are hypoallergenic.

However, if your Poo-shi inherits a Shiba-like coat, it would need less brushing but with more shedding. Isn’t this interesting?

However, regardless of the coat your Poo-shi inherits, you need to bath it when it is significantly dirty. We don’t recommend frequent bathing of your Poo-shi as such activity can provoke skin problems. This is commonly associated with drying.

We advocate that you wipe the face (and eyes) of your Poo-shi every day if possible. This is more pressing if your Poo-shi has a lighter coat as tear staining could turn problematic.

It is also possible for the ears of your Poo-shi to be infected, being that it is a floppy-eared dog. Therefore, make sure to check its ear at least once in 7 days. You should wipe the ear clean using a combination of a cleanser and a cotton ball.

We can’t emphasize enough the damage that can result from inserting objects into the ears of your Poo-shi. Kindly refrain from such activity. How about the teeth?

Yes, they need some brushing too. Make sure to brush the teeth of your Poo-shi at least 2-3 times every 7 days. Within this interval, also ensure you cut its nails.


Being that the temperament is a cross of the genetic background of the parent breeds, let us look a bit at the personality of the Shiba Inu and that of the poodle.

Your typical Shiba Inu is a very independent dog with a tendency to keep to its own and follow its own lead. They are quite stubborn, not easily yielding, and not very social. They retain most of their primitive dog behaviors (despite the training) like its high prey drive.

The poodle, on the other hand, is a different story – especially for the standard poodles (as opposed to the miniature and toy poodles).

Toy and miniature poodles still have a substantial prey drive – although they aren’t the best hunting companions. Poodles are far more affectionate and yielding to instructions than Shiba Inus.

Bringing all together, we see that the Poo-shi mix is a loyal and alert dog. No doubt, it has an inherent pride (as characteristic of the parent Shiba Inu breed), but this is largely neutralized by the sociableness it possibly inherits from the poodle. Training might take a while, but it will over time learn to accept commands.

You guess right: Poo-shis love cuddling! They always love having a companion around. Compared to the pure Shiba Inu that doesn’t bond easily, the Poo-shi builds relationships readily with humans.

Poo-shis need attention. If left aloof or on their own, they can succumb to destructive behaviors like aggression or become too reserved when strangers come around it. Poo-shis don’t only bond with humans, they easily bond with other pets as well.

However, poo-shis don’t enjoy sharing. It wouldn’t eagerly share its toys with other dogs or even your kid. Therefore, you will notice your poo-shi getting frantic and quite aggressive when your kids or other pets grab its toys.

Exercise Needs

Poo-shis, just like their parents, are energetic dogs. They are alert and active. Your poo-shis need daily exercise, although not as much as your Shiba Inu.

Walking your Poo-shi every day for about 15 minutes will do. This can be complemented with sporadic indoor play. Your poo-shi will also love going to the dog park often. This is for it to maximize its freedom, mingle, and most especially play off its leash.

Health Risks 

Poo-shis are relatively healthy dogs. This commendable bill of health can be attributed to the healthiness of the parent breeds.

Poodles and Shiba Inus are known to be strong and healthy dogs.

One common malady these two parent breeds are known to share is eye disease. Mainly, Shiba Inus are susceptible to cataracts and glaucoma. Poodles are also known to suffer retinal challenges and cataracts.

This can go on to affect the Poo-shi. More than this, your Poo-shi can also suffer health challenges like ligament and joint problems. No doubt, this will inhibit the mobility and agility of your poo-shi.

Your Poo-shi can also suffer hip dysplasia. This is when the hip joint is not appropriately located within the pelvis curve.  

We have also seen scenarios of this designer dog suffering from patellar luxation. This is a condition where the kneecap is not stable, sliding within its groove. You can get an expert veterinarian to fix this with surgical operations, however.

In the face of all these, if you feed your Poo-shi well – and in the right routine – while observing periodic checkup with your vet, you shouldn’t expect your Poo-shi to suffer significant health challenges.


Being a dog of small to medium size, your Poo-shi needs a dedicated food plan that caters specifically for its activity levels, size, and age.

Whole meats are excellent for your poo-shi. This can include beef, turkey, lamb, or chicken. Agreed, such meals can be enhanced with healthy fish oils and vegetables.

It is ideal to feed your Poo-shi 2-3 times every day. Preferably, this should be small meals spread across the day. This suits the Poo-shi given its likeliness for gaining weight or inheriting bloat (a digestive disorder) from the parent poodle.

We highly discourage feeding your Poo-shi with poor quality food. Certainly, the feed should be significantly free of fillers. Such fillers tend to trigger overeating in your Poo-shi.

Are Shiba Inu Poodle Mixes Protective?

Poo-shis are quite protective although not as territorial as the parent Shiba Inu. This designer dog may not be very comfortable sharing its toys but is not keen on preserving the “integrity” of its boundaries.

At first, you may notice a bit of aggressiveness from your poo-shi when your kid or other pet play with its (poo-shi) stuff. This will gradually wear off once the Poo-shi bonds with them. The good news is that Poo-shis bond relatively quickly.

How Much Does a Shiba Inu Poodle Mix Cost?

The Poo-shi mix is not necessarily an exotic designer dog breed. You can get a beautiful Poo-shi within the cost range of $200-$370.

Several factors affect the cost, like the location where you are procuring it. You will agree that if Poo-shis are relatively scarce there, you may have to pay higher.

You can take active steps to reduce this cost, however.

If it is convenient for you, you can go online, browsing through classified puppy ads. You can also leverage breeders networks or online dog forums dedicated to poo-shis.

Of course, you still have the option of social media. Just put a shout-out there, and someone could get in touch. If you feel you need to take the traditional approach of buying through physical recommendations, you can get in touch with a happy owner of a poop-shi and get you linked up with a breeder.

You also have to factor in additional costs when buying your Poo-shi. Extra expenses like medical costs and costs of accessories would come in.

For example, the likes of deworming, neutering, blood tests, and vaccination could cost you about $250-$300. You may need to get other accessories like a crate, collar, and carrier. This could cost anywhere from $190-$220.

How About the Treats and Toys?

Well, if you are looking at procuring treats, toys, licenses (also including grooming and training costs), you should be budgeting somewhere around $1,000.  

Is a Shiba Inu Poodle Mix Right for Me?

The Poo-shi is a great companion and will no doubt make an excellent family dog. They are comparatively easier to care for. Depending on the coat of your Poo-shi, you may not need to spend time grooming it.

Poo-shis are emotional dogs and bond easily with their owners. They are not too active, making them great for seniors as well, who will likely lack the energy to take their dogs on marathon walks.

Poo-shis are alert too (although they may not excel as watchdogs) and would bark at strangers. The impressive smartness of poo-shis makes them more adaptive and quick to learning.

However, there are cases where your poo-shi can inherit a more copious behavioral makeup of the parent Shiba Inu. In that case, it may exhibit significant stubbornness.

Nonetheless, if you deploy a befitting reward-based training approach equipped with lots of treats, caresses, and praise, you may get your poo-shi learning incredibly faster. This system is known to motivate their positive reinforcement – learning good habits.

One efficient way to make your journey (or experience) sweeter is to ensure that your poo-shi socialized at an early stage. From an infant age, get it to mix with strangers and other pets. This will eventually enhance its welcomeness.

Best Climate for a Shiba Inu Poodle Mix

The poo-shi can survive cold and hot conditions to a reasonable extent. It majorly depends on the coat your poo-shi inherits. If it gets the double coat from the Shiba Inu parent, it can survive more rugged outdoor living conditions for longer.

Nevertheless, we generally advise that you don’t leave your Shiba Inu outdoors for too long. It is better to exercise them in the evenings or mornings when the weather isn’t extreme.

The Attention a Shiba Inu Poodle Mix Needs

Yes, your poo-shi loves attention. This makes it an excellent family pet. They are far different from the parent Shiba Inus which prefers being left on its own.

They will like you or your family to play with them often. Once left too long, they tend to bark as well to catch your attention. They can also go on destroying stuff when left along for too long.

Compatibility with Kids and Other Animals

The Poo-shi is social and can bond with your kids. They also get along with other pets. For one thing, they aren’t as territorial as the pure Shiba Inu.

So long your kids (or pets) don’t handle them roughly or grab their toys too much, you can expect them to get along just fine.

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