A Shiba Inu Basenji mix is not a dog for the faint of heart. This unique cross of two headstrong dogs can be quite a challenge to those not familiar with these two breeds.

Shiba Inu and Basenjis are both primitive dogs that are very similar in appearance with people often confusing the two breeds.

While the Shiba Inu is famous for the 'Shiba Scream' - the Basenji is equally famous for 'not' barking and yodeling instead. ​

Basenjis are a rare breed of dog partly due to the fact that females only go into estrus once per year versus two or three times for most dog breeds. Additionally, Basenjis are not very popular due to it's sometimes stubborn nature.

Crossing a Basenji with another equally stubborn dog - the Shiba Inu - can result in a rather difficult to handle dog. Read on to learn more about this Shiba Inu mix.​

Temperament / Personality Of A Shiba Inu Basenji Mix

Both Shiba Inus and Basenjis are NOT dogs for new or novice dog owners. These primitive breeds require firm but patient handling. 

Shiba Inu Basenji mixes are dogs that not eager to please. They are independent thinkers and do not particularly enjoy obedience training. Aversive training techniques will not work well with this type of dog. Positive, patient training with rewards is the best technique to use with this type of dog due to their sensitivity.

Early and consistent socialization is required for this dog breed. Unsocialized Shiba Inu Basenji mixes can be territorial, aggressive and anxious. This dog breed needs a confident, calm, as well as assertive handler.

shiba inu basenji mix

A Shiba Inu Basenji mix are not exceptionally affectionate dogs. They are very loyal dogs to their owners and family - but cautious and wary of strangers.

​Both Shiba Inu and Basenjis have a strong prey drive. A Shiba Inu Basenji mix is not a dog to be trusted off leash as both of these breeds have a tendency to wander.

For its size, a Shiba Inu Basenji mix is incredibly strong and agile. If kept outdoors, this dog requires a secured yard with high fences. Basenjis are excellent climbers and can scale high fences if they have the inclination to do so.

​A Shiba Inu Basenji mix will be a naturally alert and cautious dogs. They should be competent watch dogs due to the Shiba Inus territorial and protective nature. 

Physical Characteristics Of A Shiba Inu Basenji Mix

A Shiba Inu Basenji mix is a small to medium dog with a compact and muscular build. This 'foxy' looking dog breed has erect, triangular ears, almond eyes and a curly sickle type tail.

This dog typically weighs between 17 - 23 pounds and has a maximum height of around 16 inches.

The coat color of a Shiba Inu Basenji mix include red and white, black and tan, brindle and tri-color. This Shiba Inu mix will shed heavily once of twice per year. Otherwise, this Shiba mix has light to moderate grooming needs.

A Shiba Inu Basenji mix is a very clean dog that is fastidious about its looks. It does not like to get dirty and oftentimes do not like to get wet either. This type of dog has very little doggy odor and minimal dander which would make it a good candidate for those that suffer from allergies.

​Health Issues of Shiba Inu Basenji Mixes

While the Shiba Inu is a relatively healthy and hardy breed - the Basenji breed does have its share of health issues - some of them being quite serious.

A Shiba Inu Basenji mix could suffer from the following health issues:

  • Blindness from progressive retinal atrophy
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Hemolytic anemia
  • Fanconi syndrome
  • Eye Issues: Cataracts / Glaucoma
  • Luxating Patella
  • Hip Dysplasia

The Basenji breed is also known to be acutely sensitive to environmental and household chemicals. 

​Despite these health challenges, a Shiba Inu Basenji mix should have a lifespan of 11 - 13 years. 

The Issue With Designer Dogs​

While purebred dogs have parent clubs and organizations to monitor the conformation of the breed to breed standards - designer dogs do not.

In fact, for this very reason amateur breeders and puppy mill operations find it easy to breed designer dogs simply due to the fact that no one can really regulate and judge the types of puppy that they produce.

Additionally, due to the promotion of these designer dogs in the media - the demand for these types of dogs is high. Designer dogs often command higher prices than purebred dogs bred by highly reputable breeders. Read more about designer dog issues here.

Shiba Inu fanciers and enthusiasts typically do not advocate the mixing of Shiba Inus with other breeds of dogs. These fanciers believe that the Shiba Inus already possess a natural body of refined stature that should not be crossed with anything else.

​There are proponents to designer dogs that claim that crossing purebred dogs create a more favorable genetic pool. Although this claim seems logical, it is not backed by any specific scientific studies. 

​Also, those that breed designer dogs are often novices that wouldn't understand the nuances of breeding for genetic livelihood in the first place. Often times, breeding two breeds together can produce a puppy that carries the negative traits of each breed.

Should I Get a Shiba Inu Basenji Mix?

The decision to chose any particular dog breed is a highly personal choice that should be made with careful consideration into the consequences of your decisions. We here at My First Shiba Inu do not advocate for the breeding of designer dogs in general.

We do however, advocate for the rescuing of any dog in need. There are already so many 'designer' shelter dogs in need of homes. If you are set in getting a specific type of designer dog check the credentials of the breeder. Do they do extensive health screenings? Do they take their purebred dog stock to conformation shows, etc?

There are also many instances when our readers already have a designer dog mix and would benefit from the information we can provide about the particular hybrid being that the mixes we write about all involve the Shiba inu dog breed.