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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Alaskan Klee Kai or Shiba Inu? Info about either breed?

Hi there!
I am looking into getting a dog this summer, and have narrowed it down to either wanting a Shiba Inu or Alaskan Klee Kai. I have researched about their traits and have a breeder for each breed who is great so once I decide I will follow through with whichever one. I am leaning more towards the Alaskan Klee Kai right now because of their loyalty and lovability compared to the Shiba which I have heard is more "cat like" if you will and isn't very obedient to their owners commands! There are pros and cons to each I am aware of, if anyone could offer some insight on their view which they think would be better any info would be appreciated!!! A little info about me: I am a pre med college student who will be living in an apartment with access to yard so smaller size is wanted (why I like the AKK and shiba). I have another dog I rescued named Lulu she is a herding dog mutt mix, very playful about 2 years old (will insert pic below :). Whatever puppy I get I will be able to socialize a TON since I live in a bustling college town with lots of college students/young dogs :) Thanks in advance for any info/advice you have to offer me! (this is my first post and reason I made an account so sorry if my post is not that great quality haha)
 

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Re: Alaskan Klee Kai or Shiba Inu? Info about either breed?

Honestly, as someone who owns an AKK, I'd say go with the shiba.

I've owned my AKK for eight years and I've met about 20 others. Obviously not all dogs of a breed are the same, but these are some common issues with the breed:

-Separation anxiety. This is very common in the breed. Many AKK will bark and howl for hours when they're left alone. Some breeders won't even sell to people in apartments because of this.
-Dislike (more accurately, fear) of strangers, even when well-socialized. I have lost count of the number of threads in the FB groups that say something like, "My AKK loved everyone as a puppy, but now that he's one and a half years old he tries to bite all our visitors!"
-Dislike of children specifically (not as much of an issue if you don't live with or want any, but these dogs are people magnets, so you will be fending off a lot of children in public who rush them without asking).
-Dislike of other dogs. A tendency to take offense to normal play behavior and appropriate corrections from other dogs and escalate the situation.
-Not a suitable off-leash breed, although this goes for both the shiba and AKK. Recall is also iffy. I know of several AKK who have gotten loose and been killed by vehicles.
-A one-person dog. Fine if you're single, but if you have a SO, there's a decent chance the AKK will bond with one of you and want little to do with the other. Some people's spouses can't even pat their AKK.

Basically, just read the standard and think of it like a real estate ad -- you know how realtors say a house is "cozy" when they mean "tiny"? It's like that.

"The Alaskan Klee Kai is very curious, active, quick and agile. His loyalty and alertness make the Alaskan Klee Kai an excellent watchdog, who may be territorial despite his small size. While affectionate with family members, the Alaskan Klee Kai is reserved and cautious with strangers and in unfamiliar situations."

My AKK is great. I love him. But he's been a challenge. We did puppy classes and lots of socialization with people and dogs and in many different places when he was little. Once he hit maturity, he decided he hated strangers and other dogs and that was that. He'll politely take treats from people but if they try to pat him, he backs away. If they push it, he'll bite -- won't break the skin because we trained good bite inhibition, but he'll bite. Consequently, I don't let strangers get close. Off-leash dogs are an issue because if they rush us, he WILL start a fight. We walk mostly at night. We lived in an apartment for a year and I could not go anywhere in the evenings because when I left him alone, he'd bark and howl. Luckily my landlord didn't care if he barked a bit in the daytime, but that was a year of not being able to leave the apartment for more than a couple hours in the day, and not at all at night unless I took him.

If you do go with one, choose your breeder and lines very carefully. Look at the parents' temperament, see how they are with strangers. Prepare yourself for a possible personality shift upon maturity, because it's common.
 

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Re: Alaskan Klee Kai or Shiba Inu? Info about either breed?

I researched Shibas a bit before deciding they weren't the right dog for me at this point in my life; but they might be a good fit for you. Seperation anxiety isn't very common from what I've heard, and they're very quiet and clean dogs, basically ideal apartment dogs. Stranger aggression and dog aggression can be issues but with the amount of exposure your pup will be getting + picking from good lines should at least minimize this risk. They're notoriously manipulative and will walk all over you if not given boundaries, but at the end of the day you'll have a neat dog on your hands if you put the work in.

I've heard a lot of good things about this breeder in particular: http://www.shibas.net/
 

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Re: Alaskan Klee Kai or Shiba Inu? Info about either breed?

Thanks! I am in southern California so unfortunately that breeder is out of reach for me. I have been talking to Ed from http://westernskyshibainus.com/ , he seems to care a lot about his dogs but I am still searching!
 
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