Fur Dent!

When Loki was a puppy, he had a fur dent. It was very apparent with his puppy coat. After his adult fur came in, he never had a fur dent again.

But Jujube keeps her tail so tightly curled all the time, that she does have a fur dent!

Shiba Meetup

The shiba meetup today was a success! We had a great turnout, though I'm not exactly sure how many shibas we had in total.

We've got 7 shibas alone in this picture below.

Curly tail!

We even had one long-haired shiba, named Mortimer. I had never seen a long-haired shiba in person. He was beautiful. I loved the fluffy face and big fluffy tail.

I stayed for about 40 minutes, because it started raining. At least it was nice and cool. Not too hot for an August day.

Here's a video of them running around:

Off-leash Again!

Lucky dogs! They got to go off-leash two days in a row.

They got to go in the water. These two shibas seem to really enjoy the water. I know other shibas don't, but my two do.

Jujube even went swimming for a few seconds! There are just certain fun things in life that can't be done on leash.

As you can see in the video, the dogs do run quite far away. This might cause some anxiety in some owners, but not me. They always returned to us within a few minutes. Both were easy to leash up this time around. We just stayed in one spot while the dogs ran around us. But for sure I would never ever let them off-leash in any area with other people/dogs/cars around.


This weekend, we went to visit my parents, who live in a somewhat rural area. This morning we went across the street into a rather woodsy park, and I decided to try my luck at letting them off-leash. I've actually let Loki off-leash before. I wouldn't ever trust him in an area near streets or if there were other dogs or people around. He doesn't reliably respond to the "come" command, but he does stay somewhat close by. I had never tried letting Jujube off-leash, and I was curious to see how she would do.

First things first:

Here you can see Loki in the foreground and Jujube is way in the background. Can you spot her?
Two curly tails:

I didn't feed them any breakfast and had both of their breakfasts in my pocket. I would periodically kneel down and give a passing dog some kibble. Loki was pretty good at this. He knew that every time he checked in with me, he'd get a small bite to eat. Jujube was terrible. She only got kibble maybe two times. The rest of the time she completely ignored me! She also seemed to wander a lot farther than Loki did. It's so funny, because in our home and even in the dog park, she always hangs around us and stays close. I guess there are way too many fun things to explore in the meadow and woods.

One happy Loki:

One happy Jujube. Her face is all wet from running through the dewy meadows.

In the end, I was only able to get Jujube back on leash by sheer luck. She just so happened to squat near me to pee. And so I extended a huge handful of kibble, and then I leashed her up.

Leashing Loki was not as difficult, but we were aided by a jogger. Yep, we actually encountered one jogger. I was hoping not to encounter anyone, since these two are so unreliable off-leash. Luckily, she wasn't afraid of dogs and didn't mind Loki following her, which he did like she was his new owner. So much for dog loyalty! Since he wouldn't stop following her, she was nice enough to jog back to us (with him following her at her heels) so that we could leash him up.

No, I don't recommend letting shibas off-leash. But every once in awhile, I do as long as I can find a rural enough of a place. They enjoy it so much! I just love seeing their happy, smiling faces when they are free to run through nature.

Car Ride

Loki & Jujube do fairly well on car rides. Loki has always been good in the car. Jujube tends to be more anxious. She used to be really anxious when we first got her. But she has since calmed down.

Here's Loki. He doesn't look too happy, but he settles down pretty quickly.
Here's Jujube. She takes a few minutes before she settles down.

Jujube, the Chewer

It wasn't that long ago that I needed a new leash for Jujube. Here we go again! Good thing Lupine has a lifetime guarantee.

Oh, and apparently, we can't leave the watermelon on the floor. We're certain it's Jujube. When we give her watermelon, she eats through the rind and everything. And when we had only Loki, we could safely leave the watermelon on the floor all the time. Now it has to be put up on the counter.

Is it worth it to have two dogs?

Before we got Jujube, a question I posed to other owners of multiple dogs was, “Is it worth it to have two dogs?” On the one hand, it seemed that the cost of having a second dog could be less than two times the cost of having one dog. It’s true that you need to buy twice as much dog food, but the time and effort cost was surely marginal. If you spend the time to feed one dog, feeding the second dog wouldn’t be much more trouble. Similarly, if you spend the time to walk one dog, walking a second dog at the same time doesn’t take any more time or effort.

My original reason in getting a second dog was to provide a daytime companion for Loki. I had read from a self-proclaimed dog expert that dogs are social animals and thus it was cruel to leave them in isolation for 8-9 hours a day. This expert believed so much in his message that in the absence of a human or second dog, he recommended getting another species, like a cat, or even a turtle, to be part of the canine’s pack. A turtle? Really? In all seriousness, I don’t think leaving a dog while you go to work counts as animal cruelty, but I still thought that it might be nice to get Loki a companion. Humans are really bizarre creatures, aren’t we? I got Loki to be my companion, and now I was going to get a second dog to be a companion to my companion.

As it turned out, nothing worked out as I had planned or envisioned, but little in life does. Sure, Loki and Jujube sometimes play and they can tolerate one another, but they most definitely do not cuddle or even hang out with one another. Given the number of times Loki has snapped at Jujube, she has learned to avoid him and he seems happy to have his space. I suspect that while we are at work, the two of them don’t even share the same floor. Despite our best efforts to keep them off the couch and bed while we are present, I’m pretty sure that Loki takes over the couch on the main floor and Jujube takes over the bed upstairs when we are away.

Through all of the dog fights, the money spent on a behaviorist, and bite wounds, I have never once regretted getting Jujube. She is an absolute sweetheart and has changed my perception of the shiba breed. It’s funny how first impressions really do matter. My experience with Loki has formed my main impression of the shiba breed, but had I gotten Jujube first, my impression would be entirely different. I view Loki’s characteristics to be what a shiba is. He’s mostly standoff-ish, very responsive to food as a motivator, skittish at times, apprehensive about being handled, sometimes aggressive, and does not follow you around the house like most dogs. And I see Jujube as the exception to the shiba breed. She is aloof, but always close. She does follow you around the house like a regular dog. She’s not at all skittish; in fact she’s fearless. She’s great about being handled in any way and never aggressive.

Because my initial impression of the shiba breed comes from Loki, I often hesitate to recommend shibas to others. I only actively recommend shibas if they are experienced with other primitive breeds like Akitas or Chows. But I imagine that if I got Jujube first, then I’d be much more inclined to recommend shibas to everyone I met.

I didn’t know what to expect when we got Jujube. I wanted to get a companion for Loki. But as it turns out, I got a sweetheart of a companion for me. So, if someone were to ask me today, “Is it worth it to have two dogs?” I’d say, I don’t know. I don’t think of us as owning two dogs. I think of us as owning one Loki and one Jujube. And I don’t regret getting either.

Go get your toy!

When Loki is feeling playful, he'll respond to the command, "Go get your toy! Where's your toy?" And he'll go fetch the nearest toy. "Toy" is non-specific. It doesn't matter what toy he brings; it's usually whatever is closest. He brings us a toy and then we play with it.

Last night, the whole family was lounging in the bedroom. Jujube was chewing on a toy. When Yun asked Loki to "Go get your toy!", Loki was at a loss. There were no other toys around. Jujube was chewing on the toy at hand. Oh no, what was Loki to do?

He looked around helplessly, and then the wheels in his head started spinning. Ah ha! He went over to his crate and pulled his entire blanket out, and started playing with it. He hasn't played with his blanket in ages. It was so very cute and reminded me of his puppy days.
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