Sesame Shiba Inu

Of all the possible Shiba Inu colorations, the red sesame coat pattern is the most elusive. And not only is the sesame the rarest coloration of Shiba Inu, but this color pattern is also quite difficult to define properly. So, what exactly is a Sesame Shiba Inu?

A Sesame Shiba Inu is an extremely rare color variation of the Shiba Inu dog with a red base coat and an even overlay of black hair. Sesame is one of the four Shiba Inu colors officially recognized by the American Kennel Club, and Shiba Inu dogs with this coat coloration are typically purebred.

Further information on the bold and lively Sesame Shiba Inu’s specific diet and grooming needs, as well as health conditions peculiar to this breed, are outlined in this article. But, before we go further, let’s take a closer look at how to properly identify and distinguish a Red Sesame Shiba Inu dog.

What Is A Red Sesame Shiba Inu?

Sesame Shiba Inus are typically distinguished by having a predominant red base coat and an even overlay of black hair.

It is important to note that before a Shiba Inu can be considered as Sesame, its coat color must be less than 50% black, and there shouldn’t be black patches in any area. The black overlay must blend evenly with the red base coat, and there shouldn’t be a heavy concentration of black anywhere on the coat.

There’s an exception to the pattern for the Sesame Shiba Inu dog. And in these exceptional cases, the pattern ends on the pooch’s forehead, creating what is known as a widow’s peak.

Physical Appearance

The Shiba Inu is a compact, sturdy dog, with a head that is perfectly proportional to the rest of its body. And the pooch’s head houses deep-set eyes, along with a nose and lips that are typically black in color.

Sesame Shiba Inus have straight forelegs that usually come with dew claws, which can either be removed or left to grow, with regular maintenance. The Sesame Shiba Inu can also be distinguished by its characteristic high-set tail, with a bush of hair at the base, and which is always curled over the pooch’s back.


The Sesame Shiba Inu is classified as a medium-sized dog, with males typically weighing no more than 23 lbs when fully grown. Female Shiba Inus, as expected, are smaller than their male counterparts, and they usually have a maximum adult weight of 17 lbs.

The Sesame Shiba Inu isn’t the tallest dog out there either. And adult male Shiba Inus generally measure between 14.5 to 16.5 inches from ground to shoulder level, while adult females typically stand between 13.5 to 15.5 inches tall.


Sesame Shiba Inus typically have an attractive, double-layered coat that is typically divided into a soft undercoat, and a stiff, and most times, straight topcoat.

Image from Instagram:@ninkasi_the_shiba

How Long Do Sesame Shiba Inus Live For?

The lifespan of a Sesame Shiba Inu dog typically ranges between 12 to 16 years.

Common Health Issues

Shiba Inus are renowned for being a very healthy dog breed, however, there exist certain health conditions that this pooch is predisposed to. On a positive note, these medical conditions that a Shiba Inu is prone to are rarely fatal, and with proper healthcare, the pooch will be back on its feet in no time.

That said, health issues that commonly affect Shiba Inu dogs include:

Patellar Luxation

Patellar luxation in Sesame Shiba Inus refers to a medical condition in which the pooch’s kneecap moves or is dislocated from its natural position on top of the thigh bone.

A luxating patella is mostly genetically inherited, but this condition can also occur in a Sesame Shiba Inu due to trauma from an injury.

Consequences of patellar luxation in Sesame Shiba include an alteration in the pooch’s gaitchanges in the dog’s bone structuredecreased mobility, and the development of arthritis as the pooch ages.

Hip Dysplasia

Similar to patellar luxation, hip dysplasia is a hereditary condition that involves an improper fitting of the ball and socket joint that is found in the Sesame Shiba Inu’s hips.

Hip dysplasia results in a painful degeneration of the ball and socket joint, and an eventual collapse of this joint, which often results in lameness.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy

Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) in Sesame Shiba Inus is a medical condition that is characterized by a gradual weakening of the cells of the dog’s retina, thereby leading to impaired vision, and in some cases, complete blindness.

PRA is mostly genetic, but it can also occur due to abnormalities with the Shiba Inu’s eye structurenutritional deficiencycancer, and eye infections.

Minor Health Concerns

Occasional medical diagnoses of Sesame Shiba Inus include:

  • Cataracts
  • Epilepsy
  • Allergies
Image from Instagram:@sushi.gram

How To Take Care Of Sesame Shiba Inus?


When picking out an appropriate diet for a Sesame Shiba Inu, a good rule of thumb is to look out for food products that list animal-based protein as the major source of nutrition. Carbohydrateshealthy fatsvitamins, and minerals are also a necessity in the ideal Sesame Shiba Inu diet.

Sesame Shiba Inus will do well on either dry dog kibblewet dog foodhomemade food, or a raw diet, provided they contain nutrients that will facilitate healthy growth. It is recommended to feed your matured Shiba 1 to 1½ cups of kibble, divided into two portions every day.

If you’ll be sticking with wet dog food for your Sesame Shiba Inu, then one of the best products on the market that we recommend you feed to your pooch is the Pet Plate diet plan.

Along with containing healthy nutrients for proper Shiba Inu growth, the Pet Plate diet also eliminates problems of food pickiness among Shiba Inus by incorporating food ingredients that pooches absolutely love eating.

Regardless of whatever you decide to feed your Shiba Inu with, you should ensure that the food of choice doesn’t contain preservativestoxinsfillerschemicals, and genericlow-grade protein.

You should also ensure that the Sesame Shiba Inu always has easy access to clean drinking water. And it is worthwhile to invest in dental water additives to enhance this pooch’s oral health.


Sesame Shiba Inus are an energetic and active dog breed, hence regular exercising is needed to promote healthy physical growth and mental development in this pooch.

It is recommended that the Sesame Shiba Inu be exercised for a minimum of 60 minutes per day, which is best broken down into smaller sessions of worthwhile activity.

Long walks are adequate to keep a Sesame Shiba Inu well exercised, but this should be mixed up with playtime with interactive toys and opportunities to run around the yard.

Do Sesame Shiba Inus Get Along With Cats? Temperaments Of Sesame Shiba Inus

The Sesame Shiba Inu has a strong sense of loyalty to family members and is also quite affectionate towards its owners – trademark qualities of the ideal family dog.

Additionally, the Sesame Shiba Inu is tailor-made for apartment living, and this pooch can also tolerate being left alone at home for significant periods – with provisions made for food and water, of course.

Shiba Inus tend to be very possessive, and this pooch won’t willingly share its toys, food, or territory in the home.

Interaction With Children And Other Pets

The Sesame Shiba Inu can tolerate kids, and it doesn’t mind playing and running around with children, as long as they treat it kindly, and with respect.

It is safe to say that the Sesame Shiba Inu isn’t naturally best of friends with other dogs and cats, and this is largely due to this pooch’s primary hunting background. However, with early and proper socialization, a Shiba Inu can be trained to live amicably with other household pets.

Intelligence And Trainability

The Sesame Shiba Inu ranks high in intelligence, but this pooch has a stubborn streak and a strong sense of independence, which tends to complicate the training process.

Sesame Shiba Inus absolutely don’t like being on a leash or wearing a collar; Hence, leash-training this pooch, although achievable with a great deal of patience and dedication, may take longer.

You should also be especially careful with letting your Shiba Inu off the leash in an unconfined area, as this pooch will chase smaller animals and even cars!

On a positive note, Shiba Inus are very clean dogs, hence housebreaking this pooch comes quite easily and naturally.

Watchdog Suitability

A Sesame Shiba Inu is quite alert and attentive to happenings in its surroundings; Hence, this pooch will do well as a watchdog.

Additionally, Sesame Shiba Inus tend to bark a lot, and won’t hesitate to notify their owners of potential danger and intrusion.

Image from Instagram:@taro.shib

Do Sesame Shiba Inus Shed A Lot? Grooming Tips For Sesame Shiba Inus

The Sesame Shiba Inu is known to be a moderate shedder with two specific periods of heavy coat shedding during the year, as with all other Shiba Inus. Hence, this pooch may not be the ideal hypoallergenic pet for those with dog allergies.

Despite the Sesame Shiba Inu’s double-layered coat, this pooch is naturally clean and odor-free, thereby making maintenance and grooming relatively easy.


To control the Sesame Shiba Inu’s shedding, it is recommended that this pooch is brushed, at least, on a weekly basis. And by brushing the Shiba Inu’s coat with a high-quality brushing tool such as the FURminator Undercoat Tool, you’ll be getting rid of dead undercoat hair, and redistributing the coat’s natural oils to maintain a polished appearance.

This FURminator tool is ideal for brushing a Sesame Shiba Inu’s coat thanks to a curved blade edge that conforms naturally to the pooch’s body, and a stainless steel de-shedding edge that easily reaches through the topcoat to get rid of loose undercoat hair.


With a Sesame Shiba Inu, bathing should be done minimally, as the pooch’s coat is naturally waterproof. Frequent bathing may strip the pooch’s coat of its natural oils, thereby giving the pooch a dull, lackluster appearance.

You should avoid bathing the Sesame Shiba Inu with human shampoo and use only specially formulated, dog-friendly products such as the Mighty Petz 2-In-1 Oatmeal Dog Shampoo And Conditioner.

The Mighty Petz shampoo contains healthy ingredients that are gentle on the Shiba Inu’s skin, and the conditioner is also perfect for moisturizing sensitive, dry skin.

Extra Grooming Tips

  • Brush the Sesame Shiba Inu’s teeth, two or three times a week, to prevent tartar build-up, and prevent the occurrence of oral infections.
  • Trim the Shiba Inu’s nails before they get too long, to prevent painful tears and injury.
  • Check the Shiba Inu’s ears for dirt and signs of infection on a regular basis, twice every week.

How Much Does A Sesame Shiba Inu Cost? The cost of acquiring a Sesame Shiba Inu varies, and you can expect to pay anything between $1,200 to $2,500 to purchase this dog breed. Adopting a Sesame Shiba Inus costs way less than buying from a breeder, and you’ll typically only have to spend between $350 to $550 to adopt one of these pooches from a shelter.

How Do You Make A Sesame Shiba Inu? Sesame Shiba Inus are purebred, so this coat coloration can only occur naturally in the Shiba Inu dog. For a Shiba Inu to carry the sesame coloration, the pooch must be a carrier of the specific sesame genotype. You can’t breed a Red Shiba Inu and a Black And Tan Shiba Inu and expect the outcome to be a Sesame Shiba Inu.

Can A Sesame Shiba Inu Swim? Shiba Inus are not natural-born swimmers and don’t take to water as easily as the water canine breeds. However, with proper training and close supervision, a Sesame Shiba Inu can be taught to enjoy a good swim under hot weather conditions.

Avatar photo
Pete Decker