Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Eyes Open

Eyes are opening, and they're getting mobile. Today was moving day, and now pups and mom are out front in the puppy area.

Nihon Ken Artwork

A good friend of mine here in Japan is an artist who draws the Japanese breeds. She also finds fun little items sometimes that she will ship overseas, so I thought I give her a bit of promotion in case anyone thinks it would be fun to get something done. Here she is on Facebook

I really like what she does on wood like this one below.

Monday, September 28, 2015

NIPPO Saitama Branch Fall 2015

Entered Mei (Kotomi Go Yamabiko) in the Saitama branch show. It takes a lot of work to get a dog ready, and a lot of breeding beforehand. Then on the day you make sure you get there in time, and then there's the whole process of easing the dog into a comfortable place before and after it gets into the ring. Most Shikoku get carsick, so that's another layer of conditioning you have to deal with (and clean up). Some dogs are high energy, some low energy, and you have to adjust your process.

Here we are in the ring, in a typical NIPPO stance with the dog out front, and the lead at approximately 45 degrees. Mei was terribly out of coat, but it's a lot funner to show a dog than just hang around a show, and it's great practice for me as a handler. Thanks to the Yajima's as always for the picture of Mei and I. Here's their blog

We were happy to get 2nd place in class. Mei is a nice dog, and more than anyone I know what her faults are. She's got great ring manners and temperament, and just great temperament in general which I really like about her. Here she is from this spring when she was almost in coat.

Here's a short video from the female wakainu 1 group. There were a lot of nice dogs in this group, with first place going to a friend's Kishu female, Sara. She's over on the far right in the video. That's three first places in a row for her now.

Shows are definitely not the end all for me, which is probably why I'm not that excited about the results. It's a place to see everyone, see the new dogs coming up, and then a fun game to battle the environment and your opponents. There are so many intricacies in dog behavior, and human behavior, that you get to see at shows. It's looking more like I wont have a dog to show at the national, but I guess we'll deal with that bridge when we get to it. It would make the long trip easier to travel without any dogs haha.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Kuromasa x Chacha

Chacha was bred to Kuromasa, and while we got two ties in, she didn't start looking pregnant for quite a while. It's always a tricky thing catching the start of a female Shikoku's heat. I really was lucky in that I saw the tiniest drop of blood smeared on her back leg. Other than that nothing. No drops on the kennel floor or anywhere else for days after that, but it looks like I got it right.

This is Chacha at 3 years.

Her sisters, Meme and Nana, have been tearing up the show ring as usual, but Chacha was retired after losing the tip of her ear. Lucky for me, because that injury brought her to my house. I really wanted Chacha as part of my program because she's got a fantastic temperament, and great color. I wish her hips were better, but luckily they're not terrible.

We had tried to get a litter out of Kuromasa x Chacha 2 years ago, and actually drove 2000km round trip to attempt it, but while there was a tie, we got no pups out of it. Here's a picture of Kuromasa from that trip.

He's got a really friendly temperament as well, and good structure. I checked his hips, and while not fantastic, they're decent.

Well here we are 2 years later with 2 female red sesame pups. I'm excited to see how they turn out.

Friday, September 25, 2015

1 Week Old

Little one week old lives. The litter and mother are doing smashingly. I think I have an idea of which pup I'll be keeping. It's not the one in the picture. This is the biggest pup.

Chacha had her puppies this morning. I'll post some pics later. including the little guys, I'm now sitting on 17 dogs...

Monday, September 21, 2015

Importing a Dog to Australia From Japan

I guess there is rising interest in the Japanese breeds down in Australia. I assume this because I've been receiving a steady stream of mail from would be owners. Unfortunately, Australian import regulations make it very pricey to import. Just how many limbs should you prepare to sever? Since I seem to be answering this question a lot now, I'm just going to blog it. While I'm writing this post with regard to importing Nihon Ken from Japan, it will also be helpful for those looking to move their pet from Japan to Australia, or people looking to import other breeds from Japan.

The main reasons it is very costly to import is due to the need for an import permit (485 AUD), mandatory 10 day quarantine (@1500 AUD total), and the requirement that all dogs arrive as manifest cargo (this means dogs cannot arrive as check in baggage which usually only costs around 300-400 AUD).

Airline regulations in Japan do not allow you to book a cargo flight for your dog directly with the airline. You have to go through a shipping agent like NIPPON EXPRESS . This does drive up the costs obviously. It costs at least 200,000JPY for 1 medium size (200 size) dog crate from Narita to Melbourne. All dogs arriving in Australia must arrive in Melbourne since this is the only quarantine facility in the country.

Japan is a group 2 rabies free country so while there is still a 10 day quarantine upon arrival in Australia, rabies vaccinations and blood testing are unnecessary. It takes quite a bit of time to clear all the hurdles to import a dog though, so best to start early (you'll need a minimum of 42 days). You can find a step by step guide here.

The first step you'll need to take is to implant an ISO compatible microchip, and then apply for an import permit. Once you've received your permit you will want to make start making flight reservations for the dog with your shipping agent and make a reservation for the 10 day quarantine in Australia.

So, at this point you are already running up a bill of around 400,000JPY. This obviously does not include the price of the pup or all the veterinary work that needs to be done before it is eligible for import.

I won't list all the veterinary work you have to clear before import since the timeline and procedures are very exact. Follow the step by step guide! Make sure you pay close attention, or hire someone to take care of the process for you.

To give you an idea of total costs to import a Shiba pup for instance, you'll probably be looking at somewhere around 600,000JPY. The amount will be more or less depending on the price of the pup obviously, and how much of the process you or the breeder are able to handle (since otherwise you'll have to pay someone else to handle vet trips/kenneling/transport within Japan/export inspections etc).

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Maki Go

Just realized I never posted about Maki on the blog.
She was bred by Nidai Iwahori Sou, and she's out of Kotofusa x Koharu.
She's a product of four lines of Shikoku, and while all are not completely unrelated to each other, she looks like she's got a pretty good amount of diversity going on.

 She's a nice female, pick of her litter and we'd kept her for show/breeding, but due to personal issues she became available. It's not all that often that this happens, so I went and picked her up right away and took her to get her hips checked.

Tada! I can count on one hand the number of Shikoku I've seen with hips like this. Lucky find, and it was really hard to decide on where to send her. I did consider keeping her since she's got a terrific temperament as well, but I've just cut down numbers at my house, and we've got a lot of litters on the way this fall/winter. One of my mentors once told me that you should not be selfish and keep all the good dogs for yourself. Share the joy, share the dogs! So, I sent Maki to Hakuren Sou in Italy (by way of Finland).

After I'd picked up Maki she started to really blossom. When you're taking care of a dog every day you can see the subtleties of its temperament and structure, and I was more and more sold on Maki. She's going to turn out very nice when her coat comes all the way in and she fills out. She already looked so different by the time I left her in Finland that I sent Iwahori-san a picture to which he asked me who the dog was. The picture below was taken around 40 days after the first picture in this post.


We've had a ridiculous amount of rain ever since our extreme consecutive days of summer heat. I think at one point it rained at least a bit every day for 10 days straight. We've had a few clear days here and there, and then the typhoons just push all this rain back at us.

Well today it's not raining. Just a cool damp day out here in the mountains, having a stroll with Baron and Tenko.

YouTube Video

Maybe we'll head down to the local matsuri later today.

Friday, September 18, 2015


I was thinking today that in hindsight maybe it would have been interesting to blog about a litter from planning to puppies, and then onward. I might get around to doing it sometime.

For now I can write a bit about where I'm at with Tenko's litter.

She's a first time mom, a bit of a playful, friendly dog. I made one mistake on the night of the birth by putting an old sheet in her crate. By the time I was woken up by the sound of a mewing puppy, it was 4am and 2 pups were out. Neither were visible as Tenko had lost them in the sheet. One had the sac open, but placenta still attached. The other was still in its sac and not moving. I thought I had lost it, but ripped it was still warm, so ripped the sac open and gave her a good rub down and cleared mucous from her mouth. Nothing happened for a bit, but around 30 seconds later she gave a little jolt and started breathing. Phew

It was a bit of a mess in there, so I removed the sheet and tried to help Tenko clean up the area a bit. My Shikoku have always done everything themselves, but Tenko seemed a little panicky at times, and shocked about what was going on. She was taking care of the pups though, so that was good. I thought I might need to cut cords and such, but by pup 4 she had settled into a nice spot in the crate and was doing everything very smoothly. Pup 5 took a little longer to come out since it was stillborn (less than half the size of the other pups) and I removed it quickly and didn't try to resuscitate. A little while later pup 6 popped out and Tenko looked a lot more relaxed once the contractions eased up.

I made sure everyone was nursing and cords had been cut nicely, and the place was fairly clean before going to bed. Around 12 hours later when taking Tenko out for a walk I realized she wasn't cleaning the pups very well after they defecated so there was dry stool caked around their anuses. Took a bit of time to clean that up, and to clean up the crate, but it looks like once I helped Tenko get caught up she's got the hang of it now.

Tenko's not eating so well right now, so I'm monitoring that. The last thing I want is a sick mom, or poor milk production. Anyway, my mantra with new pups is to do enough to help the dam without getting too involved that they get stressed out.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

NIPPO Grand National 2015 Location

So the NIPPO Grand National will be held on the 14th and 15th of November in Kure, Hiroshima.
Here's the rough GPS location. You can through it in your search bar and it should come up in Google maps  34.217308, 132.589512

On the 14th the Shiba will be judged, and the on the 15th all the other breeds plus the best in show type stuff.

Looks like the closest station is Akiaga station on the Kure line.
Hope to see you all there!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015


Doorway's been fixed.

Now just juggling some translation projects while waiting for Baron x Tenko pups to arrive. Due date is around the 17th, and she looks to be carrying quite a bit of weight.

Today it's overcast and a fairly cool 24 degrees, so Baron and I will be heading out to see about some boar.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

NIPPO Chiba Branch Exhibition 2015 Fall

Dropped in on the NIPPO Chiba Branch Exhibition to help out, take some pictures, and hang out with friends. I took a lot of pictures, and here are some of some of the dogs I liked.

This female's color was not the greatest, but I quite liked the rest of her.

A friend's Kishu female. Sara took 1st place in the Wakainu 1 class.

 A friend's Shikoku adult male. He took 1st place and Honbusho.

Another friend's Kishu male. He took first place in the Soken class. He's the brother to a couple Kishu boys I had here at my house for a while, Tetsu and Sho.

Another friend's Shikoku adult male. He placed second in class.

 This is Ruru, the sister of my pup Riri that passed away last year in January.

Saturday, September 12, 2015


It's difficult for me to get into the zone when I'm working from home. Luckily all I need to translate is my tethered laptop and 1 folder. Baron likes to tag along, so we usually head to the beach and work out of the van.

There was some sort of sailing ship out in Tateyama bay today, and Mt.Fuji was visible too. Mt.Fuji, a sailing ship, the beach, and the sunset...

Tomorrow starts the NIPPO show season for me. Gonna head up to the NIPPO Chiba branch show. I haven't entered any dogs, so we'll just be going to help out and hang out. Will probably take Baron and Masa with me.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Thunder Part 2

And this is what he did to the doorframe. So he destroyed 2 crates, a window and frame, plus the door frame.

Not very happy about it since I've got a ridiculous amount of things to get done as it is, but that's life I guess.

One of the perils of having a powerful and focused dog: as long as they're focused on the right things, all is good.

Thursday, September 10, 2015


When you get punished for not being home during a thunder storm. Part 1

Yes, that's my beautiful window. Thanks, Baron. Big bad hunting dog loves gunfire, hates thunder.

Amazing part is that he learned to climb into the loft, driven by his hate of thunder. Negative stress is a powerful thing.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Registering Litters Born Outside of Japan

I get this question a lot: Can a litter born outside Japan be registered with X club in Japan?
Here are the easy answers.

1. Japan Kennel Club: NO
2. Hokkaido Ken Hozonkai: NO
3. Kai Ken Aigokai: YES

One other thing to be aware of is that even if you have a NIPPO or AKIHO pedigree for a dog born outside of Japan, you cannot transfer that to a JKC export pedigree unless the dog was born in Japan.