The AKC Breed standard states the following ........
Temperament: A spirited boldness, a good nature, and an unaffected forthrightness, which together yield dignity and natural beauty. The Shiba has an independent nature and can be reserved toward strangers but is loyal and affectionate to those who earn his respect. At times aggressive toward other dogs, the Shiba is always under the control of his handler. Any aggression toward handler or judge or any overt shyness must be severely penalized.
General Appearance: The Shiba is the smallest of the Japanese native breeds of dog and was originally developed for hunting by sight and scent in the dense undergrowth of Japan's mountainous areas. Alert and agile with keen senses, he is also an excellent watchdog and companion. His frame is compact with well-developed muscles
The reason I point out these two section's are to emphasize the worst possible scenerio, an agressive dog with well-developed muscles and strong hunting instinct. This is why we emphasize that you do not purchase a Shiba sight unseen.
This is a breed that can be dominant and has a strong chase instinct. They were originally bred for hunting in Japan, ( see youtube video ) our backyard is an acre fenced in and our dogs have killed everything from adult groundhogs to birds to moles.
That being said, we pride our breeding program on our dogs being well bred and well behaved towards other dogs and people (more youtube video ). If you presently have a Shiba Inu or another breed of dog, we suggest that when getting another dog, that you obtain a dog of the opposite sex. Aggression in this breed is typically same sex aggression. Also, Shibas can be fine with cats when properly socialized. I would not suggest other animals like ferrets, rabbits, etc. , but there are exceptions.
Photo courtesy of http://www.shibamac.com/
a wonderful blog on Shiba Ownership