The Shikoku dog possesses a beautiful double coat which consists of a soft, dense under coat and a coarse outer coat. They tend to keep themselves well groomed and have little doggy odor.
Their coats require light brushing a couple of times a week to control shedding and bathing is only as needed.
However, in the spring the Shikoku dog will go through a period of heavy shedding where the under coat will lift and fall out in clumps. It is nature's way of removing the dog's heavy winter coat in preparation for the warm weather. Many people refer to this as "blowing the coat." Depending on how "coated" your Shikoku is and your climate will determine the extent of this shedding phenomenon. It is easily taken care of with some plucking, a good shedding tool and brush (and constant vacuuming).
The Shikoku dog is known to be a healthy, robust breed of dog. The breed has an average life span of between 13-15 years. The Shikoku dog requires:
- a premium diet
- daily exercise
- Routine veterinarian care
- Annual vaccinations as well as heart worm and flea/tick prevention.
There have been random instances of the breed having hip or knee dysplasia. Therefore health testing is done on breeding dogs as a prevention. Other health issues include food allergies, dental tartar and anal gland infections.