Shiba Nutrition, Exercise and Care

What if you could add 3-4 quality years to your dog’s life?

Good nutrition helps dogs fight disease, grow correctly, and age gracefully. Without good nutrition your dog can suffer from a number of problems, including allergies, malnutrition, skin and coat problems, arthritis and digestive issues. Promotes proper function of the immune system, cardiovascular system, bone structure, nerve system, glands, organs and more.

Feeding Your Dog

Searching for just the right food for your pet can be harder then you think. Today there are many types of dry dog kibble. When looking read the ingredient list. Look for a fish based diet that is all natural.

After finding a good dry kibble we learned dry dog foods and canned pet foods are cooked at high temperatures this meant crucial amino acids and all digestive enzymes can be damaged or destroyed. Pets consuming these highly processed foods often become nutritionally compromised manifested by dry itchy skin, scratching, allergies, cancer, hip dysplasia, hot spots, arthritis, cataracts, digestive problems, heart disease, tumors, low energy levels and premature aging.

Raw Foods

At Icewind we also have added raw foods to our dogs diet. We feel this is a great way to add years to our dogs lives. We have always fed raw meaty bones (also known as soup bones) from the supermarket or butcher. We keep a supply in the freezer which are fed raw to all our dogs and puppies (Never feed cooked bones as they can splinter). Raw bones will keep your pets teeth sparkling white and clean, plus will entertain your pet for hours. Also raw venison is fed. I have noticed most supermarkets and pet stores have added freezers to the dog food section, where you can purchase raw meat patties. Recently we have found a great raw food made by Raw Paws.

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Note: Leftovers, a lot of our dogs join us for dinner. Years ago the family dog was fed nothing but leftovers and they lived into their twenties. I have researched some of the oldest dogs that lived, and found out their diet consisted only of leftovers. I am not suggesting you feed a whole bowl of meat and potatoes, but in small amounts i believe leftovers are fine for our pets to eat. A suggestion for overweight dogs, we feed canned unsalted green beans to fill them up and decrease their regular diet.

NuVet Plus and NuJoint DS are fed to all our dogs and puppies at Icewind. No matter what diet you feed your pet, you will never find the perfect solution to how many vitamins and minerals you should feed. So why risk your pets health? If you could have your pet live more then his average years with you, then you need to use Nuvet Supplements. Our puppies first meal starts with Nuvet Vitamins added.This is not just a vitamin, its an immune system builder. Nuvet Vitamins are not heat processed, this can destroy essential nutrients. NuJoint DS is a proven formula to enhance your pets quality of life. The human-grade ingredients in NuJoint DS provide a front line defense against future damage and it will help to quickly and effectively reverse and heal the devastating effects of osteoarthritis.

Note: NuVet Vitamins – we have heard people tell us they are not using the Nuvet supplements because they think they are expensive. Then think of it this way, the cost of a years supply is the same as a trip to the veterinarian. Our pets mean everything to us, and if we can help them live a long and happy life, you should do the same for your pet too.

NuVet Vitamins

Raw Diet Resources

These books are great resources to learn more about the raw diet we feed our dogs.

Icewind Goldens are on the cover of this book. Icewind Shibas and Goldens are also found on pages inside this book!

Karen of Icewind Goldens wrote pages 88 & 89 on Canine Nutrition. Also pictured on those pages is my Grandson Mason and one of our Goldens!

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The Need to Supplement

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We love animals and we know you love them too! Unfortunately, the majority of dogs and cats are not receiving a complete, healthy diet and many become ill and die prematurely. NuVet Labs’ main purpose is to help increase your pet’s longevity and quality of life. Our products, NuVet Plus for Canines and NuVet Plus for Felines, provide the very best human-grade, natural ingredients available and utilize the latest advances in medical, veterinary and nutritional science. We pledge to adhere to the highest standards in products and services. Our goal is to maintain a lasting and caring relationship with our family of NuVet Plus customers and their pets they love.

Since no pet food can give pets everything they nutritionally need we found a human grade, all natural vitamin, with minerals and antioxidants. This supplement contained no fillers, and there products are never heat processed. The NuVet Company was very fortunate to assemble an outstanding team of veterinarians, committed to increasing your pet’s longevity and quality of life. NuVet supplements are not sold in stores, due to the fact they can lose important nutrients sitting on a store shelf. The company contacted interested breeders and animal professionals to promote their vitamins making it possible to be sent directly to your home. This provides the freshest ingredients for your pet.

To Order The Nuvet Plus Supplements call 1-800-474-7044 or Use breeders code 32623 for a 15% discount. Also for more information on ingredients visit our NuVet page.

The Magic of Meat and Fish

Each day of the week we add special treats to our dog’s diets. No expense is spared for our pets. We believe people food in moderation will help your pet live a long and healthy life. Visiting Icewind you will notice our pets have beautiful coats, healthy skin, and no health problems. This is a partial list of good food for great dogs!

– Canned salmon, mackerel, or tuna.
– Fresh cooked fish.
– Family dinner left over’s of steak, hamburgers, pot-roast, or any kind of cooked meat.
– Dried fish sold at Japanese supermarkets.
– Cooked chicken.
– Venison.
– Raw beef marrow bones frozen.

If you need information on your pet’s diet, feel free to email us.

Canine Allergies

In the U.S. 10 to 15 percent of dogs are afflicted with allergies. Dogs can be allergic to fleas, types of food, airborne substances, dust mites, and molds, among other things. Most foot problems can be caused by lawn fertilizers, or chemicals used on icy streets and sidewalks. Some dogs have multiple allergies. Scratching, chewing, biting, face rubbing, redness in the ears, rash, and hair loss are all signs of an allergic reaction.

Dietary Changes for Allergies

If you have ruled out the allergic problems listed above, we can suggest how to boost your dog’s immune system. Without good nutrition your dog can suffer many skin and coat problems. Most pet dogs are likely to become malnourished and overweight. First you should be feeding a good quality all natural and a proven supplement, which strengthens the immune system. NuVet protects against most ailments from backyard pesticides, pet food allergies, toxic formaldehyde in furniture and carpeting.

In addition to our regular diet we suggest…

1. Salmon Oil- adding essential Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids is very beneficial to your pet’s skin and coat.
2. Instead of canned dog food feed canned salmon, or mackerel found at the supermarket.
3. Treats only use all natural, no artificial preservatives, colors or flavors.
4. Raw meat 1-2 times a week we suggest venison.

Exercise and Mind Games

In general dogs should get an average of 45 minutes to two hours of good old fashioned, heart-pumping, tail wagging exercise each day. Fortunately, exercise comes in many forms, although the physical kind is a necessary and integral part of a dog’s daily routine, when it comes to taking the edge off your dog’s energy reserve, mental exercise can be just as beneficial. A healthy dog needs daily doses of both mental and physical exercise.

Outside Exercise

Add more fun to your dogs walk or run

– Walking and hiking- use a backpack filled with a few water bottles.
– Obedience- stop now and then and have your dog focus on you to sit and stay several times during his walk.

Fenced Yard Extras

– Throw the ball, or try a coconut.
– Build a rock pile or even better large boulders. We built a large pile of huge rocks, which keep our Shiba’s entertained for hours.
– Hide some treats.
– Make a dog playground, we found tunnels and toys on the internet made for outdoor fun. Check under agility items.

Think of ideas to keep your pet entertained.

Inside Exercise Fun

– The Kong toy- filled with treats.

– A laser beam to chase.

– Find it! Hide your pet’s favorite treat in the house.

– Chew bones can help you pet with stress and being bored.

– Obedience exercises.

Think of ways to keep your pet from becoming bored.

Note: Dogs can develop a habit of licking. Try and keep your dog from being bored. Listed are just a few suggestions, if you would like to add your ideas to our list please email us at

Having a companion is another great idea. Dogs are pack animals and love each other’s company. The idea is to prevent your dog from scratching and being bored. Keeping his mind off of his allergy problems the best way you know how.

Cheers! To the long life and health of your dog.

Dog Toys for All Sizes & Energy Levels

Vaccination Schedule

Vaccine schedules vary depending on the pet’s age, breed, health, prior vaccinations, and exposure to disease. Your local veterinarian can help you determine the type and frequency of vaccination needed by your pet. When deciding to bring a new puppy into your home its best to have a veterinarian appointment made within 48 hours after bringing your puppy home. If you know when you are bringing a puppy home you can always make a vets appointment ahead of time, and cancel if needed.


There can be many causes from changing the food your dog eats, over feeding, eating garbage, stress, excitement, or parasites. Whatever the reason, something is wrong! Take a stool sample to your veterinarian as soon as possible. If you wait for a day or two you very possibly could have a dead puppy. Pups can dehydrate and die within 24 to 48 hours unless they have medical treatment. Canned pumpkin (not the pie filling) can help firm up stool’s on dogs it also helps when they are constipated (a strange thing it helps in both ways).

Coccidia or Giardia. Both can cause diarrhea, but each requires different medications. All dogs have some level of coccidian in their gut. When a dog is stressed (being shipped, moving to a new environment, etc.) The stress can cause the coccidian to flare up causing diarrhea. Young puppies have no immunity to coccidian, they also can be exposed to it from their mother’s feces/ while nursing. It is not uncommon for a seemingly healthy puppy to arrive at its new home and develop diarrhea several days later leading to a diagnosis of coccidia. As a puppy ages it tends to developed a natural immunity to the effects of coccidian. Adults tend to carry Coccidia in their intestines but experience no ill effects. Humans get Giardia when they drink water that has fecal matter in it. When you go camping and if you drink water from a stream you can get Giardia. Puppies playing in their water buckets can also get Giardia. Again the outcome will be diarrhea. Both coccidian and Giardia need to be diagnosed by a veterinarian who will prescribe the appropriate treatment for your puppy.


Good grooming habits begin with puppy care. All puppies should be taught to sit, stand or lie down to have their bodies checked over and their fur brushed and combed, while your puppy is very young start handling his ears, paws, tail, teeth, etc. Grooming provides bonding time.

Waiting does not help the situation, the best thing to do is to take a proactive approach to treatment and help your dog out as soon as possible.

Grooming Tools – Which Ones Are Right For My Pet?

Pet supply stores have a dizzying variety of tools and products to assist in dog grooming. Buying the wrong brush or shedding blade can cause harm to your puppy. It’s best to ask your breeder what grooming supplies are best for your breed. Double coated breeds do need grooming to keep coats and skin healthy. Shiba’s will lose undercoats twice a year usually spring and fall. This is called “blowing coat”. Extra grooming at this time is recommended to encourage the growth of new coat. During the spring your Shiba sheds out the undercoat which leaves just the guard hairs which act as a cooling agent for summer. When the seasons change and the start of winter is near you will soon see a beautiful new thick coat.


Double coated breeds that are kept inside all year will keep less coats. Shedding is controlled by hormonal changes that are tied to photo period (day length) and is influenced by level of nutrition and general state of health. In addition a dog may blow its coat after surgery, X-ray under anesthesia and whelping puppies. Dog hair grows and dies just as human hair does.


Dogs do not need frequent baths. In fact, frequent baths can dry the natural oils in canine skin and leads to constant scratching, which in turn can lead to bacterial infections and hot spots. If you must bath your dog more than once a month, use aloe-based shampoos and special leave-in conditioner with tea tree oil.

Bathing Tips

1. Run or walk your dog before a bath, this will tire him or her out and hopefully will behave better in the tub.
2. Always brush out dead hair before you start.
3. Take care to keep soap out of eyes and ears, use a wash cloth for the face and inside ears.
4. Shedding can take anywhere from three weeks to a month for a double coated breed. A warm bath helps accelerate the process and daily (or twice-daily) grooming can help.

If a puppy has grown up ungroomed, he can still be taught to stand or lie still and accept this necessary attention. As with any training effort, you will often need more patience to teach shy or fearful dogs than confident or dominant dogs. For more helpful advice we would recommend reading Adam’s newsletter and book.

Dental Care

Your dog has two sets of teeth while growing up. The first set, called puppy teeth drop out between three or four months, so the adult teeth can come in. dogs suffer dental problems such as tartar and gum disease like humans. Infected teeth can cause severe health problems, including heart problems, in your dog. Teeth cleaning by a veterinarian requires anesthesia and can have associated risks not to mention the expense!

First practice handling and touching your dog’s mouth. This should be started with your puppy at 8 weeks old. Try to brush your dogs teeth twice a week with tooth paste specially formulated for dogs. Now with your finger, gently massage your dog’s gums with the tip of a washcloth. Don’t use human toothpaste it contains fluoride which is not good for dogs. Baking soda can be used: Mix 1 tablespoon of baking soda to 1 teaspoon of water to form a thick paste.

Bones and Chew Toys

Controversy abounds when it comes to what is safe to give your dog. If you believe all the contradictory statements made among pet owners, on the internet, or in books, you’re likely to never give your dog a bone or chew again. The problem is nothing is 100 percent safe, and if there was your dog wouldn’t like it anyway! But dogs need to chew and if you don’t give your dog something appropriate to chew, I guarantee he will find something, and you won’t be happy with the results.


Choose bones and toys that are too large for your dog to completely get his jaws around.

– Thick heavy duty rubber kongs.
– Large dental chews Nyla bones.
– Rawhide bones are fine unless you have an aggressive chewer who will break off a large piece and swallows it.
– All natural smoked bones.
– Rope toys.
– Chew ears and cow hooves.
– Raw beef marrow bones (found in the supermarket or from your butcher) keep a supply frozen.
– Toys

No matter how optional you think toys are, I’ll guarantee that your puppy thinks they’re mighty important. Puppies and dogs love toys to play with, cuddle, chew on, tug on, chase and retrieve and have a great time!

Anya’s Puppy Supply Store has great suggestions. All you have to do is ask. You can learn all about the puppy toy basket and have a chew proof home.