Nippo - Nihon Ken Hozonkai - Jaklho Shiba Inu

Nippo - Nihon Ken Hozonkai - Jaklho Shiba Inu

Nihonken Hozonkai (Nippo) is the organization in Japan that has its main goal “the protection and preservation of the domestic Japanese breeds”. 

In 1928 a group of friends under the leadership of Dr. Hiroyoshi Saito got together when they saw the necessity of protecting domestic Japanese dog breeds. After thorough research in various parts of Japan to trace and catalogue domestic breeds, Nihon Ken Hozonkai, better known as NIPPO, was established in 1932.

In the 1930’s the authorities in Japan were inclined to give recognition to an fund matters which they considered to be of national cultural importance, and these were given "Natural Cultural Monument"-status’. This also applied to the Akita, Shiba, Shikoku, Kishu, Hokkaido and Kai. The first to obtain this status was the Akita in 1931, followed by the Shiba in 1936. The following year NIPPO was awarded official recognition by the authorities.

Shortly after its establishment, NIPPO formulated and set out the Basic Standards for the domestic Japanese Dog, which was almost poetic and prosaic in its descriptions of the Japanese dog. The medium-sized dog was used here as a model. These descriptions however were so brief and concise that it was quickly realized that elaboration was necessary, especially for the judges. A supplement to the Basic Standard was formulated, the so called Judging Resolutions, consisting of in depth information and many detailed illustrations, without which the judging of the Japanese dog is extremely difficult.

In short, the NIPPO Standard is subdivided into two sections: the Basic Standard and the Judging Resolutions, differentiating six breeds. These are the Akita (large), the Shikoku, Kishu, Hokkaido and Kai (medium-sized) and the Shiba (small).

In “The Total Shiba”, a book by Gretchen Haskett and Susan Houser, everything to do with NIPPO is gone into great detail. This book is an absolute must for the true Shiba fancier. Of great interest are the remarks by Mr. Hajime Watanabe on the Basic Standard and his concise expalantion of the terms ‘Kan-i’, ‘Ryosei’ and ‘Soboku’.

To get a further explanation of kan-i, ryosei and soboku, and in an attempt to understand the true "being" of the Shiba,  I came, with the help of friends, with these descriptions:

The Shiba's nature must show courage and boldness.  He exhibits (well meant) mettle yet at the same time he keeps his calmness.  He is brave by nature.  His alertness is being fed by his attentiveness, and balanced by a certain amount of composure. His courageous character may never lead to foolhardy or inconsiderate behaviour. Remember, he is a hunting dog, of which being brave is a “must”  and recklessness is a bad trait. He is a mentally strong dog, who’s appearance can almost be called: sublime, or, If you like: majestic.

The Shiba's character is in essence good natured.  His gentle disposition is resultant of this friendly trait.  He possesses the accomplishment of being a good watchdog, as well as being an obedient and agile dog.  The Shiba must be able to respond quickly to the command of his owner without giving the impression of being submissive.  All these qualities make him an intelligent dog.  The Shiba's loyalty and faithfulness to his owner make him a fantastic companion and great dog to have around.
Kan-i and ryosei go hand in hand. A dog that shows good kan-I can not exist without good ryosei.

Soboku is not as much a trait, however it is more a way of
With Soboku the Shiba shows us his uncomplicated (simple), natural beauty. This beauty he has obtained by seasoned maturity(*). The shiba posesses refined simplicity, an appearance without exaggeration. Soboku can be summarized as “natural beauty”, or “artlessness”. Principle is the simplicity and it’s refined elegance. Soboku is always unadorned.
Soboku can be found in many ways of Japanese lifestyle, and in various expressions of art, such as the Japanese garden architecture. It is the simplicity of the Japanese garden, that gives it it’s original beauty. This in contrast with, what is often seen in Western gardens, the motley, desultory  collection of colors and shapes.  
Similarly, Soboku can be seen in a piece of furniture, of which the essence is unadorned and sober, yet graceful and beautiful. No bells and whistles, no frills, but the simplicity that gives something it’s beauty.  

Soboku suggests a taste, of which artlessness and  calmness radiates…

* Going through a growth proces by  means of the "experiences of life", resulting in full development, mentally as well as physically.


Nippo organizes exhibitions at various levels. These days the Shiba, the Shikoku and the Kishu fall under the auspices of NIPPO. Yearly there are 42 local shows and 8 regional shows. Once a year there is the so called ‘NIPPO Grand National’, a two day event at which hundreds of Shibas are judged. The quality of the dogs here is of such a high level compared to what we are used to in Europe, that a dog with for example one missing dental element or a dog which is a fraction outside the standard specified size, will not be shown, no matter how beautiful the dog might be. No dogs with dental flaws will ever achieve high awards.  

NIPPO has its own genealogical register. It is difficult to understand why these days NIPPO-registered dogs will still not be recognized by FCI-countries. To import a dog with a NIPPO pedigree, the dog will first have to be re-registered to the genealogical register of the J.K.C. – Japan Kennel Club, affiliated to the F.C.I.



Source: “The Total Shiba” by Gretchen Haskett and Susan Houser.

First edition 1997 by Alpine Publications ISBN: 0-0931866-98-7




Nippo - Nihon Ken Hozonkai - Shiba Inu


| welcome |
| about us |  | the shiba |  | our dogs |  | shows |  
| nippo |  
| puppies |  | photo album |  | what's new |  
| offspring |  | links |  
shiba-veteranen | | shiba-regenboog brug |
| video's |  | webcam |
| home |



Jaklho Shiba Inu
GEERT JAN WAGEMANS & BAS DE BRUIN - Zeedijk 6 - 3329 LC  Dordrecht - the Netherlands
Tel.: +31 (0)78 6164779 - Email:0