Meeting Zuko the Shiba


Nikon D700 + 24-120mm f/4 VRII

Say hello to Zuko, Suki’s brother! They’re not from the same litter, but they share the same father. This was a wild experience because I haven’t met a Shiba yet that looks this much like Suki. The pictures don’t really give you the full experience though. When you see them together in person, the way they walk/run, and the expressions on their faces, you know for sure these dogs are related!

We met up at a local dog park in San Francisco. I was a little concerned about Suki because we recently brought her to the vet to get more treatment for her seasonal allergies. You can tell in the photos that she’s still dealing with some itchy eyes. It was also unusually warm in the Bay Area, so our sheebs weren’t as active as normal.

See those profiles? Definitely siblings.

Check out that long shadow being cast on Suki’s chest. Talk about harsh, mid-day sun. Turning on the Active D-Lighting on my camera and deciding to shoot JPEGS, I said “ok camera, YOU deal with the crazy lighting”

Too hot to bound around and play, Suki and Zuko eventually just started hanging out….

….and sniffing stuff….

….So we left the park and went out on a walk.

Oh my goodness, which one is which!?

Zuko, checking me out. Unlike Suki, who is very much used to having a big DSLR shoved in her face on a regular basis, Zuko seemed much more aware of my camera’s presence. After we hung out for a while, and after allowing him to give my lens a good sniff, he was a little more open to the idea of being photographed…just a little:

Suki is always acting like “Ms. Royal Highness,” and Prince Zuko wasn’t any different. It was a Royal Shiba meetup if I’ve ever seen one.

Zuko is a few pounds heavier than Suki. They’re both pretty large, at least as Shibas go.

I postulate that those triangle-heads are congruent!

After we parted ways, we walked a little further, and Suki found the nearest shaded area for herself…ah, the life of a Shiba.

Make sure you check out Zuko’s Blog!

27 thoughts on “Meeting Zuko the Shiba

  1. thank you so much for this. i really adore shibas and hope to have one one day. they are such beautiful, smart, happy (looking at least) pups! This Zuko is quite a handsome dude! You made lots of smiles at my home tonight!

  2. “I postulate that those triangle-heads are congruent!”

    LOLOLOL Best line in this post!

    But these are pretty much the cutestestest pictures ever. Such a fun meetup, even though they were pretty mellow the whole time.

    1. Hah! I took one look at the photo I took of the top of their heads and that’s the first thing I thought to say. I’m sure they’ll play even more next time πŸ˜‰

  3. Seems like they had a good time together. I guess I’ll need to come here for my fix of Suki photos since I haven’t seen any recently on Instagram!

  4. very nice!! zuko and suki look so awesome together. they truly are royal shibas! i’m glad they got to meet and you were there to photograph them.

  5. Jonathan and Bridget (aka Suki’s people): πŸ˜‰

    Thank you for the amazing photos! I love the triangle comment too. Several times that day I was tracking Zuko at the dog park only to realize it was Suki I was watching the whole time. We will plan another date soon, when the weather is cooler so they can be Royal Monsters and play!

    This was such a fun meet-up. Thank you again!

    1. Definitely glad we found each other and finally arranged a meetup! For sure we need to get these shibas together again for more crazy antics. Your video cracks me up every time I watch it. I think it’s the music…so perfect haha

  6. I have to agree that these are really great looking Shibas. I have been an admirer of Suki for a while; she reminds me of my boy Rusty. I’m curious to know how big “pretty large” is – Rusty was tall and weighed about 30 lbs. A much more solid dog than the petite Shibas you usually see (like my female black & tan).

    I thought I should also share a couple suggestions for allergies, since Rusty was a major sufferer. Malaseb shampoo (may need to get it from a vet) worked really well – much better than expected. Eventually, the ONLY thing that truly made him itch-free was cyclosporine. I usually see people refer to the brand Atopica, but I used Gengraf, which I could get cheaper at Costco. I was so happy to see his beautiful coat return, and no more scratching. Sounds as if Suki’s allergies are not quite so bad, but they make for a miserable pup no matter what.

    You can see photos of my big boy here if you’re interested: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dhtSIc5UzsQ

    Thanks for sharing Suki (and now Zuko) with all of us – always makes me smile.

    1. Thanks for the comment! Suki tends to be larger than most Shibas we meet. In fact, She’s taller than many of the males we’ve encountered. She’s a healthy 24lbs, which is really reaching the top end as far as females go.

      Thanks for the suggestions! I’ll run those by the vet on our next visit. It’s true that Suki’s allergies are relatively minor this year, particularly because compared to last season, we got her to the vet much earlier and started treating it before it got really bad. Thanks for the link too! =)

  7. Omg! Are you sure Suki just isn’t cloned?!?!

    Great set of photos! They look like they are having a blast together πŸ™‚

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