It is said that the name of “Shiba Inu” came from the middle mountain region of Japan. It seems that the local people have called small red dogs as Shiba Inu from a long time ago.
“Shiba” is brushwood plants that grows in fields and mountains of Japan and it is mainly believed that “Shiba” of “Shiba Inu” came from this plant’s name.
There are some opinions about why those dogs are named “Shiba” as below.
Because those dogs can go through “Shiba” very skillfully.
Because those dogs’ coat color is similar to dead “Shiba”'s color.
“Shiba” has other meaning as small. Those dogs are small so they are called “Shiba”.
In 1936, when “Shiba Inu” was designated as a natural monument in Japan, the name of “Shiba Inu” was used as official name. After that, the name was widely fixed to all over Japan.