Shikoku Ken

Shikoku Ken

With a fearless expression, and a strong well constructed build, this is a breed that exudes spirit. In June 1937, it was designated as a national natural monument under the name "Tosa Inu''. However, because this could lead to it being confused with the Tosa Fighting Dog, and the breed was also found in other prefectures, from around 1932 it was referred to as the Shikoku Ken.

Excellent Shikoku Ken had survived in the mountainous areas of Shikoku, especially in the heart of the Ishizuchi mountain range's Honkawa Village in the Tosa District, as well as in parts of the Hata region on the Ehime Prefecture side. Described as a dog "light of foot'', it is agile and has excellent structure. Its fore and hind quarters have an almost wild animal like spring, and this along with its deep, keen, penetrating gaze gives the breed an irresistible charm. Overall, they are intelligent dogs attuned to their owners, and behaving accordingly.

Standard Size


Height: 52m (49cm to 55cm allowed)
Weight: 17kg~23kg


Height: 49cm (46cm to 52cm allowed)
Weight: around 15kg-18kg

*Height: Measured from ground to shoulder

Coat Color

The majority of Shikoku Ken have sesame coats, which can then be classified as red sesame or black sesame. The color contrast of this mixture of black, red, and white hairs, which is unique to the sesame coat, gives the dog a complex and ethereal beauty not seen in other breeds.

Red Sesame Black Sesame

Famous Shikoku Ken

Kusu Go received the Minister of Education Award in 1936, followed by Goma Go in 1937, and Choshun Go in 1938. Although Kuma Go did not win the Minister's Award, he is included among these four legendary dogs, still talked about to this day, that represent the early history of the Shikoku Ken in NIPPO. It can be said that there are no Shikoku Ken today that do not owe their lineage to these four breed founders.

Kusu Go
Goma Go
Choshun Go
Kuma Go