In need of a little assistance

I have a male(unfixed) male purebred basenji named Diesel. My fiancee and I got him from someone in minnesota who assured us he was great with kids(toddlers, babies) etc and was very docile and that he was already trained. I did teach him the whole potty training thing but i've been trying for three months to get him to sit stay or even listen to me for that matter. He has started biting him and I hold no power over him except i'm the one he wants to sleep with at night.(He's not allowed on the bed.) I'm getting frustrated and need help. I'e looked over every forum, tried practically everything and nothing is helping.

😞

Have you enrolled in a training class?

How long have you had Diesel? Can you tell us what method you used or how you potty trained(house broke) him?

While this may seem a little off the wall, do you take him for long walks? What we mean by a long walk is a mile or possibly longer.

Do you intend on getting Diesel neutered?

I do plan on getting him neutered in June if it would help at all. I've had him for about four months. He was potty trained before but it was a new home with new smells and it was my error for not noticing his little dance. I now know his routine outside schedule. He gets walked about five times a day. A mile at a time.

As far as training classes go i've looked into them but whenever i attempt the dog listens to the instructor and not myself or he gets too excited about being by other dogs. I've heard that Basenji's are harder to train and I refuse to give up

How old is he? Do you know his brreder? Where didi you take the training classes? All trainers are not created equal.
My bs love clicker training

How old is he? My girl Pipet was great at potty training and the bare basics, as a 1,2,3 year old she was very bitey, not in a mean way, but those little teeth are and were sharp!! She was trained to the phrase…."BE NICE" and you need to say it with only slight force behind it as any more is considered a challenge. If she kept biting I would wrap my hands in a pair of socks and make it clear that with socks, it was play time, without, it was BE NICE or you get no attention. She learned VERY fast. Sit and stay are not in the basenji dialogue until they are at least 3 year's old in my experience though I know they are all different.

Pipet uses standard language commands, I taught her to come, sit, stay, by saying COME and whistling a distinctive 3 tone blast that is unmistakable. She was trained in a graveyard where she and I walk and she can run lose. As for sit, well "SIT" is the word and it just taes time and patience, but there can be NO other distractions. I say WAIT, no matter if she is 1 foot or 200 feet away she stops and freezes as long as I repeat the commands about every 8 seconds. This obedience only came with age though. Until she was 3 (now she is 5), she had to be on a leash with a harness, no collars as she would slip out of them with a single pull. AND UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES CAN YOU YELL AT HIM!!! A Basenji will not be backed into a corner under any circumstances.

Take Diesel away from the house to train him, my two have always learned the most when on long walks. This was true for my first Basenji (a male) and is now true for Pip. The biting should be cautioned by the BE NICE command as they react if you say OW! Because they do not intend to hurt the one they love.....but if he is young, I really suggest you go for the sweat socks and make it a game. Like the books say, Basenjis are like cats, they play like cats, they ignore us like cats and they sleep with us like cats. I let Pip be herself and demand that she also follow my rules and she is so good, so obedient now that I am amazed with every passing day. You can see her on Youtube under "Pipet the well trained African Basenji"

@Enigmatic:

I have a male(unfixed) male purebred basenji named Diesel. My fiancee and I got him from someone in minnesota who assured us he was great with kids(toddlers, babies) etc and was very docile and that he was already trained. I did teach him the whole potty training thing but i've been trying for three months to get him to sit stay or even listen to me for that matter. He has started biting him and I hold no power over him except i'm the one he wants to sleep with at night.(He's not allowed on the bed.) I'm getting frustrated and need help. I'e looked over every forum, tried practically everything and nothing is helping.

😞

I would look into clicker training. You need to refocus and using a training method you haven't previously tried could help a lot. A trainer might be useful, if they understand Basenjis, but I think a class isn't a great idea yet because there are too many distractions and you need to get the dog focusing on you. Basenjis aren't easy dogs to train, but they learn quickly. Think "cat in dog's body". They know what you want, but they need a good reason to do it.

Nipping and biting may start out as play behaviour, but should never be allowed or encouraged. Training an incompatible behaviour that you can ask for when he starts that will improve things (e.g. sit or down). In the mean time, if he is doing it a lot it might help to leave a short leash on him so you can interrupt the nipping whenever it starts. Be pleasant, don't be antagonistic, but don't let him do things that are forbidden, either!

First Basenji's

I had some similar issues with Cody when I first got him, but he was a few years older.

I took him to a vet the first time he bit someone because I wanted to rule out a medical issue, and he suggested having Cody neutered right away. That may help a little.
I also enrolled him in a training class, but he was too distracted by other dogs, so I found a one-on-one class with a trainer that had experience with difficult breeds. It does take a lot of patience to train a basenji. As others have said, clicker training works well. Diesel can sense your agitation, so staying calm and positive reinforcement are key.

Good luck and welcome to the forum 🙂

As already asked, have you talked to the breeder? What did the breeder say about "how" he was trained? You say he is biting now? Biting who and under what conditions? And is there a reason you have not had him neutered yet?

Do you feel like you have any control over Diesel? How does he behave on a leash Is he play biting or is it serious biting? When was the last time he went to a vet?

We have mixed feelings about training classes but we do agree you have to find a way to get your dog focused on you in order to make progress. Even in a training class, we feel the trainer should be teaching you how to train your dog and not teaching the dog directly. If your dog never learns to respond to you and your commands is it doing much good?

Is your dog Diesel food motivated? If he is, then maybe you can find a treat he really likes. If you find a treat he likes, then you can hold it over it back over his head and tell him to sit. If you are patient this will happen because the dog is looking up at the treat over his head while you are moving it backward. Sometimes you need to gently push down on their butt to give them the idea. When he sits, first pet then treat him. Repeat this no more than 5 times. Each time he sits Pet first, then reward him. Give this method a try over several days and let us know how it works. Once he gets in the habit, you will be able to get him to sit without giving him a treat every time. Concentrate on teaching him in short sessions and we bet you will find he is much more receptive.

I would recommend trying some one on one sessions with a good, positive trainer. I saw in your intro that you are in WI. I am in the Madison area and there are some pretty good places to train and many of the offer one on one sessions.

Attention is something that can be taught. Training is the key to teaching your dog impulse control as well. There are also some very good books and videos out there that may help.

I agree with other posters that trying clicker training and food based rewards with him might be a good way to start.
Here is an article about capturing a behavior since you mentioned having trouble getting him to sit you might try this.

http://www.clickersolutions.com/articles/2001b/capture.htm

Try giving him his meals by hand and make him work for it. Wait with the food in your hand until he performs an action (possibly sit). Praise him and give him the food in your hand. Continue this throughout his meal. If you persist with this until he is paying some attention and continue the hand feeding for at least a fortnight you will find him giving much more attentive. Continue his training from there with help if you can find a suitable trainer..

Wow, thanks for all the input. I myself am in Eau Claire area. He started out nipping my little brothers and now whenever I show dominance he bites me.

I've attempted to do some training away from the house but he is by far the most adhd dog i have ever met. Haha. Diesel wont eat out of my hand for some reason its like hes scared to?

As far as his previous owner it was a guy who had custody of his two grandchildren and was handicapped so i have no idea. He was around a chihuahua and Pomeranian i believe

Totally spaced on what else I was supposed to address. I cannot find a trainer to do one on one around here that isnt a complete wack job or even someone who knows what a basenji is.

Do you not know who his breeder is? Do you have his papers?

The previous owner did not supply them . I'm a little skeptical. He looks purebred but I could be wrong

Oh, I think clicker training is perfect for this dog! You can make your first project taking food from your hand. 🙂 Click/treat by tossing the treat at first, reward a closer approach, work with him until he touches your hand, then until he takes the treat from your hand.

Once you get that, work on something else, like sit, down, "place", etc. There is a lot of information on clicker training on line, but if you are stuck for how to begin, just ask. Lots of clicker trainers on here. I would work with him in the house in a room with no distractions, and I would work without giving him any direction or modelling. Just look for something you can reward, and use successive approximation until you get the behaviour consistently, then name it.

Any solutions to having him staying out of certain areas of the house? I know Basenji's are known to run so having him not leave his yard will be a challenge. Anyone have invinsafence?

@Enigmatic:

Wow, thanks for all the input. I myself am in Eau Claire area. He started out nipping my little brothers and now whenever I show dominance he bites me.

I am curious…how do you show dominance?

Dominance theory in dogs has largely fallen out of favor... positive reinforcement works much better 🙂

He knows the meaning of no and he gets angry like a child whenever i say no. Would it be possible for him to think I was his mate?
I dont hit him if thats what you're implying, i do agree that positive reinforcement is the best.

@Enigmatic:

He knows the meaning of no and he gets angry like a child whenever i say no. Would it be possible for him to think I was his mate?
I dont hit him if thats what you're implying, i do agree that positive reinforcement is the best.

No, I was not thinking that you hit him…I am sorry if I came across that way. It is merely that people have very different ideas on how to be dominant when it comes to dogs.

Watson is not a fan of being told no either... 🙂

They are actually quite aware that we are not dogs or pack members so to speak.

There are good books about behavior and training out there and also videos if you need something more visual. Look into stuff by people like Ian Dunbar, Jean Donaldson, Patricia McConnell just to give you a place to start.

If my guy gets nippy everything stops...I walk away and ignore him, if possible I will even leave the room on him. His bad behavior makes something good go away (in this case my attention).

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