Why do Basenji's fight with each other?
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  • J

    Hi,
    I have two Basenji's, both females that grew up together so I think this is the only reason they don't fight… Whenever we are at the park and my younger girl sees another Basenji she goes nuts. If its another female... big fight. If its a male, possible big fight. Sometimes I and the other owner have tried to "let them work it out" but that doesn't always go so well. I'm just wondering if there is a proper way to introduce two Basenji's to reduce the chances of a fight. I'm jealous that the Pugs and Corgi's get to have their own play days at the parks here in San Francisco. They are all getting along and having a great time. I can't imagine a Basenji play day, it would be like a horror movie... Screaming, fighting, biting, scratching, dirt everywhere, crying and all the humans running off in the other direction.

    How do they manage mating?

    Jason

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  • Not all Basenjis are like that, but some certainly are! Of the five I have owned, two were good with all other dogs, one was same sex aggressive, and the other two basically hated every other dog they saw! It does make me wonder a bit about whether this is a genetic issue, because mine were all under my management, and yet I had different outcomes. I would think in Africa a dog that didn't get along well would end up in the soup pot sooner rather than later, unless it had some outstanding qualities that outweighed the snarkiness. Certainly there have been lots of pictures posted on this forum featuring groups of Basenjis that were obviously getting along with each other. I should add that the two of mine that were very dog aggressive were also the prettiest! (maybe a vanity problem? ;) )

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  • Jason, the problem with dog parks is that people want their dogs to be little humans who need to play with other children and get along. While some do, dogs/wolves/canids in general developed only with a pack.. outsiders not welcome. In a pack, you don't like another one, you can fight or one move on (not uncommon!) and find another pack or go it alone. Some dog parks make separate fenced areas for small dogs, some allow you to sign up for an enclosed area where just your dog(s) or you and a know friend(s) dogs play off leash. But simply open dog parks imnsho are far more dangerous than they are beneficial to most dogs and definitely for ANY dog with ANY dog aggression.

    The second problem with dog parks is that even if you have a dog that gets along with others, folks come in with dog aggression issues that can ruin your dog or hurt others. If your dog is not very dog social and safe, be a good owner and keep your dog out of the park. It really is that simple. If having a dog that likes the dog park is part of YOUR need, maybe you can adopt a golden or something.

    As for your 2 getting along because they were raised together… no. It may help, but you'll hear from scores of owners who will tell you that it MIGHT help but very often does not. As is said here often, it works til it doesn't. So be prepared that one day you may wake up to a dog fight and you'll have to keep your 2 separated. That is simply life with basenjis.

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  • U

    In New York City, we have a meetup group of more than 100 Basenjis/owners. We hold monthly meetings at local dog runs and usually have an attendance of about 6-12 dogs. These dogs get along with one another and thrive in a dog run full of other dogs.

    I think urban dogs do have to find a way to identify with a wider number of dogs and that for many the dog run is respected as common ground. I have met Basenji owners in New York who report their dogs do not get along with others. At the same time, there are many who enjoy the company of dogs (Basenjis and others). Our B will stop on the street to meet nearly every dog she sees. She visits a dog run twice a day and sees three other Bs there in the course of a week. You'll see her photos below including two from her daily park visits.

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  • There is a play date in the East Bay…. and they have lots of Basenjis... you just have to get past the initial meet/greet..... lots of noise... and just get used to it....

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  • There is a group in FL with basenjis that get along… of course many of them came from the same rescue/pack. But if a dog is dog-aggressive, that's kind of the end of it, you can't make them.

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  • K

    When we go to a basenji meet with Lela and Binti, there is a LOT of growling, howling and lunging BEFORE they go off leash. After that, they are fine, big fun all around. We make sure we meet in an open space with lots of room, so that each individual dog can do their thing. Lela is just running around for hours with the pack, Binti will stay closer to me after a while. I find, the less space to manoeuver, the more difficult it gets.

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  • One thing that stands out in these responses is that larger numbers seem to actually help the situation. Perhaps large groups of dogs remove the tendency to focus on just one, and therefore lessen the likelihood of a serious dispute. The "distraction" factor at work. ;)

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  • I believe that Basenjis are naturally leash aggressive, more so than so other breeds… I have over the many years seen and watch my own snarl, growl, snark at other Basenjis on leash... let them off leash and different situations

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  • I agree with Tanza. There is definitely a strong tendency toward confinement/leash aggression in this breed.

    Watson loves other dogs as long as he is off leash and not restrained. On leash he is a reactive poop!

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  • K

    With Lela and Binti it depends. Sometimes I can chat for ages with an owner of one or more dogs on leash and all is fine. In other cases, something is triggered and hell breaks loose. I have not yet identified quite what exactly the trigger is.

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  • The on leash/confinement aggression isn't just this breed, it is common with all dogs/breeds. LOL on the "reactive poop". We introduce rescues/adopting dogs at a small enclosed area where they can be off lead.

    My concern is, as it seems to be unclear… if your dog is aggressive OFF LEASH, that is simply not fair to other dogs to have to be exposed to. Some dogs are simply not dog park dogs. My male rottie... he would let little dogs of either gender maul him with good humor. Bitches... they are all boss. But a mid to large male, neutered or not, he postured around and he would have fought. So, never allowed loose.

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  • N

    @jetred:

    Hi,
    I have two Basenji's, both females that grew up together so I think this is the only reason they don't fight… Whenever we are at the park and my younger girl sees another Basenji she goes nuts. If its another female... big fight. If its a male, possible big fight. Sometimes I and the other owner have tried to "let them work it out" but that doesn't always go so well. I'm just wondering if there is a proper way to introduce two Basenji's to reduce the chances of a fight. I'm jealous that the Pugs and Corgi's get to have their own play days at the parks here in San Francisco. They are all getting along and having a great time. I can't imagine a Basenji play day, it would be like a horror movie... Screaming, fighting, biting, scratching, dirt everywhere, crying and all the humans running off in the other direction.

    How do they manage mating?

    Jason

    Hi Jason, do you still live in SF? I've just moved in here and I have a Basenji boy, who is usually great with all girls (especially Basenji), though keep fighting with every thrid boy. We can make them meet each other, if are still jealous on other dogs getting along together really nice :).

    Maria.

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  • N

    @tanza:

    There is a play date in the East Bay…. and they have lots of Basenjis... you just have to get past the initial meet/greet..... lots of noise... and just get used to it....

    Hi Tanza, can you please advise where/when these plays take place in the East Bay? I've just moved in SF with my boy Basenji and we are looking for a company for our walks. Thanks in advance.

    Maria.

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