New Basinji Foster Parent
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    Hello everyone, I am not exactly a Basinji owner, but I am fostering a Basinji for my friend right now. I found him at our local shelter, and couldn't believe what I was seeing. I knew my friend had always wanted a Basenji, so I called her and told her what I'd seen. I offered to fos-adopt him for her, since I am driving up to see her next month. She happily gave me the go-ahead, so Cody came home with me that same day 2 weeks ago. He has never evidently been in a car or a house, so he is learning about house and car behavior. I may have to crate him on our way up to my friend's to his forever home. I don't think he's ever had a dog friend to play with either, because my little Shiba Inu, Zorro, tries to engage him in play, but Cody doesn't seem to know what to do. He always looks so serious. Is that typical of Basinji's? Cody is VERY active and into everything. I think at this point, he thinks his name is CODY, NO!! But he's very loveable and doesn't take offense at being corrected. He just waits till later and tries it again. I gather they are much like Shiba Inus in their behavior–more like cats--they don't come when you call, or do anything else you want them to do unless you have a treat. He doesn't seem to be at all dog aggressive, because my Shiba is an alpha dog, and they get along fine. Thanks for any tips people can give me. He's adapting to my house fairly well. I contain him in the livingroom when I'm home, and then at night he's leashed to the foot of my bed with his little bed, food and water. He's much better now that he's gotten used to our routine at home. The first week I had him, I was tearing my hair out!

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  • Congrats on the new foster. Bs can be a lot of work, but it is so rewarding to have them. This is a great forum. There are some great people with some great advice. Sounds like you're doing pretty good so far though! Keep up the good work!

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  • That's very nice of you to adopt Cody for your friend. He may just be adjusting to your home and doesn't feel at home enough to play. My dogs didn't really play until about 2 weeks after they got there. He'll figure it out soon enough :)

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    Hi Petrie, I think I know you….:) I am the one who will be getting Cody in about a month, so he will have to go through adjustment all over again. I'm curious, too, to know why he's so serious.

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    Petrie, is Cody doing well with not peeing/pooing in the house?

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    Yes, it is me. Cody is doing well on his bathroom habits. He wet on Zorro's bed the first night he was with us, but has had no other accidents in the house. One time he thought about lifting his leg on something in the living room and I yelled, NO! He thought better of it and went along his way. Other than that, no problem. He'll probably have to learn that again when we get to your house.

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  • Basenji Mix

    Welcome to the Forums Petrie. How wonderful of you to help little Cody. Sounds like you're doing a wonderful job - since after all you got thru the 1st week. :D Kudos to you and JeepJeep for saving the life Cody came from. I'll bet once he has proper and continued training, he will become your prized pooch in no time and give you continued amazement with his own Basenji humor. ;)

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  • Congrats and Good Luck!
    basenjis are great, most of the time:)
    My Squiggy always has a serious look. My family jokes that if he was a person he would be very studious and wear a sweater vest and glasses and would sit his own study and smoke a pipe while reading books.
    -Yeah, my family is a bit nuts…You should hear the "voice" they gave him.

    How old is the new one?

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    Cody is 4 years old. I hope he learns to play more–does your Basenji play? He loves affection and when he wants to be loved, he taps me with his paw. Of course when my Shiba Inu sees him getting affection, HE runs over and pokes me with his nose. A co-worker has a Shiba also, and her Shiba pokes with her nose when she wants something also. Do all Basinji's tap with their paws when they ask for something? He rarely makes any noise--sometimes he does a little noise that sounds like a baby crying. Once though, when he got his head stuck in my picket fence, he screamed like a stuck hog!

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  • Squiggy is 4 also and he plays. Maybe yours didnt get socialized to play? I bet he comes out of it once he gets settled in and comfortable. Get him a stuffed animal and see if he "guts" it. Squiggy does that and then plays with it. We also play the hugging game, where i stand up and say "Im going to hug you" and he gets down and runs around real fast and low to the ground. and he will stop and I will lunge at it again…and he could do that forever. -OK, quit picturing that and laughing:)
    I have never had a dog tap before and Squiggy does that all the time. He also digs, mostly in the bed before he spins and lays sown. But it is like he is digging a hole to china! he is very quick at it:p

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    That's so funny about Squiggy digging in his bed before he lies down. Cody does that too! He's dug some of the fluff off his bed from his ritual. Both the tapping for attention and digging in bed must be breed traits. They are such characters, Basinjis. Between Cody and my Shiba, they keep me laughing. Their behavior is very similar, which is strange considering they have such different countries of origin. I'm glad I had my Shiba, because he prepared me for fostering this Basenji. I haven't been quite as blown away frustrated as I might have been. I took them to the dog park Sunday, and Cody was so beautiful when he trotted across the yard, almost floating. Then he would stand at attention and look so regal. He likes Zorro, but looks confused when Zorro runs around him, doing the play bow and trying to engage Cody in play. I think Cody was just left all alone in a yard with no other dogs and very little training. I guess it will take him a while. Maybe I'll take toys with us to the dog park this weekend, and see if I can get him to play.

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  • That's so funny about Squiggy digging in his bed before he lies down. Cody does that too!

    That is a TRUE TRUE Basenji trait :D :D We like to say that all B's gather in China for their daily basenji meeting LOL LOL

    but looks confused when Zorro runs around him

    It sounds like Cody may giving calming signals. Does he turn his head to the side?? Maybe a couple of yawns?? Or maying drops his nose to the ground kinda looks like he's sniffing?? These are all calming signals. It could just mean that he's feeling a little anxious in the environment & wants to let the other know that he's trying to chill out & they should let him chill out.

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    Yes, Cody drops his head and sniffs the ground when Zorro tries to play with him. Sometimes he looks off into the far distance and Zorro races madly around him. It's kinda funny to watch. Eventually Zorro sighs and gives up. Is that way of communicating "Chill out" a Basenji thing or a dog thing? I am learning more about the way dogs communicate, having been a cat person for years.

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    I have learned to give my rambunctious border collie Jenny calming signals when we go outside. She wants to jump up and down in front of me and grab my shoelaces and zip around crazily. I learned on my own that if I don't look at her, but look off in the distance as if I see something far away, she will leave me alone and go running ahead of me as I do my chores. So it must be a dog thing, not just a basenji thing. Petrie, I love your stories of Cody and look forward to meeting him when you come up! I'm going to try to scan the photo you sent, and let the basenji people see him.

    Christy, I like your description of Squiggy as a studious fellow with a pipe. How funny.:D

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  • Dogs have their own language and they give their own signals…the more in tune you are with your dog the better you will understand what your dog is trying to tell you.

    Check out www.dogwise.com

    I really like the DVD "The Language of Dogs" and a book by Turid Rugass "Calming Signals"

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  • I also really liked the Language of Dogs DVD. Sarah Kalnajs who made the DVD also does seminars. I attended one this past February and it was great. Her website is http://www.bluedogtraining.com and has links to her seminars and the DVD.

    I have not had a chance to read Turid Rugaas' book yet but hope to pick it up soon.

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  • You'll really like it. It's short but very informative. I've also purchased her book on "Help My Dog Pulls" and it seems to be helping us very much. Dogwise was at a dog show so it was great to preview the items :)

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    Thank you, everybody, for the tips. I'll get that DVD. I'll also get that book about dogs who pull too. Cody and Zorro both are pullers. Cody is VERY strong too. That will really help, I think. You're right about knowing your dog. I've had Zorro, my Shiba Inu, for two years now, and I know how he thinks and can read his behavior. Cody is different though, so I'm never sure if it's a Shiba thing, a Basenji thing, or a dog in general thing. Do Basenji's tend to be picky eaters? At first, Cody was, but now he looks foreward to dinner and cleans it all up. He also has a "saddle of coarse, lighter-colored hair on his back that I thought was a "winter" coat, but he's not seeming to shed that. I don't know if that's normal, or if his coat suffered from being kept outside all the time. I have no idea what he was fed before I got him. I read that Basenji's have problems sometimes with sensitive tummys and skins. His skin is beginning to look better already, but he still has that funny stiff-haired saddle.

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  • @Petrie:

    He also has a "saddle of coarse, lighter-colored hair on his back that I thought was a "winter" coat, but he's not seeming to shed that. I don't know if that's normal, or if his coat suffered from being kept outside all the time. I have no idea what he was fed before I got him. I read that Basenji's have problems sometimes with sensitive tummys and skins. His skin is beginning to look better already, but he still has that funny stiff-haired saddle.

    Squiggy has longer harder hairs on his saddle, but they are dark (normal for him) colors.
    If it is lighter and looks cotton-y it is probably his undercoat. can you pick out tufts of them?
    If you can, I could on squiggy when he blew coat, get a shedding brush. It looks like a metal loop with little metal teeth (not really like a brush). You can brush him with that and it helps TONS. I just got him finished the other night and he now looks sleek and handsome.

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  • Are you ever going to send us a picture of this little guy?:)

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  • This is the season that Basenjis blow coat… so not surprising that he still might have the long dead hairs... and if he was not on a good diet or left outside, it might take a while.
    Yes, some Basenjis have sensitive tummys, but most do well on quality food....

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