Looking for my first basenji

Hello,

My name is Roxanne, and I live in Sacramento California. I am not yet a basenji owner, but seriously considering this breed. I have yet to meet the breed, but have connected with a nearby breeder willing to introduce the breed to me before I decide. I am very excited about the breed!

First of all, you have to understand that while B's can look beautifully angelic, they can be Holy Terrors. Please research the breed thoruoghly, understanding that they atre not like other breeds, they are veteran counter surfers, able to reach as far as a foot and a half back on counters to get something that they think they want. You have to always be on alert, trying to out think them, we call out 3 the Demolition Team, having eatten the upholstry from our living room sofa and love seat. But, then all is usually forgiven when bedtime comes around and all 3 slip under the covers to cuddle up to the 'old man', meaning me. The joy, and laughter far outweigh the times when you feel you should be angry at them. Just love them no matter what, and always keep a forgiving nature.

If you decide a Basenji is the dog for you, I suggest having a look at this website, they're doing a wonderful job! http://www.basenjirescue.org/

As stated above, Basenjis can be mischievous, destructive, and hard to train. However, not all of them are completely incorrigible! 🙂 Starting with a well adjusted adult from BRAT might be a good move, since unlike a puppy, with an adult it is more "what you see is what you get." There are some deserving dogs out there looking for a good home.

BRAT has many dogs, stand behind them, spend a while evaluating instead of revolving door before they have an idea about the personality. As a new owner, however, you need to read up on basenji health, including Fanconi. Brat does not and will not test for Fanconi. Sometimes they do get in dogs that have already been tested, so I suggest you look for those, or carefully read up and decide if you are willing to take on a dog with possible Fanconi. Medfly basenji rescue http://www.basenjirescue.com/ is in California. I honestly do NOT know if they test for fanconi, however, I suspect if you find a dog you are interested in, they would allow you to pay to have it tested before committing. Ask them

The other option is contact breeders about older puppies or dogs who have been tested that they want a home for. Of their fees are no more than adopting from BRAT, but you also have peace of mind about Fanconi.

My advice is only get a puppy if you have a lot of time to put the ground work in to get the best out of a Basenji. My Kaiser is coming up to 10 months old(had him from 10 weeks) so I am very new to the breed, I am home all day and have had the time to spend on his training and he has turned out to be more well behaved than I have read they can be. In saying that he is more destructive now than when he was younger and then again the destruction is minimal compared to the stories I've heard so am very happy with his development to date. If I was to get another B I would go for an adult as puppies are cute but are hard work and you get what you put in. Read and research everything about them and when you get one enjoy, they are a very special dog. I always have the feeling when Kaiser stops and looks at me he is trying his best to understand what's she going on about and it makes me laugh.

Jolanda and Kaiser

Thanks for all of the suggestions and BRAT recommendations, for this confirms that my search is on the right track. I have been watching the BRAT sight for a year now, and I am very impressed with the amount of information about the BRAT evaluated dogs. Now I don't want to adopt from any organization/pound that doesn't provide this level of information. I have definitely gave pause to the mischievous and destructive behavior inherent in basenjis, so I am looking for an adult dog that has had such behavior evaluated (and I am open to the challenge). The one thing I struggle with when considering a BRAT dog is determining what distance is considered too far to transport a dog. Many dogs don't like to be crated, so flying doesn't seem to be an option. I haven't seen any dogs available in California from BRAT, and I am afraid that I did not do a good enough job in my descriptions on the application (I filled it out too fast). I applied for a basenji in Washington that looked like a great fit because he demonstrated impeccable behavior, but there were several more applicants for that dog and we weren't even in the top 5 applicants (lesson #1…be very thoughtful in how you word things in an application). I have also been watching Medfly, but I have come to the conclusion that their location is too long of a distance to travel to see a potential dog...nor do they provide the level of information on their dogs that BRAT has spoiled me with. I am currently investigating the opportunities of adopting a retired show dog. Please let me know if you think this is a possibility to continue pursuing, and I would also be interested in learning what the cost associated with flying a dog would be.

Thanks for assisting me in my search!

Would you share with us what drew you to the basenji? And what sort of dogs have you owned/grown up with?

@stash:

My advice is only get a puppy if you have a lot of time to put the ground work in to get the best out of a Basenji.

This is a very important point. Puppies soak up knowledge….....good and bad.......like a sponge. They may manage to "forget" some of the good stuff, but bad habits once acquired are very hard to kick, especially if they are self rewarding, e.g. getting into the garbage. Vigilance in those early days pays off big time down the road. I have been extremely lucky with my Basenjis, but with the ones I raised from pups, being around when they were young probably had a lot to do with it.

What draws me to the basenji breed are the characteristics that sound too good to be true…low shedding, minimal grooming, their tendency to cleanliness, size, barkless nature (and I understand they are not mute). I am also intrigued by their intelligence, and the challenge of their independent nature. And the icing on the cake is their majestic beauty. I grew up with sporting breeds: golden retriever/Irish setter, springer spaniels, ****er spaniels, labs, mixed breeds, and my last dog was a German shephard. I also spent some time exploring the bloodhound breed, but I never became an owner (mostly due to life changes...I loved that breed sooo much). Most of those dogs were relatively easy to train (except the bloodhound...their desire to smell outweighed their desire to stay focused on training), yet they were also very eager to please. I could have my German shephard stay in a sit position, I would walk a few hundred feet away, and she would just keep her eye on me 'til I gave her the command to come. She would run straight to me when I gave her the hand signal, and she kept her focus on me the entire time...I have no expectations of this with a basenji, nor would I have a basenji off of a leash in most circumstances.

@agilebasenji:

Would you share with us what drew you to the basenji?

Excellent question!

Looks like your connection to Basenji Forums was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.