Not knew to the breed but to the forum . I have had 3 basenjis and due for my next in a couple of weeks. All have been used for hunting and have taught me more with each dog . My last dog was the best to date as I have learnt enough about them to be able to train him to work and be trusted off lead and can't wait for the next to arrive and start the process again .
Welcome to the forum. I've had five Basenjis to date, only one of which was solid off lead. I would be interested in knowing your training methods. :) Hunting with them is something not many do, although in the past it was more common to find. It's nice to see someone using them for what they were bred to do.
Hello I first start out when their 8 weeks old in building their trust and letting them realise everything that's good comes from me. As I have always had a Weimaraner I use them as my teacher . I will tie the pup up and let it watch me put the Wei through its paces , this seems to frustrate the hell out of the pup as they want to be running free and get in on being praised by me . While going through this stage I put the pup through his paces at feeding time getting him to sit. Stay &I come to a voice command as well as a hand signal. When he has gained a good understanding of these commands I let him join in with the other dog and the competition begins on who is going to please me and get my praise. I feel that basenjis thrive on this and don't want to be left out of anything . I never walk my dogs on a footpath where everyone else walks their dog as there is to many smells to distract them . Instead I walk my dogs down the centre of the road on a lead with the dogs rear end just in front of my left leg while telling the dogs heel and praising them . A dog used for hunting is useless heeling beside you as taught in dog schools . It must learn to walk in front of you so as you can see him and read his body language. While walking them I give the sit and stay command and walk away with their lead still on them as if they break they don't go far as they hate dragging the lead. When they do this well I start doing it without leads . Most of the lead work is done at night as less distractions. I always praise the dogs when things are done well but never when not performed to my standard. . I should let you know I never let my dogs roam of chase , they are guide dogs I use them to wind scent and when sit and wait is employed I use them as a rader as they have the ability to use their nose eyes and hearing to pick up animals better than all other breeds of dogs . I also put an E-collar on the dog when they start out in the bush and I must admit they are brilliant . I have only ever had to push the button about 6 times in 25 years. Each pup has only needed about 2 corrections when they got the urge to chase something . The great thing is you don't get upset the dog remembers that It shouldn't chase or it gets a tingle and everyone wins . This would be the hardest thing to train a basenji to not do chase .but the e-collar makes it simple as basenjis remember all bad experience,s. I hope this gives you an an insight into how I go about training dogs ,I don't claim to be an expert but have had some pretty handy dogs that others would be proud to own.
You will find a lot of opposition here to e-collar use. I use one myself on my current boy, as a safety measure when I let him off leash. I can interrupt any chase with it, which is all I require. I agree they are an extremely useful tool, but as with anything else can be abused. Used sparingly, they make off leash exercise possible, which is a huge benefit. My very first Basenji girl was solid on recall, and I had her back in the '60s when there was no clicker training or e-collars. I trained her the same way I trained all my dogs. Praise for good work, punishment for disobedience. No question Basenjis prefer praise! But they also respond extremely well to food rewards and I do find clicker training very effective for teaching new behaviors. However, IMO there must be consequences for bad behaviour once they understand the rules, and not everyone agrees with that these days.
I hope you will post some pictures and let us know how your training is going.
Yes we all have our opinion but 6 times over 3 dogs in over 20 years I think is a good effort when my dogs had the pleasure of being able to run free. I to have a problem with e-collars and that is anyone can purchase them and the truth is you need to be of a stable mind to use it to get the desired result. I would also not recommend a basenji to most people as they wouldn't have the knowledge to be able to train and handle them so as they could be taken out in public. And anyone with money can purchase one that's why so many come up for re-homing. The funny thing is I could take my dogs anywhere off lead from the local park to a sheep station to the neighbours chicken coup we could sit on the hill 10 metres from feeding kangaroos with him not on a lead and I am sure he would not have minded the 2 tingles he got for the life time of pleasure. Funny people are against e-collars but most likely have a dog that has had its dew claws removed but that is ok because someone else cuts their toes off. Sorry for being so upfront but I hate being judged by people that have no right or knowledge of me and my dogs . When a international renowned dog trainer from the U.K comments on how well my basenji worked against top gun dogs I must be doing something right.
I hope you can see what he looks like Les ( basenji) is 3 months old and his big brother is Mac (Weimaraner) is 6 months old. As you can see Les just loves Mac and copy's him which makes my training a hell of a lot easier. He sit's well recalls to hand signal and will stay for me until 20 metres at present. I don't push him with anything I just let him do things at his pace . Having Mac for him to copy is my biggest asset. As you can see after a 30 yd track Mac was hesitant to get close to the deer but Les shows no fear , the pic was taken 30 seconds after we fond the hind as then I spent the next 3 minutes praising the pups.and start butchering. I will continue taking him up the bush every Saturday and take every deer they put up so as they learn what it is all about . So far they have given me great pleasure watching them learn to do what their ancestors did.
Yes my pups doing well , to date I have taken 3 deer off my boys and having trouble posting pics. Les is developing into a nice dog so much so that I got feedback for the dog groomer down the road who just happens to be a credited show judge that he is the best basenji she has seem . This put the lady she told nose out of joint as her dogs who were being groomed at the time both have Australian titles. He has impressed all that have seem him in the field as he works just like my Wei . They are truly two peas in a pod . The other day I introduced my Wei to water not to be outdone little Les followed him in swam the river and showed that he is a better swimmer than the Wei . I just may have one hell of a dog on my hands.