We recently rescued what we believe is a Basenji/Whippet mix. She is approximately 10 months old and smart as a whip but an absolute handful. :-) She has a HUGE personality, tremendous amount of energy and is both mischievous and hysterical. So far she hasn't been too difficult to train, except her biggest challenges are lunging and snapping at other dogs, jumping on everyone, and food aggression - all of which we are working on but it's slow. Apparently she came from a kill shelter in TX or NV. The more we get to know her the more we are seeing that her issues are fear driven, probably from lack of confidence. We are trying to learn more about both breed traits (our last dog was a lab mix and while very sweet, did not have half the personality or brain) and am looking forward to learning more on the forum. :-)
Welcome to the forum. Today is the first day I have seen your post.. the forum has not been working right for a while. Hopefully this new format will help!
Animal aggression in basenjis is sadly common. Sometimes the most you can do is simply manage them and not try to make them friends with other dogs.
Jumping on people, food issues, training put so simply you'll feel faint are found on the remarkable Mary Woodward's page. She has not only run a training school, but has owned Rottweilers, GSD and Borzoi. She has vast experiences and I think her email is on the pages.
Fear and lack of confidence can be two very different issues, one very much a temperament issue, the other helped greatly with experience and training. Hopefully the link from K9Deb will help.
I'm having trouble posting pictures, but I will keep playing around with it until I figure it out.
Thank you so much for the link, I will spend some time going through the website. I've been to a number of trainers and it's kind of like Goldilocks - some are too harsh others are too soft. I'm trying to find the "just right" for our dog. We have made some good progress with meeting other dogs and have been very lucky to have a number of good experiences lately. Our dog has an uncanny ability to sense whether another dog has any level of aggression or not. She thrives with older confident dogs that have firm boundaries or any dog with no agenda. The neighbors cat walked in our house the other day and I think our dog thought she had made a new best friend! Just like a little kid she would go and interact with the cat the come over to me as if she's telling me something and back to the cat again. It was fun to watch.
The food issue has improved a great deal. I started putting something special in her dish while she is eating and at first she was very protective so I just poured a little bit of broth and after a couple of days she realized that it's good stuff and I have since mixed it up with some of her favorite dog treats. She sees me coming and stops eating and sits down. I also get a sweet look as she eats some of her treat and there is no tension at all. It's a slow and steady work in progress.
This dog has a number of quirks and I don't know if they're breed related or just her. For example, she can stand on her hind feet for a very long time! We think she has some circus dog in her somewhere. Bounding like a deer is another weird thing she does. All fours - boing, boing, boing. Also, she loves to sit on people and always wants go be "touching" her human. The list goes on. :smile:
So glad things are going better! Sadly, if a cat walked into our house, Cara would try to kill it, so it's great your dog thinks it's a new friend :)
If you look for positive trainers, you should find ones who are consistent but positive in training methods.