• Basenjis, I've found are very good with cats unless they run. Even if they chase them it's not to hurt them but an instinct to chase prey. It took my Basenjis about 9 years before they stopped intimidating and chasing my cat. You know that quick slight lunge to get the cat to run. As you can see my cat lived on my dining room table and still does only because they'd eat up his food. Now the cat's not even an interest other than a sniff of him when he comes in through the cat door.
    It was funny but when my blk/wht Nika was a puppy at 9 lbs she'd chase my cat who was 20lbs and the cat would run to the front door, would crouch down and Nika would just climb on top of him nibbling at his ears and the cat would be meowing in fear/irritation.
    I think it's a good combination myself.


  • Jazzy will chase our cats at any opportunity; she hunts them. On the few occasions that she managed to catch one, it certainly did seem like she was in it to hurt them. The cats now stay behind a gated area during the day {it contains two bedrooms, a hall, and a bathroom, so it's not a small space } and only come in to the main house at night.

    Keoki hasn't met the cats yet. I am waiting until we've gotten him a bit more under voice control. We introduced Jazzy right away when she was a pup, and that seems to have been a mistake. I'm giving him more time to mature and settle in before he meets the cats, and the intro will be slow and under controlled circumstances.

    I know several people have cats and Basenjis and they live in relative harmony, but it's been two years with Jazzy and she is still a monster.

  • Sahara loves to chase and bite my cats, especially the old one as she can't run really fast. I have tried everything to keep her off of my cat, she is an outside one. Sahara runs everytime she sees me with the waterhose even when she is not bothering the cat, she doesn't trust me with that water. haha!!!! If given the chance she will get my cat by the neck and pull her around the yard, she is only 7 pds. this makes me really mad, but what can I do. Sahara seems to have a strong prey drive and I think she would hurt my cat if given the chance. Lots of times I get the cat and put her in the garage or up high where Sahara can't get to her, I wish she would leave her alone.

  • I did a controlled meeting with the Basenjis and cat by getting down on the floor and sort of protecting the cat, stopping them when they'd get too jumpy. I'd let them get close to gently smell only and stopping aggressive behavior right away. After doing this numerous times the cat began to get comfortable and the dogs got so they weren't interested in chasing him.

  • yeah, tried that. The cat went BALLISTIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and never did calm down. It was like trying to contain a raging storm of fur and claws and wild eyes. I tried a couple of times, but frankly it seemed cruel to put the cat through that. She was terrified and didn't calm down for hours;hid under my dd's bed, and growled when anyone got near. I won't do it again.

    I did try putting the cat in a carrier, thinking she'd fuss and I could stop Jazz from paying attention to her, but that didn't work. The cat felt safe but reserved in the carrier and was quiet, and Jazzy completely ignored her, knowing the cat was inaccessible. That experiment was a flop.

    Unless Cesar Milan is willing to drive to Washington, I'm just going to accept that my Basenji {hopefully not both} will NEVER live in peace with the cats and keep them separated for life.

    At night, when the B's are kenneled, I know the cats come downstairs and hang out with Gypsy; they are all pretty good buddies.

  • It is funny when I got my first two B's, Maggii and OJ, Maggii could not have cared less about the cat.. OJ on the other hand was horrible… of course it didn't help that the cat (Prawn, long over the rainbow bridge and not from the B's)... was a woosey kitty... he had claws, but would not use them... When Prawn was sitting on the chair, OJ would grab it tail and yank... he was 8wks at the time, had Prawn just a couple of time swiped him... I think things might have been a little different... Prawn became the "upstairs" cat complete with his own kitty door and deck... that he could get from the deck to the fence and then the yard... Interesting too, as long as he didn't run they mostly left him alone... however running was a big no no.... and also interesting that our B's knew that Prawn was part of the house and god help any stray/feral cat that came into the yard.. they never did it more then once...
    My favorite Prawn/Maggii story is that Maggii would lay in the back of the yard and just watch Prawn walk down the fence, as soon as he got to the gate, she would run as fast as she could and throw herself at the gate... it would rock and roll and she would then sit and see which way Prawn would fall... it was pretty funny, but we did have to nail that gate shut so that she could do that....

  • Out of our six basenjis, only one seems driven to kill the former resident cat. He lives with my parents now. And he is not a runner, at all. And he is BIG…weighs as much as the dog...and has claws. None of this deterred her. The last time I tried to work with them together, he sat very still while she drove at him from all sides trying to urge him to run so she could chase him. Of course, the chase is what she wanted...but I have no doubt that the kill instinct would take over if she caught him after the run.

    The rest like to sniff the cat, and if it is a runner give short chase...but none get as totally focused and driven as she is. But that is the kind of dog she is.

    I think it is really individual thing with basenjis (and dogs in general). Some can chase a cat, and not get aroused to the point of danger, some can't. You can train the ones that are only mildly aroused to "leave it"...but the other ones...it is so hard to get them to actually hear you, because the arouse at the hint of a cat, IMO it is best for them to live in houses without cats; or as jazzysmom said, let them live separate lives.

  • My first Basenji, a tri color used to chase cats out of the yard or if she escaped out of the yard she'd chase them around the neighborhood. I never had cats until my exwife moved in around 1987 with her 2 cats. So the dog at that time was 12. It was a bit difficult as the dog went balistic at the sight of them in her front yard. One cat was 13 and the other was 9. It took some weeks to slowly introduce them. The cats stood their ground and swiped at the dog. So the dog stayed back so as not to get scratched. They got used to each other but the dog was resentful I think and did some urinating in some areas of the house or maybe she was losing bladder control. Not sure.

  • Dash is good with my old cat. He never bothers him at all.Granted the old man hardly moves anymore. But our other cat is fair game. I think with Dash is more he tries to dominate her. He is always humping her and biting the back of her neck. She has claws but never tries to use them. If she get overwhelmed she scratches the basement door to get away.

  • Jenny is just over a year old, and we got her at about 7 months (rescue). We have an older cat that is totally uppity and VERY vocal - even growls like a small dog - and we have two other cats that are sisters who turned a year in October '06. The cats, especially the pair, are accustomed to our lab-mix and have held their own with Jenny. Older cat kept her at bay with growls, and I would often calmly intercede and "protect" the cat to let her see I was there for her. Of the sister cats (long hair), one was already fast friends with our frequent rat terrier visitor and tolerated Jenny's advances. The other one smacked her so many times in the first 5 seconds of meeting, that for the next few months Jenny shook her head as if dodging blows every time they crossed paths. That was the first part of July '06. Now the older one gets respect (mostly) and the smacker still gets unexpectedly wild without provocation. The other cat seeks Jenny out for a game of chase, or will lay in the middle of the floor on her back and side (in a pinup girl fashion) and wait for Jenny to attack.
    I have monitored these interactions very closely and know for a fact that Jenny is not hurting the cat, and the cat - who has claws - is not hurting Jenny BUT it does look like Jenny is biting the cat's neck and the cat acts like she's clawing Jenny. Mostly the cat just lays there and when Jenny walks away, follows her until they start up again.
    Oh, the smacker is fluffy and white-ish and Jenny likes to get some fur from her tail occasionally. Sometimes she does this to white fluffy dogs too. 🙂

  • BillyK I imagine a hysterical scene in my head!! The pack sounds hilarious 🙂

  • This morning I watched Ally lay in the MIDDLE of the living room floor waiting for some action. I was again amazed/amused as Ally would spin on her back in a propeller-like fashion while Jenny went in for soft bites on the legs and back of her neck. Around and around they went. And when Jenny gets too rough or Ally has had enough, Ally just vocalizes, uses a little claw and her back feet to throw Jenny away. (Otherwise there is almost never any claws or yelps like there were when Jenny first came to live with us.)
    Also, if Jenny doesn't come back for more, Ally definitely seeks Jenny out to keep the game going.

  • ha ha!!! 😃 this is great senji play! This is exactly how it happens at my house!! Except with a boy & a girl you get a little girls that ALWAYS feels like it gets too rough for her…and then the yelling & snarkiness come out.

  • My girl terrified me about a week ago. When we got Lucy from the shelter, they told us right away that she didn't like cats. When we were filling out her paper work, it was right by where they keep the cats and I had to sit on the floor and hold Lucy in my lap because she was a barking mess…

    I live in an apartment complex where each apartment has it's own door to the outside. The lady under me has a cat that she lets out at night. For the first month, everything was fine. We never saw the cat at night, but Lucy could smell where the cat had been and went a little nuts... Then a week ago, the cat was waiting at the bottom of the stairs when we came back from our nightly walk. Lucy lunged at the cat, and the stupid thing ran UP the stairs, when that's where I live instead of running AWAY. I picked Lucy up, thinking that would be best, and walked up the stairs. The thought was that the cat would run past my legs down the stairs, and the dog would stay in my arms. Well, Lucy KNEW the cat was up there, and proceeded to bite and scratch ME to be able to get at the cat. I ended up dropping Lucy and having her shove me down the stairs in her attempt to get the cat. The cat ended up leaping off the balcony for her life. I got my dog, went inside, and my dog was STILL going berserk trying to get back at the cat. Lucy ended up in her crate and I ended up in the bathroom cleaning off the blood and counting the bruises.

    It scares me after all that. I HATE taking Lucy out at night alone now, because I know I can't control her if we run into the cat again. And there's really no way to avoid it- I HAVE to take the dog out to use the bathroom, and the lady isn't just going to stop letting her cat out.

  • Larka, that sounds terrible. I have never had a dog that insane about cats. What about walking with a muzzle on? Or at least putting it on when you get close to your house?

  • How about using a Gentle Leader or a Snoot Loop when you go out at night. It's not really a muzzle but it kind of works like one so that you have more control of Lucy when she goes into these fits.

  • I haven't thought of a muzzle, or a muzzle-type thing… I'm hoping to move out of this apartment in a couple months, so we'll be away from the cat. If I had kept her on the ground, I could have hung on to her leash or collar for dear life, but I had her in my arms. She might be small, but she's all muscle, and hard to control when she's freaking out.

  • I know aaaaall about that they're slippery little furballs & quick too!!

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