dreaming of a Basenji girl... (ILM)

Thank you everyone!
I will keep you up to date on the hunt. 🙂

When I first got into the breed, Reds were dominate color in the show ring in California.... Tris were typically sent to the back of the line or totally forgotten about, along with Black/White. Then after a number of years, Tris/B&W/Brindles out numbered the Reds and the other colors were put up and dogs were judged on conformation, not color. However to this day we still have judges that are tagged "Red or Dead"... LOL. To some judges they look totally for wrinkles and the Tris/B&W/Brindles it is hard to see compared to the Reds. If judges judge the conformation and note the ear set they can see wrinkles as the ear placement is to be high on the head and they should be hooded. If you look at the illustrated standard, my Tri girl is featured showing a proper ear/head and you can clearly see her Wrinkles. In order for the most part, easiest to see these are Reds, Brindles, Tri, Black & Whit. Here is a link, see page 9 https://www.basenji.org/BasenjiU/Judge/Study/Illustrated-Standard-2012.pdf

Breeders strive for the "correct" Basenji as far as the Standard in addition to Temperament and most important Health. Breeders do have preference to colors and will breed accordingly to their preference.

You will hear people say (and I am one) the Tris are "wicked".. LOL... not in being mean, but testing you just about every step of the way and making you laugh... but all Basenjis regardless of color make you laugh every day.... I love them all, just lean to Tris and Reds.

When there are questions such as Color and DNA, go to a Breeder for information.. and one that is a member of the Basenji Club of America (www.basenji.org) these are the people that developed the standand over the years.
(obviously not directed to you CrazySenji as I know you get your "kids" from a responsible breeder... LOL as my litter 4 yrs ago was a sire from your breeder)

To elbrant: contact a breeder, you might find exactly what you are looking for...

last edited by tanza

At the last show I was at there days with no reds and when there were reds they were outnumbered but the other colors. I agree.. there will always be "Red or dead" judges. My brindle boy placed under one of them and I nearly fell over!

I 100% support breeders breeding for the colors they like but can't support people breeding based on color alone. You are right, there are FAR more important things than color!

@marcorilli I'm developing the opinion that pups vary in price based more on location and availability than other factors. There is a breeder in Georgia (USA) charging close to $2K; compared to a breeder in Michigan (USA) with pups priced just under $500. I would jump on a pup from the latter litter if it made sense. Bummer that I have to factor in the costs of travel (gas, food, and lodging, as well as potential air fare). By the time I got there I would be spending more to bring her home than I would to pay to the breeder for the transfer of ownership. sigh

@tanza You are right, Tanza... I hesitated to say it sooner as I didn't want to step on anyone's toes. DNA determines color mix - just like a dark haired man is less likely to father a red headed child (based on the 40 year memories of my high school classes). DNA/parentage is also going to affect dental/bone (structural) and fanconi (disease) issues/complications. Temperment, I think, is more of a learned trait. A pup spending their early days playing with an exuberant toddler will be more trusing than, perhaps, a pup who is exposed to a frustrated/angry teenager. [examples only - I was just trying to think of extreme opposites]

@elbrant - I disagree about temperament... 50 years ago Basenjis had horrible temperaments to the extent that judges in the ring were afraid to touch them (still today some of them are still around). Breeders made it top of the list to breed good temperaments... Of course early socialization and continued socialization if a very strong factor, but DNA for temperament is in fact true.

@elbrant - The breeder you talk about in Ga is NOT a responsible breeder... it is someone greedy for money, 2K is way out of line.. and one that would price pups according to what is most popular at the time. Across the US prices are varied on location and cost of living. In the West it is usually between 1000.00 and 1200.00....and it is expensive in California for proper Vet care/raising a litter, some breeders have different prices for show vs pet, I do not. It cost the same for a show prospect as a family companion to raise them. From responsible breeders, price are typically between 900.00 to 1200.00 across the US. Years ago I placed a pup with a couple in So. Cal.... the Mom of the litter had issues with my oldest female so I offered these people the Mom and the pup as they had been thinking of getting two. it was "buy one, get one free.. LOL" because to me the home and re-home was the most important thing. BEST decision I have ever done... So you just need to talk to breeders and what you are looking for. You are bound to fine something that will be the perfect fit for you.

last edited by tanza

@tanza I almost want to "agree to disagree" on temperament. I'm not sure that DNA is an excuse for bad behavior - it's too close to the "born a criminal" argument for me to be comfortable with it. I will suggest this though... perhaps in a focused effort to eliminate temperament issues, breeders chose sires and dams who were kinder, gentler, and better socialized. And, as a result, the litters from those pairings were handled more frequently and earlier, and the parents were better equipped (socially) to teach their pups how to fit into a modern household better. Those factors alone would strongly influence changes in the littermates attitude and that of their future offspring. Also, lest I forget... weren't those early litters often parented by dogs that were brought over from the wilds of Africa? Certainly, those particular dogs would not have been handled, stacked, or otherwise trained for the showring and would have found those situations to be "unnerving" at best - thus passing their fear and intimidation along to their litters? (If "Mom's" afriad, I should be too, right?)
I will have to continue considering the DNA vs Learned Behavior debate as I gain more knowledge to guage it with. For now, I will agree that it has been influenced by breeding, but not neccessarily genetics...

@elbrant - Breeding is Genetics? And of course proper socialization is necessary as much as breeding for good temperaments. Poor temperaments come from poor breeding... and my comment about early Basenjis and poor temperaments were Basenji born in the 60's/70's... but of course they come down from the original Basenjis that were imported to England in the 40's.

@tanza yes, breeding is genetics... isn't it? I mean, you are selecting sires and dams based on which attributes you want to carry on to the litter. Perhaps the last paring didn't have enough of a wrinkled brow... so you look for a different sire that has more pronounced wrinkles. Or one of the dams you were breeding started throwing Fanconi, so you remove her from your breeding stock. Or, there was a problem with hip displasia (or anything else). Aren't you then, breeding to manipulate the genetic makeup of your litters so they can be the best of the best.
Granted, you aren't working on the cellular level in a biolab. But aren't you still working with genetics through breeding? Or, am I overthinking this?

@elbrant - Not overthinking it.... just need to include temperament as part of the genetics. If you have litter that the temperament come out "sharp"... and a breeder can see that as early as 3 to 4 wks... you would not want repeat that breeding.
By the way, wrinkles come from the ear set, ears need to be set high of the head to get pronounced wrinkles. Of course it is easier to see in Red/White then in Tri or Black/White. Here is a link you should read https://www.basenji.org/BasenjiU/Judge/Study/Illustrated-Standard-2012.pdf

@tanza Thank you Tanza, I enjoyed reading that. 🙂

We may need to rehome our sweet Sophie as she just can’t be trusted with the cats and kids. She’s not aggressive, but the prey instinct can be a little scary. She seems to prefer women and would fair better in a home with a single person with no children or cats. Does ok with our other dog.

Anyone needing to rehome a Basenji should consider relinquishing said Basenji to a legitimate Basenji rescue. Depending where you are, Colorado Basenji Rescue (CBR) is in CO, Camp Basenji is in FL, and Basenji Rescue And Transport (BRAT) is nation wide.

@tanza said in dreaming of a Basenji girl... (ILM):

@elbrant - I disagree about temperament... 50 years ago Basenjis had horrible temperaments to the extent that judges in the ring were afraid to touch them (still today some of them are still around). Breeders made it top of the list to breed good temperaments... Of course early socialization and continued socialization if a very strong factor, but DNA for temperament is in fact true.

I've heard this before on this board, but it certainly hasn't been my experience. I got my first Basenji way back in the late sixties, and she had the best temperament of any I've owned. If you read about Veronica Tudor Williams and the making of the movie, "Goodbye My Lady", it's interesting to note that at its premier in England (in the 1950's) two of her dogs made a personal appearance and acquitted themselves very well with all the fuss and crowds. Pretty much all of the Basenjis I met when looking for my second one in 1975 were friendly with both people and dogs, and I visited breeders as well as going to dog shows. My second Basenji was wonderful with people and male dogs, not so much the females! I could trust her with my young nieces even when they treated her badly. My show girl that I got nine years later wasn't as reliable, and was dog aggressive, although good with people. Anecdotal evidence, to be sure, but it seems to me that logically village dogs with bad temperaments would have ended up in the soup pot!

Breeding for "friendly" can have very interesting results, e.g. the Russian friendly fox experiment.

" "in only a few generations, the friendly foxes were showing changes in coat colour," says Hare.

The process seems to be ongoing. "At the more advanced steps of selection, changes in the parameters of the skeletal system began to arise," Trut wrote. "They included shortened legs, tail, snout, upper jaw, and widened skull."undefined

Which suggests breeding for one trait, in this case temperament, can result in physical changes. So perhaps breeding for "show ring pretty" could be causing unforeseen temperament changes? My prettiest Basenjis have had the most difficult temperaments, for what it's worth. The ones that look more like the early African imports have had the best. Food for thought?

last edited by eeeefarm

@eeeefarm - Responsible breeders breed for all positive traits, health, temperment, conformation.......

I'm not doubting that at all, but I just don't see what you obviously have seen in regards to the early Basenjis having poor temperaments. Interestingly I recently read an article about someone importing a village Basenji from South Sudan, and "soft temperament and willing to please" was one of the things mentioned. Genetics can certainly play a big part. The old "nature or nurture" argument. I had three foals from the same mare, different sires, and all raised the same by me. Three totally different individuals! My concern is that breeding for one trait may have unintended consequences on another, and breeders do tend to want the lines that are winning.

@eeeefarm Talk to any old timers in the breed and they will tell you the same... Basenjis were known to have very sharp temperaments

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