New puppy owner Questions

Hi everyone,

I’m new to the forums 🙂 so I hope I'm posting this in the right place.
I’ll be a new puppy owner this winter and I was hoping some of you could answer my questions. I would really appreciate any additional advice as well!

I’ll be getting a 12 week old puppy from a breeder (fanconi tests done for parents) and my first question is relating to the potty times. I’ve read that a 12 week old pup should go every 3-4 hours. I work part-time from home so I’ll be offering potty breaks very often. My question is at night. Do I set an an alarm and wake the puppy to potty? Or do I let him sleep? What is your experience with this, how long between potty breaks at night?

Many people mention how destructive their basenjis are. Do they usually behave badly when you are there or is this mostly separation anxiety related? Are they really more destructive than other breeds?

Exercise! This seems to vary from one owner to the other. Some say they walk their dogs 45 minutes a day while others say 2 or more hours per day. How do you judge if they’ve had enough exercise?

Does your basenji like to cuddle up at the end of the day or are they always aloof?

Thanks in advance! 🙂

@basenji_life - Hopefully your breeder has answered many of these questions? And hopefully other health testing has been completed.

12wk puppy should go every time wakes up from a nap, after play, after eating for starters. At night, I would wake up my pups and take the out to potty. But also I am a light sleeper so if they do wake up, I hear them (crate is in the bedroom) and take them out immediately. Do not make the mistake of thinking they will walk out by themselves, CARRY them.... otherwise they will get side tracked and pee where ever...
Basenjis are no more destructive then any other breed of pup. And I don't believe that it is due to separation anxiety. Remember a tired Basenji is a good Basenji.
Exercise and play are important, differs for each pup and their personality. Remember to exercise they mind as much as their body.
Sometime mine cuddle... sometime not...

@tanza Thank you for your reply 🙂 The breeder only tests for Fanconi. So no other tests have been done. Is that unusual?

Sounds exciting. I would never wake up a puppy so they could pee. Strikes me a looking a gift horse in the mouth! It's like waking a baby up to feed him or her. Let them sleep so you can sleep. LOL

That said, at twelve weeks they're used to sleeping with their littermate so being left alone at night will likely cause anxiety. I'd set up an enclosure in your bedroom large enough so they can have a sleeping area and an area to do their business. Some breeders use special materials for the relief area. If that's the case use the same thing as they are using. If they get up and you're a light sleeper you can take them out. Otherwise no real harm done. Basenjis usually figure out on their own that they don't want to mix sleeping and bathroom areas. Also you will need to prepare for the occasional accident -- they can get diarrhea. Your situation and your breeder's may not match up, so you may want to give them a treat when they pee or poop where you want them to.

On exercise, a twelve week old puppy has lots of energy but likely not able to sustain long walks. Just take them out as needed.

@donc Thanks for the info 🙂
any advice for the diarrhea you mentioned?

@basenji_life hips and eyes should have records too. Other breeders on here will let you know the sites. I think it’s OFA? Orthopedic Animal foundation or something. You want a well tested and healthy dog from a good breeder, not all are of the same standards. I found that out with my first basenji, he was from a pet store and was not very healthy throughout his life. I learned you do a little more research, find a good breeder and pay a little more at the start. Or you will likely pay much more when they are older and have health problems. At that stage, when you are attached to the dog, if you are like me...then you will pay and do whatever is necessary. In my case it ran over $10,000 so it makes the start look cheap and very wise.

last edited by Dagodingo

I wouldn't wake a pup to take it out, but what I did do is sleep right next to my second pup (in her crate) the first few nights. I am a light sleeper, so was aware when she would wake and took her out immediately. After those first few nights she slept with me, so I was very aware when she woke. I got her at 7 weeks (yes, early, I know) and in a couple of weeks she was house trained. I put it down to religiously getting her out, so she did not form any habit of going in the house. My first pup was 12 weeks and I crated her. Very few incidents with her, either, but I didn't start her sleeping with me until she was quite a bit older. (I learned, and with the second pup I made that step very quickly because it works so well!) My others were rescues, so came already housebroken, but both slept with me from the first night. Basenjis love to be with "the pack", even if their pack mates have two legs instead of four!

@dagodingo Thanks. I just checked on the OFA list and I did see tests for Fanconi and the eyes. But nothing for the hips. However I have met all the breeder's dogs and they looked very healthy. Would I be able to notice the hip problem you mentioned?

last edited by basenji_life

@eeeefarm Thanks, I'll make sure to keep the pup in our room at night like you said. Hopefully I'll notice the signs when the pup needs to go! I'm worried I'll sleep through but I'm usually a light sleeper so it should work out.

@basenji_life said in New puppy owner Questions:

@donc Thanks for the info 🙂
any advice for the diarrhea you mentioned?

Don't feed them for a half day or a day. They'll get over it soon enough. If it persists, which it normally doesn't, they may need some antibiotics. The problem is that puppies are curious and lots of things will make it into their mouths. They're faster than you are so even if you're paying attention they can snatch something and start chewing before you can react.

You should find out what the breeder is feeding him/her and stay with that at first. Even if it's not your first choice you don't want to change food abruptly.

Oh yes, and keep in mind that a half hour walk with a puppy will be a much shorter distance than a half hour walk with a dog. Everything is new and everything needs to be inspected! The puppy may also not be accustomed to a leash, so that may also take getting used to.

Rest assured that no matter how prepared you are it's normal to want to slit your wrists sometimes! 😉 Honestly if you keep them contained when you can't supervise them and crate them when you're out you can avoid 99% of the problems.

@eeeefarm My girl whom I brought home at 12 weeks slept in the Bed with me under the covers and between my feet. She slept soundly and when I woke up I took her outside right away. I crated my Dog when we were in the Car. She was a Houdini! I had a stainless steel Crate that she spent 3 hours pushing and biting and then she slid the top back and made her escape. After that, I never crated her in the House. She slept with me every night of her life. She was a good traveler and I took her everywhere including on the Train to work. She was so small when she was a Puppy that people were fascinated by her.

The vet will have to decide on the hips, and so next time a vet visit is required, like her regular shots. Some shots are relevant to pups, and some for the rest of her life. If the pup walks outside make sure her shots are uptodate.

Hello and congratulations on your new pup arriving this winter!

I never woke up my basenjis while they were sleeping at night, but definitely when you wake up, you will need to take your B outside immediately (or as soon as you can get a clothes, shoes and a coat on!). Also when your puppy has gone outside, give him/her big, big praise. Some people also have used a command like "do your business" when letting the pup outside to go --it is another reinforcement of the routine.

That being said, a puppy will have accidents in the house--don't fuss, just take the pup outside (to instill the routine of going outside to go ) and then bring the pup back in after a few minutes.

Nature's Miracle is a great product to use to clean up urine, it breaks down the enzymes in the urine and keeps your floors clean.

A puppy will play, play, play, then bonk! take a nap, then up again, play, play, play. Taking a pup out for a walk is the way the puppy will learn to walk on a lead and also learn about the world, so take your pup out often to explore the world and give him/her time to learn. I remember one time we were walking our pup and he just STOPPED and sat down--he had reached his limit! So we picked him up and carried him home. It is a great memory.

@basenji_life said in New puppy owner Questions:

@tanza Thank you for your reply 🙂 The breeder only tests for Fanconi. So no other tests have been done. Is that unusual?

A responsible breeder tests their dogs for not only Fanconi but for PRA (another DNA test for night blindness), Hips, Thyroid, Eyes. See the link on one of my Basenjis and the testing that has been done. https://www.ofa.org/advanced-search?f=sr&appnum=1415062

In regards to waking a pup to potty at night, my Basenjis (been in the breed since 1991) sleep in crates in the bedroom as pups. I have found with all my Basenjis, a quick wake up, quick potty, they go right back to sleep now without a full bladder. To each their own, this has worked for me, especially if you are crate training

last edited by tanza

@b5004ever thank you for the advice and sharing your puppy story 🙂

@basenji_life basically for a good breeder the tests are expensive, which is why a dog from a good breeder costs more. However in the long run it will probably work out vastly cheaper and the last thing you need is a sick dog. How much is your stress worth? That’s how I look at it anyhow. I agree with Tanza “A responsible breeder tests their dogs for not only Fanconi but for PRA (another DNA test for night blindness), Hips, Thyroid, Eyes. See the link on one of my Basenjis and the testing that has been done. https://www.ofa.org/advanced-search?f=sr&appnum=1415062”. For potty training I always used the potty pads, started with them in the main room and moved them to the kitchen door after they were used to them. Then once they are going outside regularly, no more pads. All three of my dogs were fast learners, Basenjis are fastidiously clean dogs lol. It’s also really important to praise the dog when they go outside and do their stuff, you can’t bluff them so be genuine! They also respond very well to rewards, some dogs are food oriented and others it’s play or walks etc. once you find out what motivates them, they learn very fast.

@basenji_life Try to get the OFA registration numbers for the parents as it will make it easier to find them rather than using the kennel name. Hope that I am not giving you information you already know but AKC registered names are not necessarily the same as the name their called (call name). My first Basenji, a show dog, had the registered name of Dune's Midnight Windsong. Her call name was Ella.

If you want to do more background research on your new pups pedigree go to the Basenji Pedigree web site and search for the kennel name: http://www.pedigrees.zandebasenjis.com/

Good luck! Puppies are little monsters.

Many breeders these days litter box train their pups, myself included. Hate using the pee pads or newspaper.... reason, you ask.... if you train pups to use these, anything on the floor that looks the same, they will pee on... they would not know the difference if the texture is the same.... love using a litter box....

My last B came to me litter box trained, and it was so easy. I had a litter box set up for him when I brought him home and he went right to it and used it. No accidents in the house. To transition him, I took the litter box outside where I wanted him to go and he used it there. After a day or so, I took the litter box up and took him to the spot and gave him the "go potty" command, and he got it right away. My current B wasn't litter box trained and it was much harder with her.

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