My 5 year old Basenji is biting new Basenji puppies hard

  • What can I do to about
    this. He is super aggressive, but never before. It's been 3 wks and not improving.

  • How old is the puppy? And this is pretty typical for an adult to bite a pup... lessons to be learned by the pup.

  • "puppies"... does that mean you have a litter? How old?

    For right now, until you get professional help, keep him away from them. If this is not improving, next bite could kill a young puppy.

  • @dennis - Also, is this biting of the pup when the pup is harrassing the older one? Or just if the pup approaches the older Basenji? Meaning is the pup pushing the limits? Have you talked to the pups breeder?

  • Agree with the questions asking for more details. Really not enough information so offer any suggestions. Might be something concerning or might not. Just depends. That said, as Debra says, don't leave them together unsupervised until it's sorted.

  • New Basenji puppies. Not related to the older Basenji. They just get near my older boy and he really gets aggressive. Pups are 3 months old. They do nip each other, but I squirt them and say "no bite". They are getting better and better, but my older boy doesn't want anything to do with the pups. It's really sad. He bit my pup and seemed to hurt her ribs and front leg. She would not let me touch her for a few hours, but playing all out today. Thank God. I'm now putting my big boy on a leash when we all go outside. He doesn't seem to be warming up to the pups yet. So frustrating. I'm being very consistent about the no bite for the pups. Older boy is being mean.

  • @dennis It would seem that your older Boy is more than a bit jealous. You have hurt his feelings with the puppies. He had HIS Pack (you) and now he regards the Puppies as a separate Pack. I would not leave them alone for a long time, it may never be safe for you to do so.

    Good luck!

  • Keep him away from the puppies (is this a new litter ?) unless you are close by. Older dogs do have to train pups - make 'em into streetwise kids - but some older ones also suffer resentment.

    You need to identify what causes him to bite and avoid these situations. Are the pups too 'in his face' and not letting him alone, are they trying to pinch his food or is it just jealousy ? Is this the first litter you have bred (I'm assuming you did breed this litter) and therefore possibly his first experience of puppies in 'his' domain.

    Is Mom still around ? Cos I'd expect her to protect her pups from this aggression.

    Give your older boy LOTS of one-to-one attention, try to rebuild his confidence and make him realise you still adore HIM and that these little interlopers will soon be gone (that is if you bred the litter and intend to sell the pups).

    So many questions, and so much more information you really need to provide.

    In my (considerable) experience, older dogs will tolerate and train pups. Mostly you get one 'uncle' who takes over the training when the pups are up on their feet. I take the barricades off the whelping box (in an alcove beside the Aga) once the pups are up on their feet most of the time even if they do fall over. Once they have the run of the kitchen the older ones join in games but make it clear when enough is enough and I make sure they get their rest from the invaders by returning them to the bed-box and putting up the barrier..

  • I got them all to go to sleep laying all together on the couch while watching TV last night, and he seems to be "tolerating" the puppies a bit more, but he reacts aggressively if they nip at him. I see some improvement, but going slowly. Your input is appreciated. I think he is reluctant to accept the puppies into our pack, but sniffing them more and more. Glad to see a little improvement. These pups were perchanced by a breeder for pets. I love Basenjis!

  • @dennis - Your comment that he reacts "aggressively" if they nip him is STANDARD adult Basenji behavior to puppies! He is teaching them and while you think that he is being really aggressive this may not be the case. Without seeing how he reacts I can only "guess", however I can tell you that with our litters, the adults will react immediately to a puppy nip or if they think that the pup is being out of line and they will make that puppy squeal/yelp. No harm no foul..... I have always said that adults teach puppies WAY more then humans can or do

  • @dennis - Not sure what you mean by "perchance" by a breeder for pets? Hopefully the sire/dam of these pups have been DNA tested for Fanconi and PRA among other heath testing that should have been done before breeding

  • Yes. Tested. Purchased means I bought the puppies. I meant aggressive by the big growl and then bite that makes the pups Yelp for a few minutes. Seems like too much to me. Maybe I'm being too cautious, but I don't want my puppies injured. He growls when they get close to him, unless the pups are tired and inactive. I hope I'm just being too protective. The adults bite seems pretty hard to me, but maybe the heavy growl that goes with it is just making me think it's too much. They all chased a mouse outside today and my older boy didn't pay any attention to the puppies jumping on his face as he was preoccupied looking for the mouse. So, normal or too aggressive? Hard to tell.

  • @dennis I respect folks who Breed responsibly but generally I am against buying any animal. There are so many Shelter pets that I regard buying a Purebred anything a Luxury. My Girl was the Only animal I have ever paid for. She was worth every cent, every chewed wire, shoe, Book and whatever you can think of. I adored her and when I lost her it felt like I lost my child.

    I would never want the responsibility for Breeding anything. I do research to find answers about endangered species because we are going to lose a lot of Species generally. There is the INTERNATIONAL Endangered Species List and it has some domestic Dogs and Cats there so I keep a close eye on that. I also am a Member of the United Nations 'League of Nations' for Animal Welfare. This is a NGO that is granted by the United Nations Department of Hygiene for Animals. The Agency is administrated in Paris.

    Good luck with your Pups and take advice from the experienced Breeders here.


  • I hear ya Antigone. Unfortunately, the last time I got a rescue Basenji, he was blind and the one before him also was rescued, but his bone deteriorated at 4 years old and he couldn't walk. Never found out what it was. Tested for everything, but all negative. I loved them, but want healthy Basenjis this time. My preference. I really love the breed. Thx.

  • @dennis - ? you purchased a litter of puppies?

  • Only 2 puppies. They are adorable and 100% healthy. I love them so much! The pups climbed the baby gate today and when I got home they were happy and uninjured. My boy was outside. The puppies can't get through the doggy door yet. I do see them getting along better. I think it will all be OK. Just being cautious. Better safe than sorry. Thanks for all your input. It is very much appreciated!

  • @dennis If there are Oppossums and Raccoons in your area do NOT let the Dogs eat grass.These animals carry a parasite that is transfered via the feces. In Horses it is called EPM and it is basically Horse Multiple Sclerosis. My 25 year old Quarterhorse had to be put down due to that. I now manage all of my Mares differently.

    If these animals are in your area and there is something going on with your Dogs walking such as walking crooked or losing the control of the hind legs then you can ask the Vet (Horse Vets have the most experience with this) for a test that is done in South Carolina only. I will have to go through my Vet Records from when I had to euthanize my Horse to tell you the name of the Company that does this.

    EPM mimics Lymes Disease and you should always have your Dog tested for Lymes. Lymes causes Cancer and it is a horrible disese.

    No grass eating if the wild animals are in your area. In NJ where I live we no longer have these animals because the State Department of the Environment kills them. They do this because we have the Headquarters of the United States Equestrian Team here and the Horses are very valuable. I Board my Horses with a friend in PA right across the State Line so that is how my Horse got the EPM. There is no point in moving my Mares back to NJ because they have all been exposed. Eventually it will kill them.

    I too would want a healthy Pup and if I were not so crazy about the Breed I would go to the Shelter and get a Dog from there. My Horses are always Owner Surrenders so I do not buy them. I am telling you this because it sounds like the Dog you lost may have been exposed to this Parasite.

    This is a relatively new developement in diseases in Canids. The Vets do not know it when they see it and the Small Animal Vets do not share information with Equine Vets. There is a crossover and the AVMA which is PRO Slaughter for Horses and their Cousins does not inform the Small Animal Vets about things like EPM. I think this will be changing because as more Dogs are exposed and it is not Lymes they will have to admit there is something else going on.

    Enjoy your Pups Dennis but do not let them eat the grass!



  • I'm in the desert, but the big issue out here is valley fever from a spore in the dirt. Had a dog die from that before. My neighbors dog just got it too. No way to avoid it. When they do construction out here, the dust gets stirred up and they AND humans breath it in and the fungus takes over. It is very hard to get rid of and the meds Fluconazol is really hard on the liver. Hope they don't get that. Workers are supposed to saturate the ground to prevent the dust, but it really doesn't stop it from spreading.

  • @dennis The Desert poses lots of problems. You may not have Lymes or the EPM that dogs get but a whole lotta trouble. I have zero experience with that environment having lived on the East Coast for all of my life. I have been to most of the US except for Alaska and Hawaii. I have no idea what to suggest but maybe you can get the Air Filters that Construction workers use and retrofit them to fit your Dogs. If you are clever with your hands you could make these yourself. The eyes get irritatted as well. How about Goggles? I know it sounds goofey but you have to solve these problems in your own way. Invent something and get a Patent on it!

    Best of luck!


  • Snake training is a must out here. The dogs have to be trained professionally to stay completely away from the snakes. Lots of rattlesnakes out here and thier enemy, the king snake. They don't hurt dogs. I recently heard if rat pnemonia that can spread to animals too. The desert is harsh, but Basenjis love the heat and hate the rain, so they are happy if they can avoid the bad critters. Have you heard of trantula wasps. They have the most painful sting of anything in the world. Journals say if you get stung, "just lay down and cry" so you don't hurt yourself more by running into something. Hahaha. They scare me, and seem to mate in my backyard every year. We all stay far away. Not poisonous tho.

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