Age of your basenji?

Congratulations on 17 yrs. I love my long, happy- lived basenjis. Boys usually live longer. My Sonny is a healthy 13.5 yrs. old. He was perfectly trained before given to me at a year old to be a companion to my Nana who passed away a few yrs. later at 18. It was his kidneys. Sonny remains intact. He's too old now for that stressful surgery. He is a beautiful R/W. Sorry I don't have a camera. Have to scour my email for photos that may have dropped out. You seem as lucky as I giving your basenji a long, healthy life. I find them to be a very healthy breed if well cared for.

@chrisf said in Age of your basenji?:

Thanks for the tips, she is 2 yrs old and is making progress. I think the one problem is my vets philosophy is to take her in a separate room from where I am. So I can't soothe her. I do like this vet however.thanks all. The peanut butter is ingenious.

It is YOUR dog. No matter the vet's "philosophy" it is your dog and your vet is disrespecting you and the fact they are putting your dog through dangerous anesthesia makes me wonder what manhandling went on to make the dog so distressed it is the only way to do it. Please, get a new vet or tell this one your dog goes NO WHERE without you other than surgery or x-rays.

“I think the one problem is my vets philosophy is to take her in a separate room from where I am.”

Honestly, find a new vet. I can appreciate some vets like to do this and it’s fine it it works. However if you have to sedate the dog, it is not working.

I took my dog a couple of weeks ago to the vets for his annual check up and bloodwork. (Everything came back excellent) :). The vet tech took him back to get bloodwork, two minutes later four of them brought him back in the room and asked if I could get a muzzle on him. We used to muzzle Suzy in the waiting room and even that was hard as she would bite the muzzle or your hand if you weren’t carful before the basket muzzle. It was all I could do not to laugh at them, never mind aggression lol, he is all upset and sulks if I scold him, which happens maybe once a year. I held him without the muzzle on and they took the blood sample without a problem. They were all amazed and said from now on they will have me hold him lol. He has never shown any signs of aggression, but he must have panicked going back there on his own.

I had another vet tech tell me with a prior dog that they “had” to take my dog back there to get a sample. For some reason I didn’t feel she was trustworthy from her manner. I changed the vets the week after. If they won’t work with you and don’t have the dogs interest at heart, then you need a new vet.

My first Basenji was prone to pancreatitis and during an outbreak one of the vets diagnosed it as a back problem. I brought him back as it was not improving, the vet stuck obstinately to his diagnosis. It took several visits before I got another vet, who then realized the problem and gave him Baytril, he got better within a day but after a week of suffering his pancreas was damaged and he became diabetic. Don’t risk your dogs health on an incompetent vet, some are amazingly good, others should not be practicing. You are your dogs advocate, using unnecessary drugs to get bloodwork is unacceptable.

last edited by Dagodingo

My Basenjis have varied from 12 years to just over 16.

Count me among those who will not allow the vet to take my dog into a separate room for treatment. I have always held my dogs for treatment and have never, ever muzzled them. No problems with biting or attempted biting.

@zande - Totally agree!

My first love was 11 when he passed but he had health issues. 😞 His hocks had fallen and he walked on "feet" - like a person. He also had a growth protruding from his rear that was most likely cancer; congestive heart failure too. UGH.
My current love turned eight in January and is healthy, has his smarts, chases squirrels, cats, deer, etc., and runs the B-500! I am thinking/praying he will live a very long life.
As far as muzzles - I used to have to put one on at the vet, but now he doesn't mind her poking and prodding. But being a typical Basenji, he growls at whatever displeases him - even if it's his mommy or daddy. That used to intimidate us with our first baby, this one we just say "REALLY?" and laugh.

My little "niño" has 17 years and 4 months! his paws are really bad for arthritis, I feel he is about to leave me, but I block those thoughts, I not even want to think how will be my life without him. ..:( ![alt text](image url)

last edited by Mariela

@mariela said in Age of your basenji?:

his paws are really bad for arthritis

Even at that age, I have taken a couple of mine for acupuncture. It doesn't hurt the dog at all, and an experienced veterinary acupuncturist can REALLY make a difference to arthritis.

At least talk to your vet and see if you can make the old darling's last months really comfortable. If your own Vet doesn't do acupuncture - he will surely know who does and refer you.

Good luck !

You can get a vet to help you to use vet wrap to help support his hocks. Be very careful to not wrap too tight, the idea is light support. He is amazing to live so old. Keeping him comfortable is important. Bromelain, which come from pineapple, may also help with the arthritis without giving him drugs.

+1 for acupuncture. I took one of mine for treatment, unfortunately didn't work for her particular problem (not arthritis), but I was amazed at her behaviour while the procedure was taking place. She was normally suspicious of strangers and didn't appreciate visiting the vet, but once he started with the needles she relaxed completely and actually dozed off for a bit. Won't hurt, could help.

@eeeefarm said in Age of your basenji?:

but once he started with the needles she relaxed completely and actually dozed off for a bit.

First time I took an oldie for acupuncture - he had developed lesions in the high neck and was in constant pain - screamed as he curled to lie down, when he got up, moving. . .

The Vet told me he would relax as soon as all the needles were in and he did - completely, I had to hold him in a standing position cos he just wanted to lie down !

He had three treatments the first week, and on the third trip, jumped out of the car and raced up the bank in the Vet's garden ! Thereafter once a week for the rest of the month, then once a month for a couple of trips and thereafter the vet left it to me to book him further treatments at need. None were ! Thereafter several of my oldies have been to the same acu-vet who sadly is no longer with us. But two others in the Practice I use are experienced and one has been working on Hoover recently to excellent effect.

The vet explained that acupuncture can't make 'engineering' changes - but it helps the body to promote its own cortisone thereby relieving pain and allowing the animal to relax so the body can recover.

I am a firm believer !

I do not let the vet or vet techs ever take my b out of my sight. I've been told they do this because they're concerned that the owner will pass out during a blood draw, etc. If you don't pass out, there is no reason for this. When I am a new patient, I explain that I have lots of experience and assure them I will not pass out. I find that tapping the top of the nose of my b while telling him to look at me during any procedure seems to help keep him focused. ("Look at me" is a command he had been taught while waiting for the okay to eat his food and it is very useful.) My vet and the vet techs trust me to be helpful during the exam.

@pawla Many vets claim pets behave worse with the owner there. I find that condescending to just assume every owner is an idiot. Sure, if an owner really is making things worse, but otherwise, no way.

@debradownsouth said in Age of your basenji?:

Sure, if an owner really is making things worse, but otherwise, no way.

Then and only then, should they be asked to leave ! My recent experience of having Hoover whisked away, shaved down one foreleg, and blood extracted - the perpetrator of this sin was a very new, very young, junior I had to see in an emergency. I have never experienced it before in all my years with Basenjis (and before that with Lurchers).


A huge study showed that acupuncture is precisely no more effective than placebos. Except for certain practitioners who clearly made a difference. Obviously, you found someone who actually knew what he was doing.

I wish they would fund vets and human doctors who have proven results and get them to train or write their methods down for others to learn. Sadly there isn't a "standard" method for where, size of needles, how deep, etc. That you found one who gave your dogs so much is wonderful.

@debradownsouth said in Age of your basenji?:

Obviously, you found someone who actually knew what he was doing.

Three, actually, Debra ! The retired Vet who espoused acupuncture when he retired from the Practice , worked from his own home and has since died, and now two more at the Practice have been trained in the art - probably by him. My dogs have benefited from all three over many years !

@debradownsouth said in Age of your basenji?:


A huge study showed that acupuncture is precisely no more effective than placebos.

Maybe for people. Not sure placebos would do much for a dog! (maybe if you told him it would make him feel better??) 😉


LOL actually they have looked at babies... and parents' expectations most certainly led to placebo effects. Our dogs read us extraordinarily well... if we think it will work and are relaxed, they relax-- and vice versa if we are negative about the treatment.

But they actually have done blood work for stress factors, looked at movement and guarding, etc with a lot of medications and supplements.

I don't seen any way on earth her dogs remarkable improvement could be placebo. It might have given a bit of a boost, but not to that extreme. I just find it frustrating that they haven't worked to help standarize acupuncture based on those they found were clearly way above placebos. I'd willingly pay for a list of those. Sadly the only person doing acupuncture for dogs (and horses) when my rottie was suffering was worthless. His life could have been extended a lot since he could not tolerate pain meds.

@zande said in Age of your basenji?:

Three, actually, Debra !

Please tell me they are training others to follow them.

@debradownsouth said in Age of your basenji?:

@zande said in Age of your basenji?:

Three, actually, Debra !

Please tell me they are training others to follow them.

They are youngsters (comparatively !)

I just wish they were allowed to treat MY bad back and knees ! I'd accept even a placebo if it eased them as much as it most definitely helps my dogs !

Talking of Placebos - we had a lurcher in the pre-Marvin, pre-Basenji days. He loved to ride in the car and was ALWAYS sick. He sat on the front passenger seat (he was a big dog) and I would put a pile of newspapers in the footwell. Each time he threw up, I'd stop, remove a load of sheets of paper, sigh, and drive on.

But then someone told me that with children, if you tied a length of chain to the back of the car, not too long but long enough to touch the road as you went over bumps, the kid wouldn't be sick.

I tried it with the dog - he was never sick in the car again. . .

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