Hello Mike and welcome to the forum. First off, I want to say thank you for taking the time to do this research ahead of time.
Basenjis are a wonderful breed and I would never regret my choice. However, they are not for everyone! I have never noticed any doggy smell on dash and we rarely bathe him. If you are a very active couple in ways that include your dog they will probably be great. They are truely a unique breed and unlike any other I have encountered. I will answer your questions from my very limited experience with my own.
First, are basenjis really as high strung as they are made out to be? yes, Commonly called the "B-500" as they bounce off of the couch and run around the house at lightening speed.Do basenjis ever just cuddle up with you on the sofa?YEs, yes yes.Dash is a cuddle bug and must be within contact of you at all time. He sleeps under the covers and is on our lap or right next to us on the couch at ALL times
I've been told they shed very little, if at all. Is this true?This is the experience I have had
How are they with cats? I have 2 cats and Dash is great with one terrible with the other. Luckily she still has claws and they have an escape route to get away from himChildren? yes, Dash has been extrememly tolerant with only one incident and I am pretty sure it was my sons doing not his. However, my son was there first.Greggy was 5 when dash came along. But Dash is very tolerant to my neighbors 1 year old.
Are they relatively easy to train? Ha! If they want to be. They will outsmart you at every turn. Training has to be on their terms.How about house training?That is dependant on how consistant you are–not the dog. If this is a big concern I would reccomend a rescue that is already housebroken.
Do they really clean themselves like a cat?yes. I've also read that they have no "dog odor".
What is the price range for a basenji? (I know this will vary greatly). I think on other threads this was decided to be about 600-800. I live in southeast PA (Berks County) and work outside of Washington DC. Does anyone know of any breeders in either of those areas?Tanza gave you great advice on this one.
I understand that basenjis do not bark. In what ways do they communicate their needs and feelings?It ranges from full out screaming to nothing at all. Dash is silent. I think this is rare though.
Are they very up close and personal dogs or do they like to keep to themselves? Again this depends on the individual dog. Dash is friendly to others but not really interested. He will sniff people and then go on his way. He is only interested in 4-legged friends. Do they follow you everywhere and give licks all the time?Dash doesn't lick. I personally cannot stand that so I don't encourage it. He doesn't always follow me but he knows where I am.
Hope this helps. Good luck on your search.