Hello, I’m new to this group and a new Basenji owner (2 days).
I adopted a 14 week old basenji female (we named Roo). My fiancé and I have both had family dogs previously but never had our own. We live in a condo, he works full time, I work part time and am in college (though I won’t be going back for a few months due to quarantine).
Overall, Roo has been an angel! She has been sleeping in her crate at night without a peep (only wakes up once to use the bathroom) she is in our room with us and let’s us know when she needs to go.
I have put her in her crate during the day (just while I’m showering and can’t watch her) and she screams and pees. How do I make this a more positive experience when we are gone? Unfortunately I can’t leave her to scream as we live in a condo with neighbors. I put a Kong in with her but she’s not very food motivated. I also feed her in the crate and give treats there tons of praise for going in alone.
Today, I tried leaving her (to take out trash and help a neighbor briefly) while she was on the couch and she didn’t even move!
Are your young basenjis destructive when left alone? How did crate training go?
Any tips in general?
Thank you! I really wanna do everything I can to make her life amazing. I love this dog so much.
Hello, I’m new to this group and a new Basenji owner (2 days).
Welcome to the Forum - Little Roo is very cute. As far as Basenjis being destructive - they can be (especially if bored) - it depends on the individual dog. Luckily my B has never been destructive. The worse thing I’ve seen her do is - if she’s mad at you - she’ll find something that belongs to you - bring it in front of you and violently shake it - it’s very funny. My B was crate-trained but I slowly left her alone by increasing the time increments. She has free reign of our house, access to the outdoors via doggie door and has never destroyed anything. My friend has 2 Bs that she always crates when they are not home. Her Bs can be destructive , go into the garbage cans, and try to “counter surf” - fortunately I’ve never had those problems.
BTW - this little dog will bring you so much joy and happiness! Congratulations!
Yes, Basenjis can be destructive, depends on the dog. And some cannot be crated as they get too upset. Especially with a puppy, if you are going to leave her alone, you need to "dog proof" the area where she will be, and it's probably wise not to give her the run of the whole house at first. Think about things like power cords she could chew and anything else that she can reach that would be harmful if she ingested it. You are taking the right approach, leaving her only for a very brief period at first. Your goal is to very gradually lengthen the time you are absent, so that she knows you are always coming back. Giving her a kong or similar to distract her is a good idea, or a puzzle toy with treats in it, anything that will keep her occupied. A condo is not an ideal location with a pup, as you probably know. Oh, and why not let her into the bathroom with you when you shower? She will undoubtedly want to lick you dry when you emerge!
She is soooooo cute! I'm in love.
You're right to be feeding her in the crate. Keep that up. You might add a blanket to the cushion so she can curl up. As she gets older, you can do crate games. I just did a search on YouTube and came up with several. I looked at the one by martinisranch and liked it. Take a look.
If she screams when you're in the shower, best thing to do is to keep showering and ignore her. Remember that you're always shaping her behavior and they are not dumb. So if she screams and you pay attention you're telling her that to get attention she needs to scream. If you don't pay attention and take her out when she quiets down, she'll learn that if she wants out she needs to be quiet. I realize this is easier said than done.
All puppies can be destructive and Basenjis are always the best! So you are well advised to crate her. The good news is that around two -- I know seems forever -- they usually grow out of the need to chew on everything and are usually fine out of the care.
She will undoubtedly want to lick you dry when you emerge!
And you will end up wetter than ever ! Screaming is indeed attention seeking and you are making a rod for you own back if you react. Life with a Basenji is a compromise so take her to the shower room with you !
I have said it many times - I do not tolerate destructiveness. I am bigger than they are and its MY house ! Find something - like tearing up newspapers - that she can 'punish' you with but that does no harm at all (beyond rendering the papers unreadable and that is no bad thing in these uncertain times) and make a song and dance over that. Scream, cry, Oh you bad, bad girl to tear the papers ! so she knows what to do to get a reaction out of you but anything else, ignore her pleas for attention.
I hate to think that these hunting hounds are crated too much. Try creating an open space that is hers, where she is free and you can learn to trust her. By all means feed her in the crate to get her used to it - in the short term and at night. But even at night, if she has a spot which she learns is hers, in your room, on a pile of blankets, don't cage her. She should be a free spirit. That cage looks ok now, but when she is fully grown, will she be able to lie out flat - Basenjis don't always curl up even if they mostly do - will she be able to s t r e t c h upwards ? If you have to cage her, make sure she has enough space.
And email me her details for the Basenji on-line pedigree database ! The site address is in my signature block and you will find my email address there. It would be a shame to miss having such a lovely lady among the 105,000 pedigrees already enshrined !
“ I hate to think that these hunting hounds are crated too much. ............She should be a free spirit.”
Agree completely! I understand that there are times a dog needs to be crated for their own safety and protection, but I agree w/ Zande that these dogs need their freedom too. I have friends that crate their dog 6- 8 hours a day while they’re at work - I think it’s inhumane. My B use to cry and look so sad when I put her in her crate - I couldn’t stand it - So I “de-crate trained” her. I am so fortunate that my B has the free run of our house w/out being destructive. She is part of the family and just wants to be with us. She even sleeps in our bed with us at night.
I want her crate trained for her own safety when she gets spayed or needs anything medically done. If she’s trust worthy I have no problem letting her roam the house.
She’s been doing well potty training, most times we make it outside or she goes on her wee pads. She hasn’t been doing much inappropriate chewing and when she does I redirect her attention with a toy so hopefully she learns what is ok to chew on.
My concern is the condo has regulations on barking and dog noise I can bring her to a family members house and do some training but I’m not sure it would have the desired effect at our place.
My concern is the condo has regulations on barking and dog noise
You may find that she doesn't howl when not crated (even when you leave the condo). Leave the crate door open in case she wants to be in there, but let it be her choice. Maybe you could set something up where she (plus her crate and her food/water bowls) are contained in the kitchen while you are gone(?) -- just an idea.