Basenji alone in large pen in garage?


  • We are considering putting a large chain link pen in our garage as a place for our 16-month-old basenji mix (3.9'W x 7.9'L x6'H with attached dog house).

    Does anyone else have experience with this type of accommodations for leaving a young basenji alone during the day?

    1. We live out in the country with far too many wild animals roaming around to leave him alone outside (deer, coyotes, even bears, etc, let alone simple squirrels and the neighbors' dog and goats). Plus, he could probably jump or dig under our 5.5' perimeter fence.

    2. He like to chew and destroy things inside (couch, coffee table, etc) so we don't trust him inside alone.

    3. A small "crate" just seems too small and restrictive.

    So, we are considering buying a large pen to put in one of the parking spaces in our garage:
    [removed affiliate link]

    What experience do people have with a young, single, neutered, basenji mix in a large pen in a garage alone for 8 hours (for us, this would be two days a week). When we get home, we take him into our large backyard for vigorous running and play.

    I hope to hear actual experience rather that theories or opinions.


  • Good luck with the pen. Also try leaving your dog problems to solve. Often when I’m leaving for a long period of time I will leave Doc taped-up cardboard boxes or tubes with frozen treats trapped inside and sometimes just an empty beer carton for him to destroy. Sure there’s a little mess upon my return but he never chews on my things.


  • I could use stronger language, but will stick with "pity the poor basenji who is left in a large cage alone during the day. " We had neighbors who left their basenji in a small cage in the basement while they were at work, and she chewed through the wiring. She also managed to chew through a couple of padlocks. Fortunately for her, they found her another home. Where do people get the idea that there is nothing wrong with keeping a dog in a cage for eight hours?

    How old was your dog when you acquired him? Did he have any training either from you from the previous owner?

    Do you have someone who could take him out for a couple of walks while you are at work? If that big cage is your only solution, please do a kind deed and let someone else adopt him.


  • @jholsing

    I don't know where you live, but unless your garage is climate controlled it might be too cold in the winter and too hot in the summer. Would it be possible to confine your pup to the kitchen? He certainly doesn't need the run of the house. That's what I've done for my dogs for years in two different homes and it's worked out very well. In my current home the kitchen flows right into the living room. I have an ex-pen across the opening, using a couple crates (I have 2 basenjis) and the loveseat on either side to keep the "fence" sturdy. But you can get gates of all lengths and configurations at most of the pet supply places. I also have beds in the kitchen for my dogs and access to one crate, but neither one will use it. I wish knew how to post a photo so you could see my set up.


  • @jholsing
    We had a female Basenji puppy our first, that we tried to crate her and she went poop in the crate every time we left her then run in it what a mess.
    So I went the the fence dealer and had a 10’ long X 4’ Wide X 4’ High pen in the garage with a heat duct in it
    Be sure to have a top on it. I didn’t lace the top tight enough at first, when we got home a opened the garage door out came the little B lol
    Good luck.


  • @jholsing said in Basenji alone in large pen in garage?:

    I hope to hear actual experience rather that theories or opinions.

    Other than the last reply above, you aren't likely to get many people who have experience with this because most Basenji owners would not leave their dog in the garage. In theory you might think it is kinder, but Basenjis like to see out, they like to be warm, and they like to be part of the household. You might want to experiment with a "dog proof" room in the house, somewhere that is light and preferably where your dog can see out. Alternately you might consider doggie daycare or a dog walker to help you out.


  • @jholsing said in Basenji alone in large pen in garage?:

    He like to chew and destroy things inside (couch, coffee table, etc) so we don't trust him inside alone.

    This is a clear indication that your dog is: a) not getting enough exercise, and b) possibly suffering from separation anxiety. Address those issues and you won't need to spend $400+ to confine your dog.

    What are you currently doing when you have to leave your dog?


  • Experience:
    I had 2 female basenjis that had to be separated - ALWAYS.
    One was easy, but in my mind I had to be fair and give each equal time not in the dog room (a sunroom on most house plans).
    On nice days, the troublemaker could be left outside if we knew we'd be home in a few hours. In our case, the garage was not an option. it was dark, no windows in the area where we would have her, and it was just so not welcoming to any beast to be in. I would never put a toddler in there, so certainly not my basenji. She was meant to be with her people, or other dogs.
    Our next idea was a pen we made in the dog room. It was 4' x 4', but before we left her in that, she showed us she could climb out of it! It was 4 ' high. So, we put a lid on it - 2 ex pens. The first night we let her scream. She went to each space on the side panels and bit them together - every one! Then, she did it so much, the next day I had to take her to the vet. She had worn down every tooth in her mouth, except 3, that he had to pull them out - all but 3! We couldn't leave her loose in the dog room because , unless she had access to her people, she was destructive.

    To be honest, I can't remember exactly what we did. I think it was a bit more time with us than the other girl - who didn't seem to mind that much and was rather embarrassed for the breed because of the way the other acted.

    The trouble maker was so much work, but I really cried when she was put down, at 17. I think she had a bit of OCD and other psychological problems - seriously, I do think that. I know no one would have given her the accommodating life we gave her.

    lesson - be able to go to plan B, C, D ,E, because these beautiful creatures will test to see how creative you are!

    I told people, when I placed a puppy with them, I don't place puppies with dumb people, you have to be able to admit that idea won't work, let's try plan B

    (the trouble maker girl was crate trained until she was 2, and then NO WAY)

    I wish you luck, and I suppose if it's only 2 times a week, it MIGHT be okay. You'll have to watch for any effect of not being able to see people at all for 8 hrs, will have.


  • Don't do it. Far too long for a Basenji to be left alone. Why can't you leave him in the house ? Set aside a room for him and make it a desirable place to be. But these are not kennel or crate dogs, they need to be with people in a home environment. Not locked in a garage.


  • I’m thinking not the best set up @ minimum a radio, tv, window, a walk.


  • Please do not confine a Basenji to a pen in the garage. This would cause high anxiety. It would be like you being locked in a room in a basement alone. I have to leave my two alone for times when I am at work and I would never even do this with just one as they have the company of each other. They have a separate hallway area in my house which is blocked off by gates on each end so they can see and hear everything in the house. If you cannot have a Basenji feel a part of your home you should not have one. These dogs are pack animals and need to be with their people.


  • I should also add my Basenjis have access to a 80 X 100 foot yard with a chain link fence. But I never leave them out when I am gone in case of severe weather.


  • @sherryk said in Basenji alone in large pen in garage?:

    I should also add my Basenjis have access to a 80 X 100 foot yard with a chain link fence. But I never leave them out when I am gone in case of severe weather.

    Be aware that some Basenjis see chain link as a ladder. Maybe yours do not, but one of mine could go up a six foot chain link fence in no time at all! Board is safer, with the support cross planks on the outside, not the inside. The buggers do like to climb!


  • @eeeefarm if it is loosely strung so the dogs don't feel confident in climbing it, even 3 or 4 feet high chain link will keep them out. Or in, as the case may be.

    After marauding hordes of Basenjis attacked my vegetable garden, creating havoc and eating veggies planted for the human family, I put 3 foot of loosely strung chain link and five gates which I picked up cheap as they had been made to wrong measurements. I didn't care what they looked like or what size they were as long as I could get in to harvest the crops and the Basenjis couldn't.

    The dogs have tried to get in over the years, but none has braved the swaying fencing


  • Not taking sides since I have no experience in this matter; just pointing out: @jholsing mentioned... he has a basenji MIX.
    His dog may be more tolerant of the suggested set up?
    However, 8 hours is quite a long time to leave any dog alone.

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