Ruth - Moving to Michigan soon

Hi! I'm Ruth. My baby, Cooper, is a ~1.5 year old rescued basenji in black with a beautiful blaze and a cropped tail 😞 . We think his original owners thought he was a rat terrier and he parted ways with them to be a stray at the age of 6 months or so. We've had him for almost a year, and we're so thankful for anti-cruelty rescue groups that rescue dogs from shelters before they're scheduled to be euthanized!

I'm trained to be a high school chemistry teacher, but I've been working at a pet store. It's great for the discount, advice, and just being able to get puppy kisses all day. I have some interest in dog training.

Cooper is an angel as far as basenjis go. He does have severe dust mite allergies that manifest in skin issues. He only briefly ate shoes, and we keep all tissues and underwear away from him. Unfortunately, his stray days left him not really knowing how to play! He's made great strides in making a few doggie friends, but now he's in a rut of alternating between ignoring and shredding his toys. He seems to be interested in things that move on their own, such as RC cars.

Welcome Ruth. The shredding is normal. And aren't RC cars fun!

tissue shredding is a delight they dearly love

They will stop at nothing to get them. Watch your purse & pockets!

Little pick pockets!

Hi Ruth! Where in Michigan will you be moving? I live in Ann Arbor!

Basenji Mix

Welcome Ruth - Where and when are you moving to Michigan. I live in Livonia, Metro Detroit area.

Your baby Cooper sounds a lot like my Duke. He is a black/white 1.5 year old with a cropped tail (only 1 inch long). I don't know why it was done either because he was abandoned and found when 10-12 weeks old. I rescued him when I laid eyes on him. Please post some pictures - I can't wait to see Cooper.

@Barklessdog:

tissue shredding is a delight they dearly love

They will stop at nothing to get them. Watch your purse & pockets!

Little pick pockets!

I actually work at PetSmart. The little guy digs through my pockets to see if I've brought anything home. Usually he finds tissues (the ultimate prize!!!) or carries my schedule out to give to my husband.

He is VERY cute! I looked at his pics. But he DOES look a little more like a Rat Terrier to me, than a Basenji….but of course he looks A LOT like a Basenji! There is a line of Rat Terriers called Deckers that has a lot of Basenji blood in it.

It is hard to tell in the photos, but do his tan markings have stripes in them?

His tan parts don't seem to have stripes. They are a little mottled, kind of like a salt and pepper beard without the salt (does that make any sense?!?!). I assume you're wondering if those parts are brindle.

Interestingly, his tan parts have developed more over the last few months. He has tan just over his eyes, along his hind legs, but mostly through his cheeks.

Unfortunately, his allergies have been bad enough that his hair is very thinned out.

I know a lot of his photos (especially head on) make him look like a rat terrier. There is something slightly different about his head shape, and I think his coloring plays tricks with the shadows in the photos too. But he is very much a basenji in personality. Walks on his hind legs through the kitchen, steals any food/tissues/underwear he can find, yawns like a baby crying, has very selective hearing, will only obey a command if he finds something in it for him…

His tan parts don't seem to have stripes. They are a little mottled, kind of like a salt and pepper beard without the salt (does that make any sense?!?!). I assume you're wondering if those parts are brindle.

Yep, that's what I was wondering. It sounds like they are brindled. It's the eyes that look more terrier to me…and the set of the tail/topline...and the shape of the ears. But he is definitely got Basenji in him... particularly with the brindling....I don't think Rat terriers normally have brindling.

@Quercus:

His tan parts don't seem to have stripes. They are a little mottled, kind of like a salt and pepper beard without the salt (does that make any sense?!?!). I assume you're wondering if those parts are brindle.

Yep, that's what I was wondering. It sounds like they are brindled. It's the eyes that look more terrier to me…and the set of the tail/topline...and the shape of the ears. But he is definitely got Basenji in him... particularly with the brindling....I don't think Rat terriers normally have brindling.

Responding to myself. I looked again, and he could very well be a full basenji..the cropped tail throws me off.

Regardless, whatever he is or isn't, of course, you are welcome here!

I took a second look also. He has one of the older styles of Basenji heads, which throw a lot of people off. Shadow also has one of the older style heads. Very square, and cheeky (I guess that's the way to describe it). He very well could be full B!

I don't care what he is, either! I'm just so happy to have a dog with an independent personality, even if it means occasional trouble. He questions the world as much as I do, but he learns so fast!

Yay for smart, trouble making dogs with very little fur!

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Ditto 🙂

Yeah, I'll never go back to the boring life!!

Welcome…he is adorable!

Welcome to you & your little furry one 😃 😃

@nomrbddgs:

I took a second look also. He has one of the older styles of Basenji heads, which throw a lot of people off. Shadow also has one of the older style heads. Very square, and cheeky (I guess that's the way to describe it). He very well could be full B!

Cooper's head is shaped very much like my Tyler's head (Cooper is just beautiful). Tyler's head is much bigger and broader (also through the muzzle) than my last basenji. I always tell Tyler he has a Big Beautiful Head 🙂 Tyler is a rescue and is full basenji. I haven't really heard of the older style heads–I just realized Tyler's was different (even his daughter Zoey whom I also have) seems to have the same kind of head my Max did--more narrow with a more pointed muzzle. Can anyone share more info on the old style vs the new?

@MaxBooBooBear:

Cooper's head is shaped very much like my Tyler's head (Cooper is just beautiful). Tyler's head is much bigger and broader (also through the muzzle) than my last basenji. I always tell Tyler he has a Big Beautiful Head 🙂 Tyler is a rescue and is full basenji. I haven't really heard of the older style heads–I just realized Tyler's was different (even his daughter Zoey whom I also have) seems to have the same kind of head my Max did--more narrow with a more pointed muzzle. Can anyone share more info on the old style vs the new?

Narrow and pointed muzzle is not what the standard calls for (go to www.basenji.org and read the standard) Here is just a part of the standard regarding heads..
The skull is flat, well chiseled and of medium width, tapering toward the eyes. The foreface tapers from eye to muzzle with a perceptible stop. Muzzle shorter than skull, neither coarse nor snipy, but with rounded cushions. Wrinkles appear upon the forehead when ears are erect, and are fine and profuse.

So I would call that an "old style head" it is more the proper standard then narrow and snipy muzzle… and that is really not the new style, it is however in some bloodlines. My Mickii for example has a longer snipy muzzle and I would prefer it to be shorter and not as narrow. Of course males will have more jaw then the bitches

Pat, that's so bitches can get their noses everywhere they're not supposed to. I was talking to one judge and she said you don't see the 'older type', I guess it would be standard head, as much anymore.

I think heads are the most subjective part of the Basenji standard. You can see at least 12 different styles of head out there…and probably six of them are correct to the standard, but are different people's interpretation of the perfect head.

I agree with Pat, that there is no "old style" head. If you get to look thru some old photos of the original imports, and early champions in the breed..you will see a variety of heads, some more "correct" than others. I also agree with Pat, that I like to see a short, square muzzle...but unfortunately that often goes along (IME) with a level or undershot bite. It appears to be hard to continually breed for that shorty, cute muzzle, and not run into bite issues. And I don't like to see a head that is too blocky, or cheeky, and NEVER too domey....IMO a Basenji should always be elegant. Eyes are a big issue for me. Too big and too round gives more of a terrier look.

I should point out, that when I say "I don't like to see"..that doesn't mean that I literally don't like to see it...I love Basenjis no matter what they look like...but when we are evaluating stock with a critical eye, we use this term. It is kind of like art appreciation...an art critic can LOVE a good art fair...but formal art critique is different. 🙂

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