Our New Male Basenji "Roo" and Our 4 year old Female Boston "Bonzo"

We are first time Basenji owners, we acquired our 8 week old "Roo" on Tuesday. I had recently lost my longtime (over 15 years) rescue, companion, (American Eskimo Dog "Snowy") and when at a pet store, met a delightful Basenji pup. I had always been interested in the breed, and after watching me interact with the puppy and doing some research, my partner Jason indulged me with our new addition. We thought about rescue, since both Snowy and Bonzo had been rescue dogs, but since Bonzo is older and somewhat territorial, we thought a puppy would be best for her. We contacted some rescue organizations, but the only one that responded was actually puppy mill, disguised as a rescue. We did not want to buy the pup at the pet store because of the puppy mill issues, so we found a nice breeder and Roo came home.

The first few nights were traumatic for all involved. Roo was so lonely for his littermates, and upset about being in a crate. He only seemed to sleep for two hours or so at time! He let us know as soon as he was awake that he wanted out of the kennel so he could go out. Jason spent almost 3 sleepless nights, and my sleep was disturbed as well. Jason has also used Bonzo to teach the puppy some manners and let the puppy know she is not his mother.

It is Day 5 and Roo is finally starting to settle down some. The more he eats, the longer he sleeps, so we are now getting some rest. Other things are going well too, Bonzo is starting to enjoy playing with Roo (in limited doses) and crate training is going well. We are doing everything we can to get Roo out so we can avoid him getting upset because he might have an accident in his crate. Even our Boston Terrier Bonzo wakes us up and lets us know the puppy needs to go out.

I am a little worried about his size but the vet does not seem to be concerned. We are working on fattening him up so he gets the roly poly puppy belly. While we want him to eat and grow properly, we really do not want to overfeed him. There seems to be some confusion as to how tall and how much a Basenji puppy should weigh at 8 weeks. Roo seems to be very healthy and has plenty of energy. Does anyone have any idea how big he should be right now? Is there a growth chart anywhere on line that shows height and weight for Basenji puppies relative to age?

Thanks
Jason and Miranda

Welcome to the forum! I commend you for not buying from a pet store & finding a breeder instead. Do you know if Roo's parents were tested for Fanconi?

We need/love pictures! 🙂

@ComicDom1:

I am a little worried about his size but the vet does not seem to be concerned. We are working on fattening him up so he gets the roly poly puppy belly. While we want him to eat and grow properly, we really do not want to overfeed him. There seems to be some confusion as to how tall and how much a Basenji puppy should weigh at 8 weeks. Roo seems to be very healthy and has plenty of energy. Does anyone have any idea how big he should be right now? Is there a growth chart anywhere on line that shows height and weight for Basenji puppies relative to age?

Thanks
Jason and Miranda

One thing to keep in mind if you have never had a B is that they are sighthounds. A lot of sighthounds are much leaner than comparative size terriers. I would say as long as he is happy and playful you shouldn't worry. My parent's Bs never were close to anything I would call "Rolly Polly" and has very small stomachs from the time they were very young.

@ComicDom1:

We are first time Basenji owners, we acquired our 8 week old "Roo" on Tuesday. I had recently lost my longtime (over 15 years) rescue, companion, (American Eskimo Dog "Snowy") and when at a pet store, met a delightful Basenji pup. I had always been interested in the breed, and after watching me interact with the puppy and doing some research, my partner Jason indulged me with our new addition. We thought about rescue, since both Snowy and Bonzo had been rescue dogs, but since Bonzo is older and somewhat territorial, we thought a puppy would be best for her. We contacted some rescue organizations, but the only one that responded was actually puppy mill, disguised as a rescue. We did not want to buy the pup at the pet store because of the puppy mill issues, so we found a nice breeder and Roo came home.

The first few nights were traumatic for all involved. Roo was so lonely for his littermates, and upset about being in a crate. He only seemed to sleep for two hours or so at time! He let us know as soon as he was awake that he wanted out of the kennel so he could go out. Jason spent almost 3 sleepless nights, and my sleep was disturbed as well. Jason has also used Bonzo to teach the puppy some manners and let the puppy know she is not his mother.

It is Day 5 and Roo is finally starting to settle down some. The more he eats, the longer he sleeps, so we are now getting some rest. Other things are going well too, Bonzo is starting to enjoy playing with Roo (in limited doses) and crate training is going well. We are doing everything we can to get Roo out so we can avoid him getting upset because he might have an accident in his crate. Even our Boston Terrier Bonzo wakes us up and lets us know the puppy needs to go out.

I am a little worried about his size but the vet does not seem to be concerned. We are working on fattening him up so he gets the roly poly puppy belly. While we want him to eat and grow properly, we really do not want to overfeed him. There seems to be some confusion as to how tall and how much a Basenji puppy should weigh at 8 weeks. Roo seems to be very healthy and has plenty of energy. Does anyone have any idea how big he should be right now? Is there a growth chart anywhere on line that shows height and weight for Basenji puppies relative to age?

Thanks
Jason and Miranda

Congrats on your new puppy. Who is his breeder? And as already asked, were his sire and dam tested for Fanconi? 8 wks is just a bit young for a B puppy to go to a new home, IMO…. as they get much more socialization and confidence to stay with their litter mates until 10 to 12 wks.. IMO. Also most breeders do eye test which are typically done on pups at 9 to 10 wks.

At 8 weeks, pups are not very big... and there is no real average to go by.. and while it is good to have a little extra weight in case they get sick, you do not really want a "rolly fat" puppy. And you especially don't want a fat belly.. which usually means they might have worms. You need to start now at good eating habits.. meaning when he is hungry, he will eat.. do not baby him. Use good quality food, put it down for 15 minutes.. and then take it away.. he will NOT starve himself. What is it about his size that has you concerned?

How much does he weigh?

@LiveWWSD:

One thing to keep in mind if you have never had a B is that they are sighthounds. A lot of sighthounds are much leaner than comparative size terriers. I would say as long as he is happy and playful you shouldn't worry. My parent's Bs never were close to anything I would call "Rolly Polly" and has very small stomachs from the time they were very young.

Thanks for your input, we will keep that in mind. We do know that we want to keep a definite waistline as he grows. We also understand that he is a sight hound, and he is very responsive to moving objects as well as unusual sounds. He seems to have a good appetite and his breeder sent him with puppy food. We are slowly changing him over to Eukanuba which is all I prefer to feed my dogs. This puppy was wormed and we keep a close eye on the stools. We have already discussed Fanconi Testing with our vet and plan to have our puppy tested regardless just to insure his status and health.

Jason

@ComicDom1:

Thanks for your input, we will keep that in mind. We do know that we want to keep a definite waistline as he grows. We also understand that he is a sight hound, and he is very responsive to moving objects as well as unusual sounds. He seems to have a good appetite and his breeder sent him with puppy food. We are slowly changing him over to Eukanuba which is all I prefer to feed my dogs.

Jason

Euk is not the best of foods there are better ones out there with less grains and fillers, especially many Basenjis have allergies to corn. So, if you see a problem, it may be due to the food.

Who is his breeder? What food did they recommend?

Congratulations on your new puppy, Roo is adorable! Where in Illinois are you? I am in Wisconsin, not too far away. It seems there are practically NO basenji owners around here!

@tanza:

Euk is not the best of foods there are better ones out there with less grains and fillers, especially many Basenjis have allergies to corn. So, if you see a problem, it may be due to the food.

Who is his breeder? What food did they recommend?

What I do not understand, is that if you feel that Eukanuba is not the best of foods, then why didn't you offer alternative suggestions instead of just putting down Eukanuba.

So far our puppy is not having any issues with the Eukanuba. In fact I have never ever had any issues feeding Eukanuba in the last 16 years. The first ingredient in Eukanuba is Chicken not corn, which means there is more chicken than anything else.

Since our Basenji does not appear to have an allergy to corn, Miranda and I are of the opinion that it would be unwise to assume that he does or will. This puts us in the position of having alternatives if an allergy should develop later.

This has been a recommendation that we have heard from many veterinarians over years. I will be 51 years old this month, and while this is the first Basenji we have owned, this is not the first dog we have owned.

Miranda has a degree in Molecular Biology from the University of IL, and has worked in a Veterinary hospital for several years in the past.

I do not intend to disclose the name of my breeder. I see it as unimportant and unrelated.

I would stay to stick with what works for you. People can debate forever on which foods they think is the best, but ultimately everyone has their favorites. I believe we are all responsible dog owners, and have the best interests of our dogs at heart, and we will do what works for us and our pet. Although they may not be the best of the best, that does not mean they are bad. I do not eat organic, perfectly prepared, best of the best food, but do I see myself as unhealthy? No, I consider myself to be a very healthy eater, and my body is fine, the food I eat works for me.
I know we each have our preferences, and I believe no one is wrong, we just use what works best for our situations.

@Jylly18:

I would stay to stick with what works for you. People can debate forever on which foods they think is the best, but ultimately everyone has their favorites. I believe we are all responsible dog owners, and have the best interests of our dogs at heart, and we will do what works for us and our pet. Although they may not be the best of the best, that does not mean they are bad. I do not eat organic, perfectly prepared, best of the best food, but do I see myself as unhealthy? No, I consider myself to be a very healthy eater, and my body is fine, the food I eat works for me.
I know we each have our preferences, and I believe no one is wrong, we just use what works best for our situations.

Thank you for your informative and intelligent comments. Miranda and I were starting to wonder if every decision we have made was going examined with a fine toothed comb. If that was going to become the case, we were ready to seek our advice elsewhere. It is our opinion, that intense scrutiny does not set a good tone for any forum.

I hope you stick around, this forum is generally very supportive and informative. I do get the impression also, that at times people do get scrutinized rather harshly, which I don't care for. However, even if the presentation doesn't always come off the best, I do believe the people on this forum do have good hearts, and are just very, very passionate about basenjis and their beliefs. And I have gotten countless amounts of information here, plus it always brightens my day to read the funny stories, and see the adorable pictures. I believe each and every person on here is a wonderful basenji owner, and I am glad to have found a forum where I can find so much information and entertainment about one of my favorite subjects, basenjis! 🙂

@Jylly18:

Congratulations on your new puppy, Roo is adorable! Where in Illinois are you? I am in Wisconsin, not too far away. It seems there are practically NO basenji owners around here!

Jylly18, we are 14 miles west of the University of IL. I bet if you do a search, you will discover there are a few breeders around in IL and the surrounding areas.

Here are a link I came up with.

http://www.bcosw.org/

There also appears to be several breeders in different parts of Wisconsin.

I will check out that link! When my husband I started looking for a Basenji, we originally started by check out breeders, which at that time I could only find out of state. I was pretty naive about testing, responsible breeders, etc. However, after thinkiing more, as a first time dog owner i wasn't sure i was quite ready for the demands of being a puppy parent, so we decided to go rescue instead. I knew nothing of BRAT, so we just looked on petfinder and came across Tosca, who was in the Dubuque Regional Humane Society. We drove down to pick her up the next day. It was interesting because looking back, we probably didn't do everything right, we only spent about 30 min with her before adopting her, and while i read up on the breed, I probably didn't know as much as I should have. However, I knew I would do what it takes, and luckily she adapted to our family great! Although she has typical basenji challenges, we have easily adapted to life with her, and we love her to death! Plus I feel so great having rescued her from the shelter. Looking back, I wouldn't do a thing differently!

@tanza:

8 wks is just a bit young for a B puppy to go to a new home, IMO…. as they get much more socialization and confidence to stay with their litter mates until 10 to 12 wks.. IMO. Also most breeders do eye test which are typically done on pups at 9 to 10 wks.

Thats interesting. What eye test are they actually doing on the puppies and what qualifies them to do it? What does the breeders eye test mean, and how significant is for a breeder to do this test you describe? From my reading this is the information I found.

Where can I test?: Only with a Board Certified Ophthamologists that are Certified by CERF (Canine Eye Registry Foundation)

@ComicDom1:

Thats interesting. What eye test are they actually doing on the puppies and what qualifies them to do it? What does the breeders eye test mean, and how significant is for a breeder to do this test you describe? From my reading this is the information I found.

Where can I test?: Only with a Board Certified Ophthamologists that are Certified by CERF (Canine Eye Registry Foundation)

The breeder takes the pupppy to an Opthamologist for the test…we don't do them ourselves.

@ComicDom1:

Thats interesting. What eye test are they actually doing on the puppies and what qualifies them to do it? What does the breeders eye test mean, and how significant is for a breeder to do this test you describe? From my reading this is the information I found.

Where can I test?: Only with a Board Certified Ophthamologists that are Certified by CERF (Canine Eye Registry Foundation)

Exactly, breeders take their pups to a board certified Ophthamologist for a check up at 9 wks, sorry if you got the impression that breeders were checking eyes. We are looking for genetic concerns such as Coloboma, juvenile cataracts, excession PPM. This is important to a breeding program and also to potential puppy owners. Basenjis with Colobomas or Juvenile Cataracts or that have produced either should not be bred. This along with the other health testing that responsible breeder do before breeding, such as hips (OFA and/or PennHip) OFA elbows, Patellas, thyroid, and of course Fanconi testing. Also eyes should be rechecked (by a board certified ophthamologist) for any changes especially PRA. This along with knowing the vertical and horizional pedigrees of the Basenjis that are being bred and what health concerns and temperaments are in those lines.

As far as food, I noted it was my opinion that Euk was not the best food, and that there were other foods out there that is better… especially due to the corn and the beet pulp. But again, it is my opinion. And there are many discussion on this list already about different foods.

@Quercus:

The breeder takes the pupppy to an Opthamologist for the test…we don't do them ourselves.

Thanks for your timely response. That is exactly what I thought! I just did not understand why the other post was made in regard to a breeder performing the test. I thought I knew better.

Thanks,

Jason

@tanza:

Exactly, breeders take their pups to a board certified Ophthamologist for a check up at 9 wks, sorry if you got the impression that breeders were checking eyes. We are looking for genetic concerns such as Coloboma, juvenile cataracts, excession PPM. This is important to a breeding program and also to potential puppy owners. Basenjis with Colobomas or Juvenile Cataracts or that have produced either should not be bred. This along with the other health testing that responsible breeder do before breeding, such as hips (OFA and/or PennHip) OFA elbows, Patellas, thyroid, and of course Fanconi testing. Also eyes should be rechecked (by a board certified ophthamologist) for any changes especially PRA. This along with knowing the vertical and horizional pedigrees of the Basenjis that are being bred and what health concerns and temperaments are in those lines.

As far as food, I noted it was my opinion that Euk was not the best food, and that there were other foods out there that is better… especially due to the corn and the beet pulp. But again, it is my opinion. And there are many discussion on this list already about different foods.

Miranda and I have read through all the health tests and concerns. In fact the quote I posted came from the website that contains all the testing information.

I was never confused about who did the eye tests. I knew who did them from my past experiences with other dogs of different breeds. What did concern me was your post implying that the breeder did them. We both certainly knew better.

I have to say, I find it bothersome that once again you are making a comment in regard to the quality of Eukanuba food without offering any alternatives. If you are going to break down a dog food based on ingredients ("Corn and Beet Plup"), then you ought to be willing to provide the percentages of these ingredients that this dog food contains, explain why they are bad, and provide an example of a food that you feel is a better quality. It does not really matter how many different discussion threads that already exist in regard to this. You are making your comments in this thread, and should respond to any questions in regard to those comments here.

Furthermore, if you truly wanted to be helpful, I would think that you would have already provided some alternative foods, instead of dancing around the issue.

@ComicDom1:

What I do not understand, is that if you feel that Eukanuba is not the best of foods, then why didn't you offer alternative suggestions instead of just putting down Eukanuba.

So far our puppy is not having any issues with the Eukanuba. In fact I have never ever had any issues feeding Eukanuba in the last 16 years. The first ingredient in Eukanuba is Chicken not corn, which means there is more chicken than anything else.

Since our Basenji does not appear to have an allergy to corn, Miranda and I are of the opinion that it would be unwise to assume that he does or will. This puts us in the position of having alternatives if an allergy should develop later.

This has been a recommendation that we have heard from many veterinarians over years. I will be 51 years old this month, and while this is the first Basenji we have owned, this is not the first dog we have owned.

Miranda has a degree in Molecular Biology from the University of IL, and has worked in a Veterinary hospital for several years in the past.

I do not intend to disclose the name of my breeder. I see it as unimportant and unrelated.

There has been much and frequent debate and discussion regarding food. Seems everyone has strong opinions. The important thing is to find a food you are happy with. I know that our breeder uses a food that some here disapprove of, but he's been producing high quality dogs with it for over 20 yrs. Sometimes, you just can't argue with success.:)
I also used to feed Eukanuba to one of my dogs. She was on the weight management food. At that time I had my puppy on Purina puppy chow, my adult B on Eukanuba, and my senior mutt on a different food. It was crazy trying to find space to store all the food bags, LOL, so I switched them all to the same food about a month ago; so far so good. They all look fantastic and are very healthy, active dogs. THAT is my concern, as it is for all of us.

The breeder name is often a source of curiousity on the forum because many here breed and/or show and have connections with other breeders and/or their dogs. Also, even for those of us that do not breed or show, we do find that many of our dogs wind up being related which is always fun.:D

@ComicDom1:

Thanks for your input, we will keep that in mind. We do know that we want to keep a definite waistline as he grows. We also understand that he is a sight hound, and he is very responsive to moving objects as well as unusual sounds. He seems to have a good appetite and his breeder sent him with puppy food. We are slowly changing him over to Eukanuba which is all I prefer to feed my dogs. This puppy was wormed and we keep a close eye on the stools. We have already discussed Fanconi Testing with our vet and plan to have our puppy tested regardless just to insure his status and health.

Jason

Very nice it's a great Idea to have the linkage test done. Though it is not a definite indicator, at least if you get a possibility for Fanconi you prepare yourself for the possibility by having time to more thoroughly research all your options. I can't wait to see pictures of your baby, and your old lady. how are they doing with each other. Good Idea to get him on the same food you feed your girl as soon as possible. I can't imagine having to deal with two separate feeding regimes long term. I only kept Zaire on her kibble that the breeder was feeding her for only like 2 weeks before I switched her over to Charlie's raw diet. Makes things so much more convenient to be able to just feed one diet. I am sure you are already planning on it, but please let your breeder know when you get his Fanconi testing so they can be aware of what their bloodline is doing genetically. Here's hoping you manage to get yourselves some good sleep over the next couple of weeks, again congratulations on your new baby. 🙂

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