Thanks for your replies.
You say Alpha and people automatically think Cesar Milan, alpha rolling, e-collars and correction based training. There is such a stigma with the word.
I guess the term "Alpha" was the wrong word to use because of the negative connotations that come with the word. Strong leader - I think that would be a better term to use.
However even in households where behaviors are molded through positive reinforcement, rules and boundaries have been established for which the dogs live by and follow, and while humans and dogs live in harmony and respect is given by both parties, the reality is that the humans are the ones in control of the situation. You are the leader, you are the boss, you are essentially in the in the alpha roll position. It just comes down to how you lead. Iron fist with negative punishment or gentle with positive reinforcement.
I know with my own personal experience, not only with children but with dogs, positive reinforcement and gentle redirection will yield better, faster, and longer lasting results than the iron fist with negative punishment approach. But at the same time I am the one in control. Everyone knows the boundaries, what is to be expected, and what is not tolerated.
There are all different types of breeds and breed personalities. There are some dogs which are mellow, easy going, and just want to please. There are the other dogs which are more active, curious, and they have a mind of their own.
Obviously approaches in how to handle these dogs are going to be different. While you are still going to use positive reinforcement you may need to take a more leadership approach with the more active dog with a mind of its own.
I guess my question I guess is, do you find the Basenji breed falls into that category, the category that you need to take a more leadership roll with your dog because of their "free thinking" personalities.
And from the answers it sounds like yes, with Basenjis you do need to take a leadership roll. One enforced through rules, boundaries, and respect.