Basenji story from byb and happy destruction ending

Sana, not a puppymill basenji, but a basenji who was bred by an
uneducated I shudder to call this a breeder..oh, I know, intact dog owner..
Laura posted.. As it was
explained to me, her previous owner actually walled in his back yard and
turned a pair of African Basenjis that he was given loose to do what
came naturally. He "gives" away puppies when he can, and calls in BRAT
sometimes when he has too many. Even though the dogs were often nearly
starved and un-vetted, he manages to stay just on the right side of the
law since he doesn't "sell" them. But, since they're neglected and
probably never touched, the adults like Sana have a tough job adjusting
to a different life. It was thought that she might need to be put down
right after she was pulled, but Dana Cole fostered her and gave her a
chance. After she showed signs of being able to adapt, Dana put her up
for adoption and we were lucky enough to get her.
We decided to give her all the time and space she needed, and
it's paid off so well! One of the first things I did was to join a "shy
dogs" Yahoo group, and reading through the archives gave me both hope
and nightmares- I was reading about experienced dog trainers who were
still working on being able to get a leash on a dog after three or more
years of care, so I count us as lucky. It's been the type of adventure
that I never could have imagined, and I've learned SO much from both her
and the whole process. I can honestly say that I wouldn't trade her for
anything other than still having our Kima with us.

Laura's second post 2 yrs later:D

Now the good news…I'm overdue for Sana's two-year update, and shouldn't have been
surprised that she reminded me by being BAD <gg>. In terms
of "badness', Sana hasn't even registered on the charts since she's
been too busy learning how to relax, trust, beg for food, etc. On her
very first night with us, she managed to destroy my cellphone charger
and one of Bill's leather slipper. Otherwise, her "destruction" has
been limited to random paper napkins, occasional newspaper flyers,
hapless pens and pencils, and a few innocent-looking stuffies that
apparently needed de-stuffing. But, on Saturday....
Bill and I left home about 7 a.m., and apparently Bill
automatically closed the child-gate that we use to keep the dogs
either in or out of the bedroom. Normally, that wouldn't be a
problem, but this time Kirby was asleep on the bed (otherwise known
as the Place of Great Comfort and Safety). Sana, unfortunately, was
in the living room as usual. We came back about 11 to no visible
dogs, and immediately went looking. Kirby was sleeping cozily on the
bed and Sana was pretending to be a rock in her hidden bed in the
living room. But in the doorway of the bedroom were the remains of
the TV cable that had formerly run along the baseboard, firmly taped
down with duct tape. The duct tape was shredded and the cable was
thoroughly chomped in multiple places. Oh, my goodness! Sana had been
BAD while we were gone! Thankfully, Radio Shack carries replacement
cables, and we were able to laugh about this major breakthrough in
her behaviour! (Although the clerk at Radio Shack truly couldn't
understand why we weren't angry about having to buy a new cable. Not
a Basenji-person, I guess <gg>).
So, after two years, my scared little girl could express her
frustration at being shut out of the bedroom with an appropriate
Basenji response. Woohoo! She has come so far - even Bill can pet her
in bed now (but only in bed). She will come right up to me when I'm
talking to her, although I'm still not quite able to reach out and
touch her then (but I don't think it will be much longer). At night,
I now have to either curl up around her sleeping body, or shove her
over with my legs, and she won't race away in fear. At mealtimes,
we'll see a little starving-doggy dance as food is prepared, and
she's actually discovered a few foods that she'd rather not eat
(shrimp, most veggies, spicy sauces) -quite a wonderful change from
her original frightened "do you mean I can actually have food
AGAIN??!!" cringing. And once, she actually placed her paw on my leg
in an attempt to get a pizza-bone just a little faster. The cats can
still steal food from her bowl, but she's begun suggesting to Kirby
that he let her finish up his meals for him. (Kirby says "NO!", of
course). Walkies are still her second-favorite thing (after food) and
most days she'll let Bill take her out (as long as I'm not there).
Rachael visited for over a week not too long ago, with Katie
and their dog Asher coming for the last weekend. That was a challenge
for her, but she did very well. There were plenty of "drive-by
glarings", as the girls call them, and she made it clear that she
preferred to have the house empty of all visitors, but she was more
annoyed than stressed. Rachael had hoped that Sana would join her in
jogging, but that was not acceptable AT ALL. Any time she or Katie
took her leash, Sana's response was "OMG you're NOT MY MAMA!!!!
DOGNAPPER!!!!!" and she would strain every muscle to stay as close to
me as possible. And when I was no longer in sight, she obviously was
praying desperately for either divine or FBI intervention, counting
the seconds until she was back at my side, pressed against The Mama's
legs. (Sweet, but she could have used the jogging <gg>).
So, all in all, I continue to be delighted and awed by this
little dog's courage and sweetness. She's still extremely shy (and,
I'm sure, will never be "normal") but most of the time she is HAPPY
and usually alert but unstressed. She often dances as we leave for
walkies, and zooms around me in big circles at the length of her
Flexi whenever there is room. (And, I swear that she'll do her best
to wrap the leash around Bill and Kirby whenever possible, in typical
Basenji fashion). She loves Kirby, and is very gentle and patient
with him as he shows his age, and doesn't get nasty with the cats
when they decline to play "chase the kitty". Mealtimes are quick
parties (she still eats faster than any dog I've ever known!) and
nothing is sweeter than that deep sigh once everyone is in bed and
the lights go off. Her life is sweet, and she makes me want to both
laugh and cry on a regular basis.
Even when she's BAD!<gg>

Laura Whitney
Arlington, MA</gg></gg></gg></gg>

Awwww what a happy ending for Sana 🙂

This is the kid of story that delights me…here you have DESTRUCTION...and most folks would freak..but we b owners who have dealt with damaged dogs see this as progress...
We are the kind of folks who get the cameras out and share torn pillows and toilet paper down the hall and into the kitchen...

Rescue is often heartbreaking and often anger making, but this type of owner with these type of stories, well, it keeps me going...

Thanks for reading this...

I have been involved in Australian Cattle Dog rescue so I understand what you mean. It's heartbreaking to see what damage people can do to a dog by not understanding anything about the breed before they get it. I think people who have ACDs must be a lot like Basenji slaves. Every year we have a virtual award for the dog who did the most damage in dollar value. The mantra for ACD puppies is also " a tired ACD is a good ACD"

That is my motto for b's as well.
ACD…often smarter than their owners...which gets them into such trouble.
Wonderful dogs for the right owners.
Hugs for helping this smart, busy breed.

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