Frustration: Basenji lovers must read

As I've mentioned before, I work at a holistic pet boutique and Shango comes to work with me. He's a very well-behaved boy and wanders the store, sniffs, investigates, and most importantly, greets customers.

Today, I had a very, very frustrating experience.

A customer came into work with her mother, the younger woman being about 30-35. Her mother just fell in love with Shango. She loved his look, thought he was very handsome and complimented the way he behaved and sat down in our store chair and petted him, all the while he's smiling that adorable basenji grin.

The mother keeps complimenting him and the daughter joins her at the chair and launches into a tirade about Shango. She said….

"I'd never get a dog like him, he's so boring. He's pretentious. He's too clean and he's annoying. How can he not act like a dog? He just sits there, emotionless. Is he even alive? Does he have a personality? I'd never get one of those dogs how boring are they? I don't like him he's too prissy. Ew, I'd never get one....etc"

ALL WHILE I'M STANDING RIGHT NEAR THEM HELPING ANOTHER CUSTOMER!!!

I was so sad, I felt the need to go and hold him and give him lots of rub-downs and kisses to make up for her. How rude is she!

I should have told her....

"He's not pretentious, he's just intelligent to know he doesn't have to act like a dog. Have a good day"

I was SO upset!

Are basenjis dogs? I enjoyed your story.

G

It sounds like this person has never been around a well-behaved dog before in public. She is probably used to uncontrolled dogs that jump all over you and slober on you and doesn't understand that is how they are supposed to act, basenji or not. Don't let all her negative energy bother you. It sounds like Shango was a perfectly well-behaved boy. 🙂

Clay

Ah but that is the Basenji. Giving the outward appearance of being boring, and easy to care for. Only the true Basenji lover sees them for what they are and loves them regardless. Shango knows this and so do you. This girl will never have the complete love of a dog, and will never know of the true joys of earning that love. Feel pity for her, but nothing more. She is not worth the effort. Shango already knew this.
I think Blaze has finally taught me "Senji-Zen"

If I had a nickel for everytime somebody said something insulting or incorrect about basenjis…. well you know.
That being said, (almost) everything that woman said is the exact reason I love basenjis so much. They are the perfect breed.
The clean themselves, don't bark their heads off at every single noise or movement, they make THE CUTEST noises, they're SO FREAKING SMART, they're so unique & different from the millions of labs & goldens, etc you see at the dog park (not that those aren't fantastic breeds!), I could go on & on. The only thing I disagree with is pretentious. Booger is very laid back & sensitive & sweet & Lola is the most sociable, lovable little animal with every person & animal she meets.
I'm sure every single person on this forum could go on & on about how wonderful our special breed of animal (I'm not entirely sure they are just dogs) is, but you already know every bit of it, and so does Shango. This poor woman doesn't realize that SHE is the one who is pretentious & annoying, being so inconsiderate & socially inept that she would say something so rude & hurtful. And she obviously has no depth or she would realize that dogs aren't stupid & do know exactly how humans feel about them, good or bad.
This has turned into a total rant... Off my soapbox. But don't feel badly. Just know that some people don't know better, and Shango knows how YOU feel about him, and that is the ONLY thing that matters to him!

Yes, they are that and more Andrew. Then, there's the other side of the coin. You know, holes in the furniture, laundry stealing, food stealing, thinking-smart (how do I open this door? Oh, that's how), toilet paper confetti, etc. This lady would probably never know how to handle the other half. Being a good boy is one thing, being bad is another. Maybe you should hang some "bad" pictures in your shop!

Andrew, you were diffently right on the rudeness but just realize there are alot of ignorant people out there. There are alot of breeds out there that I'm not particularly fond of but to their owners they are the perfect breed and I would never insult their choice of a dog. That also insults the owner. You are to be commended that your dog behaves so good,as all basenji owners know that is not a easy task. I am sure this lady and I use the term lady loosely is probably just as rude with everything . Perhaps she should just learn to keep her mouth shut. If that was her mother with her, she should have been embarrased by how terrible her daughter was acting

That just burns me up! People are so rude. I would never ever say negative things about another dog. People don't realize that pets are a part of our family and if you insult them well then you are insulting us. It's the same principle as insulting a baby, sweater, or hair-do. I mean c'mon, would any of you walk up to someone and tell them their baby is ugly, or you hate their hair-do? So why is making these comments any different? I don't care what it is just keep there friggin ignorant comments to themselves. ARGGGG!!!

WOW! That's for letting me vent.

Who was it that said "The more I get to know about people, the more I like my dog." Certainly applies with this lady. She was rude and even worse, she knew she was being rude and was doing it deliberately. She probably has a dog at home who is in dire need of some training and has no house manners. And her mother has probably pointed this out to her. So when the mother was praising Shango, her defense was that it had to be something was wrong with Shango and not her ill mannered dog. (And sadly, she could probably train her dog out of his bad manners but she is probably stuck with hers.)

Pat

That's quite bold to say something like that in front of a dog's owner. But as we all know…....... her loss.

Everyone has different wants in a dog. But I can certainly say a Basenji is an extremely dynamic breed of dog. They can appear to be very well behaved but when they are in a comfortable environment (home) they can easily have a different personality. Not in a negative way but a way that shows they truly warm up to their best friend(s). It's impossible to spend time with a Basenji and say they are not intelligent. I've owned a Border Collie in the past (of which are very intelligent dogs) and my B seems to have a lot more going on in his head. They truly are a remarkable breed. Not to mention their distinct appearance which we all know gets numerous compliments.

"He's not pretentious, he's just intelligent to know he doesn't have to act like a dog. Have a good day"

Well said.

Sounds like you and Shango got caught in the middle of some serious mother/daughter "issues". Sadly one or both of them is probably like this all of the time to each other over anything one of them likes.

Personally I love basenjis because they are NOT like other dogs. A slobbering, yapping dog with a dirty matted coat just disgusts me. I really appreciate the cleanliness and spirited personality of the glorious B! They're the only dog for me.

Oh, and by the way - royalty is, by definition, never pretentious.

My niece, the pitbull fan/owner, is FOREVER criticizing, mocking, putting down the Basenjis to anyone who will listen. Calls them "dog wanna-bes" or "make-believe dogs", things like that. I frequently remind her that MY dogs are REAL dogs and hers are man-made, but she just pooh-poohs that.

Whatever; I let it go. If that is what she has to do to make her dogs look good, then so be it! I call it sour grapes. 🙂

@JazzysMom:

My niece, the pitbull fan/owner, is FOREVER criticizing, mocking, putting down the Basenjis to anyone who will listen. Calls them "dog wanna-bes" or "make-believe dogs", things like that. I frequently remind her that MY dogs are REAL dogs and hers are man-made, but she just pooh-poohs that.

Whatever; I let it go. If that is what she has to do to make her dogs look good, then so be it! I call it sour grapes. 🙂

Yep. One of the few breeds that go back thousands of years. I consider Basenjis the ultimate "real dog" because they still have their wild instincts intact. You can tell that if they were out in wild tomorrow they'd find a way to survive.

I know of a couple of basenjis that have been lost for over a month and when found had fleas, ticks and were a bit thinner, but how many other breeds could survive in woods alone for a month? Or for a week in sub-zero blizzards? They have excellent problem solving ability and are great hunters, able to survive when your average "dog" would starve to death. That 'problem solving' gets them in trouble at times, but that's why we love them!

I love everything everybody has said in this thread! We are such an interesting group of dog owners! And I agree to each his own, and no matter what the breed, most people consider their dogs a part of their family. I can't stand dogs that bark, slobber, get dirty, etc, HOWEVER, they are just as important to their owners as mine are to me, and I would never in a million years tell somebody their precious family member is beneath my standards. That is just bad manners!

I agree there must have been some serious mother&daughter issues for a 30yr ole grown woman to rant this way:D
I also agree that is the reason I love basenjis they don?t bark,slobber and have they this haughty look over them when they don?t feel like being social.But they can be the most cuddly,loving little creatures when they feel you?re worthy their affection and as MacPack said they are one of the few breeds that will survive in the wild they will hunt their food and not just lie down and die.
Sod her Andrew and know that your dog is much nicer then her?s…;)

I too agree with the mother&daughter problem - don't let it get to you.

Also remember, the dog genome project has shown that only a few breeds can be traced back to wild ancestors with little alteration - basenjis were one of them (the afghan and pharoah hound also I believe) - all other breeds have been manipulated to suit people's desires - some exceptionally so. So based on dog DNA, our little "dog wannabes" are true "real dogs"!

thats a horrible women!!

I would go crazy….

@Andrew:

I love everything everybody has said in this thread! We are such an interesting group of dog owners! And I agree to each his own, and no matter what the breed, most people consider their dogs a part of their family. I can't stand dogs that bark, slobber, get dirty, etc, HOWEVER, they are just as important to their owners as mine are to me, and I would never in a million years tell somebody their precious family member is beneath my standards. That is just bad manners!

And frankly, if for some reason a barking, slobbering, dirty dog found its way into my family, I would love it just as much as I love the Basenjis, and would take just as much offense if someone ridiculed it.

A few years back we had a corgi mix that was truly an odd looking dog– white, pointed noise, huge pointed ears, big hairy body, with unusually short stumpy misshapen legs. She was a funky looking creature, and I adored her!
One day we were at a park and she was wading in the creek and there were people watching from a bridge. When she came out of the water, they started laughing and said, "We thought that was a really deep creek!"
It WAS funny, but my heart broke a little for my Maggie because they were laughing at her == I loved her so much and I thought she was a beautiful girl.

Breed doesn't matter; appearance doesn't matter. You just shouldn't criticize someone's pet w/in earshot of them. period.

Same goes for kids -- a friend of mine recently had a stranger tell her that her baby boy looks like Yoda. Come on!! that was just rude. === even though he does look a bit like Yoda,:D, the lady should not have said that to the Mama.

Wow! Has that woman ever been taught manners?
Sheesh. Sounds like her mother needs to teach her a thing or two about opening your mouth and inserting foot.
How Rude.

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