Making my Basenji's food better…

  • Hi all. I wanted to post a thread to let other owners know what I stumbled upon.

    My Basenji, Jacob, is not very food motivated. We've had him 6 weeks. A few weeks ago I noticed his skin is very dry. I started squeezing 2 Flaxseed Oil pills into his food. When I went to the vet, she said that I was doing the right thing but that it may take 6-8 weeks. She said it's good to start correcting the problem from the inside. Well, 4 weeks later and still no real results. His skin is still dry, but back to Jacob not being food motivated. I put his food out and he only eats half of it and isn't very excited about his food. For the record, I feed him 2wice a day, Farm Stand Selects.

    I started to do some research. I wondered if I should change his food to get him more excited. I started to research online and read that dry food alone doesn't contain much moisture but contains way more protein than wet food. While wet food contains more moisture but not as much protein. So I started mixing in Nature's Recipe Healthy Skin Venison & Rice wet food (25%) into his dry food (75%). The results have been GREAT! He loves his food now and eats in right away. He finishes it in one sitting! It's only been a few days so I'm not sure if it will help out with the dry skin yet, but my fingers are crossed.

    Anyway, I just wanted to let people know what I learned. If you already know this then cool.

  • When we got our 2 Bs, they were on a product called Timberwolf. Unfortunately, it is not available anywhere close to us, & after calls to pet & feed suppliers we were informed that no one even carried it or wanted to bring it into stock. We talked with a dog nutritionalist for suggestions & also what we had available locally. We settled on Iams healthy naturals, and started to make the switch. After a while on this product, Callie started ignoring her food. We then started to mix a tablefood of canned along with the kibble. That went great for a week, and again Callie started to ignore the food. Nate has never had a problem either way. A few weeks ago I started adding a small amount of warm water to the mixture, made something like the old gravy train. So far, they are finished eating within 2 - 3 minutes. It works for me. Just my 2cents.


  • Mine love the grain free kibbles. I rotate brands using Evo, Origen, and Merrick's Before Grain. Their coats and skin are wonderful and they are always very excited about their meals. I do add water to their evening meals every night and for my two high metabolism dogs they get canned with their evening meal.

    I am very big on reading labels and make sure to avoid corn and soy as they are high allergen foods for dogs. Petco is now selling Wellness Core which is another good grain free kibble.

  • I use a couple of the grain free Cannidaes and Medjai likes it but never eats more than half of his bowl at a time unless I mix in some yogurt. If I get it wet, Medjai likes it a little better, but if I'm going to get a mess (he runs all over and hides his food) I might as well use yogurt. (he eats it faster)

  • I do like lvoss…I rotate between Orijen, Wellness Core, and Evo. The kids definitely like the fish based foods the best, and for the winter they are on Orijen 6 Fresh Fish and Wellness Core Ocean. The Orijen makes their coats so soft...we call Ruby the mink basenji because her fur is so soft. Also, the fish oil really helps with the dry skin.

    And the kids will both do a song for their supper...they run around in circles while I'm getting their meals ready and then when I ask for a song before they get their food, they belt one out and run into their crate to wait for their breakfast and their dinner. Even Brando who rarely made a sound when I first got him, will sing for his dinner. So yeah, I'd say they are excited about their food. 😃

    Hey gneigum...Orijen is made in might check that out. Only negative is that it is super expensive.

  • Hello renaultf1: Thanks for the tip on the Orijen. I will check it out.


  • Hey G; origen is made by championpetfoods out of Alberta. It costs about $70 for a 35 lb bag (approx). The upside is that I find that I don't feed as much, so it lasts longer. It lasts the boxer about 5 weeks at 2.5 cups per day.

  • I started out with the cheaper foods before I started reading labels. Then I moved into Innova/Evo and now I rotate between that and Solid Gold (flockenhunten or whatever) and the new Canidae Grain Free. Yes expensive but I don't feed as much; and I also supplement with treats made with fish. Coats have always been nice and shiny.

  • Bella has been eating Taste of The Wild. It's about the only grain free food available out here in the boonies. She loves it, and her skin and coat are in much better condition than when we got her from the breeder (who was feeding her Pedigree).

  • I'm am switching my boy from Blue Buffalo to Natural Balance Potato & Duck. I have had him on BB for about a year now, switching between the flavors every time I buy a new bag & he's done well. However, I decided to try a grain free food for a little while to see if I notice any differences. Anyone feed NB Potato & duck?

  • I've switched to 'Horizon Legacy'. We'll see how this works.


  • If it's made by van patten's, then yes. When I first got Zina she was on it. She did well enough, her coat and general skin were good, but then with an immune system flare up, I had to change her.

  • In Australia, (especially in Tasmania :rolleyes:), we have none of the brands of dog food that you guys are talking about…

    We feed a premium dry food to our 2 B's, in the morning, which I might add, neither eat much of :). In the evening they get dry with a little wet food mixed in, also warmed up. Both of them get a 1000mg Omega 3 capsule, and the difference in their coat is incredible. Both had quite dry, flakey, scurfy coats, and our Vet suggested this, and I couldnt be happier with the results.

    Im new to the breed, and my mentor lives interstate, so all that I am doing, is trial and error ;). Just a couple of weeks ago, I was showing Ochre, and the judge was going over her coat, again and again, on the table... I was thinking she didnt like her coat, and was dreading what she might say to me !!! I was pleasantly surprised when she actually said that Ochre had the most correct coat that she had touched in the last 12-18 months :D. Thankfully the sun was out, just long enough for the B judging, and she literally glistened in the sunshine. This judge also commented on her bright whites, and shiny red colouring. She said, I dont know what you are doing with her coat, but, please keep it up... I was over the moon with these comments :).

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