Genetics is such an interesting subject!
And the most understandable book on the subject is Mary Lou Kenworthy's ! Recommended to everyone if it is still available.
As many of you have read before, I adopted a BRAT black and white boy named Billy. I want to preface this by saying that we LOVE him and think he's a very special, super sweet guy that has brought a lot of happiness into our lives not to mention Shelby's life. They are best buds and adore each other.
However, Billy has been very destructive with today being the worst yet. He has not been kenneled during the day. But I'm afraid that's going to have to change He is getting better at potty training but still marks our coffee table on a daily basis. Not such a big deal. However, he started chewing holes in my (new..sad) couch. It's a large sectional and comes in individual pieces you put together. Each piece now has a hole. Rather large holes. He was not destructive for several weeks (not one bit!) and now it's really bad. I covered my couch in blankets, which didn't deter him. I bought bitter yuck and sprayed it down…didn't deter him. Today my entire garbage was all over along with a plant that was chewed up and dirt spread everywhere.
He has to be kenneled during the day. I can't think of another option.
But Shelby is well behaved. Should I kennel them both? Is it fair to only kennel one? I'm so torn
The little guy is so sweet...I can't even put into words how much of a lover he is. I want to do what's best for him, but I can't keep coming home to destruction. He's getting lots of exercise! One thing is that Travis comes home around 2:00 and leaves at 5:00 and I come home a couple hours later from work. He does this all after Travis leaves. I think it upsets him.
Anyway, I could really use some advice on kenneling one/verses both of them.
At my house, I have 2 dogs in (different) kennels, one dog in an x-pen and one dog loose. Nobody seems to mind too much. The tri-ing loves his x-pen and will spend time in there even when it is open (when I'm home) the girls will race into their crates to get fed. Diggie hates being in a crate (with the exception of the car crates) and he's never done any damage being left out.
Really if your new b is distructive, it's best and safest for him to be in a crate (or xpen if you like that better) when you're not home.
Really, it's okay.
My dog also suffered from separation anxiety; he did not destruct things on a daily basis. He only became destructive if he knew we would be leaving for a long period of time. How he knew of these times, I am not sure. He always knew exactly the times when we?d be gone for over nights.
I agree crating your active boy is probably best. I would also crate your female as well. Crating does not hurt dogs, and it may save you on the furniture replacement. I do recommend that you sew any tears in your couch, and ensure that there is NO stuffing sticking out. Fluff-n-stuff is too alluring for Basenjis.
The destructive behavior is almost normal for a basenji. (I hate to mention that!) My dog tore things up when he became anxious. We also have a Black Lab. She is more destructive than my Basenji ever was. If you have seen the movie Marley and Me, it depicts a Lab perfectly. I have NO furniture in the house that is dog maul free. We read up ahead of purchasing her, and understood what we may face.
Anyways, good luck. Definitely use crates, understanding and lots of LOVE.
Don't feel bad about crating. I have two that can be left out with no problems whatsoever. I have one that I must crate. She displays the behaviours that you have described. Couch/chair chewing, gets into things, etc. She does not pee or poop in the house, however, I still cannot trust her out. Sometimes even when I am in another area of the house she will do this. I still crate her if I am not available. Each B is different. Don't feel bad about it. I would not worry about kenneling one and not the other. They will soon adjust. Or, you could buy a HUGE crate and crate them both together, but I wouldn't necessarily recommend it. It depends on your situation. (When I say huge, I mean at least Great Dane size).
When we first got Shelby, she was destructive as well. We crated her. However, we just felt really guilty and stopped. She went through a horrible period (every soft surface had holes and a hole in my wall!). She grew out of it, partly because, I think she wanted to please us so badly. Billy doesn't have the same personality. I knew when we got him, it was a possibility. I'm just sad that it's now a reality!! We're going to start crating him and leaving Shelby out and see how that goes. Thanks for the responses!
One thing is that Travis comes home around 2:00 and leaves at 5:00 and I come home a couple hours later from work. He does this all after Travis leaves. I think it upsets him.
If he's only destructive after Travis leaves, you can begin with putting him in a crate for that period. It's probably not too long, so you don't have to feel too guilty