I have thought about these tests a lot. I keep thinking that I would love to do it for both of my mutts, but then I talk myself out of it because of the cost.:)
If there were some benefit to it, like mixed breed divisions in lure coursing or herding for proven mixes of sighthounds or herding dogs respectively or earthdog divisions for terrier mixes etc., then I would do it in a second.
I think this is a curiosity-buster more than anything else. (At least for the pet owner) It's a money-maker for the manufacturer.
Mutts make fine pets, are equally intelligent and loving as any other dog. I've been the proud owner of many a mutt as a kid. My dad refused to pay a dime for any dog. We always got something advertised in the newspaper as free. Always knew what the dam was supposed to be, sire was usually a traveling salesman. Asked the breed of whatever animal graced the yard at the time, my father would answer, "Heinz-57"
Guessing is much more fun - and cheaper!! I do find, however that so many people seem to think a dog has basenji in it when I can't see it at all!
There is a prick eared, red /white Jack Russell near us who doesn't bark and ever since his owners saw ours they have convinced themselves that he is part basenji. Far be it from me to say otherwise.
The more in the pack, the merrier, eh?
Basenji are striking and distinctive dogs. It's no surprise to me that so many folks would like to believe their dog of Questionable Heritage might have some in it. It doesn't hurt me to let them believe and it expands general knowledge of the breed. So I usually nod my head and agree with them.
Besides, Basenji sounds more exotic that Jack Russell Terrier.:D
If it wasn't for Duke, I'd have never known about Basenji's. I've had him 3-1/2 years now - for the 1st 6 months we had no idea what he was - until a groomer thought he was Basenji. Then I looked into the breed and thought that's what he was. I've since decided that he's in the range of a Decker Rat Terrier. He's a nut! But..I've fallen in love with this breed after learning so much about them. We adopted Daisy a true B-mix whose mother is full Basenji, rescued by the BCOSW. She's so sweet…;)
They truly are an addicting breed. They are so fascinating and fun, and they don't walk every street corner, which I love..
It is fun to see peoples inquisitive looks when they are trying to figure out what they are..of course here in Texas, we mostly hear that Otis must be a giant chihuahua…so sad..:eek:
Saw a guy with a long-haired Chihuahua in Newport, OR one time. Markings on the dog made her look just like a German Shepherd, so owner would tell people she was a miniature G-S. He said it was funny how many people bought the story and asked where they could get one.:D
Someone on the B-List once gave me the idea to tell people they're "African sled dogs".
People would nod their head and say, "Oh, that's interesting", but a few seconds later you could see the wheels turning…."wait....there's snow in Africa?" Always good for a few chuckles, then I'd explain what the breed was. I always got more questions once I adopted Tana & had 2 that were the same color (most people who knew of Basenjis always said "I thought they were red and white dogs?")
But you'd be suprised how many people never picked up on that joke. For the slower folks, I'd string them along with a bunch of silly made-up details, designed to HELP them "get it" and if they still didn't figure it out, I'd just leave it alone and let them go on believing that African people used 20-lb sled dogs to pull their sleds. There just isn't any helping some folks. LOL.
My year old shaye is pure red and white Basenji, but her "sister" Gemma is a 20 month old Basenji mix - she is heavier, lighter in color, and has more fur. She still has the curly tail and the Basenji markings - many people think they are "twins" - obviously not looking too closely - so rather than go into the whole "I think there's sheltie or collie in her" explanations, one of my friends suggested I just say yes, Shaye is a smooth coat and Gemma is a bushy coat basenji - what does it matter anyway? It's fun to talk with people who have never seen the breed though, they are very impressed with our dogs. (As are we.)
It not only happens with our breed, but with others as well. My neighbor is convinced his boston rescue is really a frenchie. Having worked around both breeds I see the obvious differences. The folks next door want to see a frenchie, so they see a frenchie.
I guess it may be kind of like having twin 2-legged kids. The difference is obvious to the parents, but not the friends/neighbors.
I actually got my first B, Stella, fell in love with the breed and then we rescued Buster from BRAT, and their coats are totally different. Although they both have the markings of a B and neither bark (although Buster is quite vocal), the difference in the texture of their fur is different and Buster is a little bit bigger then the average B. Who knows….but they're great!