Very bad behavior
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  • I have no idea what to do. my husband and i love our dog but he is too much and he is threatening to get rid of him. We just moved so I am sure that has something to do with it. But we have to crate him while we are gone. he hates and it runs when we say "Buddi crate". He screams and barks and crys while he is in there. He also chews the crate apart. Right now we have 4 C-claps and 2 vice grips to keep him in ONE crate, it is ridiculous! He lays on his back and kicks the ceiling of the crate until it busts apart. He pees out the door which ruins my floor and if he does get out he destroys the bathroom. He shreds toilet paper and enay towels that may be in his reach then poops in them. I have had him for 5 years and have had to clean up after him on my lunch and after work almost every day that we have had him! I am desperate because if I dont find a way to work with the dog he will become an outside dog or gone from our lives…. PLEASE HELP!!! I bet i have spent over a $100 in crates the past month... now another one destroyed today.

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  • Sounds like he's a very frustrated Basenji. Kicks the ceiling?? How big is the crate? It should be a big crate. 36 x 25 x27. Do you give him treats when you put him in? How long is he in there at a time? It may be too long. Do you walk him every day? How long on each walk? How about before you put him in the crate so he can relieve himself and get a little worn out too?

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  • Yes!! we had him in a big crate but he would poop and pee in it then lay in it… so on my lunch i would have to give him a bath. we cant even put anything in the crate bc he destroys it! we put him in an enclosed crate big enough for 2 dogs but not enough room for him the use the bathroom in. he gets treats each time, ones that he loves! he is in there the same time every day... 5 hours in am then i come home on lunch to let him out for 30 mins then back in the crate for 3 1/2 to 4 hours. then out for the rest of the night. I work two jobs and just moved so I have got to walk him much but in exchange for walks he now has a fenced in back yard (huge) to run it and we play with him in the evening. the only thing different from the old house to the new is he was in the kitchen with the door closed and now he is in the bathroom with them door closed (bc he gets out) and that is the only place we have to contain him without ruining my floor... which is doing anyways bc he keeps peeing!!! Im at my wits end. he jumps up and trys to bite me, which he has never done. he growls so bad that it scares me. when i close the create do he is biting the door the whole time. no sooner than he thinks i have walked out the door he goes crazy trying to get out of the crate!!

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  • my husband is home in the evenings while i am at work so he doesnt get put in the crate again until the next day.

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  • Have you had a blood workup done to check his thyroid? Low thyroid can cause behavior problems. Read this link.

    http://www.apubasenjis.com/bhealth.html

    What about leaving him in the backyard during the day?

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  • I wish i could… but he is a little Houdini!!! We have only been in our new house for 2 weeks and he keeps finding a way into the old ladys yard next door. and with strangers that try to approach him he is not so nice. if he smells you first and gets to know you then it is ok. but i dont want him to bite anyone. right now we are talking about going to get a big metal cage/kennel type thing with a dog bac for the backyard and then let him out when we are home.

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  • dog bac? I so meant dog house!! im just really upset, got back from lunch late bc trying to deal with him… 2 days in a row now... getting a little tiresome!

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  • @basenjiprince:

    I wish i could… but he is a little Houdini!!! We have only been in our new house for 2 weeks and he keeps finding a way into the old ladys yard next door. and with strangers that try to approach him he is not so nice. if he smells you first and gets to know you then it is ok. but i dont want him to bite anyone. right now we are talking about going to get a big metal cage/kennel type thing with a dog bac for the backyard and then let him out when we are home.

    You need to escape proof the fence. Is he digging under it? Put chicken wire along the edge nailed to the fence, slightly buried with the edge turned down so there's no injuries. When his paws hit that he'll stop.

    What about the blood work up I mentioned before??

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  • like i said we have only been there for 2 weeks and i work excess of 64 hours a week. I have walked around it but see no where for him to get out. from what i can tell the fence is buried… he was getting out of the gate until we bunjee corded that together so he cant wiggle and push his way thru. if we are out there he is fine but as soon as he cant see us walking past the windows, he is gone. I am off this weekend so hopefully we can get it fixed but just didnt know if any one has ever had these problems. someone also told me to get a natural drop called relief remedy for pets to have a calming effect for anxiety. would anything like that work? he is so finnicky about things wasnt sure i could give him something like that?

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  • Boy, to me it sounds like he crate phobic or has separation anxiety or both - especially since you say he has been doing this for 5 years. Their are some people on here that can maybe give you pointers on what to do in this case - in particular, Quercus, as she is a trainer.

    To me, it doesn't sound like you have a crate that is too small - although if he is crate phobic, I don't really know. They don't require a big crate and of my 3 basenjis - 2 prefer a smaller crate. My girl Ruby used to have accidents in her bigger crate (36x23x26) and when I switched her to the next size down (sounds similar to your size - mine are 30x19x22), the accidents stopped. And since your dog stopped pooping in the crate, it sound like you made the right move going down a size. Have you ever tried one of the plastic vari-kennel types? One of mine prefers that over the wire crates (I use the blue & white medium size).

    Have you ever tried leaving him uncrated in the bathroom with everything up out of reach - has he ever destroyed any woodwork or anything like that? And what about moving him back into the kitchen in this new house and gate him off the kitchen from the rest of the house?

    The only other thing I would add, is when I was having separation anxiety issues with my girl Ruby, I ran her on my bike everyday before I left and I would also walk her to make sure she was really tired by the time I crated her - it did seem to help - although it didn't help every day.

    I would definitely not recommend leaving him out for 5 hours with no one around - especially if it is separation anxiety as he could end up digging out of your enclosure. I know there are some on here that do it - but I think they have doggy doors.

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  • This might be totally off the mark and crazy, but do you think his stress has anything to do with being in the bathroom? Because he probably associates that space with bathtime (I'm assuming that being a basenji he isn't a big fan of getting wet). Have you experimented with keeping his crate somewhere else? Is there anything like water proof you can put under and around his crate so he doesn't ruin the floor? Has he ever been potty trained?

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  • @basenjiprince:

    someone also told me to get a natural drop called relief remedy for pets to have a calming effect for anxiety. would anything like that work? he is so finnicky about things wasnt sure i could give him something like that?

    I think you mean rescue remedy - I'd be careful of that as I believe it has alcohol in it. There are some folks on here that have used a DAP defuser (aka Comfort Zone @ petedge.com) with some success - you plug it in.

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  • well if i leave him in kitchen he will still pee on floor bc he gets mad (i think) when we leave. i dont want to put gate up bc he would chew thru it or jump it. last time he was out and about in the house he was fine in am, bc he slept very lazy in morning! but in the afternoon he ate every wire behind my computer and the refrigerator!! i havent been walking him in the morning bc i am tired from working 7 am to 10 pm the day before but i guess i need to quit being lazy and go for about 30 minutes or so… just to give him more time! he plays hard when he is outside... we chase each other and he does the B 500 over and over and over again. But never in the am. I also use the medium blue and white crate with all the c- clamps and vice grips on it bc he breaks it apart. the one he had yesterday now has and softball size hole where he chewed the break the clip on the side.

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  • he has been trained and never makes a mess in the house until he is shut out of something or a room that he wants to be involved in. one time we had the door shut for some adult private time and he whined and cried then pooped outside of the door….

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  • Yeah, to me it sounds like separation anxiety. One thing that I did with Ruby was put the smaller wire crate in an xpen (exercise pen) with a top on it in my bedroom. So she had expanded space. That seemed to help as her crying was significantly less when I set that up - as well she wouldn't watch me leave - instead she would dig into her treats. The only things about xpens are the wires aren't heavy gauge so you'd probably want to give it a test.

    Oh, and put really high value treats - have you tried things like frozen marrow bones…something that will hold his interest for a long time.

    And I hear you about the exercise thing - after a long day/night, the last thing you want to do is get up early - but in my case it really helped with Ruby as it took the edge off her.

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  • @basenjiprince:

    like i said we have only been there for 2 weeks and i work excess of 64 hours a week. I have walked around it but see no where for him to get out. from what i can tell the fence is buried… he was getting out of the gate until we bunjee corded that together so he cant wiggle and push his way thru. if we are out there he is fine but as soon as he cant see us walking past the windows, he is gone. I am off this weekend so hopefully we can get it fixed but just didnt know if any one has ever had these problems. someone also told me to get a natural drop called relief remedy for pets to have a calming effect for anxiety. would anything like that work? he is so finnicky about things wasnt sure i could give him something like that?

    OK, what about a vet check up? When was the last time? How about a full blood work up?

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  • well sept is time for check up so i guess i will get that in the works…. i have to put a muzzle on him at the vet bc he doesnt know them well enough. i love him and his personality to death but i just want to cry!

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  • @basenjiprince:

    well sept is time for check up so i guess i will get that in the works…. i have to put a muzzle on him at the vet bc he doesnt know them well enough. i love him and his personality to death but i just want to cry!

    I understand so let's try to be patient and we'll try to help you. I just got my 4th Basenji named Buddy. He's 9 months old. Anyway let's keep this tread going because there's more people here that can offer suggestions and help as well. We want to help you solve this and not get rid of Buddi. OK?

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  • thanks i really appreciate it. I am going to get new treats and start working with him more. show him more attention. try to get up and play with him outside in mornings to calm him down… we will see how it goes. In the mean time any other comments or suggestions would be wonderful!!! i appreciate everyone who has commented so far!

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  • So, I am a bit confused… Are you saying you have had him for 5 yrs and he has been doing this for 5yrs? Or did I get something mixed up?

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  • FIRST: Nobarkus is spot on, take him to the vet and get a full blood panel - it could be a thyroid problem. There are a few threads explaining this on the forum

    IT sounds like there are some serious training mishaps that happened along the way with this dog. Remember that your stress about the situation does transfer to the dog, so if you want to make significant changes in his behavior you need to sit down and see how you guys have molded him the past 5 years. For example: When he was growing up, did you allow him to always sleep in the bed with you and never sleep alone?? If so, you can't fault him for eliminating all over the floor because he wasn't trained to sleep with out you two. That's not fair, and he will not understand why you are angry at his actions because in his mind, all his past history tells him he sleeps with the pack, not being with the pack all of a sudden is scary, even for one night. Finding solutions to your dog problems usually needs to start with reflection on how he learned the behavior - when did it start, what is happening when the dog does something you don't like etc.

    At 5 years old, I'm certain you could ease the anxiety but I would be very surprised if you could make it go away completely. He sounds like he needs to be re-crate trained, but keep in mind some Basenjis never accept crating later on in life and need other accommodations (ie, an x pen, or doggie daycare)A DAP defuser or collar could help, you can order them online or ask your vet. I completely agree that exercise can GREATLY reduce the stress your dog feels when he is alone, primarily because he is tired. If you have the time and the resources you might consider adopting a female buddy for him to play with him and keep him company. Go and get "I'll be Home Soon" a book about separation anxiety - in fact brushing up on some dog behavior literature works wonders in communicating with your dog and modifying his behavior because you BOTH understand each other better (Patricia B. McConnell has many excellent books).

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