Can an abused Basenji ever be completely rehabilitated?

You may want to work with, or research, how to desensitize. It's not easy and it takes time, but it does work. Just when you think there is no progress, something happens to encourage you further. If, at all possible, you can work on NOT pulling the leash and instead enticing him with something to move forward, you will be able to progress a little faster on the leash pulling. (yes, I realize sometimes it's impossible) I have never seen the dog and cannot give an evaluation, but having worked with some of these dogs, progress is possible. Good luck!

Houston

Congartulations on adopting Prince, I looked many times at his pictures on BRAT, he is gorgeous.
I have never rescued a dog, but foster for BRAT and yes the jumpiness and the skiddish, will wane away with time.
Just be consisten, patient and loving..he will get to know you as a family and know he can trust you won't do any of the things that has been done to him in the past.
Again congratulations, and yes, pictures would be great.

I would strongly recommend the shy-k9s yahoo group. http://pets.groups.yahoo.com/group/shy-k9s/
It was very helpful for me when I adopted Katie 3.5 years ago.

You are a gem for taking this boy in. Yes, it is possible to rehabilitate, but it takes lots and lots of patience. AJ still ducks sometimes when I raise my hand too fast, but not nearly like he used to. I've had him for about a year and a half. Your boy will probably always be just a little wary, but in time, with gentle handling and lots of love, he will get better. There is hope…but it takes time to teach him that not all people will hurt him. Please keep us posted on his progress.

Our BRAT was a puppy mill rescue. She is very timid and nervous but incredibly loving. We got her in July and she is still a nervous nelly but is improving. He will probably improve some but will always have a little jumpiness to him.

I forgot to say, good luck and thanks for giving this boy a home.

Thanks for adopting a Basenji and giving him a lovely home. Yes, they do overcome the past, but it takes time. I've worked with my two Basenjis for a year and they are finally doing well. There were times I didn't know if one of them would ever come around! Now, we are ready for some fun stuff like lure course, agility, and obedience training.

I had a scared rescue dog who lived for 6 months under the dinning room table..we had a long cloth over it, and it was against the wall.
She felt so secure there. I could get her to come out to poo, outside, but once in, she ran under the cloth. I fed her there for a few months, then, slowly started putting the bowl a little closer to the edge of the cloth..it wasn't a fast process, but she finally realized the couch and humans were good things.
Thank you for taking in this dog who needs you so very much. We are all here for you for support.

If he is typically fond of his dinner, try feeding him from his bowl (held by you) one piece at a time - be very patient and you will probably eventually find that this will build up his trust. Your proffered hand with food will teach him that his people have only good things to offer with their hands. This particularly seems to work if the dog has been ill treated by being hit.

Gradually give him gentle commands before you hand him his mouthful and this will help with training. Basenjis like to have things to think about.

@Patty:

If he is typically fond of his dinner, try feeding him from his bowl (held by you) one piece at a time - be very patient and you will probably eventually find that this will build up his trust. Your proffered hand with food will teach him that his people have only good things to offer with their hands. This particularly seems to work if the dog has been ill treated by being hit.

Gradually give him gentle commands before you hand him his mouthful and this will help with training. Basenjis like to have things to think about.

I agree, hand feeding as much as possible. Cook up some chicken breast and cut into small pieces and hand feed. That's what I do.

I have a video at home called The Tellington T Touch. There's some good therapy you can do yourself by just touching and messaging certain points to relax Prince.
http://www.ttouch.com/

First Basenji's

Of my two BRAT boys, the red & white, still is scared of doors, not as bad as it was 4 months ago, he also cowers when I reach down to pet him, Improvment is small, but I do get toe kisses and tail wags in the morning and he looks at me with trust. Hopefully the rebhab of go slow, talk calm and assertative will eventually win him over, his brother is a terror , but we love em.

First Basenji's

Update on The Prince: He really seems to be making progress and is an absolute doll! Thank you all for your supportive messages and great advise. I'm sure I will have to be calling upon all of you again….........so nice to know you all are here!!!!

Here's a sweet pic of the little (big) guy (I'll be posting more in "my albums"):

attachment_p_93129_0_sadie-s-camera-thru-11-06-09-006small.jpg

He is stunning! 🙂

Houston

jepp, he is gorgeous..that prince of yours..:)

I rescued a 4-5 year old male from an owner who treated him more like a cat. Never spent quality time with him, never trained him, no routine, ignored him, yelled at him, and never took him for walks (didn't even own a collar when I got him). Little Benji didn't even own his own bed!

I noticed he was very curious at first about our family, our house. You have to let him explore, get into trouble and use posititive reinforcement only. Especially if you suspect your dog was abused, using negative reinforcement will only cause more damage. Fore example, Benji was obviously use to jumping up on counters to see what's going on, or on the dinner table. In 2 days he was trained to stop doing that with a simple squirt bottle. Now he only needs to see the squirt bottle and he knows it means not to jump. Some habits can be changed, others could be a little harder but use treats and lures to start changing habits. Eventually the lures won't be needed and he will do it because you tell him he is a "good boy" and loves to hear that from the whole family.

My Benji was also very jumpy when you approached him at first, didn't even know how to walk on a leash… but I started walking him 3 times a day and that is the best way to get him use to being very close and beside you. Get all family members to do this and spend one-on-one time with your Prince. Now, Benji just LOVES going for walks. I also went through a lot of treats the first 2 weeks, teaching him to stop on command, sitting at streets, and of course my favourite saying "Let's Go" and watch him run off like a mad man!

Benji now has two beds, stays off the couch, off tables, comes 50% of the time you call him (that's just Basenji trait - hehe), and loves the whole family. I'm now only in the 3rd week and can't believe the transformation of little Benji. He's sometimes up to no good, like chewing apart a bunji cord to keep a gate in place, or clawing a door frame to try and escape confinement, but hey he's a dog not a robot....

😃

I think most b's can learn to come around. It takes time, routine and giving the dog time to figure out its better in the house than, out in the yard, or in kennel.

Exactly right Sharron… time, time and more time.... however "being up to no good" is the slang term for a Basenji!!!!

Pat, I thought that was a Basenji Motto! LOL

First Basenji's

When I got Ra & Shango last July, they were very nervous too, Shango, was scared of doors, loud sounds, I couldn't pet him…..So the first night, they just paced and cried. I just lite some lavendar candles and incense, layed on the floor with them and sang a lullaby, I know ....but it worked. I just had to transfer their little hurt brains to a calm, loving feeling......try it. I did this for three nights and after that no problems. Good Luck. Everyone Lavendar works on humans and B's and soft music.....

We adopted a 2 yr old red/white Basenji from BRAT last August. She also came from a puppy mill. when we first got her she was shy and nervous. We also have three house cats and a 1 yr old Basenji mix so it was quite an adjustment for little Bana. since August, we kept seeing a gradual improvement in all her behaviors. The past month she has really come out of her shell and is absolutely fantastic.

We presently are considering another Basenji from BRAT and have had her in the house for 1 week…it has been challenging to say the least. Lucy is 4 yrs. old and was abused...mentally not physically. She is extremely over weight, the previous owner allowed her a self feeder...she blew up to 38 lbs, have been on a diet and is down to 38 now...needs to lose another 7 lbs or so until she looks like a Basenji.

Lucy was very agressive with the other two, but they had their fights and things improved. Still have plenty of snarling by Lucy but no fighting. So stick with it, have patiance and continue to teach yours right and wrong. Basenji's are smart and will come around.

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