She doesn't drink much water
First Basenji's

Hi everyone. I'm a new member here with a five-year-old basenji that just entered our home two days ago. It's been great so far. She doesn't have a name yet, because my partner and I haven't been able to decide, but we'll probably come to a decision by the end of the week.

My question here is about water intake. As her previous owner mentioned, she doesn't drink very much water. So she was getting her meals mixed with water, which is something that I'd rather not do. She has pretty bad breath, and I suspect the mushy meals don't help in that regard. Mushy meals also seem to make for mushy poops, which is a bother to pick up when this girl has a curious habit of walking while she poops, leaving a trail of liquid feces. Yeck.

Anyway, I've seen her drink water exactly ONCE since she's been here – only about a third of a cup, it seemed. This was after we spent a good two hours outside at the dog park and the pet store. So I'm inclined to think that she'll drink when she's thirsty, as she knows where the water bowl is and it's always available. But it does seem a little weird that she has had so little to drink (she's mostly been sleeping -- pretty low energy). Any suggestions on how to encourage her to drink? Or is this common with Basenjis?

Very common for Basenjis to be "walking" poopers… And also, many Basenjis do not drink much water.

As far as bad breath, have her teeth been checked? If she has some dental issues this can effect many things....

@curlytails:

Hi everyone. I'm a new member here with a five-year-old basenji that just entered our home two days ago. It's been great so far. She doesn't have a name yet, because my partner and I haven't been able to decide, but we'll probably come to a decision by the end of the week.

My question here is about water intake. As her previous owner mentioned, she doesn't drink very much water. So she was getting her meals mixed with water, which is something that I'd rather not do. She has pretty bad breath, and I suspect the mushy meals don't help in that regard. Mushy meals also seem to make for mushy poops, which is a bother to pick up when this girl has a curious habit of walking while she poops, leaving a trail of liquid feces. Yeck.

Anyway, I've seen her drink water exactly ONCE since she's been here – only about a third of a cup, it seemed. This was after we spent a good two hours outside at the dog park and the pet store. So I'm inclined to think that she'll drink when she's thirsty, as she knows where the water bowl is and it's always available. But it does seem a little weird that she has had so little to drink (she's mostly been sleeping -- pretty low energy). Any suggestions on how to encourage her to drink? Or is this common with Basenjis?

I've had Basenjis that were drinkers and the one I have now isn't so you have to add it to their food. I just had Buddy's urine checked and he has calcium oxalate crystals. So I have to get him to consume more water and lower his protein intake. He never drinks out of the 2 water bowls I have for him. He did drink water yesterday on a hike though and had to go out in the middle of the night to pee. He's high energy though. You can add canned pumpkin to the food to make the stools more solid.
You should get her full blood work done to check everything especially since she's low energy. The other thing you have to get checked is her thyroid as Basenjis can have low thyroid. See this link.
http://www.apubasenjis.com/bhealth.html

Both my Basenjis have been walking poopers, my first boy used to trot desperately around , franticaly sniffing untill he found just the right spot, then he'd be off again to find another. My new little girl does the same 😃

First Basenji's

That's funny that 'walking poops' are so common! Does it have something to do with their reputation for cleanliness? Are they afraid the poop will pile up under their bum?! Okay, I'll just accept it and not think about it too much. 🙂

Thanks everyone for all the info. I'll read through it today and act accordingly. As to her low energy, I'm not so quick to ascribe it to something like hyperthyroidism as much as the lifestyle to which she was previously accustomed. It sounds like she was kept crated by her owner for the majority of the day, so she's kind of used to staying in one spot for long periods of time. It's early yet, and I don't think her 'true' personality has revealed itself, so we'll see.

At any rate, we will be taking her to the vet later this week, so these are good things to keep in mind.

First Basenji's

Oh yeah, and her teeth haven't been checked. She's a little head shy, so we haven't been probing her there. I think I'll let the vet do that. 🙂

Hopefuly in a while your girl will realise how much her life has improved, she's probably feeling confused at the moment. It's great that she has such a lovely home with you.
Talking of pooping, when we take our new Pup outside and she's pooping she's fascinated by whats coming out and cranes her neck to have a look 😃

@curlytails:

That's funny that 'walking poops' are so common! Does it have something to do with their reputation for cleanliness? Are they afraid the poop will pile up under their bum?! Okay, I'll just accept it and not think about it too much. 🙂

Thanks everyone for all the info. I'll read through it today and act accordingly. As to her low energy, I'm not so quick to ascribe it to something like hyperthyroidism as much as the lifestyle to which she was previously accustomed. It sounds like she was kept crated by her owner for the majority of the day, so she's kind of used to staying in one spot for long periods of time. It's early yet, and I don't think her 'true' personality has revealed itself, so we'll see.

At any rate, we will be taking her to the vet later this week, so these are good things to keep in mind.

You would be surprised about the thyroid especially at 5 years old.

A change of food can give the dogs loose poops. Also, if the dog has some type of issue with the food, than that can cause issues as well. My 2 b's don't do well on lamb.
What are you feeding her?

I would get her full blood work done to check everything. I just had mine done and he's a very young energetic Basenji and he showed there was a problem.

First Basenji's

She was on Kibbles 'n' Bits Wholesome Medley with her previous owners (she gave us a bag of it). Not great stuff, but we'll be transitioning to better food. On our first meeting, she had a bit of diarrhea, which her previous owner said was due to stress. Her poops afterwards have been more solid, but still mushy. I gave her a little bit of plain yogurt too, as our Shiba gets a little of it daily and has beautiful poops. Our dog is on Canidae lamb and rice meal, and we're going to try transitioning to that. If it turns out that she doesn't do well with lamb either, we can try some of the other varieties. We've tried beef and ocean fish before, but our Shiba did not take well to that one.

Did she drink out of a water bottle, called a lixit, and not a bowl at her previous home? If so, this can cause teeth problems and sometimes the dog will not even know how to drink water out of a bowl so you have to teach it.

Kibbles n Bits is not good food so she could have teeth problems due to eating this most of her life. She may need to be on antibiotics for her teeth if they are really bad. I have had rescues who have been kennel dogs that were used for breeding and fed not so good food and they usually have bad teeth around 4-5 years old.

Even though she is not drinking much water, please have her strip tested monthly for glucose in the urine if you have not yet done the DNA Fanconi Test.

When Basenjis were introduced her in the 30s it was then remarked on how little water they drink and apparently they have the ability to recycle liquids from the kidneys (like cats). I have never had a Basenji that drunk much water only if there was an infection there. I no longer feed dry complete feed but when i| did occasionally (in the dim and distant past) I used to swamp it in cold water - it didn't make it soggy as it wasn't in the bowls long enough. Now I add a sort of gravy after their meal to avoid problems. I keep a bowl of water available at all times but it is very rarely used.

I had a bitch who died because of eating complete food with little fluid intake and since then have only given them raw food.

I would never worry about a Basenji not dinking much water as this is how they were designed! In fact I'm very surprised when I hear of Basenjis who do drink as other dogs.

I'd be interested to hear other comments.

Do let us know what the vet says.

Houston

Good to hear that your new dog is joining the family well.
As far as water, Otis doesn't drink very much at all, and if he does he tries to steal drinks out of my water glass..although ver random..my dogs are on the raw diet and dogs that eat raw in general drink less anyway..not my podengo, he drinks gallons, well he attempts to drink gallons, most end up on the floor infront of the bowl..ggrrrr.

Otis will walk and poop..unless you look at him, then he stops pooping all the way..and continues on his walk until you aren't looking at him anymore..a little shy I guess..

Just a change in home, and the stress associated with that move, can cause loose poop for several days. I have a theory (based on circumstantial evidence) that dogs crated a good deal don't drink much. They never know when they will be let out, so just get in the habit of not drinking. My free-range pack stop drinking when we have rain, they also won't eat, it's like somehow they know that what goes in must come out…outside in the rain.

Be patient, hopefully she will start to drink!

My last 2 Basenjis were both water drinkers. I had this large mixing bowl I would fill with water and I had to refill it like every 2-3 days. I feed them wet/dry combination. The vet said Buddy doesn't drink enough water and that's contributing to the calcium oxalate crystals. Not enough flushing of the bladder/kidneys. I'm reducing the protein a bit too.

First Basenji's

I don't know how she was drinking her water in her previous home, but I assume she drank it out a bowl because we got all the supplies that were deemed necessary for her transition – no bowls were given because I said we already had some. She'd also only been with her previous owner for about 9 months, so I don't know what to assume, diet-wise. Previous owner mentioned having cooked special food for her on occasion, but that didn't last long due to time constraints.

DNA test kit has been ordered, another box ticked. 🙂 Bringing in a sample of the not-so-pretty-poop for our Friday vet appointment. I'll continue to keep a close eye on everything going in and out. Meanwhile, it's very informative hearing from other folks. As my partner said, "It makes sense that an African dog wouldn't feel compelled to drink much water..." But I do feel more at ease having asked around.

If you are really concerned about water consumption then you can mix water in with her food. I have done that with my cats because they don't drink enough water and male cats are prone to blockages so it is easiest to just mix water into the their food.

Let us know what the vet report says. Of course we all want to celebrate a good fanconi report!

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