Hello fellow Basenji lovers.
I found this website when I was browsing for some background history on Basenjis. I'm not a big user of websites like Facebook, UTube, etc. but I thought this forum would be a good place to find helpful info, predominately about the dogs' health, if needed in the future.
My family started raising (and I mean in the singular fashion as a member of the family versus breeding) Basenjis about 25 years ago. My two daughters were todlers at the time and our previous dog was a Doberman, and as much as we loved Dobermans, they were a little too large around two small girls. We lost Odin in the wink of an eye when he got out of our fenced yard, ran through the woods in the back that emptied out onto a two lane road that local teenagers used as a race track. Odin was hit and I found him on the side of the road within an hour of his escape. It was a traumatic end to a dog we loved.
A couple of years later after we moved into the city and our daughters were then 6 and 8, we decided to find another dog and were introduced to Basenjis through the Evergreen Basenji Club here in Seattle. Our first was a little tricolored bitch we named Princess Tanna of the Nile (we got a little carried away with the whole African/pedigree/aristocracy breeders can sometime influence on people, and created the name. Tanna a dirivitive from tannis found in tea, and since I come from a large Welsh family who drink a lot of tea, thought it appropriate to incorporate it into her name. Tanna lived twelve years before succumbing to blindness, arthritis and difficulty in incontinence. During her life we found a stray red and white male who we name Sabin and kept for a couple of years but had a very difficult time in getting him to adjust to a small fenced yard, getting out for an hour a day for a walk. If he didn't jump the 6' height, he'd tunnel under it. Concerned that we would have another dog tangle with a car, we were able to adopt him out to a family who had a large piece of property in the county that he could explore to his heart's content. Within a year of Tanna's death we bought a male from our first breeder name Goldie. But a year later he succombed to a bad kidney infection that was misdiagnosed and treated late by our vet who admitted he had very little experience with the breed.
We bought another red and white male about ten years ago we name Gabriel who was a great dog. But once again, in the second it took for him to get past us at the front door, he made it down to another main road, saw a truck that he decided was a threat, chased it, grabbed at the rear tire which won the battle and mangled him up pretty badly. He came limping back home not looking to badly but we rushed him to the nearest vet hospital. He didn't make it through surgery and I think we all took his loss more worse than any dog we've ever owned. He was truly one of a king dog. It bothered me so much that I decided I did not want another dog.
But my now grown up daughters could see that it was harder on me to live without a dog than to suffer the occasional hardships owners go through when bad things happen, and on Christmas 2002 came home with another red and white bitch from Salem, Oregon (we took the easy way out this time and named her Salem.) And she is coming up on her eighth birthday this December.
I am convinced Basenjis are the smartest, bravest, quickest most family oriented dogs that one can own. They have their own minds and can be stubborn as all get out, but I'd never own any other kind of dog (but this will be the last dog we'll buy for sure this time.)
Well that's my intro and I hope I haven't bored you all because I know everyone has the same sort of stories.