R 2 better than 1

I am new to this forum. Thanks in advance for your advice.

I lost my 15 year old Basenji in September, and my husband and I got an 8 week old female in November. The pup is now 10 months … doing well ... yet quite a challenge to walk! My husband and I brought her back to the breeder whom we got her from last weekend for a little training ... and while we were there, we were introduced to a 3.5 yr old male. The male is shy; he was a show dog. The two got a long quite well. My husband really wants a second basenji; we hope that he will be a good companion for her. He is not neutered and he has an imbilacal hernia which we would like to get fixed. The breeder said that it is no big deal. ANYWAY ... would love advice on adding an older dog to a home with a 10 mo old puppy. Are we crazy? Thanks for your input! joan

Umbical Herina's are very, very common in Basenjis, breeder is correct, it is no big deal. While they usually never need attention, usually people have them fixed when having them spay/neutered.

IMO, 2 are better then one…. however, I find it a little strange that if this was a show dog that he would be shy? Not very constructive in the show ring. Did he finish his championship? If he got along with your girl, then sounds like the perfect match.... that said, is she spayed? Note that even if you get the boy neutered, if she is still in tact, while you will not get puppies... they can and do have "safe sex".... and since the male can accomplish a tie with the bitch, when she is in season you would separate them when you are not home.

I can not say why/when he finished showing … the breeder said that she had shown him, and now looking for a good home. The breeder said he was "shy" and when we met him he was certainly well behaved, not hyper-basenji, but very playfull with our girl. He was not trained in the typical "sit", fashion ... I am nervous that the older male will threaten our 10 mo old girl who has been in the house since 8 weeks. I do not want her to feel like someone has usurped her territory! HELP!

First Basenji's

Has your girl ever had other canine visitors to your home? Do you know how she responds to unfamiliar dogs in general?

Sometimes you won't know their chemistry until the two dogs spend more time with each other. It may just very well be that your girl DOES want to show him who's boss, and the older male will accept. Could you spend some time with the dog on neutral territory (a park, a walk in a new neighborhood, i.e. someplace aside from your home or the breeder's home) and see how they get along then? You say they "got along quite well," so that's already a promising start. If they already seem accepting of each other, maybe you can gently introduce him to your home. Sounds like this breeder is someone you can work with, and would be willing to let you take the dog on a trial. I hope it works out, as I definitely think a multiple-dog household is the way to go!

WE think 2 is HEAVEN. we highly recommend it. 🙂

Our 10 mo old female has been playing with other dogs in our home, and at their homes since the day we brought her home! She is very social. She goes to Day Care once a week, and the owner of the facility can't keep her with the "small" dogs because she is tooo playful! She plays with the big dogs! She and the 3 yr old make played in typical Basenji style at the breeder's last weekend. The breeder offered to have them both stay at her house for a week to get used to each other. I am having trouble walking the 10 month old … she is so active on leash, wanting to chase every rabbit, squirrel, and chipmucnk she sees. Just fearful I won't be able to walk two at once!

LOL everyone in the neighborhood knows my 2 b's and me. they often get a good laugh at me, being pulled after the 50 rabbits, 500 squirrels, birds, cats, cows, etc, etc… and other dogs in the neighborhood. i just think of it as EXTRA workout training. seriously, they do walk very very nicely most of the time. and when i cant keep up or they get too engaged in chasing, i just stand still until they are calmer. then we start out again. but i do KNOW i could NOT walk 3. 🙂
ps it also depends on how big your b's are. my brother got his b from a breeder in missouri, and we got both of ours through BRAT. both of ours are full basenji but are quite a bit bigger, taller than my brothers dog. i could probably walk 3 of his.... hummm.

First Basenji's

I don't think you have anything to worry about then. Just mentally set yourself up for success, and take the transition in stride, and it should work out beautifully! I say go for it!

As for walking two dogs at once, I did find it a little challenging at first since both my dogs have different leash-walking dispositions and admittedly, neither are perfectly trained to heel. My basenji, in particular, likes to dart all over the place and isn't very mindful of her leash, especially not when a squirrel crosses the path. I took an inspiration from this design and came up with a system using a combination of leather strips and buckles and carabiners:

http://pacocollars.com/products/buddy-system-deluxe/

I've been able to walk up to three dogs at a time with this system. That was fun. I still hold the leashes when walking them, but somehow the setup makes walking them more manipulatable, and I can also temporarily let go in order to pick up poop, which I found to be the most challenging part of walking with multiple dogs. Before I had this set up, I'd have both leashes looped around my wrist while I was trying to pick up some poop, and then one dog would suddenly see something across the street and go darting off in that direction, pulling my wrist, and then the poop i was in the middle of grabbing would fall right out of the bag and the other dog would accidentally step on it… minor annoyances, but obnoxious nonetheless.

I also vote for a second companion for your girl. If they played and got along, and she is social, it should be a smooth transition. And have no fear, girls always rule the home.
Good luck!

I'd agree with Mac, girls usually run things. Our two have their ups and downs, and Fiji makes him Bongo beg for cuddles but they're quite a team. I can't imagine not having two now.

Thanks everyone for your feedback!!! We just picked up the 10 mo old from day-tripping at doggy daycare … and she is SLEEPING! She plays so hard there that she is exhausted when she gets home! 🙂 The owner of the Daycare suggested that if we got the 3 yr old male, that because he has not been neutured yet, he would most likely "mark" all over the house to mark his territory. My husband wasn't thrilled to hear that! Any experience here with that? We really would love the companionship for our girl ... I am just so afriad of the walking! We love to walk our dog ... and the thought of combatting two basenji's is scary!

I totally disagree with that. It is not usual for Basenjis to mark. I have had both intact males and intact bitches… and never once did any of my males mark in the house. So, not sure that the owner of the Doggy Daycare knows the Basenji breed very well. Also you said that you were going to have him neutered.... And really just to add to that, you can just as much problems with a neutered dogs marking then an intact one.

Now granted, you are bring in a new older dog to the home... so for maybe the first month you might have a problem with possible marking, but only because it is a new place. And honestly, I have had more problems in this breed with the bitches marking then the males

Thank you so much for your insight Tanza. I suspect non-basenji owners just don't understand this special breed. I had a basenji named McKenzie for over 11 years and knew she was special … but I did not get McKenzie as a puppy. My 10 month old puppy Elsa is just such a spit-fire ... she is so sweet, cuddly, friendly ... but she is also stubborn, a poor eater, and tough to walk. My only fear about getting the 3 yr old male is that both my husband and I work for ourselves ... I used to take McKenzie to my office every day for 11 years ... I could not take Elsa (she is tooo wild) ... so my husband, who works from home, and is in and out of the house all day, would be responsible for the walking of both Elsa and the male. Stressful at the thought of getting them both out during the day. We crate Elsa now, when we are both gone. Could the 10 month and th 3 yr old be alone together? Seperate crates? Same crate? No crate? oh boy! Joan

Since you have mentioned it in alomst every post - I take it walking the basenji is a problem and you worry that adding another would also be a probelm? :O)

There are a ton of videos on how to train a dog to walk on a leash using positives.

Here is a link to the video links - hope it works. If not - just google walking a dog clicker, scroll to the link that says videos.

http://www.google.com/search?q=walking+a+dog+clicker&hl=en&rlz=1T4GGLC_enUS311US311&prmd=v&source=univ&tbs=vid:1&tbo=u&ei=E106TMDFBpCCsQOX3-RR&sa=X&oi=video_result_group&ct=title&resnum=4&ved=0CDoQqwQwAw

Since she has had 10 months to practice bad walking and the possible male quite possibly has 3 years worth - it will not be a quick fix. So while you are learning I would use a gentle leader on them to keep you from being pulled hiter and yon.

I currently walk 4 basenjis on flexi leads at the same time, most often alone. Three of them wear gentle leaders. I feel good when I am walking them and had I been more adament about :no bunnies" etc I imagine I would feel great walking them - however I ask so much of them normally that I usually allow them to be dogs on the walks - to a degree.

I do not think you should fear walking the dogs and I imagine that the more the girl is worn out - the less excited she will be on walks in the long run.

Remember - every interaction with your dog - someone is being taught - either you are teaching them to do/be how you want or tey are teaching you to let them do what they want.


MERCEDES-BENZ HISTORY

Actually, Elsa has not been walking poorly for the past 10 months … when we first got her at 8 weeks, it was the dead of winter, so we let her out in our fenced in yard to house break her. We started taking her on long walks this spring when she was atleast 7 months old. We walk miles a day ... taking her out 4-6 times a day. Our breeder, said that this age is a tough age on the leash. This is our only frustration. Every other basenji quirk is a joy to us. When we met the 3 yr old male, she walk well ... he was a show dog and used for breeding ... I fear issues around raising a dog for show/breeding that I don't know about.

Not sure that I understand your comment about "I fear issues around raising a dog for show/breeding"?

Tanza … I am not raising a show dog ... nor a bog for breeding purposes ... what I meant to say is that this 3 year old male has been raised as a show dog ... when we met him last week he could not "sit" on command ... his command language appeared to be different. Even the breeder said that he has not learned a "sit command" ... Will bringing a dog into my house that was raised as a show-dog bring challenges I am not prepared for? Will I have to train him with a whole new set of thought processes? I think I would rather raise another puppy than teach a 3 yr old new tricks!

Trog is a terrible puller when walked alone so I normally walk him with one or all 3 of my show dogs. They trot along nicely on a leash and he falls in step with his pack not pulling at all, but as soon as I try to walk him by himself its back to pulling. I will have to take a look at that link.

I walk 3 all the time on a tri-lead with no problems. The 3 year old may actually get your youngster to walk better, he is used to being on a lead. And teaching a dog to sit is just adding to the things he has already learned, not like learning another language. He has learned to "stand", he can learn to "sit", and 3 is still very young, in terms of learning ability.

The important thing is that your girl liked him, and he liked her. Often people get a second dog and have to work for many months to get them to play and like each other.
I have brought intact males into my home, one did lift a leg near my sofa, I gave a sharp "NO" and he never did it again. The other never lifted a leg in my house at all.
Your issues are all valid points, but none of them are insurmountable!

Good luck to you!

Regarding the marking in the house. +1 on what Tanza said. I have 2 intact males in my house - Brando who is 5yo (that came to my house at 2yo), and now Ozzy, a 6mo puppy. Neither has ever marked in the house. And Brando never marked in the house when my youngest b-girl, Liyah, was in heat last year. Now marking the yard, whole different story. The girls mark over each other and Liyah also marks over the boys :rolleyes:. Brando marks over all of them - especially Ozzy.

My 5yo basenjis, Ruby & Brando, were retired show dogs when I got them at 2yo. I had no difficulty in teaching them anything I wanted them to learn (sit, down, stay, etc…). I still do some training with them every day. A couple pluses were they came leash & crate trained.

Any new dog you bring into a house (be it a puppy or adult) will need time to adjust and may fall back in house training, etc. so there will most likely be some retraining necessary anyway. IMHO, it really all hinges upon how consistent you are with the things you want them to do and learn.

Oh, and regarding walking 2 - I had no problem ever walking Ruby & Brando - as they were already well leash trained. Does that mean they don't ever pull? No - all bets are off if a rabbit or deer crosses the road. Could I train them better for those instances, yes. Also, I don't require my dogs to walk perfectly by my side - they are allowed to be out in front if they aren't pulling. One thing I typically do is let my b-kids run in the yard for about 10 or 15 minutes before I take them for a walk. That way, they burn up some energy before we go for a walk.

If you already have a puller, I would work with the puller separately - sinbaje is right about checking out that link or doing a search - also, lots of good books on training out there. My youngest b-girl (1.5yo juvenile delinquent) can be a puller. I would typically take her for a separate walk (a training walk), before I would take her with the adults on a walk. With Liyah, I have taken an hour to do 2 miles before because I would not let her pull. But then I would come back, get the adults and would walk all 3 together - with regular leads (and martingale collars). Really did wonders doing the training walk first. When Liyah joined the other 2, Liyah would be allowed to be up front with the adults if she didn't pull - if she did pull, she would have to walk beside me. She definitely would catch on.

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