Today marks 6 months since I lost Cody. I still miss him so much. Since then, we also lost Moe, my parents' dog, Cody's very best friend, and partner in crime. He passed from old age, just shy of 14 years old. Sometimes, when I visit my parents, I could almost swear I hear them playing in the back rooms.
My boyfriend was working out of the country when Cody died. When he got back in January, we moved in with his grandmother. She is in recovery from breast cancer, but the treatment caused her to go into heart failure, so she needs someone with her. Since I used to be a home health aid, and she didn't want a stranger living with her, we decided that this was the best option. She also lost her dog a few months ago.
Two weeks ago, my boyfriend came home with a dog. He was our old roommates' dog, and Cody's other best friend. Our friends had been working so much that Bucky was spending most of his time in his kennel, so they had been thinking about rehoming him. One day, out of the blue, my boyfriend went over to their house, but no one was home, so he went in and got Bucky (he still has a key in case they go out of town or there is an emergency) and brought him home. Of course, I texted them right away so they wouldn't worry. Grandma quickly fell in love. Bucky is a lovable little ball of energy. We talked about it, and decided that since they were going to rehome him, if they still wanted to, we'd take him. They were fine with it, so we went and got his stuff. The best part is that when we go visit, we take Bucky so they can still spend time with him. Plus, sometimes when they are both off, they will come get him for a day. So now he has two families that love him.
Bucky isn't a basenji. He's some kind of mix, but I guess living with Cody rubbed off on him. He picked up some of the basenji mannerisms, like the way he plays, and other little quirks. Sometimes, when he does those things, I get a little lump in my throat. And he seems to be thriving here. His kennel is still his safe place, but he rarely has to spend his days in it. When we go to work, Bucky spends his days in bed with grandma, or she will let him outside and just watch him run. I've even caught them playing tug a few times. They have been good for each other. She gives him the attention he craves when we aren't home, and he gives her a reason to get out of bed, and brimgs her so much joy. He's been good for me too. And while I wish that Cody was still here, I'm happy that we could take in his best friend. I think he'd be happy about that too.
Thank you all for your kind words.
@DebraDownSouth the vet was definitely addressed. There are several in that particular office, but the one that owns the practice ( or however that works) called me a week after our appointment to check on Cody, and I had to tell him that I had lost Cody a few days before. He asked for details and said that he would address the issue with the vet that saw Cody. I believe he even got in touch with Doc, the vet that came to my house, for more information. He seemed to be sincere.
@vasmith26 As for getting another dog, I know I'm not ready yet. Eventually I would like to adopt another basenji or possibly a "golden opportunity", but I can't yet. I spend time with my parents' dog, and my old roommate's dog, and I am about to start volunteering at a shelter, but it just isn't time yet. I think when I finally do, it'll probably be like it happened with Cody, who just happened to fall into my lap at just the right time.
It has been a few years since I've posted on here, so I'm sure no one remembers me, but since so many of you were such a huge help to me when I first rescued Cody, I felt like I needed to return here.
On October 4th, I lost my best friend. He was 10 years old and had been with me for a little over 7 years. When I first met him, he was a scared, neglected, abused, underweight basenji, and when he looked up at me with his sad golden eyes, I fell in love. At first, life together was a struggle; I was learning about living with a basenji, and he was learning to be a well-loved family member. But we settled together well, and he somewhat mellowed with age.
He really was my best friend. We moved a lot, so sometimes he was my only friend. He had only been around a few children, so when I got pregnant last year, I wasn't sure how he would react. I realized very quickly that I didn't need to worry. He was very protective of me during my pregnancy. He became a velcro dog, following me everywhere and always sitting near me or on me, which was very out of character for him. He was also selective of who was allowed near me. The list was short, just my fiancé, my parents, and my brother. I was put on bed rest early in my first trimester because I had subchorionic hematomas and would hemorrhage. I lost my son in a late miscarriage, and almost died myself, so when I finally came home, Cody never left my side. He wasn't big on cuddling as he got older, but he let me hold him, cry on him, and use him as a pillow. After that, he never really went back to his overly-independent ways. He continued being a velcro dog that cuddled on the couch and in bed.
One night in late September, we were getting ready for bed, and I noticed that he was hesitant to jump on the bed. I thought that maybe he was just starting to feel his age, so I tried to pick him up and he screamed. I made an appointment, but the vet couldn't see him for a little over a week, and suggested giving him doggy aspirin until then. He hadn't escaped and no one had hurt him, so the only thing I can think of that happened is that he was playing too rough with the other dog and cat, both of which are much younger than him. When the vet saw him, she didn't take X-rays, but he was diagnosed with a herniated disc near his tail, and she prescribed some meds. I thought he was getting better, but then a few days later he got worse very quickly. He was in a lot of pain. He would fall when he was walking, and he started dragging one of his back legs. He lost the use of both legs within 24 hours. It was a weekend, so the vet office was closed, and we don't have an emergency vet here. Plus at that point, I didn't trust the local vet here. My aunt has a friend that is a vet about 3 hours from here, so she called him, but he wouldn't be able to make it here for another day or so, and Cody was in so much pain that I couldn't travel that far with him. He told me to keep him medicated and comfortable, and he continued to call to get updated. When Doc finally made it here, he quietly and gently ran his hands over Cody, checked a few things, and then cursed the other vet. There was an injury to Cody's spine, but it was more than just a herniated disc and it was near his neck. Within another 24 hours or so he would be completely paralyzed. His front leg was already showing signs of paralysis. There was nothing we could do. The other vet should have xrayed him, at least it would have saved him from the pain and confusion of going paralyzed. I held his face in my hands, kissed him, and told him how much I loved him as he was helped across the rainbow bridge.
Through all of his last week, especially when it got bad, I never left his side. I didn't eat or sleep for days, I just couldn't. I laid on the floor next to his bed as he slept and just watched him and prayed. He stayed with me through the hardest time in my life, and I couldn't leave him during his. It's been 2 months, and sometimes it still hurts so much that it takes my breath away.
I've never been a very religious person, but in his last few minutes as I told him how much I loved him, I also told him that he had been my best friend for 7 years, but now he would get to go be Liam's best friend until I got to see both of them again. He would probably be just as protective over him in death as he was in life. That thought has helped when the grief is overwhelming.
Fly high my sweet grumbly old man. I'll see you at the rainbow bridge.
I ran across these ads posted by the same person in Van Alstyne. I don't know how to send these on to BRAT, but I know that there are several members on here that do.
Rigby is listed as brindle, but has an interesting coloring.
Rigby is a 4 year old brindle male. I have owned him all of his life. He is very intelligent, house broke neutered and up to date on shots. It breaks my heart to re-home him. He has began to attack my goats. He gets along well with cats and all other dogs. Also with children and people. VERY friendly. Not fussy over food. Only aggression has been towards the goats. Please only call me if you are serious about giving him a loving home. I also have two more basenji's that I need to rehome. A 4 year old female (standard colors) and a 5 year old black and white male. Spayed and neutered, house broke and up to date on shots.. They are also free to good homes only. The female gets along well with males, but is a bit touchy about other females. She needs to be the "pack" leader. I would like for the black and white male and the female to be homed together if at all possible. I love these dogs and will only let them go to a good home. 940/736/7158
Penny is a 4 year old standard color female and Trip is a 5 year old black and white male. I would like to re-home these two as a pair if at all possible, but may consider separating them for the right home. Penny is the "pack leader" and Trip is her "pack"…lol. These two belong to my daughter. She has a new baby and is no longer able to give them the attention they deserve or pay for the upkeep on them. I have them at my house right now where I'm having to keep them in kennels. My daughter and I love them enough that we know they deserve better than being penned up and need more loving attention. If you are not familiar with the basenji breed, please do research before you consider adoption. Both are house broke, up to date on shots, spayed and neutered. Please call 940/736/7158. Thank you very much....Donna
I had some similar issues with Cody when I first got him, but he was a few years older.
I took him to a vet the first time he bit someone because I wanted to rule out a medical issue, and he suggested having Cody neutered right away. That may help a little.
I also enrolled him in a training class, but he was too distracted by other dogs, so I found a one-on-one class with a trainer that had experience with difficult breeds. It does take a lot of patience to train a basenji. As others have said, clicker training works well. Diesel can sense your agitation, so staying calm and positive reinforcement are key.
Good luck and welcome to the forum
I don't have experience with a puppy, and the others have given great advice on the subject, but I have moved and traveled quite a bit with my basenji. While I assume each dog is different, mine has adapted well each time. (Although he does mope when we first move from a place where he has doggy friends in the home to one where he is the only dog.) We've lived in small apartments in larger cities as well as medium to large houses with fenced in yards in small towns/rural areas. I made sure to keep familiar items (mostly his stuff: beds, toys, blankets, crate, etc) around the new house/apartment and in different rooms, which seemed to help during our last 2 moves. Keeping similar routines also helped to ease into the new place, like keeping the same walking routines if possible. As others have said, the living situation will dictate how you exercise your B. Last semester, from September to November, we traveled a lot while I was doing research. At least every other week (although more often it was every week), we would drive 4 hours to the coast on Thursdays and return home Sunday nights or Monday mornings. It took a few trips to get used to it, but after the 3rd or 4th time, whenever I pulled out my suitcase and started packing, he seemed to get excited, complete with tail-twitching, toy tossing, and a B500 or two while I got ready. He would also get right into his car crate and settle down whereas before he would fight with me about having to ride in the crate (if it was up to him, he would roam the car during the whole trip). They are quite adaptable as long as you are consistent.
Please take into consideration the recommendations of the others about the health testing. Check the results yourself on the links provided above. It would be heartbreaking to fall in love with a puppy that you were told is healthy only to find out later that it isn't, especially if you can prevent the situation. No one is trying to discourage you from getting a puppy, only trying to help you make an informed decision.
Cody howled in his sleep once last year. It was loud and mournful, lasting for about a minute. I had just fallen asleep, so it scared me. It took quite a bit to wake him up, but he just looked at me like I was evil for waking him up, grumbled and sighed at me, and then burrowed back under the covers.