I understand your grief. It runs deep and you think every morning, ‘how am I going to face the day without my monkey?’ But you do, and think to yourself, ‘is this hole in my heart ever going to decrease in size?’ It’s been 7 years and although you can’t drive a Mac truck through the hole in my heart, it still remains. I like to think that my little guy ‘took’ that piece of my heart with him to heaven, so when my time comes he’ll easily find me. Some days it’s what keeps me going. This is the place to find kindred spirts that understand, he’s not just a dog!
This is a serious issue, because your dog is resource guarding you. Most people think that it’s because their dog is protecting them, it is not. That growl, it’s a warning, that if not corrected, will progress to teeth barring, and eventually a bite. I suggest you research resource guarding. I have a dog, that resource guards, we are his 4th home. We have had him for 7 1/2 years. My experience, when he first came to live with us, he and I bonded. I fed him, and was his principle care taker, the supplier of his resources. This led to problems. My husband could not come to bed without begging charged at by the dog. On 1 occasion, he got bitten. Your wife will need to work obedience with him, without you in the room. I suggest that she feed him. She should be the one that walks him. This will send the message that he needs to depend on her for his resources. Eventually you can share the duties, but for right now, she needs to be the one to do it. Also, I would suggest that your wife should come into the room, You make the dog get up OFF the couch. Have your wife sit down beside you, and have HER invite the dog back up onto the couch. Do this several times everyday. I have to keep treats in the bedroom so my husband can get into bed at night, he needs to pay a toll every night! I hope this helps.
Each basenji is different, and what works for one may not work on another. When Tim was a puppy, and he would bite too hard, whatever we were doing STOPPED immediately, I would stand up, fold my arms in front of me, AND turn my back on him, and in a very low voice say, ‘ohhh nooo puppy...’ Tim hated being ignored by me, more than anything in his world.
Each basenji is different. What works for 1 doesn’t necessarily mean it will work on another. HOWEVER, you can teach your dog to walk on a leash with LOT of patience, consistency, desensitizing, and positive reinforcement. My high energy basenji needed a job. I was very serious about his ‘job’, and he was very proud to do every day. I backpacked him with slightly filled water bottles. Adding a little at a time to equal tiring him out with his exercise fitness. Our current male that we adopted 7 years ago, is very dog reactive. I need to be very aware of the other dog’s body language to judge how mine will react. I made some basenji specific walking videos for a friend. They are private but I can message them to you if you would like. I’m not a trainer, but I made these as my friend didn’t quit understand what I was trying to convey. If you are interested let me know. But it took about 2 years before he became ‘good’ on the leash.
@eaglet I feel compelled to share my experience with you as back in ‘96 when we got out first basenji female. I had done my research, so I knew what I was getting into. I had 1 rule, ‘no dogs on the bed’. I lasted 45 minutes that first night, before I placed her in the bed under the covers by my feet, a place she slept for 16 years. She was a joy, a little lady. So when the breeder had another litter we decided to get a little boy. I never even pretended he wasn’t sleeping in the bed between us. BUT and it’s a big BUT, they couldn’t have been more different in personality! He was an imp, monkey, thief, mischief seeker, a clown, and at times exasperating. But for ALL his shannigans, he was my heart dog. At 16 he stole the roasted chicken off the kitchen counter when my back was turned! We got a companion former show dog when our 1st female passed. She was 8 1/2 when we go her. She was sensitive and shy. She was no trouble at all. We got her a companion when our 1st male passed. We were his 4th home, due to biting issues at 6 1/2. He’s been with us for 7 years. He required a lot of desensitizing to several issues, especially touching his collar. We thought there was something wrong with him as he only wanted 1 walk a day. Had his thyroid checked, blood work done, nope, he’s just lazy. Here’s my point with basenjis, you don’t know if you are going to get a high or low maintenance personality. There are so many negatives out there because we don’t want to see them have to be rehomed due to issues like destruction, or biting. I had to reupholster my couch 2 times, thankfully I sew. I fell in love with the breed, and I’m willing to do ANYTHING my dog needs me to do for their health and well being. If you decide to get a basenji, you must have a sense of humor, waterproof mattress cover, patience, love, plus the willingness to accept sometimes they outsmart you. Yes, they can be frustratingly smart, but the rewards far out weigh the negatives, IMHO.
Our first basenji back in ‘96 lived with us in an apartment. I, too, used pee pads for those occasional ‘accidents’. BUT, she wasn’t getting potty trained, even though we were taking her outside. It was ME. I was sending mixed signals to her. I picked up the pee pads, and she was taken out, immediately upon waking, after eating, after naps, after play. She was trained within a week. I also had another female that when she got older, decided she hated the rain SO much, she did her business on the floor, BUT it was the bathroom floor. She was so smart she made the connection that, that’s where her pack ‘goes’.
Our second puppy, Tim was a biter as a puppy. I found that he mostly bit during play, and when he became overly stimulated. When he would bite, whatever we were doing would immediately stop. I would stand up, fold my arms, turn my back on him, and in a very soft voice, ‘oh, no, naughty boy’, and ignore him. It was a phrase I ONLY used when There was an extremely egregious behavior. Because I swear he though his name was, ‘no, puppy, no’! He hated when I ignored him, more than ANYTHING.
The reason the ‘Behavioral Problem‘ section is there, is to discourage just ‘anyone’ from getting a basenji. We encourage questions, research. We want to make sure you are prepared for your basenji, so he/she won’t have to be rehomed due to behavioral issues. BUT, to answer your question, here is my list: Independent thinker, makes me exercise (walking the dog), no doggie smell- even when wet, very little dog hair (unless it’s the change of season and they are blowing out their coat), no barking, basenji talk (not all do this), entertaining, a very unique bond. I’ve owned 4 since 1996, each with their own personality. Raised 2 from pups, and adopted the last 2. We wanted to adopt another after our female passed this past November, but our male resource guards me, and HE wanted no part of THAT. So we will be a single basenji home till he passes. Many of us are lucky to have what we call, a heart dog/bond, with our basenjis. I have never owned any other breed, so I don’t know how that compares, but a basenji is more than just a dog.
@rgk9ruler...Prednisone can shrink the swelling in the lymph glands, and make the dog feel generally better. It is only a bandaid, NOT a cure. I am a pharmacist, so when our Miss Delli-Do got this diagnosis, I did the research, with chemo the best out comes were at best, 18 months. Our gal was 15, and cost did also play into our decision, as well as her quality of life. We decided just comfort measures. She told me when she was ready. Again my heart goes out to you. It’s a tough diagnosis to get.