Ahhh, the question, to crate or not?? You will get a varying degree of opinions here. I've owed 4 basenjis over the last 30 years. They were all crate trained, but, and this is a big BUT, they were allowed free roam of the house, bedroom & bathroom doors closed, after they proved trust worthy. This is NOT to say there was not destruction. There was on occasion. I was okay with that. When Delli chewed and destroyed my $80 earbuds, was I upset? Sure, but, hey, I left them out where she could get ahold of them, my fault, NOT hers. Crate training is great for vet visits, traveling, and when they need quiet time if they choose. Although Tim was crate trained, he did not like being left alone. When he had a bout of pancreatitis, and we had to leave him overnight, he was such a stinker, making art with the newspaper and dog food in the crate and making a huge fuss, they resorted to putting him in the clear plexiglass, iron lung so he felt less confined!! Tim was my clown, and too smart for his own good.
I guess what I'm trying to say, and what most of us say, is best they are crate trained for if the time ever comes that you need it. AND leaving them out depends on the dog, and his/her personality. Our first basenji was a dream, easy, independent, very low maintence, so much so, I decided another would be so much better an experience! Joke was on me...Tim was well, Tim. He was an imp, a monkey, he just needed the foam red nose. He put high in high maintenance!! He was so different than our female, like night and day! A tired Tim was a good Tim. And I had to backpack him on our walks to wear him out, he was so high energy. At around 8 years old we started leaving them out for short periods of time, but it was only after I had read an article about a family that last their beloved basenjis in a fire because they couldn't get out of their crates.
It's a personal choice, however, you should put your dog's needs/protection first. Some basenjis are determined chewers. This can be dangerous for the dog, as well as, expensive trips to the vet for surgery for a ripped stomach from a shard of bone. We all have horror stories, or battle stories, sometimes we win, sometimes we lose. Tim was a counter sufer, this meant EVERYTHING on the counter have to be pushed back exactly 11 inches, because he could work that paw like a friggin human hand determined to get whatever it was he wanted off the counter.
I'm sorry there is no standard yes/no answer here, but like I've stated best be prepared and have the dog crate trained. I can also tell you this, I've had to reupholster my couch twice, and we had to get a new living room set, 3 new living room rugs. If you value your stuff, put it away, otherwise it's fair game! And you must have a sense of humor....
Definately basenji in there. You can have a DNA test done now for around $100 if you really want to know. Just make sure that they have basenji DNA in their data base. My Bolt, who is 3/4 African, has a square blocky head just like yours, although, I have to say he does have a slightly 'different' look than our others, but he is 100% basenji, he's just got a big blocky head!
We got our very first basenji girl at 12 weeks. She was a left over. She also grew up into an independent little lovely lady. Not to say she didn't have her occasional 'B' moments, like leaping onto the coffee table and running across our pizza one night! She was such a joy, we decided to get another from the same breeder. We got him at 8 weeks. She felt it would be fine since we were 'experienced' (I really have to laugh here, because NOTHING could have prepared us for what we were about to invite into our home!) and we had our female to 'teach' him the ropes. He was nothing like our female, he wanted my attention all the time. We had to teach him how to play, how not to bite. There were many pleas for help from members of b-com. I'm not telling you this to frighten you. The dogs were as different as night and day. It could have just been their personalities, it's hard to say. I wouldn't have traded a day with either dog. I think it's a personal decision, however, our girl at 12 weeks certainly was more independent.
@abrunelle...yes, our Tim was an imp, and got into EVERYTHING! We had an extra large wire crate in the kitchen that Rory and Tim fit into nicely. They were crated together once Tim outgrew his small crate, and we knew Rory would not hurt him. My husband worked from home so for that first year they weren't crated all that much. But we tried to leave the house every day for at least 15 minutes with them crated so they knew we would return. The only reason I stopped crating them was Rory was starting to refuse to go in the crate, AND I had read this tragic story that broke my heart how someone had lost their Bs in a horrible house fire and the dogs couldn't get out because they were crated. You can get stickers for your house that lets firefighters know you have crated pets in your home. I just can't remember who made them or carried them. We don't currently crate our 2. Bolt would never dream of destroying anything, could be because he's the laziest basenji. But, Delli, she does not like it when we leave, but at 15 if she gets something, it's my fault, I left it out! I ought to know better!
Sounds like your pup may be getting separation anxiety in the crate, hence the protesting noise. We got another b to help Rory with her separation anxiety, plus I really wanted anther one! Some basenjis really hate the crate, some don't mind. You have to find what works for yours. Perhaps a gated room might be the answer.
I have to agree with Tanza here, your dog is definitely resource guarding. This behavior is unwanted, and can be disastrous if left unaddressed, or not properly handled. I had the same issue with our Bolt when he first came to live with us at 6 1/2 y/o. We have had him now for 6 years. I have worked extensively with him, but it is an issue we have to continue to deal with on a daily basis with training. I believe he had to be rehomed because of this issue. When he first got here, he thought sleeping in bed with me was his right, not a privilege that I gave him. He would not allow my husband to get into bed without charging/snapping at him. Clearly this was not acceptable behavior. If we were in bed, Bolt and I, and my husband then came to bed a while later, Bolt and I got out of bed, let my husband get into bed. Husband would then call Bolt up onto the bed tapping the mattress saying 'big bed'. Once the dog was in the bed my husband would have a few small treats and would work a little obedience with him before bed. Now when Bolt sees my husband coming to bed, he knows he's going to get a treat and do a little obedience. BUT even after all this time, if I'm asleep and the light is off, Bolt will growl at my husband. If the light is on, however, and I'm asleep, there is much less chance that he will growl at my husband. My husband watches his body language very carefully.
As far as chewing things....our first pair of basenjis were crated until they were 8 years old when we left the house. I had to remove a chair to a back room because Tim liked the cherry wood! Our female does not like to be left alone, although she has Bolt with her, she wants us to stay home. She will show her displeasure by chewing something of mine, glasses, ear buds, or will move my shoes to the middle of the living room. I try to keep all items out of harms way. It comes with experience and training you. Don't leave stuff out that she can get into, or chew. They have no trouble finding stuff on their own. Some basenji owners will give cream cheese frozen in a Kong for their basenji to chew. Ours just thought it was this weird thing, licked out the yummy stuff and ignored the Kong. It's frustrating, we all know, we have all been there, but be patient, and above all consistent. They are independent thinkers, what works for one doesn't mean it will work for yours, sometimes you need to try different things. Hang in there, it's so worth the reward!
I know it's kind of late to chime in here, but, I feel I need to share my experience with you. We got our first basenji in March '96 and our 2nd in December of that same year, brother and sister from year apart litters. They could not have been more different. Our female was an angel, an occasional basenji high jinx, but her brother, imp all the way. He was a biter from the get go. Like you, we tried everything. What finally worked or us, immediately stop play, stand up, fold arms, out of reach, and turn our backs from the puppy. He quickly got the message, that biting of any kind would not be tolerated. I really need to caution you here, any kind of biting, even in play, should not be allowed, as this most likely will become an issue for you in the future, especially if you plan on having children in your home. He will think that it's okay to put his teeth on/into your skin. I ought to know as our Bolt, although very much loved in his original home, after 6 years, had to be rehomed due to biting issues. We are his 4th home. Not everyone can cope with an adult biting dog. It's best to deal with it now.
They are very smart dogs. I say they are more like a 2 year old in a dog suit. BUT, what works for one does not mean it will work for another, and sometimes, it will only works once. They can be very challenging, but the reward, that, that is limitless, and why so many of us have them. If you ask most of our relatives, they simply think we are nuts for having 'crazy' dogs!