There's a book called 'the intelligence of dogs' that's pretty good, since it measures problem solving ability, and not obedience.
Having said all that, it's a common misconception. How often are our kids in schools (human kids, not four legged ones) called 'stupid' because they're not obedient!
We met a red for the first time this weekend (up until now, our Bassit, a tri, was the only real-live B we knew). What I found hilarious, was that I could pretty much see what the red was thinking. His behavior was fairly predictable. With Bassit, we never EVER know what she's thinking until she's wreaked some sort of havoc!
Edited to Add - I'm sure that the humans owned by the red would beg to differ on his being 'predictable' but that was my opinion. His behavior made sense, whereas Bassit's…sometimes I have to think really hard to trace where her thought pattern started out!
Hooray! That's the answer I was hoping for. I have made some pretty significant changes in my lifestyle to accomodate little miss. (I don't think I've gone out on an evening for more than a couple of hours since we brought her home.) I'm pleased to hear that the efforts we've made to spend time with her and bond are going to pay off long-term.
Our girl, Bassit, is 10 months old, and, as much as I'm afraid to say this too loudly, she's simply a joy! Not very distructive, very, very sweet and loving, friendly to people and other dogs, exceptionally cuddly. We were at Woofstock this weekend and met someone with a 7 year old Basenji who said that theirs had gotten progressively more 'ornery' as she got older. Is this common? Are we in a honeymoon period and my sweet little girl will grow more distant and cranky? Would love to hear from others with more experience than me.
Bassitt is pretty sure that she's agile like a cat. Except she outweighs cats by at least 10 pounds. She's forever falling off of the back of the couch because she thinks her butt's smaller than it is. (Then she gets scared because she fell off. Then she runs away and doesn't look where she's going and runs into stuff and gets scared.) In short…She's a total klutz, but in such a delightful way!
Our Bassitt really doesn't love her crate either. When we first brought her home, she'd scream for hours (when I left her to go to work). In desperation, we did a combination of 'really really tire her out' (i.e. I get up at 5 in order to walk her long enough to make her sleepy) and 'fool her into thinking she's not crated'. We bought a very tall metal gate with vertical bars (nothing for her to climb) The gate's adjustable, so an area of the hallway has become 'baby jail'. She's pretty happy to go in there, because it's not so restrictive. We still crate her sometimes (for example, we start the night out with her in the crate, but within a few hours she's lonesome and needs to come into bed with me…spoiled!) and when she's in the car, but because she doesn't associate it with 'mom leaving' she doesn't hate it as much.
The secret for us was to do a bit at a time. (put her in baby jail, as soon as she stopped making noise, let her out. After a little while, put her in again, same thing) Exposing her a bit at a time seemed to help.
Good luck! I know your frustration.
(Can't help at all with the chewing. Bassitt hates toys, all she wants to chew are ipod chargers)
The B-500s are getting out of hand as well! Yesterday, she was doing circuits of the house and leapt into a bedside table, causing everything to go flying. Now I understand what they mean when everyone says 'You need a sense of humour to be owned by a Basenji'
So Bassit has just turned 7 months. And I swear, it's like a little 'evil' switch has been turned on in her brain! My sweet, docile little puppy is suddenly pure darn badness from the end of her nose to the tip of her tail.
I suppose that's what I get for being smug, thinking that I got the one 'perfectly behaved' basenji!
Tell me though, in your experience, do puppies go through a toddlerhood? Where all of a sudden, they're into everything? And do they ever grow out of it?
I have to admit, the pure GLEE she gets from grabbing something she knows isn't hers makes me laugh.