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Loki & Kaia

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posted in Behavioral Issues read more

I have a 6 yr old female and a 7 yr male. They are left uncrated while we are not there. We close the door to my daughter's room, but otherwise, free access to the rest of the house along with a doggy door for access to our fenced yard. They're fine and mostly sleep or sun outside. Our girl was fine being crated, but our male never adjusted to the crate and would completely freak out, chew the bottom, and was at risk of hurting himself (his teeth got caught twice with us right there with him).

We much prefer letting them roam freely. They have plenty of toys and chews and we make sure to keep the important stuff put away. The worst they'll do is scope out some paper or tissues to shred while we're gone. We keep stuff like that which is ok for them to "steal and destroy" in case they get the urge, but even if we didn't, we wouldn't come home to a shredded couch or the like.

posted in Basenji Talk read more


Aren't basenjis just the most helpful dogs ever? 😃

Yep. Kaia has recently taken to assisting me in changing out of work clothes when I get home and of course, loves to help gather, sort, and fold the laundry. She'll even sprint off with items and take them out in the back yard just so we have less to wash! 😉

posted in Basenji Talk read more

After putting it off for the last 2 months I decided to finally start doing Pilates again to help get myself back in shape. I don't have a gym membership and classes get pricey, so I exercise at home. First time this week went alright, except that Kaia thought something was hidden under the mat and Loki decided that it was the perfect time to play- which he emphasized by grabbing a toy and hitting me in the head. Tonight's attempt was…well, interesting. Loki again thought it was playtime (no toy bashing though!), so I multitask by playing tug-of-war while also doing the easier exercises. Apparently the mat is comfy, because both felt the need to wiggle their way on with some antlers. Setting your feet down to find dogs and pokey antlers underneath is just a tad odd. Kaia discovered that me trying to balance on hands and knees is the perfect time to lick my ears because I can't push her away quickly; that if she starts a wrestling match with her brother she can always hide under mom's stomach, legs, raised arms, etc; and racing around, over, and under mom is tons of fun, though a 22lb torpedo leaping over your face is quite disconcerting. The real kicker came after I was finished and realized I hadn't closed the laptop, so my resume was now 53 pages long with some very helpful bits thrown in. And of course, the moment the mat is rolled up, the dogs curl up on the bed and pass out.

Basenji-free home gym space just moved to the top of the home buying wish list 😉

posted in Basenji Talk read more

Loki is just a tad over 12" and Kaia measures 11.5" . How old will your pup be when he comes home? I'd hold off on the leather until he's fully grown, otherwise you'll more than likely end up buying two. Mine were 8 and 12 weeks when they came home and both were around 6" then.

posted in Basenji Talk read more


Of course we say, be careful what you name them…. as they will live up to it....

Yes, they will. Kaia's registered name is Meisterhaus Twice the Trouble…guess who's the troublemaker at my house? Sometimes I even think it should have been Triple the Trouble 😉

Naming can be difficult, especially when you prepare for a boy and come home with a girl! I think Bandit is cute for a girl, but it's really whichever name you feel suits her best. If in a few days, you find something else you like, it won't be difficult to change it.

posted in Basenji Talk read more


I would be careful about using treats to lure her off the couch, because a smart dog will soon learn to jump on the couch in order to be lured off by treats. I like clicker training, but it isn't always useful for extinguishing behaviour unless you can set things up to train an incompatible behaviour.

Which is why phasing out the treats, as well as rewarding when she does refrain from jumping on the couch is so important. Especially since the op is trying to teach the "off" command, they may find using treats in the beginning useful. Once Lucky knows what off means, treats should be random until eventually stopping altogether. And if she does jump immediately back up, no 2nd reward- a firm off, placing her on the floor and rewarding only once she has stayed down. It would also be helpful to teach something along the lines of "stay", so that when she is about to jump on the couch, give her the command, and when she successfully stays off, reward 🙂

posted in Basenji Talk read more

Basenjis do like to follow their own rules. She can and will learn what your rules are, but don't be surprised if she ignores them. Honestly though, she hasn't had enough time to learn what the rules are yet. It can take weeks or months for puppies to learn what they are/are not supposed to do. Puppies have a lot of things to learn and there will be ups and downs. At times it will seem like she's doing great, and then she'll backtrack a few steps; completely normal. If you continue to want her off the couch, just keep doing what you're doing and be patient. You could try clicker training or using treats to lure her off the couch after you give the command and gradually phase out the treats. I'd also give her a treat when she does not jump on the couch when she usually would, again phasing out the treats. Any new behavior you try to teach is going to take time for her to reliably perform. Basenjis learn quickly but they don't always choose to do as asked. She may very well stay off the couch when you are watching and then sneak up when able.

posted in Basenji Talk read more

Loki's picky eating comes and goes, even after Kaia got here. He has had no problem letting her finish his dinner when he didn't feel like eating. I've added yogurt and/or pumpkin to his kibble and that has helped him finish his dinner. They are oddballs in that they will sit and wait for the other to finish, then switch bowls to make sure every last bit has been cleaned up. They also frequently trade bully sticks with one another, but higher value stuff like meaty bones are a no-no to come near. Last month I started them both on Nupro and he actually gets excited at meal times! That has never, ever been the case prior to adding that in. I haven't had to utter the dreaded "finish your dinner" in weeks 😉

posted in Basenji Talk read more


Ava loves broccoli, cauliflower and peas, too! She also loves carrots, spinach and sweet potatoes. In hot weather, she thinks a floret of frozen broccoli or cauliflower or a frozen carrot chip is the best thing ever! All I have to do is open the freezer door, and she's dancing on her hind legs.

The dancing is adorable! So far broccoli and cauliflower are the only veggies Loki will eat, everything else he spits out with a disgusted look on his face. I made homemade dog biscuits at Christmas and snuck bananas into 1 batch 😉

posted in Basenji Talk read more

As others have stated, give it time. Each puppy learns at her own pace. As far as her learning her name, anytime you say her name and she looks at you, treat. If she's playing with something or distracted, it's not going to work as well unless you are more interesting than whatever she is paying attention to. Anytime you say her name should be friendly, excited, etc; her name should be associated with good things. It's very easy to scold using her name when she's doing something she shouldn't be, but try to avoid this.

For treats, cooked chicken is great. Our two go crazy for Zuke's Z Filets, chicken chips (dehydrated ground chicken), cheese, hot dogs; anything that can be cut up into small pieces will be good during training. Loki has recently discovered that he loves steamed broccoli and cauliflower once the stems are removed. I can use anything from store-bought treats to peas with Kaia!

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