The Basenji Dog As A Pet

Animals___Dogs_Beautiful_breed_dog_Basenji_looking_at_the_photographer_049535_There are so many interesting dog breeds of small dogs that you may not have heard of. Ones that may be perfect if you are single, have a roommate or partner in a small apartment with no children. We tend to only think of a few small breeds of dogs first like Chihuahuas, Boston Terriers and miniature pinschers. There are so many more exciting breeds of dogs with individual personalities that might fit you better than some of the more commonly spoken of dogs you have heard of.

The Basenji

Have you ever heard of the Basenji breed of dog? It is one of the oldest dog breeds known of. Because of this, he is not a barking dog. This sounds great but he does make other noises and yelps that can be just as loud. He is a straight up hunting dog. It is thought that he doesn’t bark a lot because his African ancestors preferred to hunt with a more quiet partner. This doesn’t mean he can’t bark or doesn’t know how to bark. He most certainly can bark but usually is like his cousin, the wolf. They bark one time and then go quiet.

Size and History

The Basenji weighs in at about 22-24 pounds and stands between 16-17 inches tall, depending on if it’s a male or a female. They have a metabolism unlike any other domesticated canine. They cycle once a year, instead of twice like other dogs. This is how the wild dogs do it as well. They are still a very independent breed that can be hard to train because of their long history of being wild animals. They have extremely an high prey drive which makes them prone to being a wanderlust if left unattended. They were found back in the 1800’s in the Congo. They were then made into hunting dogs and were treated quite well by the tribesmen. It was said that a good Basenji was as valuable as a good wife! They still acutely have those hunting instincts and are best for someone who has no other small pets unless they were closely raised with them. Any small rodent like pets would be in severe danger around this dog. They will even hunt a cat so it’s best if you want one of these dogs to be committed to only owning a dog and giving him all of your love and attention. They do however get along well generally with other dogs so they will adapt into the pack mentality if you already own one.

A Rare Breed Not For Everyone

The Basenji is considered a more rare breed of dog and if you are interested in owning one, expect to be on a waiting list. There are however rescue organizations specifically for this breed as it is a commonly abandoned dog because of the high level of attention and care required. They are perfect for an apartment dog and are great with strangers. They do have high energy and can sneak out of places easily so they require a lot of monitoring. Any fences need to be checked frequently for holes. They tolerate hot weather well but do not like the cold. They will need a sweater when taken outside. They do tolerate being left alone well. If you have young children, picking out another breed until they get older would be the best decision. They are hound dogs and need frequent socialization early on. They are extremely smart, but may not appear too bright if you are training them and a small animal catches their eye. It is just his nature as a sighthound. He also does not listen right away to your directions. He sits and thinks about it for a moment and decides if he wants to do what you say or not. This type of personality may not fit all types of people while others love it.

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