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My Personal Experiences With A Basenji Dog

I spent weeks researching different breeds of full blood, mixed breed, and mini breed dogs. I wanted one that was good for indoors, since at the time, I lived in a small duplex. I did not want dog fur all over my furniture, so light shedding was a must. I also lived on a busy street and lacked a fenced in yard, so I needed a dog with low to normal levels of energy. I wanted a proud looking dog, with good posture and strong muscles, confident looking and generally good to it’s master. After weeks of searching, I found the Basenji. This dog seemed perfect to me.

I continued my research on the breed, and learned some interesting things. They supposedly cannot bark. They make a strange howling sound, referred to as a yodel. They can be really stubborn, but always with good intent. They have hair, not fur, so they will lose some on the floor and furniture, but they don’t shed coats. They also clean themselves, so bathing is a bi-annual kind of thing.

All this seemed perfect, so my girlfriend and I drove across Missouri to buy one, for just over $600. From the moment we picked him up, we were in love. The long road trip home wasn’t the best experience, but it was over before we knew it. Then reality hit in. I’m about to share with you exactly what I’ve gone through with my Basenji, Sam, and what you may be able to expect if you’re planning on buying one.

So they don’t bark, but they yodel? No. Not a yodel. Just a piercing howl that sounds like an old woman crying and screaming hysterically. Sam did this every night while we tried to sleep, literally for over a month. Our neighbors hated us, remember, duplex. My girlfriend and I lived there with my roommate. He couldn’t hardly stand sleeping there, so he stayed away as much as he could (nice guy huh?). This isn’t a typical puppy cry that you’ll hear from any young pup while kennel training. This was the most awful sound you can imagine coming from an animal, and just when you think it can’t possibly get any worse, he starts crying even louder.

Sam was very playful as a pup, which is to be expected. He had razor teeth, and didn’t enjoy his doggy toys, he just wanted to chew on us, and bite visitors, and tear up furniture, and chew baseboards, and tear through his leash, and the list goes on and on. You have to be on his case constantly. We couldn’t let him run loose in the house, because he would just run into another room and chew things up.

Another month of this, and a couple cans of keep-away, and he finally learned to enjoy his doggy toys a little more.

Now he’s a bit older, he doesn’t cry at night. He’s a little more calm, so we don’t have to watch him 24/7. But he is, and always has been, very stubborn. He knows when he does things he shouldn’t, and he’ll do that stuff anyway, just to make us get out of the chair and then he tries to get us to play with him. He’s not super high maintenance, but he does need a good hour of fetch and wrestling every day. Once we got past the puppy stage, he’s really a good dog. We had a kid since he came into our lives, and Sam does fine with the baby. Everything else is just like any dog, but these are the things that seemed to me to be somewhat Basenji specific.

It was rough for a few months, but now we wouldn’t trade him for any dog in the world.

Source by Skeeter McGee

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