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Basenji Dogs

basenji dogs Basenji dogs are a very old breed. There is evidence of this from depictions of their likeness found in Egyptian tombs, though there are differing opinions about the breed's ancestry.

Some believe that this dog descends from the Spitz breed due to its physical similarity. While others, think it was developed from pariah type dogs in central Africa specifically as a hunting dog.

There is no doubt of its bravery, stamina and excellent ability to hunt, both by sight and scent. And these skills are still used in its native country today.

One of the most unusual facts about the Basenji is that it does not bark. It does, however, make other noises which sound similar to laughing or yodeling.

This breed of dog has an elegant, well-balanced look and carries its body with a confident posture. The face has a very alert expression, but the forehead creases tend to give it an inquiring gaze.

Appearance, Coat and Care

BasenjisBasenjis (Complete Pet Owner's Manual)

Height: 16-17 inches
Weight: 22-24 lbs.
Color variations: Red; black, black and white; red and white; black, tan and white; black brindle and white.

The coat is sleek and fine. This breed is almost odorless, has very clean habits and likes to take care of its own grooming, much like a cat. And, also similar to the cat, they don't like water or going out in the rain.

For potential owners with allergy problems, this dog may be one to consider as it sheds very little.

Personality and Traits

Basenji dogs are friendly and affectionate, but they are also known to have a proud and independent side to their nature. They are cautious, though not aggressive, with strangers and like to be approached on their own terms.

This dog is very intelligent and known to be crafty in getting its way. Owners need to be able to stay one step ahead of them to maintain their leadership role.

Basenjis are very fastidious and are reputed to be easy to housetrain. and co-exits well with other dogs. It is very curious and fun-loving and likes to play a lot. They don't enjoy being left alone and tend to get into mischief if bored. Toys are very welcome diversions for them, especially indestructible dog toys to satify their insatiable interest in chewing.

Even though they don't bark, they are good watchdogs and will let you know, through a repertoire of other noises, if there is something you should check out.

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Activity Level

This breed has a lot of energy and needs a daily walk. They also really like to play, so if you want to burn off some of that energy, take them out for long daily walks.

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Space Needs

The ideal environment for Basenji dogs would be any residence that has ample room outside to run and play. Apartment is not a good choice due to the high activity level of the breed and the need to get outside for exercise.

Also, Basenji dogs don't like being left alone and are likely to start "yodeling" or making sad noises which sound like a baby crying, which may be confusing to neighbors.


A good dog for older and more mature children who can convey leadership. The caution remains no matter what the breed, that activities involving children and pets should always be supervised by an adult.


While Basenji dogs usually bond deeply with humans in a caring and affectionate way, this breed may not be suitable for families that cannot provide significant daily walks and other exercise opportunities.

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Book Recommendation:

basenji dogs book basenji dogs book Complete Basenji
Traces the story of this silent "barkless" dog, which is still used for hunting in some parts of Africa. Known as the "all-round hound," the Basenji now competes in agility and obedience competitions as well as having a role as a show dog and companion. This is a breed with unique characteristics and expert advice is given on all aspects of care. Illustrated in black and white.

basenji dogs, dogs of africa book basenji dogs, dogs of africa book Dogs Of Africa
Many breeds of dogs originated on the continent of Africa. The native African dogs are divided into seven basic types. Maps illustrate where the dogs originated, and the author covers the history and characteristics of the various breeds. Fully illustrated reference.

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