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Description: The Basenji is a handsome, short, muscular dog who is also known as the African Barkless Dog. "Basenji" means "bush thing" in African dialect. They should not bark, but they are not mute. Basenjis repertoire of sounds range from a pleasing throaty crow to a keening wail made when they are lonely or unhappy. Basenjis are often compared to small deer because of their grace, intelligence and beauty. They are about the size of a Fox Hound, and very proud. One of the oldest breeds of dogs, they are native to Africa where they are used to assist beaters in flushing game out, which are then driven into nets strung up against trees. These dogs were highly prized in Central Africa for their intelligence, silence, speed and hunting power. The Basenji has a short, fine coat that tends to become more course in colder countries, but without losing its gleam. Wrinkled on the forehead, they also have a curly tail that swirls to one side of their body. Known to be much like cats, Basenjis will sometimes clean themselves by licking all over, and are said to be nearly odorless. Basenjis will make good pets as long as they are handled on a regular basis from an early age.
Other Names: Congo Dog, Congo Bush Dog, Congo Terrier, Bongo Dog, African Barkless Dog, African Bush Dog, Zande Dog, Belgian Congo Dog, Nyam Nyam Terrier.
Type: Sighthound and Pariah
Females: 16 inches; Males 17 inches.
red, black and tan. There is always white on the chest, feet and tail tips.
are intelligent, independent, affectionate but alert. Basenjis are playful,
inquisitive, and active. Sometimes aloof with strangers.
Depends on dog and owner attentiveness; doesn’t bark to alert. If you are a
stranger, you should not approach Basenjis from behind.
Care and Training:
Comb or brush the Basenjis smooth coat and bathe when necessary. Daily exercise
will prevent obesity. House training comes easily as they are naturally clean
creatures. Basenjis clean themselves like cats, and have virtually no doggy
odor. Basenjis will sometimes use destruction as amusement when left to themselves,
and should be trained carefully not to do so.
Health Issues: Anemia, hernias, hip dysplasia, Kidney problems, PRA (Progressive Retinal Atrophy), thyroid problems.
Life Span: 12-14 years
Country of Origin:
Zaire and the Congo (Central Africa)
First Registered by the AKC:
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