This is one of the oldest breeds in the world, although its history is full of mysteries. Scientists are confident that 4000 years BC Basenji were the only known dogs.
In 1937 this breed first appeared in Europe in an exhibition under the name Kraft Congo Terrier or The Dog of the jungle. Since 1941, they were very successfully bred in the US. The first representatives were imported from Congo, and later were crossed with dogs from Sudan and Liberia. Recently single Basenji specimens begin to appear in exhibitions in Russia.
Basenji is a dog with above-average growth. The ideal height at the withers for males is 43 cm and for females - 40.5 cm. The weight is between 9.5 and 11 kg.
This is a slender and graceful animal with a light skeleton and aristocratic bearing, slightly shortened body and high set neck. The head has a flat forehead, with a medium broad muzzle. The ears have sharp tips, they are erect, slightly tilted forward and set high. The tail is set very high and the legs themselves are quite prominent in front of the base.
The coat is short and smooth. Colorations are ginger, black, or black with spots, but all paws are white, as well as the chest, the neck and the tip of the tail.
Character and behavior
In Congo these dogs were used to drive the prey towards the nets for which the Basenji had a bell on his collar (the hunters always knew the exact location of the prey). During hunting the dog use both sight and smell. They are alert, intelligent and independent but aloof and suspicious of strangers. Basenji does not know how to bark. He may growl, roar and express his feelings with snorting or melodic howl.
They are very different from other puppies, quietly observing everything around him, staying almost imperceptible. These dogs are very loyal animals, intelligent, with elephantine memory and never forget if something bad is done to them.
Training and education
During training the Basenji will understand everything, but could decide that your demands are meaningless and there is no chance to execute any command.
In Europe they became indoor dogs. Here and there they are still used for hunting. Some even believe that Basenji can successfully hunt wild boar – of course one dog is not enough, it takes at least seven or eight.
He is intelligent and easily memorizes all the commands. The Basenji is suitable for active people who have older children and experience in growing dogs.
This breed is a perfect choice for people suffering from allergies and who appreciate cleanliness in the home.
The lifespan of the representatives of the breed is about 12 years. They are prone to kidney, intestinal and eye problems.
Grooming and care
The Basenji puppy can easily be grown at home, because their fur is short and does not need special care. Furthermore, the dog is very clean. To raise a happy and obedient Basenji, you should take a little more time, a little more effort and to show more understanding.
This dog can adapt to life in the city if you provide him with long daily walks. Don't leave the puppy alone, it is capable to make a huge mess.
In Africa it is believed that Basenji drive away evil spirits, and one that has several Basenji dogs is a rich man. As for the spirits, things are not quite clear, but in terms of wealth Africans are absolutely right: Basenji is so nice that the more you have, the richer you are. Or at least happier.
Children and other pets
The Basenji adore the company of his master and gets along very well with children in the family, but behaves suspiciously with strangers. If he doesn't have enough time to play and exercise, and is left just sitting in a corner of the yard, your pet could develop behavior problems.
For "Mother" of the breed is considered Veronica Williams, but the best puppies for sale in the 40's were associated with the name of Gene Stringer.
The Egyptians treated Basenji with huge respect - mummified them no worse than the Pharaohs. They wrapped them in precious fabrics, stuffed them with incense and laying them in comfortable tombs. Well preserved mummy of a Basenji was discovered in the tomb of Tutankhamun.
The slogan of the Basenji club states: "Your dog often has the point, even if you are not able to understand"
There is a legend that once these dogs were able to speak.