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Old 05-03-2011, 12:23 PM
ChrisWB ChrisWB is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Posts: 18

Thank you all for your advice.

From what everyone is saying it sounds as though a Sheltie would be a better fit for my lifestyle. I've scheduled a time to visit the breeder's ranch to meet the dogs and puppies. If I feel a connection to one of the puppies I will likely add a Sheltie to the family.

Now I just have to get over my prejudice that a show dog is "better"; the Shelties are working ranch dogs and are bred with health as a priority.


Shelties are more energetic than JRTs? Good lord!


Dachshunds are a royal pain in the butt to train, but I had no trouble training mine. It just took a LONG time. My silliest training mistake was teaching her the command "speak"; she was bright enough to realize that she was getting food whenever she made noise. I foolishly turned my dachshund into quite the little opera singer! My family still gives me grief about that.

I am considering scheduling a time to visit the Basenji breeder as well, but I haven't decided whether it would be worthwhile.
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:25 PM
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Dekka Dekka is offline
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Ontario
Posts: 19,768

Ya I have met some that are chill, but I find the whippets more busy than the JRTs.
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:43 PM
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Laurelin Laurelin is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 30,963

Mine weren't exactly chill either, just chill-er. LOL They really liked having something to do every day and definitely needed exercise but at the same time were very much okay if you missed a day or two of exercise. And just in general they weren't quite as demanding about things as the paps. I sure do KNOW when Mia hasn't had enough to do.

The very first thing Trey did when we brought him home was leap over our couch in one bound, lol.

Hank CA - (approx. 1 1/2 year old Spotty Dog)
Mia CGC - (6 1/2 year old Papillon)
Summer TG3 TIAD - (11 year old Papillon)
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:52 PM
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Zoom Zoom is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Denver, CO
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Depending on where the Basenji comes from, they might fit in ok. Many of the US show breeders have been breeding for more biddability and less "primitive", which means they're not entirely "Basenjis" anymore. My former training mentor had a 4th generation show bred Basenji--still not my cup of tea but she worked for her owner pretty well, but that was about it. If you weren't her person, you could go take a flying leap.

Honestly, given your list of wants, the Sheltie would fit in a bit better, though neither breed is exactly known for being good with strangers, in that they're both known for being rather/very aloof. Many Shelties are quite shy.
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:50 PM
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YodelDogs YodelDogs is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Georgia
Posts: 479

*raises hand slowly*

Basenji breeder here

Originally Posted by ChrisWB View Post
I'm looking for a dog that is bright, affectionate, non-threatening towards strangers (my college students), and adaptable. The dog should also be friendly towards other dogs. I would prefer a dog that's trainable which gives points in the Sheltie's favor.
The right Basenji could meet all of your requirements. Basenjis are very intelligent dogs and they learn incredibly fast. The trick is to use positive reinforcement, preferably clicker training. You also have to change up training constantly to keep them guessing what will be next and to keep them from growing bored. Training is easy, consistency is not. A Basenji will never be a "push-button" dog who obeys instantly and without question. And for this reason you need to have a ton of patience and a good sense of humor.

This is a video of me working 3 pups from last year. They had only had one short lesson before this one.

YouTube - Basenji puppies learning to sit

Breeders have done a great job in toning down the temperament and most Basenjis who are well-socialized as puppies can be good with other dogs. Some, however, never enjoy interacting with strange dogs and they are not afraid to say something about it. Boys tend to be more easy-going than girls.

Basenjis can be very affectionate and they enjoy cuddling but they will not fawn all over you like a Golden Retriever. They are curious dogs so they will follow you around the house or your yard. It's hard to even go to the bathroom without at least one "supervising" the procedure. *coughs*

Basenjis are a nice, portable size and they enjoy going places. They are very clean, have no body odor, shed very little, almost never pant, and never drool. They are not able to make a repetitive bark but they can make a single bark which sounds more like a "boof". They are capable of making any other sound any dog can make plus a wide assortment of noises of their own. Many can make a pleasant yodel when they are happy and a few can make a blood-curdling scream when they are not happy.

I have had the breed for 20 years and I will probably always have them. If you have any questions I will be happy to try to answer them.

Sherwood Basenjis
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Old 05-03-2011, 09:55 PM
ChrisWB ChrisWB is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Posts: 18

Thank you all for your advice! I wrote a longer post, but it is being "held for moderation". I'm not sure why. Perhaps I wrote the phrase "thank you" too many times?


The puppies in your video are absolutely adorable, and the dogs on your website are some of the most beautiful I have ever seen. It's a shame that you're not located in the southwest. Do you mind if I contact you via private message to see if you've heard of the breeder with whom I've spoken? Thank you for the offer to answer questions; I'll take you up on it! Here are a few off the top of my head:

1. You mentioned that boys are more easy-going than girls. The dog that my dog/puppy will be around the most is a submissive male rat terrier. Would it be better to choose a female to ensure that there's no fighting? Come to think of it, all of the dogs that I interact with on a daily basis (all of my neighbors are dog-crazy as well!) are males.

2. How much stimulation do you think that a Basenji needs every day? I would likely take my dog everywhere with me: on campus where I work, around the neighborhood (most of the restaurants I frequent are dog-friendly), and etc. There are only 3-5 hours out of every day that I would be away from the dog on average.

3. Do Basenjis bond with their owners? I've heard from a number of owners that they do not bond with anyone.

4. Will a Basenji attempt to escape from my yards if left unsupervised for a few minutes? I have an 8' chain link fence around both my front and back yard.

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