Oops! It appears that you have disabled your Javascript. In order for you to see this page as it is meant to appear, we ask that you please re-enable your Javascript!


  • Home
  • >
  • Blog
  • >
  • 10 Thoughts You’ll Have As A Basenji Parent
10 Thoughts You'll Have As A #Basenji Parent

Is your dog red and white and weird all over? Here are just ten of the many thoughts that you’ll only ever have if you’re the proud parent of a Basenji.

1. This dog does not respect fences.

Every dog parent is grateful when they’re able to live in a home with a fenced-in yard. When you have a Basenji, you have to take it a step further. A Basenji will endlessly challenge any barrier, climbing over or digging under to get to the other side, especially if there’s a small, furry animal darting across the way. When you have this type of dog, you stop looking into fences and begin to consider military-grade barricades.

2. Who cares what the neighbors think anymore?

Though a Basenji does not bark, they do make a variety of sounds that will make your neighbors truly believe that you are keeping a deranged gnome hostage in your home and torturing it every so often. The yelps, yodels, rumbles and screams are sure to evoke the curiosity of anyone who lives within 100 yards. At first, you’ll try to explain that your dog is no ordinary dog, but there comes a point in which your dog is an enigma beyond explanation.

3. What’s a dog park?

Basenjis are not known to be friendly towards other dogs, though they can have a few playmates if they are socialized with careful consideration. This dog runs circles around others, and can be pushy. They tend to have trouble bouncing back after minor altercations with other dogs, and overall seem to prefer human company.

4. It’s a proud moment when your Basenji comes back the first time you call them.

When you call a Basenji when they’re busily exploring outside, they’ll take your call into consideration – you’ll see an ear twitch or two – but they’ll most likely come when they’re ready. If your dog is staring up at a squirrel in a tree, you might as well wait until they give up. Being independent is a sign that your dog is intelligent, though that means you’ll always have to be two steps ahead of them, and find out what really motivates them.

10 Thoughts You'll Have As A #Basenji Parent

5. Everyone thinks they know more about your dog than you.

People will constantly let you know that they think your dog is a Jack Russell Terrier, Beagle mix or really any crazy, totally wrong idea. Most of the public has never heard of a Basenji, and if they have, they will immediately tell you that you’re lucky that your dog is totally silent – which is, of course, also totally wrong.

6. Those forehead wrinkles, though.

The Basenji’s cutest feature just might be those adorable wrinkles on their forehead. That expressive little face always lets you know how they are feeling. This dog is an excellent communicator, using their body language, eye contact and a certain level of mind-bending to get you to do whatever they desire. And how could you possibly resist?

7. What’s a groomer?

Your Basenji isn’t the only one that spends hours vainly licking themselves clean like a cat while they bask in the nearest ray of sun. These dogs are very clean and don’t shed much. You can easily get away with very little brushing just to keep their fur soft and shiny. Most Basenjis do not need to go to the groomer, except for a quick bath or nail clip.

8. Boredom? What is that?

These high-energy dogs will always keep you on your toes. You’ll find yourself going to the park multiple times each week, and taking long jogs instead of walks. A Basenji is always on the move, and you’ll do your best try to keep up, but they’re incredibly fast. Once they get on the trail of an interesting prey animal, they’ll tirelessly pursuit it with amazing determination.

9. Is this actually a dog?

Sometimes, you might wonder if you may have accidentally adopted a tiny human wearing a fox suit. A Basenji is intelligent in ways that you would never expect a dog to be. It’s expected for a smart dog to find creative ways to steal food. It’s not expected for them to be able to listen to conversations and pick up on words that you’ve never taught them. A Basenji will be, oddly enough, smarter than some of your human friends, and twice as cuddly.

10. How did I ever live without this little dog?

A Basenji becomes as essential to your life as any of your limbs, as just as firmly attached. Though they are independent, they are absolute mushes by the time night comes. Some people will find your bond kind of weird, but you don’t need those people in your life.

Get custom artwork of your favorite dog
Download your Basenji cartoon!


  1. Betty
    On November 1, 2018 at 2:54 pm, Betty said:

    In a nut shell or in some cases a padded room.

  2. Nancy
    On November 2, 2018 at 1:37 pm, Nancy said:

    Oh my yes. Had the privilege of being owned by a Basenji.

  3. Amy
    On November 2, 2018 at 2:14 pm, Amy said:

    My Basenji was definitely high energy but I don’t know how my life would’ve been without him. He saw anything as a prey animal, even the Rotti and Pit across the street. He squeezed his little but between the two fence posts, got into their yard, and the two dogs had to go to the vet and mine came back home. If ur not willing or aren’t able to keep up with this breed, DO NOT get one. Yes, they have this look that draws u in, but looks r deceiving!!!!! But I would have another in a heartbeat if I could!!!!! I miss my Benji every single day; he loves me unconditionally and was very protective of me. I miss his beautiful face!!!!!!

  4. Wade Martin
    On December 15, 2018 at 3:40 pm, Wade Martin said:

    Had 8 basenjis in my life I love the breed

  5. Sara Logan
    On May 16, 2019 at 7:24 pm, Sara Logan said:

    So I just adopted a 1.5 year rescue all the way from Puerto Rico. Was told by rescue agency, mixed breed maybe jack russel. She is clearly a basenji she has all the characteristics and character, except she lacks the curled up tail.

  6. Diane B
    On June 5, 2019 at 12:54 pm, Diane B said:

    We adopted a Basenji mix about 8 months ago. Everything I’ve read about them fits her to a T, except the barking. She does plenty of “talking”, but also her fair share of barking. We are at the point of having to spell words because she understands what we’re talking about.
    What a boring life we had before our Dory.

  7. Lissa
    On June 9, 2019 at 8:47 am, Lissa said:

    In my experience, many basenjis are dog social and do just fine in dog parks. Of course, like any other dog in a dog park, they need to be supervised. And watch out for the litttle fluffy squeakies.

  8. Rutha Thorne
    On June 17, 2019 at 8:38 pm, Rutha Thorne said:

    We were introduced to Basenji by my now ex’s ex giving us a mix, who the kids had already named Taco because she looked like a Chihuahua. She got much bigger and the vet said she was a Besenj Yello w Lab mix. She was adorable with all the behavior s of a Senji. She died from mysterious seizures at 18 months old. We decided to join B.R.A.T. and adopted Cleo, A full Senji. She was 8 when we go her and lived another 10 years. After having her for a few years we Got Bongo, a two year old male, who was every hit as beautiful. He escaped the fence and was hit by a car and died. My ex was devastated. My present husband and I are parents to two Basenji girls. We have had Missy for 11 years since she was a year old. We recently adopted Jane from a foster home. I recognized her as a Senji mix immediately, though the foster names every breed hut Senji. Jane keeps Missy busy and annoyed by her constant playing.

    On June 18, 2019 at 8:12 am, GREGORY DAILEY said:

    My little men, my little man, my little man Myron. My little man my little man name is Myron, it rings out rhymes with siren. He’s got four legs undertale, and I mean A Tale To Tell. About mama and daddy, things that we everyday is like brand new.
    I’ve had Myron 9 months and helped pull him out of his mama Daisy. Who is color black. I always told people if she was a chocolate donut pug, because her tail perfectly Circle. But he was different he came out red and white wrinkles curly tail and bigger. I had to ask myself in the internet world what kind of dog is this oh, until I saw the Basenji. He has some how crossed Chihuahua I pray for that has all the types of a good veggie except for floppy ears raising inside of a couch he is the best, the loyal smart incurious he knows exactly what I’m saying to anybody I do brother. Definitely smarter than most people I know, and thinks he’s six foot tall with other dogs. I look forward to many many years with my room and the Basenji. I would have no other

  10. Vickie
    On June 19, 2019 at 7:16 pm, Vickie said:

    Once, when I was walking one of my dogs, as a little girl was petting her, she said “Look Daddy, a little fox!”
    I suppose I should mention that one time, as I was walking one of my dogs, an adult asked, “Is that one of those Jack……Daniels dogs?”

  11. Roger
    On July 30, 2019 at 7:29 pm, Roger said:

    We got ours after seeing him get hit by a car. My wife scooped him up and we flew to the vet. I named him Jack Jack because the little glimpse I got of him I thought he was a Jack Russell. He’s such a great kid. He loves to lay across the cushions on the back of the couch and hang his head over my shoulder.

  12. Nancy Doyle
    On August 12, 2019 at 6:20 am, Nancy Doyle said:

    @Diane B.

    Do you still have your dog? I am about to Rescue a dog with the same name and same breed.

  13. Patricia Farmer
    On September 29, 2019 at 2:50 am, Patricia Farmer said:

    I lost my little Maggie 4 yrs ago in Ogallala ne. She got away from me in the parking lot. I still look for her. I mourn for her every day. I never found her. It’s the not knowing an the worry she might have gotten hurt and I wasn’t there for her. She’s red and white pure Basenji. If anyone has any information please contact me. 308-289-2864. Thank you.

  14. Nye
    On September 30, 2019 at 2:33 am, Nye said:

    I started out with 1 basenji, then 2, then 9 and now I have 1left. They all were wonderful additions to my life. I was challenged in the outsmarting dept. Made me laugh often and spent lots of $ on vet visits. I plan to do it again when I retire in 20 years.

  15. Sarah
    On January 13, 2020 at 10:28 pm, Sarah said:

    Can they get along with cats and chickens? Maybe if adopted at a young age??

  16. Teresa Liistro
    On April 23, 2020 at 12:19 pm, Teresa Liistro said:

    Sarah, they are classified as sight & scent hounds. So no they are not good around smaller animals, if they get the chance they WILL KILL. I have 2 & speak from experience. I suggest you do your research before you buy one

  17. Debby S.
    On October 16, 2020 at 2:22 am, Debby S. said:

    My beautiful girl will be 2 yrs
    old in Nov. I am over the top in love her. She has been a total joy. In many ways she is typical Basenji , but I many other ways she’s not. Many owners say Basenjis aren’t good with other dogs. But my girl is one of the exceptions. She plays and gets along very well w/ other dogs. She is a rare jewel.

  18. Joan Haase
    On December 28, 2020 at 9:53 am, Joan Haase said:

    I have a part Basenji but looks a pure bread She picked me at an animal shelter I have never regretted taking her home We go on holidays together in a camper van She runs the house Sam is 11years now and I don’t know anyone that doesn’t like her I love her she is my best mate.

  19. Robert
    On February 5, 2021 at 2:27 pm, Robert said:

    I have a great dog and his name is Rocky.

  20. Jo Anne
    On April 3, 2021 at 12:42 pm, Jo Anne said:

    Our basenji beagle mix adopted my husband and me about 4 years ago. He was rescued by my vet and was living in their dog kennel. He was already named “Bob”. It was love at first sight. Had no idea what breed he was. He had the shape of a beagle. My neighbor said he had the face of a basenji. Never heard of the breed but when I saw pictures online that was my Bob. He does not bark much which is unusual considering he is part beagle. He is such a joy and gives us so much love. I always refer to him as my 4 legged kid who just walks differently than we do. Anybody who meets him instantly love him.🥰

Comments are closed.

Related Posts

  • Posted by Claude
  • |
  • July 16, 2021

6 Helpful Tips for Training Your Puppy

Author: Daniel McFerrin Have you just gotten a puppy? If so, congratulations! Becoming a dog owner can end up being incredibly rewarding. However, it can ...
  • Posted by Claude
  • |
  • October 5, 2020

Keeping Your Dog Safe And Happy During Your International Holiday Together

Guest post by Isabella Lovett Dogs have changed the lives of many people, and their impact on the human heart paved the way for the estimated ...
  • Posted by Claude
  • |
  • August 3, 2021

Help Your Arthritic Dogs With These Activity Modifications

Author: Fay Smith Dogs suffer from arthritis pain, too. When your canine pets get older, they may be prone to arthritis or a joint disease ...