Basenji Breed Information and Personality Traits 

Getting a pet and caring for it are not things as easy as they appear. While living with a dog, cat, bird, rodent, snake, or even another animal, there are various situations and considerations to keep in mind. Each has its own set of features and care requirements and will be treated as such by the family to which it belongs. 

In many households, canines are the most prevalent pets. There are many different dog breeds, each with its own set of physical traits, abilities, personalities, and temperament. One of the most intriguing breeds is the Basenji. 

The Basenji is one of the oldest canine breeds that have survived through the years. This dog belongs to a small-medium-sized breed known for its beautiful and aristocratic appearance.

This creature has small ears, a short back, a deep chest, and dark eyes with a piercing gaze. This animal’s fur is short, fine, and dense, with a range of colors, including black and white. There are, however, other color combinations to take into account. 

It is an alert dog that is always aware of what is going on around it. Furthermore, Basenjis are devoted and friendly with their owners and human family members but reserved with strangers and other animals.

In fact, because the Basenji has a hunting instinct, it is not suggested for families with other pets or little children. These dogs are known for their lively, mischievous, and stubborn nature. 

Basenji Information Table 

Other Names Barkless Dog 
Origin  Democratic Republic of the Congo 
Dog Type Hound 
Size Males are between 41 cm and 43 cm tall, while females measure between 38 cm and 41 cm. 
Weight Males weigh between 10 kg and 12 kg, while females between 9 kg and 11 kg. 
Coat  Fine and Short 
Lifespan 10 – 14 years 

How to Groom a Basenji at Home? 

Basenjis are one of the few breeds that do not shed much; however, they do shed heavily in the spring and autumn. Brushing your hound using a grooming mitt or hound glove regularly helps keep your house clear of canine hair and your pet looking lovely. You may wish to undertake your grooming outside of your home during the larger shedding seasons. 

Basenjis can be washed as often as needed with canine shampoo, but they do not require regular bathing. Wet your Basenji well before applying shampoo and massaging it into the fur. After your dog has been bathed, gently squeeze any extra water from its body, ears, legs, and underbelly. Finally, properly dry your Basenji using towels. Brush your pet to eliminate any loose hair once it’s completely dry. 

Your Basenji’s health is also dependent on its teeth and gums. Teeth must be brushed and tartar examined on a regular basis starting at a young age so that the dog becomes accustomed to that habit.

Begin to teach your pup to allow its mouth to be touched and its teeth to be cleaned. Once the puppy teeth have fallen out and all of the adult ones have grown, begin brushing. Teeth and gums that need to be cleaned could be the source of your Basenji’s poor breath. 

Are Basenjis Hypoallergenic? 

To be sure, Basenjis are hypoallergenic dog breeds. They are less likely to cause allergies to the skin. As a consequence, this dog is excellent for allergy sufferers as well as proud homeowners. However, it should be remembered that a Basenji’s potential to affect you is determined by both your sensitivity and the dog’s characteristics. Simply said, whether or not a Basenji will help you with your allergies is determined by your immune system. 

According to studies, 5-10% of people are allergic to dogs, with the adult population being the most impacted, suffering from allergic rhinitis and asthma. 

It should be noted that, like all dog breeds, Basenjis shed. They, however, shed less than other types of canines, making them a hypoallergenic and low-shedding breed. Not only do they shed less, but they also don’t leave a lot of hair around the house. Allergic reactions can affect any dog breed, and the length or kind of the dog’s fur has no bearing on the severity of the allergy. 

How Much Exercise Does a Basenji Need? 

To keep healthy and happy, Basenjis require a lot of activity. These athletic canines are lightning-fast both physically and mentally. Because Basenjis are brilliant and often stubborn, they are more likely than other breeds to engage in activities that require both their brains and bodies. 

Adult Basenjis require at least one hour of daily exercise, depending on their age and total activity level. You can begin exercising a Basenji pup as early as 3 months of age by taking it on short 15-minute walks and progressively increasing the length of that activity as the dog gets older. 

Because their bones and joints are still developing, puppies under the age of 9 months should not participate in activities that require a lot of running and jumping. Hip dysplasia affects Basenjis and happens when the thigh bone does not fit properly into the hip joint. 

Any breed of dog requires daily walks to stay fit. However, in addition to walks (two 30-minute walks per day for adult Basenjis), your dog’s regular exercise routine should include a variety of other activities and games. It’s important to remember that Basenjis become bored easily, especially if they get the same exercise and training every day. 

How Long Do Basenji Dogs Live? 

A Basenji’s typical life expectancy is between 10 and 14 years. It is worth mentioning that time depends on various factors, including food, physical exercise, mental stimulation, genetics, and lifestyle in general. 

Is Basenji a Good Family Dog? 

Is Basenji a Good Family Dog?

It is largely reliant on the manner in which it is raised. Because they are hypoallergenic and shed very little, Basenjis are excellent low-maintenance pets. In the home, Basenjis give a cleaner, fur-free environment. They are also gentle with humans and canine companions, though this does not apply to small animals. 

Due to its hunting tendency, this canine is not typically suggested for cohabitation with other types of pets. On the other hand, Basenjis get along well with other dogs. Of course, this breed, like any other, needs to be socialized since puppyhood. In some cases, Basenjis can be dangerous and vicious against smaller animals. 

It is not recommended for families with children since it can be violent when provoked. The Basenji may attempt to punish your youngster in any way it sees fit, including loud barking and even subtle bites. Your kid will not only be harmed but also scared. That, however, will be determined by its level of education. 

Keep in mind that Basenjis are devoted to their owners. As a result, it doesn’t intend to harm anyone. However, it must be taught how to interact with youngsters. You can do this by encouraging your child to teach the dog basic commands or to regularly feed the pet while keeping a watch on them. In that way, the Basenji will treat your child as a leader rather than a member of the pack. 

When is Basenji Full Grown? 

The first thing to understand is that physical and mental development are not synonymous. It’s crucial to know how big a Basenji will develop before estimating when it will reach full size. It’s difficult to predict how big a dog of this breed will be since there are so many factors in play. 

A Basenji’s average size ranges from 38 cm to 43 cm. A male of this breed can grow between 41 cm and 43 cm tall, while a female is between 38 cm and 41 cm. 

A male Basenji’s weight at 3 months of age can range from 4.3 kg to 5.1 kg, depending on the breed’s size. At 6 months of age, a male of this breed weighs 7.8 kg for the smallest and 9.3 kg for the largest. When it is one year old, it will weigh between 10 and 11.9 kg. With this in mind, a male Basenji will reach maturity between the ages of 12 and 14, depending on the size. 

A female Basenji, on the other hand, can weigh between 3.9 kg and 4.7 kg at three months of age. Depending on the size, a female of this breed weighs between 7 kg and 8.5 kg at 6 months of age. It will weigh between 9 kg and 10.9 kg when it is one year old. With this in mind, a female Basenji will mature between the ages of 12 and 14 months, depending on its size. 

Do Basenji Dogs Shed? 

Although Basenjis shed, they do not shed as much as other dog breeds. We must underline that because these dogs have a good coat, they shed very little hair. Genetics, the density of the inner layer of this dog’s coat, nutrition, health concerns, and other factors all play a role in determining how frequently this dog sheds its fur. 

Basenjis tend to shed more on warm days in the early spring and as the season progresses. They normally do that for three to four weeks, and we can tell because their coat is uneven.

Hair traces can be found on the floor, furniture, and other areas where your Basenji spends time. However, when compared to other dog breeds such as the Golden Retriever, this canine sheds very little. 

It’s crucial to remember that not all Basenjis are created equal. Thus it’s common to encounter those with a thicker undercoat. Basenjis of this type, like other breeds, are prone to shedding. 

In general, Basenji shedding is simple to manage and can be reduced with weekly brushing sessions. 

When to Bathe a Basenji? 

Basenjis are one-of-a-kind canines that groom themselves to be tidy and clean; thus, they require less bathing than other short-haired canines. Bathe them every 4 to 6 months to maintain their coat healthily and eliminate dead hair. 

Two baths are required for Basenjis. To begin, a simple bath should be taken. We recommend starting with a Hypoallergenic Shampoo and then transitioning to a medicated shampoo as needed if your dog has sensitive skin or allergies. Choose a type of scented conditioner and shampoos for the second bath if your Basenji has normal skin. 

Should Basenjis Be Shaved? 

Many short-haired breeds, such as Basenjis, can be shaved, but there are still dangers involved, and the process isn’t necessary for the dog’s health or pleasure. 

It’s really not that necessary to shave a Basenji’s coat unless it is for medical reasons due to an injury or infection. 

Basenjis Be Service Dogs?  

A Basenji can be trained as a service dog to assist persons with disabilities such as vision and hearing loss, those who use wheelchairs, and those suffering from mental illnesses such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Depression. 

Basenjis can be educated to guide visually impaired people, alert individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing, provide minor protection or rescue work, etc. 

How Do Basenjis Show Affection?  

There are some dog breeds that aren’t as affectionate as others. In this situation, Basenjis are extremely affectionate dogs, especially with their owners and members of their human family, while strangers, children, and other animals may cause them to become distant. 

Because numerous factors influence how affectionate a Basenji is, not all Basenjis will show the same level of affection. Dogs, on the whole, have personalities and temperaments that are comparable to those of humans. As a result, some dogs are affectionate and friendly, while others are more aloof and independent. 

Despite the fact that these dogs can be playful, headstrong, and mischievous, they will always want to provide you with love and attention. They are dogs who require quality time with their owners. 

While humans find it easy to demonstrate affection to other people and animals, dogs do not. Hugs, belly massages, sleeping with them, and giving them food are all ways people can demonstrate their affection for their dogs. 

Basenjis, like other dogs, express affection by their actions and body language. Some may not be as affectionate, and this will depend on a variety of things such as their lifestyle, the love they receive from their human family, the respect for their territory, and more. 

Basenjis tend to do certain specific things such as: 

Lick You 

When Basenjis want to show you attention and love, they lick. Although not all Basenjis exhibit this habit, it is still a wonderful way to express love. It’s essential to keep in mind that your dog will cover you in saliva, so be prepared. 

When a Basenji licks you, it implies it will always be there for you. It’s worth noting that your dog’s conduct could indicate that it wants anything on sometimes. 

Stare into Your Eyes 

It has been proved that one of the ways the Basenji expresses affection for you is by staring into your eyes. When dogs do this, a hormone called oxytocin is released, which helps the animal and its owner form stronger ties. 

Sniff You a Lot 

Sniffing is how most dogs greet each other. Sniffing by Basenjis, on the other hand, might indicate affection and love for their owners. That demonstrates their interest in you and their want to spend time with you. 

Show Empathy 

When an animal of this type notices that you are sad or upset, it will show you affection and devotion. Basenjis, like other dogs, express empathy for whatever emotional issues you may be experiencing. 

Lean on You 

That is a normal occurrence in most dogs, which are usually quite friendly and affectionate with their owners. If your dog leans on you, it shows that it has a lot of faith in you and is very fond of you. It’s possible that this is the most intense demonstration of affection a dog of this breed can make. 

Jump on You 

Your Basenji may jump on you to demonstrate affection. You may not want to allow this habit because having your dog on you at all times can be annoying. It might also be a problem if you had a lot of visitors at your home. 

Can My Basenji Dog Live in Hot Weather? 

The Basenji, like other dogs from hotter, drier regions, is ideally suited to summer conditions. This hardworking dog was bred for hot-weather hunting, and Pygmy tribes still use it for hunting lions today. 

Basenjis prefer warmer heat, but not very hot weather. When the weather is humid, you must be cautious in the summer since it is dangerous for both dogs and humans. 

Although there are a few situations where Basenjis will be excessively hot, owners should exercise them with caution in hot weather. It should be noted that Basenjis cannot stand the cold and despise the rain. 

Can Basenjis Live Outside? 

Although Basenjis enjoy being outside, they must never be left alone. This “escape artist” can jump a fence with ease and is challenging to catch. Its prey drive is intense; thus, it may chase, harm, or kill neighborhood cats while on the run. Rain irritates the Basenji, and it could refuse to go outside if it is raining. 

Many “escape” issues arise as a result of their owners leaving them alone and bored. This dog might be fine in an area with perfect weather, a warm dog house, a highly safe yard, and plenty of toys for pleasure and play. 

Can Basenjis Swim? 

Can Basenjis Swim? 

Water is not a favorite thing of most Basenji dogs. Many canines of this breed are frightened of water and feel uneasy in it. One of the main reasons is that it is a cat-like breed with certain features, such as a phobia of water. Other explanations, on the other hand, could be due to a painful incident in the past or simply due to the pet’s genetics. 

That isn’t to say there aren’t any Basenjis who enjoy swimming. If we introduce this breed of dog to water since puppyhood, it will not be afraid of swimming in the future. This, however, necessitates patience and instruction. 

There can be a number of reasons why a Basenji does not want to swim: 

  • Genetic issues: This is linked to its parents. It’s possible that Basenji’s parents were terrified of swimming or just didn’t know-how. Your Basenji would lose interest in swimming in those circumstances. 
  • Traumatic experiences: Maybe your Basenji has had a negative experience falling into a river, lake, or pool without learning how to swim in the past. Dogs, like humans, recall events from the past and learn to correlate them with current events. 
  • Late learning: It’s important to remember that this breed has slow learning ability, making it more difficult to train. As previously said, Basenjis, like any other breed of dog, must learn to swim from the time they are puppies. If you try to teach your dog to swim as an adult, it is unlikely that it will learn or take the time to do so. 

Should I Neuter My Basenji? 

One of the most significant advantages of spaying or neutering your Basenji is that it will almost surely increase its quality of life. 

It’s been proven that spaying reduces the incidence of uterine infections and breast cancer, while neutering reduces the risk of testicular cancer. Neutering and spaying your Basenji is an effective way to prevent these big Basenji killers.  

If you neuter your male Basenji, you may rest assured that it will always behave in the best way. Neutering your dog reduces aggressive and territorial behavior, as well as the fact that it won’t spend the entire walk looking for a companion. So, you have to neuter your pet as soon as possible to avoid these humiliations. 

You might be able to save a lot of Basenji puppies’ lives. Hundreds of dogs die each year due to a shortage of owners willing to care for endless litters of puppies. That would prevent litter and save the lives of thousands of infant Basenjis that would otherwise end up in shelters. 

Many female dogs, regardless of breed, can have problems during pregnancy. Sterilization, of course, will address the problem. That is something you and your Basenji will never have to deal with again. Similarly, after your Basenji female has been sterilized, psychological pregnancy will not develop, avoiding vomiting, nausea, and other unpleasant sensations. 

Can Basenjis Be Left Alone? 

They can be left alone as long as they are properly taught, even if they prefer the companionship of their owners or members of their human family on many occasions. They could be alone for up to 8 hours in most cases. 

Basenjis, like other dog breeds, suffer from separation anxiety and may develop destructive tendencies if they have not acquired the appropriate training to be home alone for an extended period of time. As a result, it is suggested that they be trained to stay in crates while their owners are away. They will be safe and will not cause any difficulties in the house in this manner. 

If you have multiple family members, you can leave your dog with one of them while you go to work or school. Similarly, you can seek the assistance of a neighbor to look after your Basenji while you are gone; however, this is not recommended if you work each day. 

Basenjis require daily exercise and training because they are quickly bored. You may take them for a walk twice or three times a day to ensure that they have a happy and healthy life. 

Are Basenjis Good with Cats? 

The first thing we should know about the Basenji is that it is a long-distance dog. That is, it is very devoted and nice to its owners or members of its human family, but it cannot get along with strangers the majority of the time. 

Furthermore, it is a curious and alert dog that can react aggressively to situations that it perceives as threats. As a result, it is not suitable for families with small children or other tiny pets. 

Regardless of these features, the coexistence of your Basenji and cat will be influenced by a number of things. Socialization training, attention, and interaction between the two when playing or exercising are the most important features. 

You should be aware that these dogs require socialization training from the time they are puppies in order to get along with cats, as well as other animals and people. That is, if you raise a Basenji alongside a cat from an early age, they will almost certainly become best friends. If you already have a feline and then get an adult Basenji, you can have some issues in your home. 

Although socialization training can help a Basenji get along with cats, it does not ensure that your dog will be one of them. Keep in mind that each dog is unique and has subtle personalities and characteristics that set them apart from the rest. 

Do Basenjis Like to Cuddle? 

Do Basenjis Like to Cuddle? 

The Basenji can be very affectionate with members of its human family but distant and not very outgoing with strangers. In reality, this breed adores its family, enjoys cuddling, and appreciates being lavished with love and attention. 

Are Basenjis Aggressive? 

In today’s world, using the words “aggressive” and “Basenji” in the same phrase may sound absurd, given that these dogs make terrific family pets. However, we must not overlook the historical truth that, due to their keen eyesight, the Basenji canine breed was originally used for tracking and hunting. 

In a home setting, Basenjis have trained to be kind and respectful over time. However, they still have the aggressiveness that was originally used for hunting games, but it is mainly suppressed. 

Basenjis usually have a calm and pleasant demeanor toward their owners, strangers, and other dogs. In addition, rather than dominating or viewing children as potential dangers, they play and interact gently with them.

They cannot, however, be left unsupervised in areas where tiny animals such as birds, cats, and rabbits can get them. Their hunting instincts are likely to drive individuals to do things they don’t want to do. As a result, Basenjis can be aggressive and dangerous to smaller animals.

Are Basenjis Good with Kids? 

Although Basenjis are not recognized for being particularly fond of children, their high energy level makes them suitable companions for older kids. If they’ll be around children, it’s preferable if they’ve been raised with them since puppyhood. An adult Basenji who has never been around children is best suited to a home with old kids to appropriately interact with it. 

Always educate youngsters how to handle and touch canines, and monitor any contact between them to avoid biting or any other problem on the part of either party. Teach your kid to never touch a dog that is eating or attempt to grab the pet’s food. A child must never be left alone with an animal of this type. 

Basenjis Good with Other Dogs? 

Basenjis are shy dogs that are friendly with their families but wary of strangers. They used to hunt in packs, and if socialized from the time they were puppies, they are usually good with other dogs. Some Basenjis, however, may not get along with other canines of the same breed. 

It’s vital to keep the following in mind. Because this dog breed was created to hunt, it can show its hunting instincts at any time. When it comes to other dogs of the same gender, many Basenjis are aggressive. Many of these dogs have a great desire to chase and capture smaller creatures such as rabbits, rats, and chickens. 

A Basenji can get along with another dog in the house, but it depends on its attitude, behavior, and the level of training provided by its owners. 

Basenji Dog Diet 

Basenji Dog Diet 

The number of times you must feed a Basenji each day isn’t the only factor to consider. It’s vital to understand what percentage of nutrients and vitamins you should add to your pet’s food. Remember that to live a long and happy life, any canine, regardless of breed, requires a well-balanced diet. 

All dog breeds, including the Basenji, require proteins. They are a necessary component of the dog’s organs, cells, hormones, and tissues. Protein should account for between 25% and 30% of a basenji’s daily calorie intake. That aids in the growth and development of the animal. 

Your Basenji’s diet must include more than just protein. Fat is also important since it supplies a lot of energy. Excess fats, on the other hand, are not recommended in the canine diet, so you should only provide 5% of them. 

Carbohydrates, which contain minerals, fiber, and iron, are also an important source of energy. You can also give your Basenji vitamins to help with metabolic activity, but make sure you give it the proper amounts. Many people buy vitamin supplements, but you won’t need them if you feed your Basenji a balanced and complete diet. 

Are Basenjis Good for First Time Owners? 

Basenjis are not recommended for first-time dog owners. It may, however, work if the prospective owner has realistic expectations, is capable of meeting the breed’s exercise and stimulation requirements, and is knowledgeable about training techniques. 

Now, suppose you are serious about getting a Basenji as your first dog and are willing to make some lifestyle changes. In that case, it is advisable to conduct your research and understand everything you can about this breed before purchasing or adopting one. Despite your lack of experience, knowing every physical and emotional component of this breed will help you keep control of the situation. 

The most critical aspects that you should know about this breed are: 

  • Size 
  • Physical Activity 
  • Personality and Behavior 
  • Grooming 

Are Basenjis Smart Dogs? 

Although the Basenji is a smart dog, it may be stubborn. Even if a Basenji understands and follows all of the commands you give it, there is always the question of whether it will actually do so. It may decide to ponder first and then cooperate, or it may decide that there is no compelling reason to do what you’re asking. Instead, Basenjis use their minds to attract your attention and persuade you to give them whatever they want or need. 

The Basenji canine is ranked #78 in terms of intelligence when compared to other dog breeds. This means that, despite their intelligence, they lag behind other canines in this area. 

When Do Basenjis Calm Down? 

Basenjis are high-energy canines that demand daily exercise. In fact, they cannot be kept indoors for lengthy periods of time because they become bored and disruptive. Due to their enthusiastic disposition, they can also be stubborn and unruly. 

These dogs may appear peaceful, but if they don’t get enough exercise, they’ll try to release their energy in ways we don’t like, such as destroying objects or running around the place.  

This breed is hyperactive from birth, but we can manage their high activity levels with proper instruction and training. Many dog owners worry if these dogs will eventually quiet down. That will only depend on your Basenji’s personality, temperament, and conduct since it was a puppy. 

Notably, there are certain techniques for calming a Basenji. That, however, will depend on the lifestyle we give to this creature. 

Exercise routines, attention, education and feeding, are some of the factors that we can use to help calm a Basenji. 

Will Basenjis Run Away? 

The Basenjis are noted for their ability to escape. If given the opportunity, these dogs will avoid their owners and their homes. They must live inside a house with enough security measures to prevent them from running away, as well as build a fence in the backyard or garden. 

When our Basenji encounters another animal, especially a dog, while we are walking, it is natural to believe that it wants to run away. That is due to the fact that these canines have a natural hunting impulse inherited from their ancestors. Furthermore, because these dogs become bored easily and rapidly, they will feel compelled to run for enjoyment, whether by playing or simply running. 

Basenjis are independent dogs who, although having separation anxiety, may find it easier to go away from their owners for a few hours than other breeds who have the same problem. As a result, it is critical to train them and implement appropriate security measures at home. 

How Much Do You Feed Your Basenji? 

To prevent them from eating more than they should, these dogs must be fed on a regular basis. The structure of this dog’s physique makes it more prone to gaining a few extra pounds. 

It’s crucial to remember that a Basenji puppy cannot be fed the same amount of times as an adult one. 

Puppies of this breed, ranging in age from 8 to 12 months, should be fed three to four times per day. Because the animal is in full development and growth at this point, you must feed a Basenji puppy high-quality, nutritional food. As a result, pups should consume more food than adult dogs. When your canine is 6 months old, you should only feed it three times per day. 

You must feed your Basenji twice a day between the ages of 6 months and one year. It will have reached adulthood by this time and is the correct number of times to feed it. 

The amount of food your Basenji consumes is determined by its size, age, weight, level of physical activity, build, and metabolism. You could seek assistance from your veterinarian in developing an appropriate feeding regimen for your pet. 


The Basenji can liven up even the most tranquil environment. In fact, it’s so energetic that you’ll have to train it on a daily basis to keep it from destroying your house. 

The Basenji does not bark, but it does have a distinctive yodel that helps to distinguish the breed. As a result, if you’re looking for an apartment dog, you should be cautious. 

It’s easy to groom and individuals with dog allergies like this animal because it has a shorter coat and less dander.