The Basenji is known as the “Barkless Dog.” They are the perfect dog for a active one or two person home as they are timid with too many people and also with strangers. Originally bred in central Africa as hunting dogs, they also do not do well with non-dog animals in the house, especially small rodents and birds.
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Top 10 Facts:
1. While “barkless,” Basenjis are not soundless. Instead of barking, they are known to make a yodeling sound called a “barroo,” because of their flat larynxes.
2. Basenjis are extremely unique in that when they hunt they use sight and sound rather than exclusively one or the other.
3. The name Basenji in the Pygmy language means “small thing from a wild bush.”
4. The first two Basenjis in America were stowaways that came in with a shipment of Gorillas from the Congo in 1941.
5. Basenjis almost went extinct in the 1980s because of the Fanconi disease, a disease which impacts the kidneys and digestive tract.
6. When curious, Basenjis are known to stand on their hind legs like a meerkat.
7. Basenjis are a very old breed. They have been found in Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, and some think the breed may date back to the Stone Age.
8. Basenjis are considered a “square breed.” This means they are as long as they are tall.
9. Not unlike cats, Basenjis are self cleaners in that they lick themselves clean.
10. Basenjis only go into heat once a year versus most breeds of dogs that go into heat twice or more a year.