basenji picture

Size: Small – medium
40 - 43 cm (16 - 17 inches)
Weight: 9.5 - 11 kg (21 - 24 lb)
Life Span: 14 years
Affectionate & independent
Country of Origin:
Central Africa
AKC Group:
Other Names:
Congo Dog


The Basenji is alert, intelligent, curious and friendly. Basenjis are independent dogs yet very affectionate. Basenjis get on well with children and strangers, but may be more quarrelsome with strange dogs. These dogs do not usually get along with non-canine household pets. The Basenji loves to play and will try tp persuade its owner into playing, however this strong desire to play can lead to behavioral problems if unoccupied or left alone.
Click here on how to stop your Basenji's behavior problems

The coat is very easy to groom and only requires periodic brushing to keep it looking healthy. Basenjis are remarkably clean and odourless with their cleaning habits (they wash their paws rather like a cat).

Not a great amount of exercise is needed for this Basenji's, although they do appear tireless.

There are 5000 year old engravings in Egyptian tombs which resemble dogs of the Basenji breed. With the decline of Egypt as a world power, these dogs were thought to have disappeared, but actually for centuries they survived with the tribesmen of Zaire in central Africa. Basenjis were valued for their guarding and hunting skills - with the extra benefit that they were barkless. For centuries they were pure, with no cross breeding of outside breeds. It wasn't until 1870 that the 'Basenji' was rediscovered and the first pair arrived in England in the later part of the 19th century.

Physical Characteristics:

General Appearance: Rather high on it's legs, yet well-balanced with an alluring way of cocking it's head to one side.
Color: Chestnut with white markings, white at the tip of the tail, feet and chest. The darker the chestnut, the smaller the white markings. White and black. White, black and tan are also found.
Coat: Short, sleek and fine with pliant skin.
Tail: Set high, curling tightly over the back once or twice.
Ears: Set well forward. They are pointed and erect.
Body: Deep chested, prominent ribs, level back, short loins with sharply defined waist.

Additional Comments:

  • Inherited eye conditions in Basenjis are now less common than what they were, but it is important to buy from a reputable breeder.
  • Basenjis do not express themselves with a bark, but with a yodel-type cry.
 Basenji Picture Gallery 1
Two Basenji PuppiesBasenji Puppy in BasketBasenji Lying DownBasenji Standing by a CowBasenji Profile
Basenji PortraitBasenji Trotting Beside his OwnerSleeping BasenjiBasenji ProfileBasenji Resting
Basenji Puppy Lying on a Red BlanketBasenji Puppies PlayingTwo Basenji's SniffingBasenji Lying Down
BasenjiBasenji ProfileBlack & White Basenji PuppiesBasenji Puppy Portrait
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