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don't basenjis bark?
The voice box of a basenji is narrower and more uniform in diameter
than most dogs, so basenjis will make noise but they don't usually
force it out all at once as a bark. They do make many
other sounds such as howling, whining and growling.
do basenjis come from?
Cave drawings in north Africa indicate basenjis have been around
since prior to 6000 BC, that is more than 8000 years ago.
Artifacts of a dog like a basenji that I saw in the Egyptian
Museum in Cairo, indicate that during the "Old Kingdom"
of Egyptian civilization, basenjis were used to hunt wild game.
Many fewer artifacts of basenjis have be found that date
back to the Middle or New Kingdom of Egyptian civilization.
To me, this suggests that, as Egyptian society evolved an agricultural
economy, the people no longer needed hunting dogs. From
the Middle Kingdom to the New Kingdom, dogs represented in sculptures,
paintings and other artifacts are physically bigger than basenjis.
Were the basenjis replaced by larger dogs to guard
property? Certainly, as Egyptian civilization advanced, their
need for a small adept hunting dog diminished. In fact as a
basenji owner who has seen his dogs harass cattle, it is not
unreasonable to imagine basenjis interfering with rather than
supporting livestock husbandry.
did they go?
In any event, evidence of basenjis vanishes from Egyptian history
by the end of the New Kingdom and conquest by the Romans.
Apparently basenjis moved south into the heart of the African
continent. Actually, for all we know, basenjis may have originated
in central Africa and might have been brought to North Africa.
But as far as I know, no evidence exists to support such a theory.
In any case, western European accounts of a jungle dog that
doesn't bark were first reported in the mid-18th century.
During the colonial period of the 19th century, a few basenjis
were taken out of Africa and brought to England. Unfortunately,
the effort resulted in the dogs' deaths probably from distemper
or parvo or any number of diseases for which basenjis had no
did Basenjis come to the US?
It wasn't until the interwar period of the late 1930's when
a distemper vaccine was developed that English colonists returning
to the UK from Africa, successfully introduced basenjis.
An English woman by the name of Veronica Tudor Williams is credited
with keeping basenjis alive in England during the Second World
War and promoting the breed. About the same time, basenjis
were introduced in the United States by Americans traveling
to England and have been recognized by the American
Kennel Club since 1943.
be great pets!
Well, they don't shed much and don't need much grooming. A bath
once in a while is fine. But their independent temperament
and hunting instincts frequently get them into trouble.
They are masters of escape and some can even jump a six foot fence.
Once they get loose, they are fast and will roam for miles.
Most basenjis live in homes where they get a chance to run around
during the day and really need a fenced yard.