AKC PuppyFinder: Basenji Puppies

Breed Traits
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  • Personality: Smart, independent, alert, and poised; affectionate with friends, aloof with strangers
  • Energy Level: Very Active; Energetic, inquisitive hounds, Basenjis need running room and lots of exercise
  • Good with Children: Better with Older Children
  • Good with other Dogs: With Supervision
  • Shedding: Seasonal
  • Grooming: Occasional
  • Trainability: Independent
  • Height: 17 inches (male), 16 inches (female)
  • Weight: 24 pounds (male), 22 pounds (female)
  • Life Expectancy: 13-14 years
  • Barking Level: Quiet
Breed Description
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Basenjis are compact and elegant hunting dogs originally native to Africa and still used there today for hunting game. It's an ancient breed also known as the 'barkless dog,' although it does make a yodeling sound when excited. Basenji puppies grow to be about 22-24 pounds of muscular grace. They're as fastidious as cats with no 'doggy' smell, which makes them good housemates. Basenjis are calm and loving with their family, but because of an independent spirit can be aloof with strangers. Let your Basenji meet new people on his own careful terms.

History & Job
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Origin: Central Africa

Year Recognized: 1944

Breed History & Job Description: Basenjis are contenders for the title of oldest AKC breed. They were already well established when they were brought up the Nile from interior Africa as gifts for the pharaohs of ancient Egypt. Basenjis are depicted in 4,500-year-old Egyptian artifacts. African tribesmen prized Basenjis as versatile hunters with keen eyesight, explosive speed, and a highly developed sense of smell. They’re expert vertical leapers, a skill developed to scout prey in African grasslands. A native breed name is the “jumping-up-and-down dog.”

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Presently, the primary health concerns in the breed are Fanconi Syndrome (a kidney dystrophy), Progressive Retinal Atrophy (an eye disorder), and surprisingly, hip dysplasia. Some Basenjis may be faced with these health challenges in their lives, but the majority of Basenjis are healthy dogs.

Read the Official Breed Club Health Statement.


Recommended Health Tests from the National Breed Club:

  • Hip Evaluation
  • Ophthalmologist Evaluation
  • PRA Optigen DNA Test
  • Fanconi Syndrome DNA Test
Breed Club
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  • Breed Club: Basenji Club of America, Inc.
  • Breed Club Link: http://www.basenji.org/
  • Breed Standard: View
  • Group: Hound
  • 2016 Popularity: 88
  • Breed Referral Contact: Denise Vertrees - 502-439-9519
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  • Breed Club Rescue: Basenji Club of America
  • Breed Club Rescue Email: ernursero@aol.com (Joe Carlson)
  • Breed Club Rescue Link: https://www.basenji.org/joomla


Click here to see all Basenji Rescue Groups.

Dog Size
Breeders of Distinction
Champion Bloodlines
This indicates that at least one dog in the
puppy's parentage, going back 3 generations,
earned an AKC Conformation Championship
and/or Grand Championship title.
Breeders of Distinction
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Breeder of Merit - The following breeders demonstrate a commitment to the AKC community,
dedication to their breed(s), and actively promote the sport of purebred dogs.
Bred with
Bred with H.E.A.R.T - The following breeders have met specific
health testing standards and participate in continuing education.
Club Members - The following breeders
are members of AKC-licensed or member clubs.
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