Basenjis are an energetic, clever breed with adorably furrowed brows, a strong hunting drive, and an independent personality. 

Characteristics and Size

The Basenji is a hound dog, originally found in Africa. Known for its renowned skill of identifying smell and spot objects, it is a perfect hunting companion. Its height varies from 16 to 17 inches and it weighs between 22 to 24 pounds. 

Group: Hound Group
Height: 16-17 inches
Weight: 22-24 pounds
Life Expectancy: 13-14 years
Coat and Color: Short in Length and Red, White, Black in Color

Also known as the “barkless ” dog, this pooch has a muscular build, alert ears, a small coat, and a cute curled-up tail. With a life expectancy of up to 12 years, it’s a loving and intelligent breed.

About Basenji Breed

With a stubborn temperament, a Basenji doesn’t know what pleasing people is. Be careful with this clever canine as it might just trick you into getting attention and fulfill their demands. Overcoming their stubborn behavior with harsh punishments can make them aggressive and confused. Understanding how to train them is the key!

Be careful with your things as anything left out on the ground is either chewed or played with. They were called barkless because of their disciplined attitude of staying calm while hunting. However, they can whine, growl, and even do a shrilling bark when needed.

This world-class escape artist can jump any fence. So don’t leave them unsupervised, as they will escape to explore the surroundings and never look back. Basenji is a playful, active, and alert breed. But if you want a dog to fetch a ball, Basenji is not the one for you. 

However, they are quite agile and can play games that are creatively twisted according to them. You can also flaunt your Basenji as a show dog as its shiny copper coat comes groomed naturally.


Suitable for any house, this pooch needs regular and rigorous exercise. Make sure you challenge them with different games for mental stimulation. Although being an active breed, they might be prone to health issues if not taken care of. Some of the most common issues are Hip Dysplasia, Fanconi Syndrome, and Umbilical Hernia. 

Recommended Health Tests from the National Breed Club:

  • Hip Evaluation
  • Ophthalmologist Evaluation
  • PRA-BJ1 DNA Test
  • Fanconi Syndrome DNA Test
  • Thyroid Evaluation

Make sure they do not get obese. Three quarters to one cup of dry food, divided into two meals is sufficient for them to stay fit.

This canine companion is best for those who need an alert and fit dog accompanying people outdoor. So if you like challenges and are ready for a highly intelligent breed, Basenji is the one for you.