The Basenji does not bark, but it does yodel, howl and shriek. This primitive African breed is high-energy and makes an alert watchdog. Like a cat, they wash themselves with their paws, hate water and can climb. They are also a challenge to train.


Height: 40-43 cm at the shoulder

Weight: 9.5-11 kg

Coat and Grooming

The short coat comes in red, black and brindle, all with white markings. There is also the tricolour (black, white and tan) variety. A weekly brush is needed to remove dead hair.


This is a relatively healthy breed. Some dogs have been known to suffer from Fanconi Syndrome, a kidney disorder. Expected lifespan is 10-14 years.

Environment and Exercise

A small yard will be fine if this is coupled with vigorous daily exercise. Games, running and walking will keep this breed happy. Basenjis have a low tolerance to the cold and should be kept inside at night.

Compatibility with Kids and other Pets

The Basenji is alright with kind, considerate children if they were raised with them from puppyhood. They should be the only pet in the household.

Gallery of Basenji