This dog descends from the ancient Paraiah Dogs and has been used for hunting since the year 3600 B.C. The legend has it that, specimens of this breed were offered as gifts to the Egyptian pharaohs. Along with the decline of the Egyptian Civilization, their number dropped, but they were pretty well preserved in their native country. The first specimens were brought to England in 1895 and then died in 1936 of a fatal disease (Fanconi syndrome). Gradually, this breed adapted to England’s climate and diseases.
It is a medium-sized, well built, thin, fast and pretty strong dog. It has a flat skull, the muzzle slightly shorter than the skull, tapered, with a black nose. The eyes are small, almond-shaped and hazel. The ears are medium-sized, triangular and erect, forming some wrinkles on the forehead that gives this dog a worried look. The tail is small and curled. The coat is smooth, short and comes in red, chestnut red, tan and white, copper, pure black. The white color is found on the chest, feet, the tip of the tail and neck.
It is an intelligent, lively, alert, curious, pretty independent and slightly stubborn dog. It doesn't bark, but makes some noises similar to a scream or a howl. Devoted and faithful to its master, this dog accepts children as long as they don't bother him. They are not the ideal play companions for children. It is suspicious and cautious with strangers and tends to protect its master. It doesn't have problems with other dogs, but in the yard with other animals, especially cats, the hunting instinct takes over. That’s why he needs socializing at an early age.
The Basenji is considered to be the cleanest dog. It grooms and washes itself just like a cat. The brushing can be performed with a rubber glove or brush. It doesn't like the rain, it can't stand the cold and the drought.
This breed doesn’t stand the cold and feels better in an area with a warm climate, it can adapt well to living in an apartment, but daily walks are a must because it has a moderate level of activity.
Because it is an independent and stubborn dog, it is quite difficult to be trained. The training must be done by someone with experience and skills, able to make the dog listen and execute the orders. The training must be firm, consistent, but without being too rough or severe.
It is used for finding prey and as a companion dog.