Basenji is a small-sized hound that was bred for hunting through sight and scent. Although it is a hunting dog, it makes a great family companion due to their friendly and loving personality. They are a very keen dog with high energy, so training them is necessary from an early age.

Basenji is a very smart dog that is quick at catching new commands and instruction. Therefore, training can be started at an early age as they are able to soak up things despite their age. Here are the methods for training your Basenji dog.

When to Start Training?

Basenji, as mentioned above is a very intelligent and smart dog. They catch up instruction from their master quickly which makes training them easy. Although training them when they are old will not be of any good, so training should be started when they are still puppy ready to learn new things from their master.

The right age for starting training is between 6-8 weeks when they are enthusiastic and eager to please their owner. Start from basics like calling by their name, walking them on a leash, potty training, and so on. Only move to advance when they complete the basic obedience training.

Agility training should be started when they are about 9-12 months old. By this time, they would master the basics and are ready for advanced training. This time should be kept in mind because if the time for basic training crosses, it will be very hard to train the,m and they can become a very stubborn adult.

Basenj agility
Basenji agility.
Image Source: Rip Van Wrinkle Basenji Club.

Where to Start Training?

Basenji is a reserved dog when they are around strangers. So, a place with a small crowed is great for training them. Training them in a place like a park, garden, the backyard is an excellent choice as they get to roam around, run, and play while training. They can easily get bored if they are trained in a small place with no big area to perform their physical activities.

Do not keep them for more than 10-15 minutes of training as it will make them bored and they will find things to entertain by themselves. However, keep them on a leash while training as they are a hunting dog that will go chasing after small animals in the park.

How to Define Task for Basenji?

Determining task for your Basenji makes training easy and efficient. Use hand gestures and vocal words to define tasks and commands for them. For certain tasks use only certain words like to make it come to you, use the word ‘come’, to make it sit down, use ‘sit’. Likewise, do the same for the rest of the duties. Using specific words for specific tasks will make it easy to learn for your dog.

Tricks training Basenji.

The hand gesture is also very important while commanding or training your dog. They get things quickly with hand and body gestures. For some tasks that your dog does not understand, you can do it yourself so that it will see and learn from you.

The Training Process

Basenji needs an experienced dog owner who can train them well. A consistent leader can train better and with the knowledge of their temperament, you can train your Basenji accordingly. The following are the important factor that is used for training your dog.


As soon as the Basenji gets to the right age of training which is around 6 months, establish leadership on the is very necessary. They need to see you as their leader for them to know they can trust and follow you. This is the right age for leadership as they are always roaming around humans and are eager to please them.

Establish a leadership on them does not mean harsh treatment like forcing them and using hands. Be gentle with them and consistent while training.

Positive Reinforcement

Positive reinforcement is very important while training your dog as it will keep them focused and motivated. Reward-based training will always give your dog reason to be obedient and disciplined. As they complete a certain task, reward them with a treat and it will motivate them. Give them a lot of vocal praise as they are done with a task.

Basenji dog agility training
Basenji dog agility training.
Image Source: Pinterest


Since basenji is a hunting dog, it is important to socialize them with a variety of people and other canines. Start socializing from a very early age so they do not get timid or aggressive around strangers unnecessarily. Take them to a park with people and their pets, so you can socialize them properly. Although always keep them on a leash while taking them out.

Visit Doglime for training methods of different dog breeds.