Basenji vs Beagle What’s the Difference

The Basenji and the Beagle are two dogs of distinct climates. One is from Central Africa and the other from Europe. However, both dog breeds are ideal for children. They are both low-maintenance dogs that are easy to groom. However, while the Beagle barks a lot, the Basenji doesn’t bark as frequently as it does.  

In this Basenji vs Beagle comparison article, we’ll see the characteristics, character, history, care needs, and health life of both dog breeds. We’ll also highlight how they differ from each other in a comparison chart.  

Basenji Dog

The Basenji  – affectionately known as the “Bongo” – is an old breed of dog from the primeval forests of Central Africa. In the profile, you will get information about the history, keeping, and care of the unique service dogs.  

History of the Basenji 

Due to a lack of records, little is known about the origin of the Basenji. However, it is one of the primitive dogs. Researchers assume that it is descended from the Egyptian Tesem.  

The descendants of these dogs, the so-called pariah dogs, still live semi-wild in African villages. They do not have direct contact with humans and are not pets.  

In the rainforests of the Congo area, however, some of the nimble dogs served the pygmies as a guard and hunting dogs. The name “Basenji” comes from the language of the pygmies and means “little wild thing out of the bush”. 

In 1870, British colonial rulers discovered the dogs and named them “Congo Terriers”. The wife of a British colonial ruler, Olivia Burn, is considered the first breeder in Europe.  

In the 1930s, the British established a breed standard and began showing the dog at shows. In 1964 it was officially recognized by the FCI. The dogs are now part of FCI group 5 “Spitz and primitive types.” 

Essence and character of the Basenji 

Due to its independence, the spirited dog tends to stray. Its essence can be compared more with that of a cat.  

Its hunting instinct is high and it is a social pack animal. It gets along best with other representatives of the breed, but also other dogs.  

The dogs don’t like to be at home alone. With good socialization and adaptation from puppyhood, dogs can also live with cats. 

Appearance of the Basenji 

The Basenji is a slightly built, medium-sized dog. Its proportions are consistent and it looks elegant and graceful. The legs are long compared to the body and the gait is sweeping.  

The tail is tightly curled and lies on its back. It carries its head proudly high. The skin lies in characteristic, fine folds on the forehead and on the sides of the head.  

The dark eyes are almond-shaped and slanted. The distinctive erect ears are set high and pointed. The dog’s coat is short and lies close to the body. It can be black and white, red and white, tricolor and brindle. 

Upbringing of the Basenji  

The African dogs are relatively stubborn. Their upbringing is therefore demanding. The self-confident dogs try to assert themselves initially and put their own needs in the foreground.  

A successful upbringing is possible with mutual trust and clear rules. You should therefore be patient with the Basenji, especially in the first few years.  

Health and care of the Basenji 

Basenjis are clean and neat dogs that don’t require a lot of grooming. They don’t have a strong odor and shed little hair. Some representatives of the breed even groom themselves like cats.  

Since the dogs come from a tropical country, they are relatively sensitive to cold. In bad weather and cold, a dog coat is recommended. In terms of health, there are some genetic defects in some of these dogs due to one-sided breeding.  

Overbred dogs of the breed are predisposed to eye diseases and metabolic problems. Serious breeding, however, combats such hereditary diseases. 

The Beagle Dog

The Beagle is a child-loving and friendly dog with a strong sense of self. Find out everything about the history, nature, attitude, and care of the dog breed below: 

History of the beagle 

Originally, the English bred the beagle to hunt hares and other small games. Its task was to follow the trail of the prey and to find the animal. 

The breed’s direct ancestors come from southern France, from where the English took them home during the Hundred Years’ War.  

They first named the dogs Southern Hounds and crossed them with local Talbots. How the name Beagle later came about is unclear. All that is known is that the name was first mentioned in the household books of Henry VIII in 1515.  

Already, 100 years later, the Briton, Gervase Markhams, mentioned the beagle in the “Description of the most important hunting dog breeds”. The official recognition of the spotted hunting dogs did not take place until 1890.  

Internationally, the dog breed is in the FCI group 6 “hounds, sweat dogs and allied breeds”. The former hunting dogs have developed into family dogs and are among the most popular breeds in Europe. 

Essence and character of the beagle 

The Beagle is a lively, happy breed of dog with a distinctive pack behavior. Since it was used for hunting in the pack, it gets along very well with fellow dogs and shows no signs of aggressiveness.  

It is also extremely friendly and open-minded towards its people and especially children. The dog is always in a good mood and adapts to different circumstances without any problems. 

Of course, despite all this, there is still a hunting dog in it that always comes out when it has the opportunity. As soon as there is a good smell in the air, the Beagle activates the hunting mode and follows the track.  

With a good portion of consistency, however, you can get the strong hunting instinct under control. Due to its high intelligence, the Beagle is stubborn and likes to act independently. You cannot expect submissive obedience from the self-confident and persevering dog. 

Raising the beagle Puppy

There should be no lack of consistency in the upbringing of the young dog. Due to their breeding as hunting dogs with a high degree of independence and determination, the beagle dogs need clear rules.  

Since the breed gets along very well with other dogs, attending a dog school is ideal. Here the puppy can make first contacts playfully and learn something at the same time. 

Activities with the Beagle 

Since the Beagle was originally bred to be a hunting dog, it requires the appropriate level of activities. Of course, long walks in the open air and regular contact with other dogs are essential.  

As a fully grown dog, you can also take the little hunting dog with you on bike tours or jogging. Dog sports such as agility or dog dancing as well as small retrieval games also put the dog to good use.  

Dogs especially like to use their nose for search games. Professional dummy training or simply hiding treats in the apartment are particularly ideal. 

Health and care of the Beagle

The dog’s short, dense fur makes it very robust in the rain, wind, and snow. Also, it is very easy to care for and only needs to be brushed now and then.  

A regular check of the floppy ears for parasites is much more important. In terms of health, beagle dogs are considered to be very robust and hardly suffer from breed-related diseases.  

However, you should pay particular attention to a species-appropriate diet and give it enough exercise. Be careful not to give your dog too many treats and don’t let your dog out of your sight while walking. The Beagle tends to eat everything it finds on the ground, which can have negative effects on it.  

Basenji vs Beagle: a side-by-side comparison 

 Basenji Beagle  
Origin DR Congo Great Britain 
Dog size Medium-size (40-43cm) Small (33-40cm) 
Weight Male: 10 to 12 kg, Female: 9 to 11 kg Male: 10 to 11 kg, Female: 9 to 10 kg 
Function Hunting dog Hunting dog 
Character intelligent, loving, self-confident, strong-willed friendly, lively, loyal, vigilant  
Life expectancy  12 to 16 years  12 to 15 years 

Final Thoughts 

The Basenji is a special breed of a happy dog. Its independent character makes raising the African dog a little more complicated. The proud and elegant dog is therefore great in the hands of an experienced owner. The dogs also feel comfortable in a city apartment if they are given enough free space. 

If you want to bring a Beagle puppy into your house, you should be very sure you’re ready. The little rascal will remain part of your family for 12 to 15 years. During this time, it doesn’t want to be alone and needs a lot of exercise and care. It’s used to having company and can come with you on vacation. 

When you have decided the breed that suits you among the two, it is important to find a reputable breeder. It is best to visit several breeders, pester them with questions and take a look at the condition of the puppies and the parents. For a purebred and healthy puppy, you should be ready for around $400 to $1000 for the Beagle and around $1200 and $1800 for the Basenji.