basenji (bəsĕnˈjē) [key], breed of medium-sized hound whose origins can be traced back several thousand years to Africa and the courts of the Egyptian pharaohs. It stands about 17 in. (43.2 cm) high at the shoulders and weighs about 23 lb (10.4 kg). Its short, silky coat may be colored chestnut red, black, or black and tan, with white chest, feet, and tip of tail. The basenji has two unique characteristics: it does not bark but utters a sound that has been described as a chortle or whine, and, in the manner of a cat, it cleans its own body. Possessing a keen sense of smell, the basenji was used in its native Africa as a hunter but is now commonly kept as a house pet. See dog.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on basenji from Fact Monster:

  • Ibizan hound - Ibizan hound Ibizan hound , also called Ibizan Podenco, breed of tall, swift dog of ancient origin ...
  • hound - hound hound, classification used by breeders and kennel clubs to designate dogs bred to hunt ...
  • dog: Early Dogs - Early Dogs The dog is descended from the wolf. True wolves appeared in Europe about one million ...
  • Encyclopedia: Dogs - Encyclopeadia articles concerning Dogs.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Dogs

Play Hangman

Play Poptropica

Play Quizzes

Play Tic Tac Toe