Copper State Basenji Club
A Club for Arizona Basenji Fanciers…
Past, Present & Future
Formerly the Basenji Fanciers of Greater Phoenix
The Basenji Fanciers of Greater Phoenix, Inc. was formed in 1973 & known until 2017 as the Basenji Fanciers of Greater Phoenix. Some of the club’s charter members are still active in the club to this day.
The club has held numerous fun matches over the years. In 2001, the club received approval from the American Kennel Club to hold a Specialty Show under its own name. The club currently hosts Lure Coursing practices & fun events at least twice a year. AKC has also granted the club permission to hold regular Lure Coursing Trials including JC Tests, CATS & FastCATS.
The Basenji Club of America National Specialty was hosted by the club in 1999. It was held in Scottsdale, and welcomed basenji enthusiasts from across the nation & as far away as Sweden & Australia. The club will again host the National Specialty, set for 2019 in Tuscon.
History of the Barkless Dogs
Stylized representations of a small, aristocratic, curly-tailed dog that authorities believe to be Basenjis have been found in Egyptian Bas Reliefs, created in the time of Moses. Some show these dogs accompanying funeral processions of the great leaders during the time of ancient Pharaohs.Other engravings, dated as early as 3600 B.C., show these dogs as house dogs seated by the chair of their masters.
There is a long gap between ancient history & the nineteenth century, when various explorers in the upper Congo & the Southern Sudan reported dogs “like those of ancient Egypt”. These dogs were being used by the natives to drive game into hunters’ nets. It is mentioned that the natives tied bells to these dogs, in order to know where were, because they were silent hunters & did not bark. Interestingly, these hunting techniques are still in use today. Basenjis are known as both sight & scent hounds.
Into the Modern Age
The first successful attempt to bring these fascinating dogs out of Africa occurred in the 1930’s. About a dozen were imported to England by different importers. Chief credit for establishing the breed in England, in spite of the rigors of World War II in the late 1930’s & early 1940’s, belongs to Miss Veronica Tudor-Williams, author of Basenjis: The Barkless Dogs of Central Africa.
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