5 Best Dog Foods For Basenjis (2022)

In this guide we’ll take a look at the best dog food for Basenjis. We’ve compared quality of ingredients, nutritional information, and value for money to give you our top recommendations below.

Breed Advisor only recommends products that we’ve tested, or significantly researched . This page contains affiliate links, that at no additional cost to you, may earn a small commission for the site. Find out more here.

What is the Best Dog Food for Basenjis?

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Compare Our Recommended Dog Foods

Use the dropdown to sort the table by the feature that’s most important to you.

  • Top 5 Ingredients
  • Type
  • Lifestage
  • Calories
  • Protein
  • Fat
  • Fiber
  • Cost
  • Our score

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Basenji Dog Food Reviews

Merrick Backcountry Freeze-Dried Raw Grain-Free Great Plains Red Recipe Big Game Recipe with Beef, Lamb & Rabbit Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Deboned Beef
    2. Lamb Meal
    3. Salmon Meal
    4. Sweet Potatoes
    5. Potatoes

  • Type: Freeze dried raw and dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 392 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 38%
  • Fat: 17%
  • Fiber: 3.5%

Merrick Backcountry Freeze-Dried Raw, one of the best dog foods for Basenjis available for purchase today, is an exceptional diet that has been expressly formulated to meet the needs of highly active breeds. This diet places a high emphasis on protein. Its recipe includes deboned beef, lamb meal, and salmon meal as its main ingredients, all meats that are easy to digest and rich in essential fatty acids.

This diet is completely free from grains. The fruits and vegetables selected as the basis for this food’s carbohydrate content were chosen for their abundance of antioxidants and fiber. These superfoods assist with good digestion and a healthy immune system.

Merrick Backcountry Freeze-Dried Raw is free from artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. Glucosamine and chondroitin have been included in this recipe to provide assistance with maintaining excellent joint functionality.

Pros

  • Owners are pleased that this diet includes a combination of freeze-dried meat pieces and dry food in its formulation. They feel this encourages hearty eating in their dogs. The protein content is sufficient to support the activity levels of the busy Basenji.
  • This diet is rich in flavor. Dogs love the taste of this food and look forward to their every meal.
  • Dogs that had an ongoing problem with flatulence saw an end to this problem when consistently fed Merrick Backcountry Freeze-Dried Raw for their main diet.
  • Owners were thrilled to note that dogs regularly fed this diet had excellent coat quality. Their fur was thick, lustrous, soft, and shiny.
  • Owners are pleased that this diet contains no grains in its recipe. They expressed it was a great choice for Basenjis suffering from food sensitivities and allergies.

Cons

  • Some owners shared that they felt there was a lot of inconsistency in the amount of freeze-dried meat pieces when compared to kibble with each bag of food they purchased. Some bags contained a lot of meat chunks while others contained next to none.
  • Some Basenjis far prefer the meat chunks to the kibble. They will often pick out the meat and ignore the kibble entirely. This can be remedied by saving the meat to be fed as a treat when the meal has been consumed.
  • A few owners indicated they felt this diet was too expensive.
  • In rare case, some dogs were uninterested in this food and would not eat it. Merrick has many other flavors owners can choose from for their dogs. One of those foods may be more appealing.
  • Some owners were disappointed that the product bag redesign did not include a resealable closure. They felt it was far more challenging for themt to keep their dogs’ food at its peak freshness as a result of this change.

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Halo Holistic Chicken & Chicken Liver Adult Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Chicken
    2. Chicken Liver
    3. Dried Egg Product
    4. Oatmeal
    5. Pearled Barley

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 403 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 25%
  • Fat: 15%
  • Fiber: 5%

For top quality nutrition at an affordable price point, it’s hard to go wrong with Halo Holistic Adult Dry Dog Food. One of the best dog foods for Basenjis on the market today, Halo Holistic Adult Dry Dog Food lists chicken and chicken liver as its first two ingredients. These meats are easy for the Basenji to digest and contain ample servings of amino acids to fuel a healthy body.

A grain-inclusive diet, Halo Holistic Adult Dry Dog Food uses whole grains, fruits, and vegetables in its recipe to provide a well-rounded carbohydrate profile. Each fruit or vegetable included in the diet was selected for its high antioxidant and fiber content to support good digestion and a healthy immune system.

Halo Holistic Adult Dry Dog Food contains no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. A proprietary supplement blend known as DreamCoat has been added to support coat and skin health in the Basenji.

Pros

  • Dogs really enjoy the taste of this food. Even the pickiest of eaters eat their every meal with hearty gusto.
  • Some dogs that had ongoing issues with loose stools saw a return to normal stool consistency when fed a steady diet of Halo Holistic Adult Dry Dog Food.
  • This diet includes whole grains in its recipe. Owners are pleased about this, indicating that they feel the inclusion of grains helps Basenjis to achieve excellent digestion.
  • The coats of dogs regularly fed this diet were beautiful. Their fur was soft, shiny, and healthy.
  • Some owners felt this diet offers them good value even though it is a little more costly than some dog foods on the market today.

Cons

  • A few owners indicated that they felt this food was overpriced.
  • Some owners expressed that they would prefer to feed their dogs a grain-free diet. They felt that dogs suffering from food-related allergies benefitted most from a recipe with no grains in it.
  • A few owners shared that the price for this food was inconsistent. They noted that this lack of predictable pricing made them unlikely to feed this food on a regular basis.
  • This diet includes dried peas, dried chickpeas, flaxseed, and pea fiber in its formulation. These ingredients are of questionable nutritional quality for dogs and may be linked to such health issues as rapid spikes in blood sugar and poor fertility rates in breed dogs.
  • This diet includes dried peas, dried chickpeas, flaxseed, and pea fiber in its formulation. These ingredients are of questionable nutritional quality for dogs and may be linked to such health issues as rapid spikes in blood sugar and poor fertility rates in breed dogs.

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VICTOR Select Yukon River Canine Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Menhaden Fish Meal (source of DHA-Docosahexaenoic Acid)
    2. Peas
    3. Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed Tocopherols)
    4. Garbanzo Beans
    5. Dehydrated Salmon

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: All life stages
  • Calories: 390 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 33%
  • Fat: 16%
  • Fiber: 3.8%

VICTOR Select Yukon River offers families with Basenjis exceptional nutrition and great value for their dog food dollar. This diet prioritizes the use of fish meal, a powerhouse protein that is chock full of essential fatty acids to fuel the active Basenji’s energy reserves while boosting support for the breed’s coat and skin health.

One of the best dog foods for Basenjis available for purchase today, VICTOR Select Yukon River is grain-free. Its recipe has been specifically formulated to assist dogs with known food sensitivities. To this end, this diet also contains no corn, wheat, or soy, common allergens for many dogs.

Pros

  • Owners were pleased to report that dogs struggling with loose stools saw a return to normal stool consistency with a change to this diet.
  • This diet is available for a very reasonable price. Owners like that this food is of exceptional quality and can be purchased for an affordable cost.
  • This diet is renowned for its exceptional flavor. Dogs enjoy the taste of this food. They are so enthusiastic about their kibble that their owners are able to utilize it for their meals and for training treats.
  • Dogs fed a steady diet of VICTOR Select Yukon River had energy levels that were appropriate for their age and breed.
  • Dogs that regularly struggled with food-related allergies saw great improvements in their symptoms when transitioned to a regular diet of VICTOR Select Yukon River.

Cons

  • Dogs that regularly struggled with food-related allergies saw great improvements in their symptoms when transitioned to a regular diet of VICTOR Select Yukon River.
  • Some owners felt this diet was rather pricey.
  • In some cases, some dogs were disinterested in this food and would not eat it. The addition of a topper, broth, or some meat may entice these dogs to eat their meals.
  • Some dogs suffered from mild gastrointestinal distress such as nausea, loose stools, and diarrhea when fed this diet. This could be attributed to a food sensitivity or to a dietary change that occurred too quickly for the dog’s system.
  • A few owners wondered if this diet had recently had a change in formula. Though their dogs once tolerated this diet well, they were no longer seeing the health benefits they once were.

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American Journey Active Life Formula Salmon, Brown Rice & Vegetable Recipe Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Deboned Salmon
    2. Menhaden Fish Meal
    3. Brown Rice
    4. Peas
    5. Rice Bran

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 345 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 25%
  • Fat: 15%
  • Fiber: 6%

American Journey Active Life Formula is a top tier food that meets the nutritional needs of dogs that enjoy a highly active lifestyle. This diet, considered to be one of the best dog foods for Basenjis, includes both whole salmon and Menhaden fish meal as its first two ingredients. These meats are easy to digest and rich in nutrients to fuel health and wellness in dogs.

American Journey Active Life Formula is a grain-inclusive food. Its carbohydrate profile includes antioxidant and fiber-rich fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

Pros

  • Owners love that this diet is grain-inclusive. They are pleased their dogs can enjoy a top quality food that includes grains in its foundation, believing these ingredients are key to good digestion in the Basenji.
  • Owners shared that this diet has a strong smell of salmon, but it does not smell artificial. They like that this seems to indicate the diet is made from the highest quality ingredients.
  • Dogs transitioned to a steady diet of American Journey Active Life Formula had excellent quality stools.
  • Dogs love the taste of this food. Even the pickiest of eaters look forward to their every meal.
  • This diet is quite affordable. Owners feel they are able to provide their dogs with excellent quality nutrition for a very reasonable price.

Cons

  • A few dogs developed persistent flatulence when fed this diet consistently.
  • Some dogs dislike the taste of this food and will not eat it. A different American Journey Active Life flavor may be a better fit for those dogs.
  • Some dogs suffered from loose stools and diarrhea when fed this food. This may be the result of too quick a dietary change and should resolve in time.
  • Some owners expressed that they preferred to feed their Basenjis a grain-free diet. They indicated that they felt the absence of grains was an important help in their dogs finding relief from food-related allergies.
  • Some owners were disappointed to note that their bags of food contained a large amount of food dust.

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ACANA Singles Limited Ingredient Diet Lamb & Apple Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Deboned Lamb
    2. Lamb Meal
    3. Lamb Liver
    4. Sweet Potato
    5. Whole Chickpeas

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 371 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 31%
  • Fat: 17%
  • Fiber: 5%

ACANA Singles LID Grain-Free has earned an excellent reputation as one of the best dog foods for Basenjis available for purchase today. This diet is rich in protein that is derived from only one lean meat: lamb. A grain-free food based on a limited list of ingredients of exceptional quality, sweet potatoes lay the foundation of the carbohydrate content of this high performance food. This ingredient plays an important role in good digestion and a strong immune system.

Taurine plays a starring role in this food, ensuring support for the Basenji’s cardiac health. ACANA Singles LID Grain-Free contains no peas, corn, or plant-based isolates, all common allergens for many dogs. This diet is proudly manufactured in the United States.

Pros

  • This diet is well renowned for its exceptional flavor. Basenjis love the taste of this kibble and eagerly gobble up every morsel in their bowls.
  • Owners like that this diet includes only one protein: lamb. The emphasis on a finite number of ingredients gives them confidence that this food is the ideal choice for Basenjis with food-related allergies.
  • Owners like that this food is readily available online and can be delivered right to their door.
  • Dogs that suffered from food-related allergies saw great improvements in their coats and skin when fed a regular diet of ACANA Singles LID Grain-Free. Their skin returned to well-hydrated and itch-free, and their coats were soft, shiny, and healthy.
  • Dogs with loose stools saw a return to normal stool consistency when fed this diet on an ongoing basis.

Cons

  • Some owners felt this diet was too expensive.
  • A few owners indicated that this diet was very hard to find in their local stores. Thankfully, it is available for purchase online and can be delivered.
  • A few owners disliked that this diet is grain-free, preferring to feed a grain-inclusive formula to their Basenjis to help with good digestion.
  • This diet contains whole chickpeas, an ingredient that is believed to be linked to lowered fertility rates in adult breeding dogs.
  • Some dogs disliked the taste of this food and would not eat it. Acana has many different flavors in their grain-free limited ingredients line. One of these diets may be a better choice for those dogs.

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How to Select the Best Dog Food for Basenjis

The strong-willed Basenji is full of energy, mischief, and fun. A breed that hails from Africa, the Basenji is well renowned for being barkless. However, this breed is not silent. It has its own unique vocalizations unlike the sounds made by other dogs.

The Basenji is not a breed for the novice dog owner. It is known for being particularly stubborn and unwilling to learn new things. The breed is fiercely intelligent and requires regular vigorous exercise and mental stimulation to remain a contented family companion.

Basenjis can learn new skills; however, they are very unreliable as to when they will obey the commands they have learned. The breed can be very manipulative, easily training its owners to do its bidding.

The Basenji excels at finding ways to escape even the most carefully constructed yard. For this reason, they need to be carefully supervised even when contained in a fenced space. They make exceptional watchdogs, enthusiastically yodeling at the presence of strangers.

Another unique quality of the Basenji is its feline like desire for cleanliness. The breed is also known for shedding only minimally.

Highly athletic, the Basenji is not known for gaining weight easily. Free feeding is still discouraged for this energetic little pooch. All food should be measured and all intake monitored to ensure a healthy weight and body condition.

The best dog foods for Basenjis should contain a minimum of 18 percent protein and 5 percent fat.

Choosing the Correct Calorie Count for Basenjis

The athletic Basenji requires a premium performance diet to thrive. The best dog foods for Basenjis list suggested serving sizes which can provide a helpful starting point for owners trying to determine how much to feed their dog. These can be adjusted with the dog’s age, weight, activity level, and appetite providing helpful guides for increases and decreases.

Because the Basenji is a busy pooch, the breed can be predisposed to forgetting or not stopping to eat. This can make this breed prone to becoming underweight. To avoid this problem, it is best to refrain from free feeding the Basenji. All food should be measured, and meal times should be monitored to ensure the Basenji consumes adequate calories for optimal health and wellness.

Dietary Requirements for Basenji Dog Foods

Basenjis are carnivores and as an athletic breed they require a meat-based diet to achieve optimal health and wellness. The best dog foods for Basenjis take a whole meat or meat meal as the basis of their formula. By-products are not of sufficient quality to fuel the Basenji’s daily nutritional needs. Likewise, plant-based proteins such as soy, corn, and wheat should be avoided as they are common allergens for many dogs.

Any food that contains artificial ingredients or chemicals is poor quality and should be left on the shelf. Some of the most concerning ingredients include fillers, preservatives, additives, artificial flavors, and colors. These items add no nutritional benefit to a food.

Carbohydrates help the Basenji to achieve good digestion and a thriving immune system. These can come from whole grains, fruits, or vegetables. Each ingredient in a diet should be chosen for its high antioxidant and fiber value.

Healthy fats are the building blocks of a food, helping the Basenji to enjoy coat and skin health and strong energy levels. Animal fats are the best source of these essential fatty acids and can be found in such foods as oily fish or chicken fat. The plant-based oils canola, safflower, and coconut also offer ample servings of the fats required for the Basenji to enjoy health benefits.

Supplements help a food to operate at peak efficiency. The ideal supplements for the Basenji include prebiotics, probiotics, glucosamine, and chondroitin.

Things to Look for in the Best Dog Food for Basenjis

Here is a basic list of the most important things to look for in the best dog food for a Basenji:

  • Lean, meat-based proteins heading up the ingredients list

The primary ingredient in any diet suited to the active Basenji should be meat. A whole meat or meat meal is the best foundation for a high quality food. By-products and plant-based proteins such as corn, wheat, and soy should be avoided.

  • Prepared without the addition of chemicals, flavorings, fillers, or mystery ingredients

Chemicals, fillers, artificial flavorings and colorings, and mystery ingredients provide no nutritional benefit to the Basenji. Diets containing these ingredients should be avoided. 

  • Enriched with probiotics and helpful supplements

Supplements can be a great help in supporting the Basenji’s health. The ideal supplements to look for in a food include prebiotics, probiotics, glucosamine, and chondroitin. 

  • Meets AAFCO nutritional requirements for a complete and balanced food

All foods appropriate for the Basenji should bear the AAFCO seal of approval, indicating it meets the standards for a complete and balanced food.

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