Basenji

Best Dog Food For Basenjis (2020 Reviews)

Basenjis are definitely one of the most exciting dog breeds out there. They were first bred for hunting, which explains their exceptional eyesight and sense of smell. They are known for being cat-like due to being able to groom themselves like cats. They are also known for not barking, yet they still growl and yodel.

Basenjis are affectionate dogs towards their parents, and they are very protective of them. You know you are very much loved if you have a Basenji for a best friend. To return the favor, we have prepared a list of best dog foods for Basenjis and added a buyer’s guide at the end of the article for new pet parents. 

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Salmon Dog Food
Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon
our top pick

Here are the best dog food for a Basenji in a quick glance:

  • Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon
  • Solid Gold – Leaping Waters with Cold Water Salmon
  • Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Natural Dog Food
  • FROMM Four-Star, Grain-Free Gamebird Recipe
  • Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Salmon Dog Food
Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon
our top pick
solid gold
Solid Gold - Leaping Waters with Cold Water Salmon
Runner Up
rachael ray
Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Natural Dog Food
Best for Budget
FROMM Four-Star, Grain-Free Gamebird Recipe
FROMM Four-Star, Grain-Free Gamebird Recipe
Best for Picky Eaters
• Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken
Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken
Best for Sensitive Stomach

Our Top Pick: Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Salmon Dog Food
Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon
our top pick

About: Blue Wilderness’ dog foods are specially prepared to mimic the diet of dogs’ ancestors. Their products are grain-free and prepared with a mixture of whole meat as well as meat meals. Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon is a great option for those who want to feed their Basenji with a high protein diet.

Features: Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon is an impressive dog food due to having salmon as its first ingredient. It is a fantastic source of protein and Omega-3 fatty acids. Chicken and menhaden fish meal are the following ingredients as the additional sources of protein.

All the Blue Wilderness products are grain-free. Instead of using wheat or corn, they provide carbohydrates through peas and sweet potatoes, which are much healthier choices for pups. Their products also contain carrots, blueberries, cranberries and parsley to improve the taste and provide the antioxidants that dogs need.

Blue Wilderness products are made in the U.S.A. They do not contain any artificial flavors, colorants or additives. Instead of such unnecessary and harmful ingredients, Blue Wilderness prefers adding vitamins, minerals and probiotics to their recipes to keep your dog as much healthy as possible. 

Runner Up: Solid Gold - Leaping Waters with Cold Water Salmon

solid gold
Solid Gold - Leaping Waters with Cold Water Salmon
Runner Up

About: Solid Gold – Leaping Waters with Cold Water Salmon is a greats second choice on our list, especially if your dog has a sensitive stomach. Featuring protein-packed ingredients and probiotics, this one might be the new favorite of your pup.

Features: The first ingredient of this particular dog food is again salmon, which is an incredibly rich protein source. Ocean fish meal is the second ingredient as an additional source of protein.

It is a grain and gluten-free dog food that uses chickpeas, lentils and peas as carbohydrate sources in the recipe, making it much healthier for pups and easy on their digestive system. The salmon oil found in the recipe is a rich source of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids to keep your dog’s skin and coat healthy. Probiotics are added to help the digestive system.

 In addition to all these fantastic ingredients, Solid Gold – Leaping Waters with Cold Water Salmon contains fresh vegetables such as carrots, pumpkin, parsley, apples, cranberries, blueberries and broccoli. 

Due to being chicken-free and free from grains as well as gluten, it is a great food for dogs that have a sensitive stomach. If that is the case for your Basenji, you can safely opt for this one. 

Best for Budget: Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Natural Dog Food

rachael ray
Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Natural Dog Food
Best for Budget

About: Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Natural Dog Food is a great choice for those who are considerate of their budget who wants their pups to be healthy due to being grain and gluten-free. It is simply designed to provide dogs with the nutrients that they need while being delicious and budget-friendly.

Features: Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Natural Dog Food’s primary ingredient is real turkey, which provides high levels of protein. This dog food is free of grains, gluten and any fillers. The brand makes sure that the ingredients are nutritious to pups and not harmful in any way. 

This product does not contain any artificial dyes, colorants, flavors or preservatives, but it is full of minerals, vitamins and flaxseeds to improve your dog’s diet and health. Since there are no grains, gluten and artificial additives, it is unlikely to cause any allergic reactions.

However, the recipe lacks the benefits of fruits and vegetables to be budget-friendly.

In any case, it is a product that contains high-quality ingredients that will provide the nutrients with your dog needs. If you are in the lookout for a budget-friendly but high-quality dog food, this one might be a great option for you.

Best for Picky Eaters: FROMM Four-Star, Grain-Free Gamebird Recipe

FROMM Four-Star, Grain-Free Gamebird Recipe
FROMM Four-Star, Grain-Free Gamebird Recipe
Best for Picky Eaters

About: FROMM is not a well-known dog food brand, yet it is worth checking out because their products are full of great ingredients that dogs will love to get a taste of. Specifically, the Gamebird Recipe is their most popular recipe that is delicious for dogs, even for those picky eaters.

Features: This dog food has duck meat as its first ingredient, which is known to be found tasty by dogs. It also contains turkey and chicken meat as additional sources of protein. Gamebird Recipe is free from grains. Instead of wheat, rice or corn, potatoes are used to provide pups with a healthy source of carbohydrates.

FROMM Four-Star, Grain-Free Gamebird Recipe is packed with probiotics for proper digestion, antioxidants, fruits and vegetables to make the recipe even better. 

The Gamebird Recipe by FROMM is incredibly impressive with its premium ingredients, and it reflects on their prices, which seems to be the only drawback of the product yet, it is understandable. Even the pickiest eaters seem to love this recipe, but some prefer FROMM’s other recipes, especially the salmon recipe over this one.

 If your dog is allergic to meat, you might want to try out other recipes since this one is packed with various meat. However, if your dog is just a picky one, you might want to give this one a try. 

Best for Sensitive Stomach: Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken

• Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken
Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken
Best for Sensitive Stomach

About: Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken is a great dog food option for the pet parents who have best friends with a sensitive stomach. Not lacking in nutrients, this recipe is quite rich in protein, providing anything and everything that your pup needs to be healthy. 

Features: Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken contains deboned turkey as its first ingredient along with turkey meal and chicken meal as additional protein sources. It also contains animal-derived ingredients such as chicken fat, chicken liver and salmon oil that provides Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids

Since the recipe is free from grains, peas, potatoes and sweet potatoes are used as the sources of carbohydrates. In addition, these, the recipe contains various fruits and vegetables such as broccoli, apples and blueberries to provide needed vitamin, minerals and antioxidants for dogs. It also contains glucosamine and chondroitin for healthy joints as well as probiotics for proper digestion. 

The only controversial ingredient found in this recipe seems to be tomato pomace. While it is not a harmful ingredient to dogs, some pet lovers believe it to be a cheap filler. 

Wellness Core Grain-Free Original Turkey & Chicken is a bit expensive compared to other dog foods, which may not be ideal however, keep in mind that this is a recipe packed with protein and it is grain-free. 

If you cannot seem to find a dog food that is easy on your pup’s sensitive stomach, you might want to give this one a try and see if it works. 

Buyer’s Guide

Which Nutrients Dogs Need?

When choosing a dog food, it is essential to know which nutrients dogs need. When dogs consume these nutrients in the amounts that they need, it leads them to have healthy and happy lives

When it comes to these nutrients, there are a few fundamental nutrients that dogs need.

Protein

Protein is the most essential nutrient as it is the building block of organs and cells. Cell growth, maintenance and repair is only possible when there is enough protein. Dogs mostly need protein to maintain their hair. Dogs can intake protein from different sources.

The most common protein source in dog foods is animal meat such as beef, lamb, chicken, turkey and fish. While vegetables can also be protein sources, they are not as beneficial as the protein provided by animal meat, and they usually cause digestive issues.

It is important for dog foods to have animal meat as its first ingredient in order to provide high-quality protein. Animal meals can also be the secondary sources of protein in dog foods. However, make sure the animal meat or meal is properly identified, such as a chicken meal. If the animal is not identified, try to avoid that dog food.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Salmon Dog Food
Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon
our top pick

Fat

Fats do not only provide a great amount of energy that your pup needs, but they also provide fatty acids such as linoleic acid, Omega-3 and Omega-6 that are important to maintain healthy cells.

Fats also help vitamins such as A, E, D and K to be absorbed since they are fat-soluble vitamins. When essential fatty acids are not provided to a dog, they may suffer from skin problems and growth issues

Some dog foods contain salmon as their first ingredient. Fish are not only amazing sources of protein, but they also provide the fatty acids dogs need, especially Omega-3 and Omega-6. 

Carbohydrates

Essentially, dogs do not need carbohydrates for energy since they primarily get energy from protein and fat. However, some carbohydrate sources can be quite beneficial for dogs. Fibers are important kinds of carbohydrates since they are easy on the digestive system and can help with digestive issues such as chronic diarrhea. 

Whole grains supply iron and minerals as well as other nutrients for dogs. However, it should be mentioned that some dogs may be sensitive to grains. In that case, there are dog foods that provide carbohydrates from vegetables such as peas or potatoes

Vitamins

Vitamins are needed in small amounts in dogs’ daily diet. They don’t need supplements unless they are diagnosed with a specific vitamin deficiency. Most dog foods provide the vitamins dogs need through vegetables and fruits. 

Minerals

Minerals are another essential element that dogs need, especially for healthy bones and teeth and therefore, for healthy growth.

What Should You Look for In A Dog Food?

There are certain ingredients that you need to look for in dog foods if you want your Basenji to have a balanced and healthy diet. Let us take a look at some of the fundamental ingredients that you need to pay attention to. 

Meat

Meat is the most essential ingredient that needs to be the first one in the ingredients list of high-quality dog food as they are listed by weight. Meat should make up a majority of dog food because it is an essential source of protein. Many trusted brands use real meat such as beef, lamb, chicken or fish as their primary source of protein. 

Meat Meal

Even though meat meals are controversial ingredients, they are incredibly high in protein, and they are usually the secondary sources of protein in dog foods. Meat meals provide more protein and nutrients than you may think.

The one thing that you should be careful about is the animal that meal is made of. In the ingredients list, the animal needs to be identified, such as a chicken meal. If the animal is not identified, we recommend that you avoid that dog food altogether.

Carbohydrates

Grains are mostly used as carbohydrate sources in dog foods. Unless your dog is allergic or sensitive to grains, it should not pose any problem. What you should be mindful of grains is that there are low-quality grains, and then there are high-quality grains that are much healthier for dogs.

Low-quality grains are corn, soy and whole wheat, while high-quality grains are peas, oats and barley. Their placement in the ingredients list should be lower. Some low-quality dog food may list grains as the primary ingredient, which is not an ideal diet for dogs.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Salmon Dog Food
Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon
our top pick

Vegetables and Fruits

Vegetables and fruits are healthy ways of providing vitamins and minerals to dogs while having many other benefits on the side. Apples, blueberries, sweet potatoes and broccoli are some of the most preferred options in dog foods. 

What Should You Avoid in Dog Foods?

You need to be careful about what you should strictly avoid in dog foods as much as what you should look for. The ingredients we listed below are known to be harmful to dogs in one way or another. Simply put, they are not healthy. When you are looking for the right dog food for Basenjis, try to avoid these ingredients.

BHA/BHT

BHA and BHT are chemical preservatives mainly used to preserve fat in dog foods. Even though they are banned in many countries, they can still be used in small amounts in the U.S.A., Canada and Europe. BHA is known to cause kidney problems, while BHT is known to be linked with cancer. If you want to be on the safe side, avoid these preservatives at all costs in your Basenjis food. 

Ethoxyquin

Ethoxyquin is another preservative that can be found in dog foods. Ethoxyquin was originally used as a pesticide. Even though it is used in small amounts in dog food, ethoxyquin is known to cause kidney and liver damage, liver, spleen, stomach and skin cancer, blindness, immune deficiency as well as leukemia. It doesn’t worth the risk. 

Propylene Glycol

Propylene glycol is mostly known for being used in antifreeze. The reason why it is used in dog foods is to reduce moisture while preventing bacteria from growing.

The problem with propylene glycol is that it reduces all sorts of bacteria growth, even the good ones living in your dog’s body that he actually needs. It can also decrease the moisture needed for proper digestion. This may result in cancerous lesions or intestinal blockage in dogs, which is why it is a good idea to avoid it.

Unidentified Meat and Meat Meal

As we have mentioned before, meat and meat meals are excellent sources of protein for dogs, and they need to make up the majority of dogs’ diet. The problem occurs when the meat or the meat meal is unidentified, which means it is not written from which animal it is derived from.

If there is just “meat” or “meat meal” in the ingredients list, it is safe to assume that it is derived from the worst, lowest-quality source possible because it can come from anything, even diseased or dead animals. Yikes!

Artificial Colorants

Artificial colorants used in dog foods are simply unnecessary. It makes the food look more appealing. While they may look cute in all different colors for us humans, it doesn’t matter to your pup unless it tastes good. These artificial colors can cause hyperactivity and other health issues

Flavor

Artificial colorants used in dog foods are simply unnecessary. It makes the food look more appealing. While they may look cute in all different colors for us humans, it doesn’t matter to your pup unless it tastes good. These artificial colors can cause hyperactivity and other health issues

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Salmon Dog Food
Blue Wilderness Adult Salmon
our top pick

MSG

MSG, aka monosodium glutamate, is used both in dog food and processed human foods. It is usually used to make everything taste better, but it causes many problems. Low-quality dog foods tend to contain MSG to cover up for the lack of flavor.

High-quality dog foods do not require such enhancement as the taste comes from real meat as well as fresh vegetables and fruits. While you can see monosodium glutamate in the ingredients list, it can also be hidden in other ingredients. It is best to stick with trusted brands.  

Corn Syrup

Corn syrup is another ingredient that can be used in dog foods to improve the taste. Just like sugar, corn syrup is not suitable for dogs’ health at all. Sugar and, in this case, corn syrup can cause spikes in the blood sugar and after dropping it, along with diabetes and obesity.

Another downside of corn syrup is that it is addictive, which means your dog will develop an addiction to sugar in time. It is best to avoid any form of sugar in dog foods.

Soy

Soy can be used in dog food as a filler and source of protein. Protein sources other than meat are not exactly suitable for dogs because the meat is their primary source of protein, and vegetable-based protein may not contain essential amino acids dogs need.

 Even though soy has all the essential amino acids, it is difficult for dogs to digest soy. It often causes gas and bloat. Since it is cheap, it is used in low-quality products to improve the protein percentage. Soy is also known to cause allergies. It is best to avoid it entirely since it causes many problems for dogs.

Animal By-Products

Animal by-products are anything that remains of the animal carcass other than the muscle meat. We mean anything. It usually contains diseased organs, tissues and even tumors. It can also include things like hair, beaks and hooves.

Low-quality dog foods contain animal by-products as cheap fillers and protein sources, yet it contains only a very small amount of protein. No matter what you do, do not buy dog food that contains animal by-products. 

Best Dog Food For Basenjis (2020 Reviews)

In this article, we have listed the best dog foods for Basenjis. You can choose any one of them that suits your budget and your Basenji’s needs. If you are planning on becoming a pet parent or if you are new at this, we also provided you with information as to what you should look for and what you should avoid in dog foods. 

It is important for you to get to know your Basenji and choose a dog food that can provide everything that your dog needs. If you are confused and not sure which dog food to want, we highly recommend you consult your veterinarian

About the author: Al Sarac

I've been an avid dog enthusiast since childhood. I started this blog in hopes of helping owners find answers to questions I had after owning my first dog. This website was created as a way to share our love for all things canine with the world. From choosing the best food for your older dog to get the best beds for your tail-wagger, I aim to give you the information you need to give your dog the best care throughout his entire life.