Tanza Basenjis began in 1991 with Maggii and OJ (aka: BISS Ch Zuri's Obviously Maggii, SC, FCH and Ch Bushbabies Obviously Jazz). After completing their AKC Championships with their novice owner/handler, we were hooked..... and the rest as they say, is history. In 1993 Mickii (aka: MBIF DC Zuri's Ti-Tanza Wazi Ajabu,SC,LCM6) became part of the Tanza Family and we also began to Lure Course. In 1994 we bred Maggii for our first home bred litter and from that litter of 6, our keeper was Kristii (aka: DC Tanza's Kenyetta,SC,LCM). In 1996 our second litter, from Mickii, our keeper was Fatia (aka: DC Tanza-Zuri Fatia,SC,LCM). Also from that litter was Tego (aka: DC Tanza's Tego,SC,FCH) owned by Jeff Sheldon of Walnut Creek, California. We are very proud that in November of 2000, Fatia gave us our "second" generation of home bred's. Crystal is an AKC Dual Conformation & Coursing Champion, ASFA Lure Champion and has her AKC JC and in 2005 earned her Rally Advanced Obedience Title and her Obedience CD Title. Jamari is an AKC conformation champion and JC, and an UCI Intl Champion. Go to Tanza Boys and Tanza Girls and visit with the "kids". We take great pride that they have been shown by owner/handler or breeder/owner/handler in the show ring, with the exception of Tego. Tego was shown both by Tanza Basenjis and his owner Jeff Sheldon, Jamaa Basenjis and sired his first litter in December 2000. See Tego's kids by visiting Tanza Boys and Tanza Girls. Tego's first champion is Ch Jamaa-Tanza Jahari, handled by Jeff Sheldon and his daughter, Ch. Jamaa-Tanza Makindu is a conformation championship, Rally Novice Obedience titled, Agility titled, Junior Courser, and Caine Good Citizen, handled by her owner, Brenda Phillips, and is Tego's second conformation champion.
Joining Tanza Basenjis in March of 2010 are CH Klassic-Tanza Color Me Tri,SC (12/24/09), DC AB Tanza Life In The Fast Lane,SC, and co-owned with Jeff Sheldon & Ty Rollins,GCH AB Day Trip To Tanza-Jamaa,SC (1/6/10).
Ch Klassic-Tanza Color Me Tri,SC delivered a lovely litter of 5 girls and 1 boy on November 28, 2012. Watch for her "kids" in the ring and on the field.
Tanza Basenjis is breeding for the "functional Basenji" and on a small scale. This includes good temperaments and good health, along with proper conformation and ability to perform on the Lure Field. We take great pride in the fact that we have bred from our first three litters, three AKC Dual Champions, 5 AKC conformation champions, and four ASFA Field Champions. We feel it is important for breeders to show their Basenjis to their AKC Conformation titles, as that is the way to confirm that you are breeding a sound, correct dog. Also, that you are breeding good temperaments, as a dog of any breed with a poor temperament will usually not last long in the show ring. We feel very strongly that they should be able to do performance events, we have chosen Lure Coursing as it is similar to what they do in the wild, hunt by sight. Many people do Obedience and Agility, to name a few. We have decided that our interest is Showing and Coursing. We believe that our Basenjis are OUR PETS first, regardless if they are showing, coursing, or just retired, enjoying the good life as house dogs. All of our Basenjis have been placed with loving family homes and if their new owners are interested in showing or doing performance events with their Basenji, all the better!!! But in the long run, it is the home that is the most important.
We health test as much as possible before breeding a litter and will use the newly release DNA Direct Fanconi Test for any and all future breedings, requiring OFA Hip Certification and current Eye Exam. We put much thought into the limited amount of breeding we do. We try to find the best cross and one that will improve the breed along with making wonderful family pets. Tanza Basenjis requires a Spay/Neuter contract on all pet puppies (owners that are not interested in showing) and for show prospects, we require a co-ownership. All contracts state that if the pup needs to be re-homed during its lifetime, the pup is returned to Tanza Basenjis. As much as we would like to claim that we have no health problems in our bloodlines, we can not! In fact, there are no Basenji bloodlines that can make that claim. People may not have problems at present, but that does not mean that months, years down the road, genetic problems will not rear its ugly head. Until the day we have testing for all genetic problems (as we do with HA & now the Linkage test for Fanconi), we as breeders can only try and be aware of the potential problems and try to breed away from them. However, since our gene pool is limited, that is not always an easy task. (About Basenjis and Basenji Health)
In choosing your new family member of any breed you need to go to a reputable breeder. Visit dog shows in your area, contact the National Breed Club or the AKC to find a breeder referral in your area. Visit the breeders in your area, more then one if possible. See the dogs and how they interact in a home situation and don't be afraid to ask for references. Talk honestly with the breeder regarding your life style to see if this is really the best breed of dog for you and your family. A good breeder should be your friend for life and someone to lend support during some of the trying "early" puppy days. If you are honest with your breeder and what you are looking for in a new family member, they will try and fit the puppy to you and your family. If not, you might find it difficult to purchase from a reputable breeder, because we, as breeders are concerned that a puppy is placed in the right home and its "forever" home. You should prepare a list of questions to ask your breeder and be prepared for the same from them. A good breeder is not afraid to tell you that this is NOT the right breed for you, your family or your lifestyle.