The Tasty Rat and the Dog That Hunted It

A full grown reed rat tips the scales at 20 pounds, and it’s never less than 20″ long. A third of this is a tail covered with thin hair. We’ll take the word of documents that report the rat to be very tasty, but the rodent’s highly cautious nature made it devilishly difficult to hunt. In their book, The Mythology of Dogs: Canine Legend, Gerald Hausman and Loretta Hausman write that the Basenji’s silence may have been bred for this purpose. While Basenji’s are known to be the “barkless” dogs, however, it’s not strictly true that they are altogether silent. They produce vocalizations that include yodels, crows, chortles, howls and growls.

Image: Basenji by Glenda Harlan

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