Slightly longer than tall, the Rhodesian Ridgeback combines features of speed, power, and endurance. The Rhodesian Ridgeback has an athletic build. Their stride is efficient and long. Their short glossy coat is adapted for living in hot climates. A particular feature is a clearly defined ridge, which starts with two identical whorls just behind their shoulders and taper to the prominence of their hipbones.
This handsome dog breed was created in Africa to be a versatile hunter and residential guardian. He’s smart but sometimes stubborn, with a moderate energy level and an easy-care coat. These days, he’s less likely to hunt lions and more likely to hunt a soft spot on the sofa after going jogging with you.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog Information:
|Breed Name||Rhodesian Ridgeback|
|Other Names||African Lion Dog, African Lion Hound|
|Breed Group||Sighthounds & pariahs (UKC)|
|Weight||Male: 80-90 pounds (36-41 kg)
Female: 65-75 pounds (29-34 kg)
|Height||Male: 25-27 inches (63-69 cm)
Female: 24-26 inches (61-66 cm)
|Area of Origin||Zimbabwe|
|Life Range||10-12 years|
|Level of Energy||Energetic|
|Overall Grooming||Low Maintenance|
Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog History:
The Rhodesian Ridgeback (also referred to as the ‘African Lion Dog,’ ‘African Lion Hound’, and ‘Van Rooyen’s Lion Dog’ for its capacity to harass lions) was bred in Zimbabwe (formerly Rhodesia) and is known as for the distinctive ‘ridge’ on its back, which is made by hairs running within the other way to the rest of its coat. European settlers of Rhodesia within the 1700s found a domesticated dog with such a ridge among the native Khoisan tribe.
They adapted the Rhodesian Ridgeback to the aim of hunting lions and other large game, probably by crossing it with large breeds that came with them like the Bloodhound, Greyhound, and Great Dane. The resulting breed could run at great speeds, withstand harsh weather, and hunt by sight or scent. Groups of two Rhodesian Ridgebacks were sent bent corner, taunt, and confuse a lion while the hunter stepped in for the kill.
The first breed standard for the Rhodesian Ridgeback, based on the Dalmatian, was drawn up in 1924, and American Kennel Club recognition followed in 1955. Today, the Rhodesian Ridgeback may be a popular show dog, companion, and hunter.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog Photos:
About Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog Health:
Rhodesian Ridgebacks are generally healthy dogs, and responsible breeders screen their dogs for hip and elbow dysplasia, thyroid function, and eye anomalies. Dermoid sinus may be a tube-like opening within the skin that’s occasionally present at birth; an experienced breeder can palpate, or feel, for this defect.
- Major concerns: none
- Minor concerns: CHD, hypothyroidism, elbow dysplasia
- Occasionally seen: deafness, dermoid sinus
- Suggested tests: hip, elbow, thyroid, dermoid sinus (as puppy)
Nutrition For Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog:
The Rhodesian Ridgeback should do well on a portion of high-quality pet food, whether commercially manufactured or home-prepared, together with your veterinarian’s supervision and approval. Any diet should be appropriate to the dog’s age (puppy, adult, or senior). Ridgebacks are notorious “counter surfers,” so make certain to not leave human food unattended.
Some dogs are susceptible to getting overweight, so watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Treats are often a crucial aid in training, but giving too many can cause obesity. Learn about which human foods are safe for dogs, and which aren’t. Ask your vet if you’ve got any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean water should be available at all times.
How to Take Care of Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog:
Rhodesian Ridgebacks can adapt to a variety of homes, including apartments, as long as they get daily exercise. They ought to sleep in the house with their people, not outdoors during a run or kennel.
Access to a securely fenced yard is ideal. They’ll attempt to escape if bored, so additionally to make sure that your fence cannot be jumped or climbed over or dug under, keep your Ridgeback busy with training, play, or dog sports. Sending him out into the yard by himself for hours on end is an invitation to destruction. Even if he is not especially bored, a Ridgeback is usually inclined to dig large holes so he can rest within the cool and comfortable dirt. Be prepared to offer him part of the yard or resign yourself to having a cratered yard that resembles the surface of the moon.
Give your Rhodesian Ridgeback some of 15- to 20-minute walks or playtimes daily, plus opportunities to run during a safely fenced area a few times every week. Due to the breed’s strong prey drive, keeping him on the leash in unfenced areas may be a must. Your Ridgeback will take off after a cat, rabbit, or bicyclist, regardless of how well you think that he’s trained.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Grooming, Bathing & Coat:
Rhodesian ridgebacks are a short flat coated breed that sheds throughout the year, even within the wintertime. Grooming is usually recommended for 4 – 8-week intervals to wash ears, clip nails, check anal glands and ensure the coat and skin are in healthy condition.
Bathing Care: Rhodesian Ridgeback requires two baths once you bathe them. The first bath should be a general bath. If your Rhodesian Ridgeback has allergies or sensitive skin, we might suggest a Hypoallergenic Shampoo and follow it with a medicated shampoo depending on your dog’s needs. If your Rhodesian Ridgeback has normal skin, then the second bath you’d want to select one among our wonderful fragrant shampoos and conditioners. Follow the bath with a conditioner or Luxury Remoisturizer to keep the coat in great shape.
Eyes Care: Eyes should be alert and bright. Use Opti-Soothe Eye Wash during the bath to flush any foreign matter.
Ears Care: Monthly ear cleaning with Ear Care is suggested to make sure no ear problems, which may need vet attention to arise. Only clean as far as you’ll see, never further.
Paws Care: Paw Balm should be used weekly. Also, paw pads that are soft and pliable are less likely to dry and crack.
Coat Care: Use Aloe Hydrating Spray between baths to control flaking and dandruff, especially in dry conditions.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog Exercise:
Rhodesian Ridgebacks are strong, athletic dogs who require a moderate amount of exercise, and that they can adapt well to varied living situations when given daily outings like long walks and play sessions with their owner. They like to run, and that they need physical activity to assist keep them healthy and happy. The breed also can exercise mind and body by participating in canine sports like tracking, agility, and other activities that dogs and owners can enjoy together.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog Personality:
The Rhodesian Ridgeback has won many admirers for his innate qualities. The breed possesses many of the characteristics generally related to Hounds, but is somewhat tougher than the typical hound breed. The Ridgeback features a quiet, gentle temperament and rarely barks.
Although he may give the impression of a giant, lazy hound, the Rhodesian Ridgeback is often a threatening presence. This dog was bred to hunt and be a family protector. The Ridgeback is definitely trained and has above-average tractability.
Because of their innate abilities as guardians, ridgebacks shouldn’t be trained as protection dogs. Their natural protective instinct should be subjected to elementary obedience training for control.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog Training:
Because of their very strong prey drive, Rhodesian Ridgebacks should be in a safely enclosed area when off-leash. The Ridgeback may be a devoted companion and wishes to live indoors together with his human family. They will be strong-willed, independent, and sometimes domineering, and must be guided with a firm but a patient hand from early puppyhood. Early socialization and puppy training classes using positive reinforcement are recommended and help to make sure that the dog grows into a well-adjusted, well-mannered companion.
Pros of Rhodesian Ridgeback Dogs:
- Grooming: Effortless: The Rhodesian Ridgeback requires minimal grooming.
- Shedding Level: Rhodesian Ridgebacks shed none to minimal.
- Drooling tendency: The Rhodesian Ridgeback may be a perfect example of a very low drooling tendency.
- Adaptability: Rhodesian Ridgebacks adapt well to lifestyle changes and different living environments.
- Child Friendly: Rhodesian Ridgebacks are very kid-friendly dogs.
- Senior Citizens Friendly: Rhodesian Ridgebacks are one among the best breeds for elderly people.
Cons of Rhodesian Ridgeback Dogs:
- Hypoallergenic: Rhodesian Ridgebacks don’t have the best with allergy sufferers by causing the allergic reaction.
- The impulse to Wander or Roam: Rhodesian Ridgebacks have high wanderlust potential, which suggests that this breed features a strong desire to explore the world.
- Tolerates Being Left Alone: Rhodesian Ridgebacks do best when a family member is at home during the day or if their workplace is dog-friendly in order that they can take the dog at work.
- Cat Friendly: Rhodesian Ridgebacks aren’t the most cat-friendly dogs.
- Dog Friendly: Rhodesian Ridgebacks aren’t the most dog-friendly dogs.
- Office Friendly: Rhodesian Ridgeback isn’t the best dog breed for the office environment.
- Good For First Time Owners: Rhodesian Ridgebacks aren’t good for novice owners, because of their stubborn personality.
ALSO READ: WEST HIGHLAND WHITE TERRIER DOG BREED INFO.
More About Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog:
The first thing people notice about the Rhodesian Ridgeback is usually the characteristic ridge that runs down his spine and provides him his name. The ridge reveals part of his heritage, which is a mixture of European hunting dogs and African dogs who had a distinctive ridge.
They also notice his strong athleticism, noble carriage, and also the intelligence in his eyes. The history of the breed only adds to his allure; owners are often asked, “Did they really hunt lions?”
The answer is yes, and the Ridgeback was developed in Africa to corner and hold big game prey, like lions, bears, and boar. Today, the Rhodesian Ridgeback remains used for hunting, and a few members of the breed have even adapted to pointing and retrieving. The Rhodesian Ridgeback also can be found competing in various dog sports, including agility, lure coursing, obedience, and tracking, and he’s good hiking or jogging companion.
The Rhodesian Ridgeback is dignified and reserved toward strangers. Together with his family, he’s a quiet, gentle companion, one who’s able and willing to defend his home and other people if the necessity arises.