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Rhodesian Ridgeback

Rhodesian Ridgeback

Rhodesian Ridgeback’s get their name from the “ridge” of hair on their backs, growing in the opposite direction of their coats. Members of this extremely active breed can be dedicated and loyal companions but are not right for all families. If you’re prepared to dedicate some time to training and a great deal of time to exercising this pup, read on.







Size:
Male: 80- 90 lbs. Female: 65-75 lbs.
Exercise Requirements:
If you enjoy jogging and spending time outdoors, then a Rhodesian Ridgeback may be the right dog for you–these dogs are known to keep up with a running horse for up to 30 miles! Originally bred as hunting dogs in Africa, the Rhodesian Ridgeback needs a lot of exercise and plenty of room to run. They require at least an hour or two of vigorous physical activity every day to expend their energy in a positive way.
Mess Factor:
With their short coats, the Rhodesian Ridgeback sheds very little. Another plus? These dogs are generally odorless.
Barking and Volume:
Rhodesian Ridgebacks aren’t known to be excessive woofers, but will bark more often if not given enough exercise.
Training Requirements:
Known for their assertive and strong-willed natures, Rhodesian Ridgebacks need assertive parents who are confident and consistent. Early training is necessary to establish your pack-leader status and to keep these dogs from becoming aggressive. A puppy class can help socialize your dog and at-home training is also important. These dogs aren’t recommended for first-time dog parents, since they can be difficult to train.
Ongoing Costs:
Health Factors: This breed is susceptible to dermoid sinus (a congenital condition where an abscess forms along the dog’s spinal column). Puppies born with this disorder will need to have the abscess removed because it can be life threatening. Other health concerns include hip dysplasia and cysts. *A responsible breeder can help minimize the risk of genetic disorders.
Grooming: At home grooming will suffice.
Training: A puppy class is recommended and further obedience classes may be necessary.
Grooming Requirements:
Like most hounds, the Rhodesian Ridgeback requires very little grooming. A quick brushing once a week (or once every two weeks) is sufficient. Bathe only when necessary.
Kid Compatibility:
Good natured and protective, the Rhodesian Ridgeback can be an excellent companion for older kids. If you have young children in your family, though, you may want to look into another breed. Ridgebacks have a tendency to play roughly and they can accidentally knock over younger kids.
Longevity:
10 -11 years.
Friendliness: Towards Animals
As long as the animals are raised together from an early age, then the Ridgeback will get along fine with your other dogs or cats. However, this breed can become aggressive towards dogs outside of its immediate pack. Make sure to keep your Rhodesian Ridgeback on a leash when you take him for walks.
Friendliness: Towards People
Rhodesian Ridgebacks form intense bonds with their parents and they will do anything to protect their families from harm. This breed loves to spend time with the pack and will happily tag along with you on a run or lay next to you on the sofa. Because of their guarding instincts though, the Ridgeback is naturally wary of strangers.
BE PREPARED FOR: A dog that needs lots of training, socialization and exercise, who makes the perfect pup for an older, active family.





Links and resources:
Clubs
Rhodesian Ridgeback Club of the US
Rescues
Rhodesian Ridgeback Rescue for US
Most large cities have their own rescue organizations for the breed.
Videos
Rhodesian Ridgeback jumps in a lake




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