Rhodesian Ridgeback

Rhodesian Ridgeback Breed Profile

Average Weight:
Male – 30 – 39kg (66 – 85lbs).
Female – 30 – 39kg (66 – 88lbs).

Average Height:
Male – 63 – 67cm (25 – 27in).
Female – 61 – 66cm (24 – 26in).

Coat:
Short, smooth coat.

Average Life Span:
10 – 12 years.

Average Litter Size:
6 – 8 puppies.

Rhodesian Ridgeback Fast Facts

Ease To Train
Exercise Needs
Grooming Frequency
Energy Level
Protective Instincts
Behaviour Around Children
Relationship With Other Pets
Loyalty To Owner
Ease To Train
Some dogs are easy to train while others require more effort. General breed factors are taken into consideration to determine how easy you should find it to train your dog. On the scale, a 1 indicates that your dog will be difficult to train while a 10 indicates that your dog should be easy to train.

Exercise Needs
Dogs vary greatly in the amount of exercise they need on a daily basis. Some may need long, vigorous walks while a walk around the block will be sufficient for some. A score towards the lower end of the scale means that your dog requires little exercise while a score towards 5 indicates that they have high exercise needs.

Grooming Frequency
Depending on your dog’s coat, the grooming frequency will vary. Some will need brushing every day while others can be groomed once a week. On this scale, a 1 shows that a dog needs very little grooming while a 5 shows they require plenty of upkeep.

Energy Level
Some breeds have incredibly high energy levels and find it difficult to rest while others prefer sleeping for large parts of the day. A score of 1 on the scale indicates the dog has a low energy level while a 5 shows they have extremely high levels of energy.

Protective Instincts
Many dogs have protective instincts and may act wary around strangers while others are much more friendly and accepting. A score of 1 indicates that your dog is unlikely to react to strangers while a score of 5 shows that your dog is likely to be wary.

Behaviour Around Children
Many dogs that are reared and socialised around children understand how to interact with them but some breeds are completely unsuitable to have around children. On this scale, a score of 1 shows that a breed is not good around children while a score of 5 shows they are perfectly compatible.

Relationship With Other Pets
Stereotypically dogs don’t get on with other pets but often this is not the case; many dogs enjoy the company of other animals. A score of 1 shows that it is not a good idea to mix a breed with other pets while a 5 indicates they tend to get on well with other animals.

Loyalty To Owner
Most dogs are extremely loyal to their owners and family, although there are a few that are quite independent. A low score of 1 indicates that a breed does not have a strong sense of loyalty while a score of 5 shows that they are extremely loyal.
The Rhodesian Ridgeback, originating from the country now known as Zimbabwe, is one of the most recognisable dog breeds due to the feature from which it takes its name.  The unique ridge of fur which travels along the spine is instantly recognisable and occurs because the fur grows in the opposite direction to the rest of the coat.  However, because the coat is so short very little grooming needs to be done.  Only occasional brushing is required and a hound glove or grooming mitt is a good tool to use to keep the fur in good condition.  You may find that, on occasion, a soft bristle brush is needed to remove dead hairs when they shed, although this is minimal at best.  So, while grooming the Rhodesian Ridgeback doesn’t require a great deal of work, other areas do.

Any potential owner of a Rhodesian Ridgeback should make sure they have time to give to their dog.  This isn’t necessarily for companionship but to give them the exercise and training time they need.  Due to their past use as hunting dogs, they have a large store of energy that needs to be expelled.  This means that they will need at least two long walks each day, and you need to make sure you can give them that, especially if you leave them during the day.  If they aren’t sufficiently stimulated, like many dogs, they can resort to destructive behaviour.  Another way of occupying your dog, and something that should be done regardless, is training.  It should begin during puppyhood and not stop as these dogs enjoy doing things their own way.  That said, it isn’t easy to train this breed as they need to be constantly stimulated.  Many owners turn to a professional for help but it is possible to do at home if you know the right way to go about it.  As with all stubborn breeds it is important that you establish your authority in a way your dog will see as fair.  And because the Rhodesian Ridgeback is like all dogs, treats and rewards will go a long way.

While looking after a Rhodesian Ridgeback can be hard work, they are a great companion breed and have a long history.  In their country of origin they were loved because of their fearless nature, something that was essential when used for hunting large prey such as lions.  They were more than capable of tracking and trapping these large beasts until their owners came along.  These dogs are also very loyal and could be used to protect their family and their livestock.  These traits are still present today so if you are looking for a strong, brave guard dog this breed may be for you.  While they can become family pets, the Rhodesian Ridgeback will need plenty of training and socialisation beforehand.

Rhodesian Ridgeback Quick Links

Rhodesian Ridgeback
 
Rhodesian Ridgeback
 
Rhodesian Ridgeback
Rhodesian Ridgeback
 
Rhodesian Ridgeback
 
 
Newsletter Sign Up
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter