The Rhodesian Ridgeback!

The Rhodesian Ridgeback is so named for the unique appearance of its back, where a ridge is formed by a part of the fur that grows opposite the general direction of hair growth. Its coat is short and shiny, and its outline symmetrical, though it has a long, sleek body. The breed is well known for its endurance and speed, as well as its ability to take down larger game during hunting.

Some Quick Facts:

Life Expectancy:
10-13 years

Energy Level:
Average, though can be aggressive. High stamina.

Living Conditions:
Very good outdoor dogs. Not meant for sedentary lifestyle.


Exercise Needs:
Frequent walks and runs.

Breed Group:


24 to 27 inches

65 to 90 pounds

Standard Hair Colors:
Light wheaten, dark wheaten, and shades in between, possibly with little white marks on its feet and chest.

National breed club:
Rhodesian Ridgeback Club of the United States

Rhodesian Ridgeback Skills

The Ridgeback is also known as the African Lion Hound, as it was used for hunting lions in the 1870s. This breed used both scent and sight when hunting, and because of its agility, it was able to stay safe while pursuing lions and other larger game until the hunter is able to shoot them down with a rifle. By the 1980s, the breed became qualified for competition in Sight hound field trials, and is becoming a popular breed to join the event of Lure Coursing.

Rhodesian Ridgeback Personality

Loyal and protective, the Rhodesian Ridgeback makes a great guard dog, though may tend to be too animated at play with younger members of its household. It is a sharp all-around hunter, and its strong personality may translate to aggression towards other dogs and pets, and aloof behavior towards strangers. Though slightly stubborn, this breed learns fast, and responds quite well to consistent training.

Exercise Needs

Imposing a sedentary lifestyle on a Rhodesian Ridgeback can leave it quite frustrated, thus frequent exercise is necessary for this breed. One can take it out jogging or hiking a few times a week, where they can display considerable stamina. It can also adapt easily to its owner’s outdoor exercise routine.

Living Conditions

Ridgebacks can very well withstand warm and cool climates, survive drastic changes in weather, and may be made to live outdoors in warm to temperate conditions. However, they may prefer to sleep indoors, and may spend the daytime inside and on the yard, in turns. On trips, they may be able to live on little food or water.

Grooming Requirements

The Ridgeback’s short coat requires minimal upkeep, which mainly involves brushing off dead hair and shampooing on occasion.

Health Issues

A foremost health concern for this breed is dermoid sinus, a skin ailment that may be indicated by dense painful growths in the back. This condition is believed to be present from birth in those affected. Hip dysplasia has also been observed in this breed, as well as elbow dysplasia and deafness.

If you liked this dog…

The Ibizan hound possesses the same loyalty, hunting instincts, and guard dog ability, with a lean yet slightly smaller build.


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