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Rhodesian Ridgeback – Dog Breed Guide

Breed summary

Size: Large
Weight: 65 to 90 pounds
Height: 24 to 27 inches
Longevity: 12
Bark Tendency: Medium
Aggression: Medium
Compatibility to other pets: Low

Adopt a Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog Breed Guide


The Rhodesian Ridgeback dog breed got its name from the distinguishing physical trait found on its back. This dog breed has a ridge of hair running along its back that grows in the opposite direction from the rest of the dog’s hair.

Official Name

Rhodesian Ridgeback


Date – Recognized officially in 1922
Country – South Africa
Family / Group – Sight Hound, Hound, Southern

Recognized By:
Continental Kennel Club
Fédération Cynologique Internationale
American Kennel Club
Kennel Club of Great Britain
Canadian Kennel Club
Australian National Kennel Club
National Kennel Club
New Zealand Kennel Club
Rhodesian Ridgeback Club of the US
American Pet Registry, Inc.
American Canine Registry
Dog Registry of America, Inc.
North American Purebred Registry, Inc.


The Rhodesian Ridgeback dog breed originates during the early days and establishment of South Africa as a nation. These dogs were bred by European Settlers to be an all-purpose farm dog. They created the Rhodesian Ridgeback dog breed as versatile hounds that can be used as herders, guardians, and hunters that can go head-to-head with the African lion. These sight hounds descend from the old dog breed that is native to the Southern African continent and were kept and used by the Khoikhoi people. Today, Rhodesian Ridgebacks are popularly bred as companion pets.


Rhodesian Ridgebacks have very high prey drive and should not be trusted around small animals. These dogs can be quite challenging when it comes to training because of their independent nature. These dogs are very intelligent and will display its good-natured and laid back disposition towards friends and family. They are very devoted to their handlers.

Bred For

Ridgebacks were bred to work as hunting dogs that can also be used as a retriever. They are also used originally as guard dogs that protects property and dependable to watch over children.


A Rhodesian Ridgeback dog that is sufficiently exercised and well trained should be okay to keep as an apartment pet. These dogs will thrive in homes that have a large yard.


Rhodesian Ridgebacks have shorthaired coats that will be easy to groom and does not require lots of time to do so. They are dogs that shed hair in average amount.


This African dog breed is capable of learning quickly as they are highly intelligent. Training can get difficult as these are dogs known to be willful and can get very stubborn. If this is the case, a gentle but firm training method should be done.


The hardy Rhodesian Ridgeback dog breed are fit and healthy enough to withstand dramatic weather changed and climate extremes. They are known to be prone to dermoid sinus, hip dysplasia and also susceptible to develop cysts. Mast cell tumors are also common to this breed.


Rhodesian Ridgebacks are tireless and possess impressive stamina. They require an owner who can keep up with them and should be taken on long and brisk walks every day. Jogging is preferred. These dogs should also be given ample time to run.