VCA Madera Pet Hospital

Rhodesian Ridgeback

Rhodesian Ridgeback

Basic Rhodesian Ridgeback Information

  • Lifespan: 10 - 12 years
  • Height: 24 - 27 inches
  • Weight: 70 - 85 pounds


Medical Conditions Seen in Rhodesian Ridgebacks


Rhodesian Ridgeback Traits

  • Joggin Partner
         
  • Lap Dog
         
  • Good with Children
         
  • Warm Weather
         
  • Cold Weather
         
  • Grooming Requirements
         
  • Shedding
         
  • Barking
         
  • Ease of Training
         


Rhodesian Ridgeback History

  • South African Hottentot tribes hunted with dogs that often had a ridge of hair running the opposite direction along their back.
  • In the 1500s and 1600s, Boer settlers arriving in South Africa brought with them mastiffs, Great Danes, greyhounds and other breeds that then interbred with native Hottentot dogs.
  • In 1875, Dr. David Livingston published one of the earliest engravings of a ridged dog in his memoirs, Missionary Travels in South Africa.
  • Also in 1875, missionary Charles Helm traveled to Rhodesia, bringing two dogs from his home in South Africa. A big game hunter, Cornelius von Rooyen, borrowed the dogs to try them at hunting. He was so impressed with their hunting ability that he worked for the next 35 years to have them breed true.
  • The dogs were especially adept at holding lions at bay, and were dubbed lion dogs.
  • In the 1920s, the name was changed to Rhodesian ridgeback and a standard of perfection was produced.
  • In the 1930s and 40s the breed came to Europe and America.
  • Today it is among the most popular of AKC registered hounds in America.


Rhodesian Ridgeback Behavior Concerns

  • Makes a loyal and protective companion.
  • Good with children, but can be overly boisterous for small children.
  • Makes an excellent watchdog and good protection dog.
  • It is strong-willed, powerful and somewhat independent.
  • Reserved with strangers.
  • Generally good with other dogs and pets.
  • Obedience training is a necessity.
  • Does best with reward-based training involving food plus a firm hand.


Rhodesian Ridgeback Suggested Exercises

  • Makes a well-mannered housedog as long as its exercise needs are met.
  • Requires a good walk or jog, or a run in an enclosed area, every day.
  • Not generally a good dog for dog parks, but varies with individuals.
  • Its short coat provides little protection against cold weather.


Rhodesian Ridgeback Grooming

  • Coat is short and close.
  • The coat needs weekly brushing and occasional bathing.
  • Shedding is below average.
  • The ridge of hair growing in the opposite direction along the midline of the back is distinctive and leaves no doubt as to whether it is a ridge or raised hackles. A few ridgebacks are born without ridges.


Suggested Rhodesian Ridgeback Nutritional Needs

  • Ridgebacks have a moderate build, lean yet muscular. You should be able to feel the ribs, but they should not be too noticeable.
  • Some ridgebacks tend to put on too much weight.
  • Adult dogs should be fed a balanced diet, with restricted calories if the dog starts to gain too much weight.


Did you know?

  • Grapes and raisins are harmful to dogs.
  • Some dog parasites are transferable to humans.
  • Many common pet ailments may be detected early and prevented by visiting your veterinarian twice yearly - saving both time, money, and most importantly, ensuring the best quality of life for your dog.


Come visit us, we would love to see you!

We are here to help! Book an appointment today to continue your pet on a path to great health and wellness

Make an appointment

Ask the Vet

Have unanswered pet health questions? Dr.Donna Spector, with 10+ years of hands-on Internal Medicine experience, is here with your answers every Friday.

CLOSE CLOSE

Specialty Care

Sometimes sick or injured pets need the care of a veterinary medical specialist. When that happens, VCA specialty hospitals work closely with the general practitioner veterinarians who refer cases to us in order to provide seamless veterinary care to your pet. When your pet is facing any kind of serious illness or injury, our specialty referral hospitals will provide the compassionate and expert care your beloved pet needs.

Our goal is to make sure that when you and your pet are in need that you have access to board certified specialists who are up to date on the very latest developments in their field. In our state of the art hospitals, our specialists also have access to the most sophisticated diagnostic and treatment tools and techniques from ultrasonography and endoscopy to CAT scans and even MRI.

As part of the VCA family, we have over 83 specialty hospitals across the US and Canada which provide referral specialty care, so there may be one near you. Our specialized services include: behavior, cardiology, critical care, dentistry, dermatology, integrative medicine, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, radiology, rehabilitation, reproduction, and surgery.

Find a VCA Specialty Care Animal Hospital near you:

 

See all VCA Animal Hospitals >

CLOSE CLOSE

Emergency Care

In case of emergency, please call us immediately. If it is after hours, please contact one of the nearby emergency care clinics:

Pet Emergency & Specialty Center of Marin, (415) 456-7372, 901 E Francisco Blvd. San Rafael CA 94901

VCA Animal Care Center of Sonoma County, (707) 584-4343, 6470 Redwood Drive, Rohnert Park, CA 94928

CLOSE CLOSE