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Old 04-18-2011, 03:24 PM
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Default Rhoedesian Ridgebacks??

We've (Dad's) been talking about getting a Ridgeback recently. I have no idea why but since it's not going to be my dog I have very little say. Dad's always wanted one and since I'll be leaving in a few years Mum has decided that this might be a good time to get him one so that I'll be able to do a lot of the training (Yay!!). Mum and I are considering getting dad a Ridgeback. I'll be doing a lot of the training/ socialising but the dog will mainly belong to him. However since I have no experiance with the breed we're doing as much research as we can.

What are they like to live with?

What are their exercise requirements?

Are they usually same sex aggressive?

What about mental stimulation? Easy to train?

I know they're a hound but can they be let offleash (with appropriate training obviously)??

What health tests should be done on the parents as a minimum?

What's their temperment like??

I know some large dogs shouldn't be walked too much as puppies. Is the Ridgeback one of them?


I'm sure as the thread goes on I'll have more questions but thses are just as general guide. This will be our first properly researched puppy and I'm determined to do this right.
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Old 04-18-2011, 04:03 PM
JessLough JessLough is offline
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The president of the FRSO has one, so I do have some experience being around them. HER ridgeback, Chuma, is very good offleash. She lives out in the boonies, and the dog knows to stay around the house/stay around her when they are out in the city. She is also a very good barn dog, and will often be left at the barn if her owner needs to go out without her.

Chuma is very sweet, loves other dogs, is perfect with the baby, the cats, the ferrets, etc. Even though they are in the hound group, they do not tend to be very hound like.

ETA: as far as training goes, Chuma is VERY well trained. I am not sure what it took to get her there... the owner is big on CM though
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Old 04-18-2011, 04:22 PM
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I used to house sit for one who I adored.

He was a mature adult when I knew him, so I'm not sure about puppy exercise. They lived on a huge property on the side of the mountain, and he enjoyed a lot of off-leash freedom on the property, and long hikes. He was mellow enough to sit out a day if the weather was icky and not be a pest. I wouldn't expect to walk him in an area where he could hit traffic easily off leash, but he was good about sticking sort of close at all times.

The biggest concern I would have as far as getting one for myself was his protective instinct. He would put on quite a show when people tried to get in the house, and I would not have been surprised if he backed it up given a reason. I was always very careful that he knew I was the one coming through the door before I opened it more than a crack.

He definitely had issues with other male dogs, particularly intact males (he was neutered, but I don't know at what age). He lived very nicely with a female pit.

I really liked his temperament. Very mellow and a bit stand-offish with people he didn't know, but every once in a while, when he didn't think anyone was paying attention, he'd be a complete goof. Totally my type of dog.

A woman I know has had several highly titled obedience Ridgebacks. I think they are generally considered to be more easily trained than many of the hound breeds.
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Old 04-18-2011, 04:26 PM
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My boss has a ridgeback who I'm around every day, plus three other regular day care ridgebacks. They are one of my top choices for breeds.


What are they like to live with? - I'm not with one in a home environment on a regular basis...however, they're pretty easy to work with. They can be a bit stubborn, for sure, and a tad aloof with strangers. They sort of go from really serious to totally goofy, depending on what's called for.

What are their exercise requirements? - they're energetic. Not as high strung as some herding breeds or anything...I'd compare them to a higher energy sporting breed, like a viszla or pointer, as far as needs go. They're not a breed that will do well with little exercise, but they're not non-stop go-go-go. They chill out once they're done romping.

Are they usually same sex aggressive? - I have heard a little bit about DA in the breed, but generally, I don't think so. At least not as bad as breeds like dobermans, some mastiffs, etc. I'd probably ask a potential breeder how their dogs do with other dogs, though.

What about mental stimulation? Easy to train? - yes, but they get bored with repetition, and like I said, can be stubborn. If it's not fun for them, they aren't just going to do it to please you, most of the time.

I know they're a hound but can they be let offleash (with appropriate training obviously)?? - I've seen it done, and never seen one take off...I think it would depend on the dog. If it's fixating on things like squirrels and scents, I wouldn't chance it.

What health tests should be done on the parents as a minimum? - hips and elbows...I've heard there can be thyroid and eye issues in the breed but not sure what tests are done.

What's their temperment like?? - see above...they're goofy when they want to be, serious when they need to be, loyal as all hell. They're a bit shy or reserved with strangers, pretty doting to their families and friends.

I know some large dogs shouldn't be walked too much as puppies. Is the Ridgeback one of them? - they are a breed I'd worry about repetitive exercise with. I wouldn't worry about walking too much, but jogging or serious heel work or something I would avoid until well over a year, as with all giant breeds.
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Old 04-18-2011, 05:33 PM
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Thank you for your help!!

Protective instinct isn't a bad point for us. Fudge and Tika have protective instinct and while I'm not sure if they would back it up, we're used to working round it so they are not put in a position to have to back it up.

Same sex aggression and being able to be offleash are probably most important to us. We couldn't introduce another female to the house because of Tika. Same sex aggression outside of the household wouldn't matter as much but we don't want to crate and rotate although we would if we had to.

The exercise is slightly worrying to me. I would have no problem giving that sort of exercise but my dad's more laid back. A lot of the exercise would be offleash and what I would be afraid off would be if the dog wouldn't be offleash for whatever reason would be that it wouldn't be given as much exercise as it needs. Do you think one walk a day plus some play time in the yard would be enough for a slightly more laid back dog?
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Old 04-18-2011, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogs6 View Post
Do you think one walk a day plus some play time in the yard would be enough for a slightly more laid back dog?
Maybe, if the walk was long/stimulating enough (not just a 10 minute walk down the block). How big is the yard? Especially if the dog could play with other dogs, play fetch, etc. I think that would be good enough. The ridgeback puppies I know do have significantly higher puppy energy levels than the adults, too.
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Old 04-18-2011, 06:06 PM
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We have half an acre as our yard and a usual walk for us is somewhere between 2-4 miles. Most of that is spent offleash although if the dog had to be kept onleash we could do that as well.


ETA: As a puppy I would be there as well to ensure that it got enough exercise, socialisation and training. I was thinking more of an adult dog like when I move out. Sorry I should have clarified.
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Old 04-18-2011, 06:43 PM
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if you get one w/ good prey drive have your dad get with some Irish lurchermen and try taking fox on the lamp. a ridgie is more of a cur than hound and they usually don't open on the track. they also work cattle & other rough stock very well if given the chance. mind you this applies primarily to real working stock but still shows up quite often in show dogs & BYB bred dogs. many often wind up in the shelter or rescue because the owners didn't realize the dog was going to kill the neighbors cat or try to herd the other neighbor's horses.
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Old 04-18-2011, 07:12 PM
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I have had four Ridgebacks and raised a litter. As young dogs, they are energetic and easily bored. After age 3, they settle into dogs willing to do what you do with just a walk a day for exercise. They leash train well, and I obedience train all of them in mixed company--socialize thoroughly, and I take mine to the dog park frequently to play with all breeds. As in any breed, some lines are more laid back than others. A very tall fence is required if the dog is not exercised enough--they can leap a 6 ft fence if young and bored and alone.
My absolute favorite large breed--strong, healthy if from a good breeder, easy to groom with a hound glove, love children and can be trained to like any small animal or stranger you wish them to. Strong prey drive--running animals will be chased, so a very good recall is necessary to train from day one, to stop a chase before it begins. Once in full chase mode--they come back when they are done--must be stopped at the beginning, lol.
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Old 04-18-2011, 10:07 PM
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A half acre to romp on and a 2-4 mile walk per day could definitely suffice for an adult ridgeback. A puppy might need a little more mental stimulation and engagement, but honestly it sounds like it would work well with your family.

I wanted to do ridgeback foster really badly, but one would literally not be able to fit in my apartment =[
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