Rhodesian Ridgeback Guide, Origin, Characteristics, and Personality

Rhodesian Ridgeback Guide, Origin, Characteristics, and Personality

Breed Info Summary

Breed Suits (families, active lifestyles, companionship

Shedding/Non-Shedding: Little

Size: Large


The Rhodesian ridgeback has origins in southern Africa, when it was bred with other breeds brought to the area by European immigrants in the 1600s. Mastiffs, Great Danes, bulldogs, bloodhounds, greyhounds, and terriers are among the dog breeds that made up this mix.

An early version of the ridgeback was employed for big-game hunting by a hunter from Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) in the 1800s. He discovered that the dogs were fearless when it came to confronting and holding lions and other animals.

Nowadays, this breed is not only territorially protective, but is also very committed and caring to family members.


The Rhodesian Ridgeback is a combination of independence and intelligence that can be fascinating, challenging, and satisfying all at the same time. It's crucial to start training as soon as possible and to be firm — but not harsh — and consistent.

The Rhodesian Ridgeback has a strong prey drive due to hunting heritage. That means stray cats and other small furry animals aren't always welcome in your yard. Your yard should therefore be properly fenced to keep him from hunting on his own.

Ridgebacks enjoy running, hiking, and playing, but they can get by with daily playtime in the backyard and a walk. Ridgeback puppies and young dogs require a lot of activity. These pups are devoted to their human families and they find life in the backyard to be too boring, meaning occasional outings to the park or beach are especially welcomed.

Pros and cons to consider


  • Low grooming care and minimal shedding
  • Low drooling
  • The perfect watchdog
  • Doesn't bark frequently, but if it does then it does so for a reason
  • When properly socialised, they are calm and friendly 


  • Hunting instinct is strong
  • Not the best option for first-time home buyers
  • Possibly aggressive towards other dogs
  • Requires high levels of physical activity

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