Rhodesian Ridgeback Breed Information and Photos

This large muscular dog was developed in South Africa as a hunter and protector. This page contains Rhodesian Ridgeback breed information and photos.


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Breed Description: The good-natured and formidable Rhodesian Ridgeback gets its name from the symmetrical ridge of hair on its spine growing against the grain of its coat. This large muscular dog has a broad, flat skull, strong, deep chest and powerful hind quarters. Originally developed to hunt lions, today the Ridgeback excels as a guard dog and loving family pet.

Group: Hound Group

Purpose of Breed: Lion Hunting

Country of Origin: South Africa, Zimbabwe

Average Size: Dogs 25-27 inches and 80-90 pounds; Bitches 24-26 inches and 65-75 pounds.

Color(s): A light to red wheaten color, sometimes with small white markings on the chest and feet.

Coat Type: Short, dense, sleek and glossy.

Grooming: This breed's short coat is easy to maintain with weekly brushing and occasional baths and requires standard care for eyes, ears, pads and nails.


Exercise Needs: Rhodesian Ridgebacks will do well in an apartment but require a large yard for exercise. They are extremely energetic dogs and don't tire easily. Due to their keen scenting and sighting abilities, this breed should only be allowed to roam in an area enclosed by a fence at least 5 feet tall.

Temperament: The Rhodesian Ridgeback is loyal and obedient. It is wise to pay attention when they sound the alarm as Ridgebacks are discriminating watch dogs. They are highly intelligent and easy to housebreak. Loyal and affectionate family dogs, they and are happiest when they are with "their people." Although not generally aggressive, when provoked the Rhodesian Ridgeback will stand its ground. These dogs have a strong will and a high hunting drive. Early obedience training is necessary to establish pack leadership, but it can also be trying with these independent thinkers.


Common Ailments: Susceptible to hip dysplasia, dermoid sinus, and cysts.

Life Expectancy: Averages 10-12 years.

Trivia: This breed was originally bred in South Africa to hunt lions and is also known as the African Lion Hound.

More Information: Rhodesian Ridgeback Club of the United States, Inc.

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Does anyone know what kind dog I have? Thanks.

Brian from Centerville


March 3, 20090 found this helpful

His head looks like a boxer.

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March 3, 20090 found this helpful

Yep, I vote boxer too.

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March 3, 20090 found this helpful

Looks to me like he has some foxhound or coonhound in him. How is he at treeing squirrels?

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March 3, 20090 found this helpful

The body looks like a dog I once had, A Rhodesian Ridgeback.
If he's got a part of his hair that sticks up around his neck, it's a Ridgeback. The face is a little different than that of a Ridgeback, like everyone said, maybe a boxer, (just the face).

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March 3, 20090 found this helpful

Forgot to mention, the coloring of the dog, is exactly that of a Ridgeback and the ears too.

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March 4, 20090 found this helpful

Here is our precious baby that we had to put down in 2007 due to illness. She was 16 yrs old. We got her from the SPCA when she was 9 mos old. She was half Rhodesian Ridgeback and half Lab. She did not have the row of hair on her back that grew in the opposite direction like a full blooded Ridgeback.


She did have a row of very wavy hair on her back which stood up in the opposite direction when she was scared or in attack mode. I would definitely say your precious baby has part Ridgeback in him. His head looks like lab. He's very handsome no matter what he is. Give him lots of TLC every day.

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March 4, 20090 found this helpful

Oh, he's obviously a Very Special Copper-Colored Happy-Looking breed of dog.

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June 21, 2008

Cooper is a 9 week old Rhodesian Ridgeback. I picked him out from a litter of puppies when he was 8 weeks old. (5-25-2008)

He likes to SLEEP in the sun!


By Julie from San Francisco, CA

Cooper (Rhodesian Ridgeback)

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Pets Dogs Dog Breeds Rhodesian RidgebackApril 8, 2013
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