Breed Review: Rhodesian Ridgeback (20 Pics)

The Rhodesian Ridgeback is a charismatic African native with an elongated “mark” on the back. Fans of the breed attribute a lot of advantages to their wards, including high intelligence, fantastic stress resistance, the ability to correctly assess the situation and act according to the circumstances, without looking back at the owner. However, even taking into account the listed qualities, the portrait of the breed will be incomplete, if not to mention the amazing energy of its representatives. It is the passion for an active lifestyle, combined with an innate desire for independence, that turns Rhodesian Ridgebacks into quite discerning pets, requiring increased attention and dedication from the owner.

#1 Jackal-like dogs with an oblong comb of wool on a ridge have been bred in Africa since time immemorial.

The animals were especially popular with the Hottentots, who, due to their semi-nomadic lifestyle, needed four-legged defenders. In addition, these few people were engaged in cattle breeding, and since keeping the livestock in the savannah has always been a difficult task, black shepherds attracted dogs to the business.

#2 Everything changed in the middle of the 19th century, when the European nobility had a new fashionable hobby – hunting African lions with dogs.

The breeds of the Old World were not suitable for such a dangerous event, so the hunters turned their attention to the native dogs, who already had experience working with giant cats. A pioneer in this business was a certain Cornelis Van Royen, who bought Hottentot dogs from a hunter from Southern Rhodesia (formerly South Zambezi) and began to breed the ideal lion beater.

#3 Breeding the breed went with the good old method of crossing, and here Van Royen had a wide scope for imagination.

Thus, the clan of aboriginal dogs was replenished with the genes of mastiffs, terriers, bloodhounds, great Danes, retrievers, and pointers. The experiment, oddly enough, bore fruit, and soon at the farm of the amateur breeder, queues of people wishing to acquire a puppy began to line up. By the way, initially, the animals were not called Ridgebacks, but Van Royen's dogs, and this praise of the breeder's personality continued until the beginning of the 20th century. Only in 1922, Francis Richard Barnes initiated the creation of a separate standard for the breed, according to which all dogs with a comb on the back were renamed Rhodesian Ridgebacks.

Alice White

Written by Alice White

Alice White, a devoted pet lover and writer, has turned her boundless affection for animals into a fulfilling career. Originally dreaming of wildlife, her limited scientific background led her to specialize in animal literature. Now she happily spends her days researching and writing about various creatures, living her dream.

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