you are considering owning a Rhodesian Ridgeback the following
may be of some assistance to you.
Ridgebacks are a large strong sensitive breed of dog. They are
part of the hound group and consequently will hunt and chase
anything that runs away from them.
Owning a Ridgeback, which has long life span (anything up to
15 years old is not unusual), is not to be taken without a lot
of thought and research.
Have you the time and patience to walk, groom, feed and go to
training classes, if so you will be rewarded by a loving loyal
companion for many years to come.
Ridgebacks are good with all members of the family if they are
taught the ground rules from day one, they are good with children
providing both learn to respect each other, they are a very
intelligent breed and have a strong will, they think things
through and if there is no point in doing something you might
as well do it yourself !!!
time to visit adult dogs in their home. Most Ridgeback owners
are happy for you to visit and talk Ridgeback!
a good book on the breed (the breed clubs usually sell these)
Discover Dogs (Crufts in March or Earls Court in November)
or some shows where you will see a large number of Ridgebacks
Breed Club secretaries - they will have the dates and venues
of shows and other events run by the clubs (see Links
be influenced by the winners at a show! Make up your own mind
of the kind you like. There is a great diversity in type,
colour, size, male or female.
prepared to wait for the right puppy from a respected breeder.
If this breeder has no puppies available at the time, be guided
by that breeder - you can either wait for another litter or
be guided by them to another breeder they recommend of similar
be tempted to buy two puppies together! They are twice the
amount of work, twice the amount of chewing (yes all puppies
chew!). You cannot do justice to two puppies, better to wait
until the first puppy is about 18 months old before acquiring
a second one.
reputable breeder will always help you choose a puppy. They
have spent many hours assessing and lovingly rearing their
puppies, and they know even at such a young age their differences
in character. The breeder is the best person to advise on
the type of puppy to suit your family and lifestyle.
following are some questions you should ask if enquiring about
both parents hip scored, and are the KCBVA certificates available
for you to see?
old is the bitch? (most reputable breeders will not breed
from a bitch under 2 years old or over 7 years)
you meet the bitch, it is not always possible to see the dog
(sometimes the dog lives in another part of the country or
in a different country)
both parents Kennel Club registered?
the puppies been sinus checked? If you don't know about this
condition look on the breed clubs web sites to find out more
age are the puppies when they are ready to go to their new
homes? (Puppies should NOT go to their new homes before 8
weeks of age)
the puppies be insured?
they have been wormed?
Will they have a diet sheet for you to follow and a supply
of food for the first few days?
Have the puppies been registered with the Kennel Club?
Will you get a 3 or 5 generation pedigree?
Is there a contract? Reputable breeders have contracts to
protect both the buyer and seller; these contracts usually
contain any conditions such as endorsements put on registration
papers. The Kennel Club website contains more information
all this, be prepared to "grilled" by the breeder!
They will want to make sure you are going to be suitable owners
of their precious puppy.
you would like to discuss any of the above points please do
not hesitate to contact
be aware of the following statement that has been issued by
all of the breed clubs in this country, which is causing us
a lot of concern.
WORD OF CAUTION TO PUPPY BUYERS
has come to the notice of the Rhodesian Ridgeback Breed
Clubs that some unscrupulous breeders are passing off
Rhodesian Ridgebacks of incorrect colours, as "rare
and correct" - please be careful. The correct colours
allowed by the breed standard, as defined by The Kennel
Club, are Light Wheaten to Red Wheaten and not colours
such as black and tan (Doberman colouring) or brindle.
Occasionally, due to recessive genes, silver/grey, blue,
black & tan or brindle coloured puppies are born.
They should never be shown, never be used in a breeding
programme and should be registered as "non standard"
colours; their purchase price should reflect this. The
Kennel Club recommends that these puppies should have
their registration documents endorsed by the breeder accordingly.