Rhodesian Ridgeback Breed Origins and Caracteristics

In the South of Africa from the province of Cape to Zambeze, there were indigenous dogs that had a tuft against the natural direction on their back. They watched over the herds and they were so brave that fought against lions. The boers, passionate hunters, bought these dogs to the Hottentots and used them to create a breed with the same qualities of those of the source breed but heavier and more powerful. The mastiffs, greyhounds and terriers contributed to the birth of this breed. The characteristic mark called "ridge" in English or "pronk" as the boers called them, remained in the new specimens. In 1874, a missioner took this type of dogs to Rhodesia (currently Zimbabwe) where the breed developed later on. The first standard was established in 1902 and the breed received the official name of Rhodesian Ridgeback.

This dog is extraordinarily fast and brave, very friendly and loyal to its master and family. The form of attacking is unique in its gender. It attacks with all its forces against the prey with the intention of knocking it down. When the Rhodesian Ridgeback attacks in packs, one of the dogs finishes successfully the attack against the chased prey even though it is a lion. Nowadays, with the modern hunting tools, the dog is used more as a utilitarian, guardian or small game hunting dog. The short, dense hair close to the body is bright and it should not be wooly or silky. It does not need any kind of care. Despite its short hair, the Rhodesian Ridgeback resists bad weather and it easily adapts to more varied weather conditions.

Size: male 63-69 cm; female 61-66 cm. Weight: 29-33 kg. Colors: light wheaten to red (1) a small white patch on the chest and toes is accepted. A dark color (never black) in the snout and the tip of the tail corresponds to the standard but there should never be a mask or this should not expand to the eyes.

The hair tuft implanted on the back is its main characteristic. On the front part there are two rows of hair that make an imperfect circle. These should be symmetrically arranged and its rear border does not exceed a third of the tuft length (2). This tuft has 6 cm wide, and it narrows towards the rear part. It should start right at the end of the back and arrive to the rear limbs (3). The outline (4) shows the forms of incorrect tufts.

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