A Rhodesian Ridgeback is NOT
a Labrador or Golden Retriever in a short coat. They can be trained,
but bore easily with standard repetitive obedience. They are willfully
disobedient, and are capable of training you before you can train them.
They need to be stimulated both in the mind and the body. They are an
athletic hunting dog that requires adequate daily exercise. They have a
stomach of steel, and will steal your food off the table, and counter
(sometimes in front of you), and can easily become overweight. They are
hard headed, and require a firm hand in positive training. They are
extremely intelligent, and will purposely deceive you. They are fast,
and will chase anything that moves, from rabbits and squirrels, to deer
and wild boar. They will not come when called. They will get into trouble. They may destroy something of yours. They will pull you, and
push you to your wits end...
They are the most handsome of dogs, and are loyal as your shadow. They are not fussy eaters. They have a short easy to care for coat that is nearly odorless, making them easily groomed. They are generally easily house trained, and quiet in the home. They will keep your yard, pest free from rabbits, squirrels and chipmunks. They will protect you from what they perceive as a threat, but will not bark obnoxiously at nothing. They will ask to come up on the couch, and will take over your bed. They make great foot warmers on those cold nights.
Rhodesian Ridgeback puppies are cute, but remember they quickly grow into BIG dogs, ranging from 65 to 100lbs+. Owning a Ridgeback should not be taken lightly, and you can expect the Rhodesian Ridgeback to live upwards of 10+ years.
By the time your puppy is 8-10 months old, he will have reached adult size... however he will continue to fill out. He looks like a dog, but is a puppy stuck in an adult body. If he doesn't receive adequate training as a puppy, he will be out of control by 8 months. Be prepared to attend a basic puppy obedience class with your new puppy. This is the quickest and easiest way to bond with your new pup, and to set the rules straight. Ridgebacks can be very hard-headed, and having the knowledge of how to communicate with your puppy at an early age will help you later when he starts to rebel.
Can you provide without question the following?
Training as a young puppy, and through adulthood
Adequate exercise in the form of off-lead free running as a puppy, and no forced exercise or lure coursing until adulthood
Plenty of mental and physical stimulation
Socialization, meet 3 new people and visit 3 new places each week until adulthood
Never leave your young puppy home alone for more than 4 hours MAX
Include your puppy in all family matters including some vacations and short trips
Feed a Quality Premium grain-free diet including daily Ester C supplement
Attain your puppy's AKC Canine Good Citizen Certificate or Puppy S.T.A.R.
Keep your wits about you during puppy adolescence