Rhodesian Ridgeback - Breed and Grooming Tips

A large and muscular dog, the Rhodesian Ridgeback was not only developed as hunter but also as a family protector. The breed can be light wheaten to red wheaten and are sleek and glossy in appearance. Originally bred to hunt lions the breed is also known as the African Lion Hound.


A Look Back

A native of South Africa, the Rhodesian Ridgeback was bred by the Boer farmers to fill their specific need for a serviceable hunting dog in the wilds. In 1877 Reverend Helm introduced two Ridgebacks into Rhodesia where big game hunters found them outstanding in the sport of hunting lions on horseback. They raised and bred these dogs with an appreciation for their exceptional hunting qualities, the ridge on their back becoming a unique trademark. In 1950 outstanding specimens were imported to the United States and the breed was admitted to registration by the AKC in 1955.


Right Breed for You?

Due to their short coats Ridgebacks shed very little and require only weekly brushing and occasional baths. The breed is also athletic, requiring regular exercise. Trustworthy with children, they are "people" dogs and like to be where you are, possibly curled up on the couch if permitted.


Source:  American Kennel Club - www.akc.org


Grooming

General: Rhodesian Ridgeback’s are a short flat coated breed that sheds throughout the year, even in the winter time. Grooming is suggested for 4 – 8 week intervals to clean ears, clip nails, check anal glands and insure the coat and skin are in healthy condition.


Eyes: Eyes should be alert and bright. Use Optisoothe Eye Wash during the bath to flush any foreign matter.


Ears: Monthly ear cleaning with Ear Care is advised to be sure no ear problems that might need vet attention arise. Only clean as far as you can see, never further.


Bathing:  Rhodesian Ridgeback’s require 2 baths when you bathe them. The first bath should be a general bath. If your Rhodesian Ridgeback has allergies or sensitive skin we would suggest a Hypo-Allergenic Shampoo and follow it with a medicated shampoo depending on your dogs needs. If your Rhodesian Ridgeback has normal skin then the second bath you would want to pick one of our wonderful fragrant shampoos and conditioners. Follow the bath with a conditioner or Luxury Remoisturizer to keep the coat in great shape.


Paws: Paw Balm should be used weekly as well, paw pads that are soft and pliable are less likely to dry and crack


Coat Care: Use Aloe Hydrating Spray between baths to control flaking and dandruff, especially in dry conditions


Show Dog Tips: Silky Show Shampoo and Silky Show Conditioner will add silk proteins and shine to the coat as well as the Honey and Oat Conditioner. High Sheen Finishing Spray right before entering the show ring will add the little extra shine without any oily residue.


Tools: Shedding blade can be used to pull out the dead coat. Short coated breeds shed all year around and so they constantly need to be brushed.


Common Problems: Rhodesian Ridgeback’s are hounds that were bred to hunt lions and love the outdoors so they are prone to minor scratches and wounds. Keep 3 in 1 Healing Cream on hand for those incidences.

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