Why To Get A Rhodesian Ridgeback

5 years ago
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Stuart tells us why we should consider getting a Rhodesian Ridgeback as a pet and introduces us to the impressive (and charming) Leo, his four year old Rhodesian Ridgeback.

These dogs were originally bred in South Africa to assist in lion hunting - they would tree the lion until the hunter came to make the kill - hence the phrase ‘to keep a lion at bay’. They are strong, robust, and can cover great distances at speed.

Their genes are a mixture of European setter dogs and ridged animals used by the local tribes for hunting. This mixture produced a dog capable of withstanding the extreme temperatures of the plains, and brave enough to face an apex predator.

As you will see, Leo is a wheaten colour, not a show colour - but Stuart likes his ‘snow paws’ anyway. The breed was first recognised in the US mid-50’s - the first documented breeding carried out by Errol Flynn. Ridgebacks don’t shed much fur, have very little odour, and are pretty low maintenance in terms of grooming.

Ridgebacks are well-known for their durability, and ability to run long distances, up to thirty miles, a day. Their health vulnerabilities as a pedigree are better than many other breeds. Stuart adds a cautionary note, though. Ridgebacks require daily care, exercise, a decent diet, and a home in which they receive the necessary attention and training. Under these conditions, the Ridgeback can be your most loyal companion.

If you find yourself in a position where you’d like a pet, but you don’t have time to train it, or walk it, or give it any affection, Stuart suggests a pet rock. Far less demanding.

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