Learn about the temperament and personality of the Rhodesian Ridgeback. Discover what he’s like to live with, his traits and characteristics and how he generally behaves.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Temperament
The Rhodesian ridgeback is a loving, loyal, and devoted family member. They are intelligent and independent and always have an opinion. They are not naturally obedient, but they will want to please you, as long as what you are asking makes sense to them. It is important to train them for obedience, and to be consistent with your expectations. They are usually easy to housetrain. They are a natural watchdog and they seem to save their barking for when it matters (so pay attention when he barks). They are protective of their families, and are good with children. Just remember that these are big, playful, rambunctious dogs, who can knock over a child by accident and not even know it. Also, a happy Ridgeback tail can make for a very unhappy toddler. They usually adore children, and like to be around other dogs, but can be aggressive towards cats. They are usually reserved with strangers. The Ridgeback needs daily exercise, and will need a fenced-in yard. Be aware that they are athletic and can jump a five-foot fence easily. (They also excel at agility!) Their prey instinct is high, and they will chase cats and squirrels no matter how loudly you scream their name and the recall command. If you are smart enough to have them on a leash, take care that they don’t yank you out into oncoming traffic in hot pursuit of a plastic bag being blown across the road. They also have a good sense of smell and are liable to take off on a scent trail with no warning. They are not car smart! And if he gets away, you will be hard-pressed to catch him! A young ridgeback is energetic, but as they mature, they become much more laid back. In fact, they can be incredibly lazy at times. They probably will not exercise unless you do it with them. Sometimes they’ve even been accused of being stubborn. However, a bored Ridgeback can be bad news. They are perfectly capable of destroying your home when bored. Don’t be surprised to find one standing on your countertop pre-rinsing your dishes. They also love to dig and will eat anything: all the food in your house, sticks, rocks, crayons. They are people dogs, and cuddly ones at that. They will try to sleep in your bed, probably under the covers, probably cheek to cheek. They will try to sit on your lap while you’re watching TV. They see nothing odd about an 85-pound lapdog. They will also try to take over your couch and favorite chair.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Training
The Rhodesian Ridgeback is moderately easy to train. He learns new commands at the average rate. He is neither difficult nor easy to train.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Shedding
The Rhodesian Ridgeback sheds a fair amount of hair. You’ll find hair stuck to your couch, carpets, clothes and everything else in your home.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Grooming
The short coat of the Rhodesian Ridgeback only requires an occasional brushing. But because he sheds you may find yourself brushing him once or twice a week to remove loose hair. (What you get out with a brush doesn’t fall out in your home!)