History of pets: The Ridgie
With its refined demeanour, the Saluki is the embodiment of grace and speed. These sleek and silky-coated ‘sight-hounds’ – which means they hunt by sight as opposed to relying on other senses – may appear aloof to strangers but are in fact loyally devoted, preferring to stay at one’s side rather than lounging on a lap. They also love being pampered!
The Rhodesian Ridgeback or “Ridgie”, as they’re affectionately known in the canine community, gets its name from area of Africa where they originate from, as well as the distinctive patch of hair running along its back. The Ridgeback is part of the hound family, bred to be a family guardian and hunter of lions, the breed acquired the title of African Lion Hound.
In the early 1800s, Dutch settlers in Africa came across the Khoisan peoples, who had had hunting dogs noted for their ferocity when protecting their human family. The settlers wanted to breed a dog that could hunt, guard livestock and the family, as well as withstand the Southern African climate. The settlers had the idea to begin breeding Great Danes, Mastiffs, Greyhounds and Bloodhounds amongst others, with the Khoisan’s hunting dogs, bringing the Rhodesian Ridgeback we know today, into existence.
As adults, Ridgies have quiet and even temperaments, they can reach a large 60-70cms at the shoulder and fully grown, weigh between 34-36kgs. But take note, these tan or red Fidos can be wilful and stubborn, which is why socialisation and training early on is a must.
This strong and muscular breed also needs regular exercise to stave off the boredom otherwise you might be left with uprooted trees, giant holes in the garden or fence-jumping. However, an assertive owner who lays down the law as well as the love, will enjoy a calm sociable and highly protective companion.
Is a Ridgie the right choice for You
If you’re seeking a furry addition to your family that:
- Is large, intelligent territorial and protective
- Has a short easy to care for coat
- Thrives on vigorous exercise and athletic activities
- Is calm and quiet in the home (as an adult)
Then this is the canine companion for you!