Rhodesian Ridgeback

Rhodesian Ridgeback

The Rhodesian R dog boarding surreyidgeback is probably not the best breed choice for inexperienced owners. Although they appear serious and imposing, and are strong-willed and independent, they are also surprisingly sensitive and any inappropriate handling may likely crush their confidence and irreversibly damage the bond they have with their handler.
Consider that the Ridgeback was bred to hunt large, fearsome game with great agility, athleticism and stamina. They are intelligent and dignified – affectionate with their owners and aloof to strangers. And, although they do require firm but fair training, their discerning nature do make them vulnerable to those of whom they invite into their trust. Therefore owners seeking a breed that possess these qualities as a guard dog and loyal companion do need to know how to carefully and thoughtfully manage their powerful and courageous traits.
Royvon sees a wide range of Ridgebacks in their training school – some of them have experienced owners who are looking to fine-tune their skills, while others are overly cautious, unpredictable or aggressive. Poor breeding aside, this highly capable companion deserves an equally capable handler.
How did the Rhodesian Ridgeback become the breed we know today ?  The Khoikhoi people occupied the Cape Peninsula during the mid 17th century when the Dutch began trading with the area and set up a trading station. These people had a dog which was used for hunting; described as ugly, but noted for its ferocity whe dog boarding surreyn acting as a guard dog. This dog measured 18 inches (46 cm) at the withers, with a lean but muscular frame. The ears have been described both as erect and hanging, but the most distinctive feature was the length of hair growing in the reverse direction along its back. Within 53 years of the Dutch settlement, the Europeans were using these local dogs themselves.
By the 1860s, European settlers had brought a variety of dog breeds to this area of Africa, including Bloodhounds, Greyhounds, terriers, and Foxhounds. These breeds were bred with the indigenous African dogs, including the dog of the Khoikhoi people, which resulted in the Boer hunting dogs, a forerunner to the modern Rhodesian Ridgeback.
Reverend Charles Helm traveled to the Hope Fountain Mission in Southern Rhodesia in the 1870s, taking two ridged dogs with him. It was there that Cornelius van Rooyen, a big–game hunter, saw them and decided to breed his own dogs with them to incorporate their guarding abilities. The offspring were dogs with red coats and ridges. They became the foundation stock of a kennel which developed dogs over the next thirty five dog boarding surreyyears with the ability to bay lions, that is, to hold them at bay while the hunter makes the kill. The dogs were used to hunt not only lions but also other game, including wild pigs and baboons. The first breed standard was written by Mr F.R. Barnes in Bulawayo, Rhodesia in 1922. Based on that of the Dalmatian, it was approved in 1926 by the South African Kennel Union.
In 1922 Bulawayo, Southern Rhodesia (Zimbabwe), Francis Barnes standardized the breed using the existing Dalmatian standard as a model – there was no mention of a preferred group placement. Although no parent club was ‘officially’ recognized at the time, in September 1924 the South African Kennel Union or SAKU now the Kennel Union of South Africa or KUSA began taking “Lion Dog” registrations. In February 1926, SAKU (KUSA) officially recognized the Rhodesian Parent Club. At the behest of Barnes, SAKU also made two changes at this time:
The Union’s official name for the breed was changed from ‘Rhodesian Lion Dog’ to ‘Rhodesian Ridgeback’.
Oddly the breed was placed in the Union’s ‘Gundog’ group.
On this second point Barnes was emphatic, stating “I am breeding a gundog.” The Rhodesian Ridgeback remained classified as a Gundog for over 20 years thence.
The South African Kennel Unions reason for this was that “Gundogs” were those that find game above ground, and the human hunter was then expected to dispatch the game by means of a firearm. Within this context, the Rhodesian Ridgeback—which was clearly expected to hold the lion at bay for the hunter, not to attempt to dispatch the lion unassisted by the gun—was placed in the Gundog group at that time.