Rhodesian Ridgeback

Rhodesian ridgeback is a dog breed belonging to Group 6 according to FCI dog standard. Rhodesian ridgeback, also called African lion hound, is South African hound dog breed characterized by a narrow band of hair that grows forward along its back, against the direction of the rest of the coat. This ridge is inherited from a half-wild native hunting dog that, by breeding with various European dogs, formed the stock that gave rise to the Rhodesian ridgeback. Typically strong, active, and of great endurance, the Rhodesian ridgeback is a trim, shorthaired dog, with hanging ears and a glossy, yellowish brown to reddish brown coat. It stands 24 to 27 inches (61 to 69 cm) and weighs 70 to 85 pounds (32 to 39 kg).

The original ridgeback stock was produced by the crossing of such dogs as mastiffs, bloodhounds, Great Danes, and terriers brought to South Africa by German and Dutch emigrants, and a half-wild, native hunting dog that contributed the characteristic ridge. In addition to its outstanding ability at hunting lions, the ridgeback was prized as a protector of farms from prowling animals and became popular hunting dog in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) in 1870s. Today it is rapidly gaining popularity as a guard and a companion dog.

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