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Old 10-15-2008, 02:36 AM   #1
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Question Rhodesian ridgeback? A question about them and small pets

Hello, I am a newbie

We were thinking of getting another dog, we live on a large private acerage, we have horses, cats and dogs.

We have been doing LOTS of searching about the rhodesian ridgeback breed and really like them. The only thing is I have read that they can be very "prey motivated" there for are not good to have around small animals. It said in one article about them that they should be kept on a leash since they will hurt or even kill the niebourhood cats.....

We have 4 cats and a 4 pound Chihuha and DO NOT want any of them hurt or killed. (we do also own a doberman but she is great with the little animals)

I do know that any large breeds not socialized enough with small animals can kill them, but is the rhodesian ridgeback more likely to kill cats and small dogs than other breeds?

Is this not the right choice for someone owning this many small animals and will have more small animals in the future? This is our BIGGEST concern with the breed.

thanks so much! Look forward to meeting everyone here!!!

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Old 10-15-2008, 03:05 AM   #2
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Hi and welcome to the dogforum.

If you get a pup and socialize it with tons of small animals I doubt there will be a problem. However, prey drive can occur, with all dogs you can never say never.
I know several ridgebacks that functions excellent with small animals, so you could look into getting from a breeder who hsa small animals with the pups so to say that you know the mother and father have low preydrive.. That should help you..

Its a wonderfull breed so good luck
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Old 10-15-2008, 03:24 AM   #3
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This is a fabulous dog but not to be used for protection as they are naturally so needs no training in that field. They often do not do well with children as they do not want to be pestered much. Nicknamed the Lion dog.

It needs alot of socialization with other dogs and people to get along with. A great hunter but calm in the home as a pet. I love this breed and found a link with photo and alot to read about temperment, age, etc.

http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/rhodesianridgeback.htm
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Old 10-15-2008, 05:23 AM   #4
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Looking at the bigger picture, every dog can and probably will have prey drive. They originated from the wolf who are born to kill - and there is no dismissing that. Just teach him the usual "Sit", "Wait", "Drop" (basically lie down, but the dog usually just drops straight to the floor) and "No" so if anything should go wrong, then you always have the added safety of an obedient dog wich should help. Also try find a rescue that has a pup as they do tests with children, food, toy and other animal agression, or a breeder that has cats and socialises the pups with cats.

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Old 10-15-2008, 02:26 PM   #5
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Thanks so much guys! Its great to meet new dog lovers and learn more.

I totally understand that any large dog can be bad with small animals if not socialized properly. We took alot of time and care making sure our dobi would not hurt the small guys, and now I trust her 100% but she was never bred back in the day as a hunting dog and she is more interested in people that animals.

But some have a higher prey drive with small animals, than others. I am just hoping if we socialize like crazy with our cats and our tiny dog that when this dog gets outside it wont all of a sudden go into prey mode when it see our cat run like crazy outside and catch them and kill. I have had this happen with a dog we got before.... We have never gotten over it

We were also researching the goldlen lab and the rottweiler, would you say those are breeds that would be better with small animals??

What ever dog we get will be socialized like crazy and taken to puppy classes and the follow up with adult classes like we did with our dobi

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Old 10-15-2008, 02:31 PM   #6
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Oh and feel free to suggest any breeds you think would suit acreage life horses, lots of small animals, and a dobi.

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Old 10-15-2008, 04:15 PM   #7
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I do not suggest a Rhidgeback to a fairly "new" owner. Someone who would be ideal for a Rhidgeback is someone who has experience with very stubborn dogs.

I guess I suggest Labs - they seem to generally be all around good dogs. If you are not specifically looking for a purebred, perhaps check with your local shelter. Rotts can be stubborn/hard to train sometimes, however if trained properly when young they are wonderful adult dogs. Far too many people around here get a puppy & make it an outside dog - then when s/he is full grown at around a year they dump it in the shelter as they cannot handle the dog anymore.
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Old 10-15-2008, 06:41 PM   #8
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I think if you are considering raising a puppy with your own cats and small dog you should have no problems, assuming you are strict about not allowing the puppy to chase the cats ever and take training seriously.

I don't think the OP is a new dog owner, just a new forum member. If you have successfully trained a doberman, a RR should be within your capabilities. I have never found RR's to be stuborn, just large and fairly high energy. I currently have a RR x rescue dog of around 10 months. He does have a high prey drive in the sense that he is attracted to movement (as many breeds are), but he is fine with my cats despite not being raised around cats. He is very trainable. I introduced him carefully to the horses and I now trust him to be loose in the paddock with me. I would always be cautious around any unfamiliar stock that ran fast - eg loose deer or rabbits in the forest would be a big temptation I would imagine.

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Old 10-15-2008, 07:40 PM   #9
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Thanks guys!

No we are not new dog owners, we have had a couple mix dogs from the spca throughout the years, and we have had our Doberman and Chi for 3 years now.

Training shouldnt be a problem (I hope LOL) since like our Doberman this new dog will be enrolled in puppy classes then adult classes, I like to have a well trained dog esepcially around a horse breeding and boarding stable its needed.

Our dobi is very well behaved with our little animals, but we were very carefull with her and the small guys when she was young and in training it has really paid off.

As someone suggested I emailed a couple of RR breeders today, asking them all about my worries, I will see what they think, if they think that its to much of a risk for my little guys then on to another breed.

We have been looking at our local SPCA for dogs, but only older ones are there and the one we like, it said on its cage not good with cats..... So ya thats out. We would perfer a puppy ONLY because we dont want to risk our little animals on an older that may not have been socialzed with them.

Oh and the dog would be an inside/outside dog just like our Doberman and the rest of the animals haha (except the chi) When its cold we have a zoo inside LOL!!!! They are to spoiled

hanks so much guys!!!!

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Old 10-15-2008, 07:48 PM   #10
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Hi and to the forum
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