Dog Behavior

Rhodesian Ridgeback Puppy Training: The Surprising Truth About When to Start

The Rhodesian Ridgeback, distinguished by the hallmark ridge running down its back, is a breed renowned for its courage, intelligence, and loyalty. Originally bred to hunt lions in the African savannah, the Ridgeback’s unique history has shaped its behaviors and characteristics. For new or prospective Ridgeback owners, one crucial question is often on their minds: When is the right time to start training this majestic breed?

The Ideal Start Time for Training of a Rhodesian Ridgebacks Puppy

The optimal time to commence training your Rhodesian Ridgeback is as soon as they step into their new home. This usually means starting formal training at around 8 to 10 weeks of age. This breed’s intelligent and curious nature makes them eager learners from a young age.

In the beginning, it’s essential to prioritize basic commands such as “sit,” “stay,” and “leave it.” These foundational cues pave the way for more advanced training in the future. Additionally, this period is crucial for socialization. By exposing your Ridgeback puppy to various environments, people, and animals during the first few months, you’ll be fostering a well-adjusted and confident adult dog.

Behavior Problems from Delayed Training of a Rhodesian Ridgebacks Puppy

If not provided with early guidance, Rhodesian Ridgebacks can exhibit certain behaviors that might be challenging for their owners:

  • Stubbornness: Ridgebacks are independent thinkers. While this speaks to their intelligence, it can also lead to a stubborn streak if boundaries aren’t set early on.
  • High Prey Drive: Their historical role as lion hunters has endowed Ridgebacks with a strong prey drive. Without early training, they might be prone to chasing smaller animals or even running off if they spot something intriguing.
  • Guarding Instincts: Ridgebacks have protective instincts. While this can be beneficial in some scenarios, without early socialization and training, this protectiveness can transform into unwarranted aggression or over-guarding.
  • Size and Strength: Given their size and strength, Ridgebacks can unintentionally become unruly if they don’t learn basic manners and obedience early on. This can pose challenges, especially during walks or when interacting with children or smaller pets.

Benefits of Using an Online Dog Training Course for Your Rhodesian Ridgeback Puppy

In today’s digital age, online dog training courses have emerged as valuable resources for dog owners. For Rhodesian Ridgeback owners, in particular, these courses can offer unique benefits:

  • Adaptability: Online courses allow for flexible scheduling. This adaptability is ideal for individuals with fluctuating daily routines. You can revisit sessions, move at a pace comfortable for both you and your puppy, and ensure each lesson is thoroughly understood before proceeding to the next.
  • Breed-Specific Guidance: Certain online platforms provide training modules tailored to specific breeds. For a Ridgeback, such specialized courses can be invaluable. They address the unique behaviors and challenges associated with the breed, offering insights and techniques that generalized courses might overlook. These courses, often crafted by experts familiar with the breed, ensure that you’re getting the most effective training advice tailored to your Rhodesian Ridgeback’s needs.

In addition, online courses usually come with forums or other community features that allow you to connect with other Dachshund owners. This can be an invaluable resource for advice, support, and sharing experiences.

The Only 2 Online Puppy Training Courses We Recommend

1. SpiritDog’s Ultimate Puppy Bundle (BEST BUDGET FRIENDLY OPTION)

This comprehensive online puppy training program, designed by experienced trainer Steffi Trott, aims to help dog owners raise a well-behaved, social, and friendly puppy. The course provides lifetime access to over 70 lessons, including videos and an exclusive eBook, with a focus on critical behaviors like biting, potty training, and chewing. Participants can learn at their own pace from home, with the ability to ask unlimited questions to professional trainers. The program promises noticeable improvements in puppy behavior with just 10 minutes of practice per day. It comes with a 60-day money-back guarantee, lifetime personal support, and seven bonus mini-courses covering specific issues like hyperactivity and separation anxiety.

2. K9 Training Institute’s “Dog Masterclass” (BEST OVERALL)

In addition to basic puppy training, this more comprehensive training class tackles any behavior problem you might face with your dog. It’s made an a very easy to follow video format.


In conclusion, the journey of training a Rhodesian Ridgeback, like any dog, is one filled with patience, commitment, and plenty of rewards. Starting this journey early ensures that you mold a companion who’s not only well-behaved but also happy and confident. And with the vast resources available online, training becomes more accessible and tailored, ensuring that your Ridgeback grows into the loyal and majestic companion they’re meant to be.

The iHeartDogs Ask a Vet tool gives you access to verified veterinarians 24/7. Get professional help for your pup and feed shelter dogs now.

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