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Raising Your Puppy

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A Rhodesian Ridgeback is a stubborn dog and is therefore not the right dog for everybody. An obedience course at a certified dog club is certainly not an excessive luxury. While looking for a course, make sure that the emphasis is laid on building the relationship between the master and the dog, on coaching the dog, and on contact between dogs. You have to pay attention to these dogs inside and outside. Playing with other dogs is fine as long as you find it OK.

[/vc_column_text][dt_gap height=”15″][vc_column_text css_animation=”top-to-bottom”]After the basic puppy training, you cannot stop training a Rhodesian. It takes about 3 years for a Rhodesian to outgrow his teenage mentality, and throughout that time, it is essential to keep training it. As soon as you have picked up your puppy, you should start attending a puppy training class. If that is not possible, then you can start at home with several simple exercises like taking the puppy out, teaching it to sleep alone, and toilet training it. Rhodesian Ridgebacks do well with motivational training based on rewards. A dog is not a human being, so do not anthropomorphize the dog during training or at any other time.[/vc_column_text][dt_gap height=”15″][vc_column_text css_animation=”top-to-bottom”]met_hangbuikzwijn

Socialisation is essential for the Rhodesian puppy. The socialisation period takes place starting from the third week up to the twelfth week. This is a deciding period of its life that will determine whether it will be a good or bad housedog. In the first eight weeks, the responsibility of exposing and socialising the pup lies with the breeder. In turn it is your responsibility to choose your breeder carefully. If you were to buy a pup that did not get a good socialisation the first eight weeks, then you have to work very hard to make up for this lost time. From the moment you take the puppy home, it is your responsibility to socialise the pup. This process does not stop after the first twelve weeks. This process has to continue until adulthood since the older the dog the more difficult the socialisation. So use this period optimally. The more you expose the dog to different situations the more your dog will be a balanced one who can face every situation without being afraid or stressed. During this period, negative as well as positive experiences have a lasting effect. You are responsible to take the necessary time to work with your dog. Take your puppy everywhere you can, whether it is for car rides, to playgrounds, to markets or stations. Teach your dog everything you think he will encounter or will need to know. Everything that your pup has not been exposed to, your puppy will distrust. If you live in the city, visit the country so he can get to know domestic animals.[/vc_column_text][dt_gap height=”15″][vc_column_text css_animation=”top-to-bottom”]met_hondje

If your puppy has not yet had all its shots, be careful with public places where there is a lot of dog excrement. There is an extra high chance of contagion. Get yourself used to picking up your dog’s excrement.

Frequent contact with other dogs is only positive and we want to encourage it, but remember that the power of decision has to be the master’s. It is the master who is in control of which dogs your puppy can play with and when. Make sure that it only plays with dogs that you know and that have a positive interaction with your puppy. The master has to make sure that these encounters are positive and peaceful. This builds a good foundation for later when the dog walks off-leash or in other situations where it could encounter other dogs.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text css_animation=”top-to-bottom”]slapende_vrienden

We as breeders help you by giving you a brochure that explains how to deal with different aspects of having a puppy: How do I house train my puppy? How do I socialise my pup, How do I train my dog to stay alone? How do I deal with an insecure dog? How do I continue the socialisation of my dog? Are there other aspects I have to watch with this puppy? What can I do and what am I not allowed to do?

And at last, the Rhodesian Ridgeback is a dog who needs a lot of exercise. He truly appreciates a good 2 hour walk every day.

Children

The question whether Rhodesian Ridgebacks are suited for children can be answered affirmatively. But beware that a lot depends on how you teach your children to deal with the dog. Keep in mind that not all dogs are as good with children and that not all children are as good with dogs. Be aware that if something goes wrong with the dog or with the child that it is neither the dog’s fault not the child’s, but your fault as the adult in charge. You are responsible for teaching your child to respect the dog and that no confrontational situation takes place. Know that a child cannot read the body language of a dog and that he cannot recognise a warning which precedes an attack.[/vc_column_text][dt_gap height=”15″][vc_column_text css_animation=”top-to-bottom”]op_sofa

Here are a few tips which you can teach your own and other children who are old enough to learn and understand them:

  • always call a dog to you; never walk to the dog (a lower-ranking member of a social group always goes to a higher-ranking member)
  • do not yell, fight or run away when the dog is around.
  • show the dog respect: let a sleeping dog sleep, do not be too wild around the dog, no fingers in the eyes, ears or nose, do not pick up the dog, no teasing or pestering, do not shake the dog awake, pull it out of the basket, especially do not disturb while it is eating.
  • every dog needs a safe and peaceful sleeping place.
  • do not give contradictory commands, nor should you repeat commands.
  • never stare a dog in his eyes.
  • do not lie on the floor beside the dog (or in the basket of the dog); always keep your face higher than the dog’s.
[/vc_column_text][dt_gap height=”15″][vc_column_text css_animation=”top-to-bottom”]If the children are too young to clearly understand all this, then never leave them alone with the dog. Prevention is the best approach. If you do not have any children of your own, but if you know that the dog will frequently come into contact with them later on, then it is best to expose it to children during puppy-hood. Take a walk around the block past a primary school, or let a child feed the pup a snack. That way the dog learns that children are fun.

Never leave your child alone with your dog no matter what breed it is.

With thanks to the `Rhodesian Ridgeback Club Nederland’[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][dt_gap height=”25″][dt_divider style=”thick”][dt_gap height=”25″][/vc_column][/vc_row]

This post is also available in: Dutch French