Thai Ridgeback

The Thai Ridgeback is beautifully unique, not to forget elegant. Yet they are much lesser known than the popular Rhodesian Ridgeback. Check out the guide below for some interesting facts on this breed.

Thai ridgeback in the woods

Height: 20-24 inches
Weight: 16-34 kilos
Lifespan: 12-15 years
Pedigree? (registered with the KC?): No, this breed is not registered with the Kennel Club

Positives and Negatives

Find out the positive and negative traits of the Thai Ridgeback below:

Pros:

  • Excellent family dog
  • Minimal grooming needs
  • Independent and copes well when left alone
  • Intelligent and easy to train

Cons:

  • Can be aggressive if not socialized correctly
  • Naturally dominant
  • High exercise needs
  • Not a great choice for first time owners

Overview

The Thai Ridgeback has a strong history related to its bloodline, dating right back to ancient periods. They are one of the oldest and purest breeds alive, yet aren’t very popular outside of the native land. This leads to the question, how much does a Thai Ridgeback cost? On average just over £1000!

Thai Ridgebacks were bred as guard dogs. Their loyalty runs deep and they will go to great lengths in order to protect their owner. The breed also makes an excellent watchdog but will need early socialization to prevent them from becoming aggressive to those they don’t know.

Gray Thai Ridgeback dog standing

Compared to the Rhodesian Ridgeback, the Thai dog is much more suitable for a family environment. They’re playful and energetic by nature and will hold a special bond with each member of the family. Despite being such a devoted companion, their independence allows them to be left home alone. Separation anxiety isn’t a risk.

Even though this breed is recognized to be one of the oldest, purest breeds still around today. Thai Ridgebacks still haven’t received recognition from the UK Kennel Club. They are, however, recognized by the United Kennel Club and American Kennel Club.

This canine is fearless and won’t back down from a fight. Not even a cobra! Yes, you read that correct, this pooch is known to kill the world’s longest venomous snake! In Thailand, they protect their families from potentially fatal situations.

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History

Native to Thailand, the Thai Ridgeback is thought to be the oldest of pure breeds still in existence today. They were found in a remote area of Thailand where they had no access to other canine breeds. This explains why their bloodline has stayed so pure.

The Blue Thai Ridgeback has been prized in their homeland for hundreds of years. They’ve been seen on archaeological artifacts dating back almost 400 years! Although this dog is highly popular in Thailand, they are rare elsewhere, which is why Thai Ridgeback puppies come at a pricey cost.

In Eastern Thailand, the breed was mainly used for hunting boars, cobras, tapirs, deer, and smaller prey such as birds. Their other jobs included pulling carts, acting as a watchdog, and guarding their territory.

One of three Ridgebacks the Thai dog holds the same ridge patterns as the Rhodesian Ridgeback from Africa and the Phu Quoc Ridgeback. Yet each has its own distinct features separating themselves from one another.

Both the Thai and Phu Quoc Ridgeback are believed to have descended from the now extinct Funan Ridgeback. They have been extinct for some time now and date back to over a thousand years ago. They were alive during the Funan Era in a section of Southeast Asia which is now known as Cambodia and Myanmar.

Personality

Thai Ridgeback Temperament:
Thai Ridgebacks are naturally protective of their home and owners. They are completely devoted to their family yet won’t struggle when being left alone! Due to their dominant side, this canine isn’t recommended for first-time owners.

A strong leader will help guide this dog to become the perfect family pet. Provide this pooch with the love and attention they need and you will receive a well-natured, loyal companion.

Brown Thai Ridgeback dog

Are Thai Ridgebacks Good With Strangers?

No, the Thai Ridgeback is known to be extremely wary of people they don’t know. If they haven’t been socialized with strangers from an early age, they could become aggressive.

With consistent training, the breed can be around strangers but do remember as a watch and guard dog they may still be naturally suspicious.

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Are Thai Ridgebacks Good With Children?

A Thai Ridgeback will make an excellent companion for an older child! Not only do they love to play, but they hold a deep individual love for every member of the family. You can be certain a child will be protected whilst in the presence of this canine!

Due to their energetic and excitable nature, Thai Ridgebacks aren’t recommended for toddlers. They must be kept under supervision in case the young child is accidentally knocked over. The breed is not known to intentionally harm children.

Are Thai Ridgebacks Ok With Other Dogs?

No, Thai Ridgebacks are not the friendliest with other dogs. Due to their dominant nature, dog fights can easily ensue. Naturally, they become suspicious of any person or dog they don’t know. Again early socialization is key to prevent any aggressive traits becoming habits.

Exercise

As this breed is known to be highly energetic, it is no surprise that they must take part in one hour of exercise where they can really let loose. Be aware, they can jump very high so they must be exercised off-leash in an enclosed space with high fences.

Ideally, the Thai Ridgeback will need a garden they can access. Just don’t be surprised if your garden is quickly decorated with holes! Ideally, this dog should take part in agility and other activities that can keep them mentally stimulated.

gray Thai ridgeback dog on leash

Thai Ridgebacks love to play interactive games such as fetch. They adore attention and bond strongly with their owner when exercising or training.

Health

Due to their pure bloodline, the Thai Ridgeback is generally healthy and doesn’t have many predisposed health conditions.

  • Hip Dysplasia- An abnormality of the hip growth causing wear and tear on the surface of the joint. It causes inflammation, pain, swelling and eventually arthritis. Hip Dysplasia is a common skeletal condition in medium-large breed dogs.
  • Dermoid Sinus Cyst This genetic skin condition is a neural tube defect. It happens during embryonic development and is caused by the incomplete separation of the skin and nervous system. Single or multiple bumps appear around the back of the neck. Infection can lead to meningitis and myelitis.

Intelligence & Training

If you’re after an intelligent dog, then the Thai Ridgeback will be a great choice. Provided you’re a strong and consistent leader. Like many intelligent breeds, mental stimulation is necessary. Especially since this pooch can get bored pretty quickly!

Socialization needs to be one of the key focuses of training from an early age. Otherwise, this dog will quickly become aggressive to people and canines they don’t know. Attend a local puppy training class, it is the perfect way to get your dog used to others, whilst learning commands.

Thanks to their intelligence, this pooch is easy to train. So, you won’t have to spend hours trying to teach this dog how to go potty outside! Thai Ridgebacks love attention so training and interactive games are the perfect way to establish a bond with this breed.

Yes, this dog picks up on commands well but they can also pick up on bad habits just as quickly! The best way to get a Thai Ridgeback to listen is by using positive reinforcement. Harsh training methods will completely switch this dog off. Rewards such as affection and food treats will work like a charm on this canine.

The Thai Ridgeback is dominant and will push boundaries. If they aren’t shown how to be a follower their behavior could quickly become bossy and out of control.

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Grooming

Thankfully the Thai Ridgeback has minimal grooming needs and doesn’t shed much. So you can snuggle up on the sofa together without being covered in fur! Use a slicker brush every once in a while to remove any loose strands of fur.

This canine hasn’t got an undercoat which makes them more bearable for allergy suffers, compared to other breeds. Due to this, the Thai Ridgeback will only need baths once or twice a year. Whenever they get dirty really! If they are bathed too regularly it will irritate their skin.

Dog breed Thai Ridgeback standing on the pavement

Cleanse the ears on a weekly basis from any debris or wax. Be sure to trim the nails every 8 weeks or when they begin to touch the floor. You must also remember to brush their teeth! Dental hygiene is often forgotten and vets do recommend this every day.

Thai Ridgebacks have sensitive skin but that doesn’t mean they don’t love to soak up the sun! In Thailand, if they aren’t busy working, they’re probably sunbathing!

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