Rhodesian Ridgeback mixes are uniquely steeped in history.
The Rhodesian Ridgeback originally hails from Rhodesia, an African country now known as Zimbabwe. So it is probably no surprise to learn this dog’s nickname is “African Lion Dog!”
The Rhodesian Ridgeback is a truly ancient purebred dog with origins still partially shrouded in mystery. The breed name comes from a distinctive feature – the appearance of a “ridge” that follows the length of the dog’s spine.
In this article, meet some amazing Rhodesian Ridgeback mix dogs!
Modern genetic science has begun to unravel the mysteries behind the Rhodesian Ridgeback breed’s origins.
A 2015 journal article has linked the Ridgeback to the Great Dane and a number of other sizeable working K9s along with a handful of companion breeds.
Size, Height and Weight
The Rhodesian Ridgeback stands 24 to 27 inches tall and weighs 70 to 85 pounds.
Males are slightly taller and larger than females.
Personality and Temperament
These dogs have courage and valor to spare! In addition they are loving and affectionate with “their” people but reserved around strangers.
They also have an exceptionally strong prey drive, likely born out of their history chasing (but not killing) lions. For this reason, you’ll need to practice a really strong recall with them, so you know they’ll come back when you let them off leash.
Our sister site has lots of helpful training know-how and troubleshooting tips for recall training.
The Rhodesian Ridgeback bays like a hound and tracks like one too. In addition, many breeders and canine experts feel these dogs, with their unique background and history, may be more suitable for an experienced owner and trainer.
Coat Care and Shedding
According to the official breed standard, the Rhodesian Ridgeback’s singular ridged coat comes in only one color – “wheaten”.
The ridge itself is formed by a thin strip of backwards-growing hair that follows the curve of the spine. This is a canine trait rarely seen outside of Africa.
This dog will shed. However, the short, flat, smooth coat is easy to maintain with basic brushing and the occasional bath.
Health and Longevity
The Canine Health Information Center recommends that breeding stock be pre-tested for
As of 2015, the Rhodesian Ridgeback Club of Great Britain has also reported another concerning congenital health issue called Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy (JME).
This dog’s typical lifespan is 10 to 12 years.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Mixes
Although there is some controversy surrounding the practice of mixed breeding, hybrid breeding, which crosses two specific purebred parent dogs, is often used in service to the theory of “hybrid vigor” or “heterosis.”
This theory states that genetic diversity can improve known health issues for purebred canines hampered by a limited gene pool.
Rhodesian Ridgeback Types List
Have you arrived here in search of information about a specific hybrid Rhodesian Ridgeback dog? This clickable list can get you there fast!
- American Pit Bull Terrier Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Pitbull Ridgeback)
- American Staffordshire Terrier Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Basenji Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Rhodesian Basenji)
- Boerboel Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Rhodesian Boerboel)
- Border Collie Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Boxer Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Rhodesian Boxer)
- Doberman Pinscher Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Doberman Ridgeback)
- German Shepherd Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (German Ridgeback)
- Golden Retriever Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Golden Ridgeback)
- Great Dane Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Greyhound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Irish Terrier Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Irish Wolfhound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Labrador Retriever Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Rhodesian Labrador)
- Mastiff Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Pharaoh Hound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Pharaoh Ridgeback)
- Redbone Coonhound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Rottweiler Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
- Saint Bernard Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Saint Ridgeback)
- Scottish Deerhound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
American Pit Bull Terrier Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Pitbull Ridgeback)
The Pitbull Ridgeback can weigh 30 to 85 pounds with a life expectancy of 8 to 15 years.
This dog will have strong protective and guarding instincts tempered by an equally strong bond with “their” people.
American Staffordshire Terrier Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
This mix dog will weigh 40 to 85 pounds and can live 10 to 16 years.
The AmStaff terrier influence can give this hybrid a personality more suited for family and community life.
Basenji Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Rhodesian Basenji)
The Basenji Ridgeback will weigh 22 to 85 pounds with an average lifespan of 10 to 14 years.
This dog brings together the ancient primitive Basenji, the “barkless dog,” with the Rhodesian Ridgeback’s hound-like baying. As a result your dog may or may not vocalize.
Boerboel Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Rhodesian Boerboel)
The Rhodesian Boerboel combines a South African mastiff with a South African hound, giving you a dog that can weigh anywhere from 70 to 200+ pounds and live 9 to 12 years.
Both parent dogs will contribute strong protective and guarding instincts and a confident, independent and dominant personality.
Border Collie Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
The Border Collie Rhodesian Ridgeback will weigh 30 to 85 pounds and live 10 to 15 years.
This dog will have a naturally high energy level and a strong desire to chase, herd, guard and hunt as a result.
Boxer Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Rhodesian Boxer)
The Rhodesian Boxer will weigh 50 to 85 pounds and live 10 to 12 years.
This dog inherits more of the true pet dog temperament from the Boxer side, in contrast to the ancient, independent-minded nature that comes from the Ridgeback side.
Doberman Pinscher Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Doberman Ridgeback)
A Doberman Ridgeback is definitely a sight to behold! This dog can weigh 60 to 100 pounds of pure, sleek muscle. The life expectancy is 10 to 12 years.
This hybrid dog can make an impressive watchdog and a loyal family guardian, certainly with the right early and ongoing training and socialization.
German Shepherd Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (German Ridgeback)
The German Shepherd Rhodesian Ridgeback mix can weigh anywhere from 50 to 90 pounds with a life expectancy of 7 to 12 years.
This dog will have innate protective and guarding instincts and unstoppable courage.
Consequently, with the right training and socialization, this dog can become a great hunting companion or working K9.
Golden Retriever Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Golden Ridgeback)
A Golden Ridgeback will weigh 55 to 85 pounds and live 10 to 12 years.
This dog’s temperament will be an intriguing mix of the Golden Retriever’s notable friendliness with the Ridgeback’s natural reserve.
Great Dane Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
This imposing dog can weigh anywhere from 70 to 175 pounds. The average life span is 7 to 12 years.
The Great Dane contributes a patient, friendly demeanour that can certainly mix well with the Rhodesian Ridgeback’s even temperament.
This dog’s size will make early training and socialization imperative in a pet setting.
Greyhound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
A Greyhound Rhodesian Ridgeback can weigh anywhere from 60 to 85 pounds. This will be a sleek and slim dog with an unstoppable drive to run.
Both parent dogs contribute a hound’s temperament through and through.
This dog can be challenging to train on a number of levels and as a result may be best for a more experienced dog owner.
Irish Terrier Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
The Irish Terrier Rhodesian Ridgeback dog can weigh 25 pounds to 180 pounds. This hybrid dog has a life expectancy of 10 to 15 years.
This hybrid pup’s disposition can range from fiery terrier to independent hound. They tend to be loyal and protective of “their” people and property and can therefore be wary of strangers.
Irish Wolfhound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
The Irish Wolfhound Rhodesian Ridgeback is going to be a big dog with a weight range from 70 to 120 pounds. This dog’s general lifespan ranges from 6 to 12 years.
An affectionate companion canine when well-socialized and trained, this dog’s independent streak can make them a handful in puppyhood.
Labrador Retriever Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Rhodesian Labrador)
The Rhodesian Labrador will weigh 55 to 85 pounds and live 10 to 12 years.
This dog receives an interesting mix of personality traits from each parent dog. The Labrador is famously friendly and as a result has been the number one companion canine in America for 26 years straight!
The Ridgeback on the other hand, is a dignified and independent ancient dog breed not recommended for first-time pet dog owners.
Mastiff Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
This dog will by far be the weightiest pup on this list! Expect an adult weight range of anywhere from 70 to 230 pounds. The life expectancy ranges from 6 to 12 years.
A Mastiff Rhodesian Ridgeback will inherit courage in spades from both parent dogs as well as strong guarding and protective instincts. That is to say this is definitely a dog that will benefit from early and consistent training and socialization.
Pharaoh Hound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Pharaoh Ridgeback)
The Pharaoh Ridgeback combines two ancient dog breeds with hound backgrounds and strong prey drives. This dog will weigh 45 to 85 pounds with a lifespan of 10 to 14 years.
This dog may or may not inherit more of a gentle “pet type” temperament depending on which parent dog dominates.
Either way, because of this pup’s high sprinting drive you’ll need to practice recall training with them so that they’ll come back when you let them off leash!
Our sister site has lots of helpful training know-how and troubleshooting tips for recall training.
Redbone Coonhound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
This hybrid pup can weigh anywhere from 45 to 85 pounds and can live anywhere from 10 to 15 years.
The Redbone Coonhound parent contributes the distinctive and vibrant fire-red coat along with a calm temperament (when not on the hunt). This personality can combine well with the Ridgeback’s more stubborn and independent nature.
Rottweiler Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
The Rottweiler Rhodesian Ridgeback dog can weigh anywhere from 70 to 135 pounds and has a lifespan of 7 to 12 years.
From the Rottweiler side comes a guardian Mastiff and working K9. From the Ridgeback side comes a hunting hound.
Consequently this dog will have a strong protective and guarding instinct coming from both parents, which means early socialization and training will be key to success in a companion canine setting.
Saint Bernard Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix (Saint Ridgeback)
The Saint Ridgeback may grow up to weigh 70 to 180 pounds. The general life expectancy for this dog is 8 to 12 years.
This dog receives different temperament influences from each parent dog.
For instance, from the Saint Bernard comes a loving, loyal and gentle nature.
The Ridgeback side on the other hand, contributes a dedicated, independent and protective personality.
Scottish Deerhound Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
This dog can weigh anywhere from 70 to 110 pounds with a life expectancy of 8 to 12 years.
This hybrid dog brings together the racing instincts of the Deerhound, a greyhound-type of incredible size, with the incredibly strong prey drive of the Ridgeback.
Because of this dog’s prey drive, it’s important to practice recall with them before you let them off leash. You can find lots of helpful training know-how and troubleshooting tips for recall training on our sister site.
This dog will shed somewhat year-round and seasonally.
Is A Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix Right For Me?
We hope you have enjoyed learning about these unique and wonderful Rhodesian Ridgeback mix dogs!
Take care to consider the characteristics of each mix before deciding which dog is right for you and please share your favorites in the comments!
References and Resources
Parker, H.G., et al, “Genomic Analyses Reveal the Influence of Geographic Origin, Migration, and Hybridization on Modern Dog Breed Development,” Cell, 2017.
Mackfall, J., et al, “Breed Health,” The Rhodesian Ridgeback Club of Great Britain, 2019.
Stewart, S.H., “Origins of the breed,” The International Rhodesian Ridgeback Foundation, 2019.
Mansourian, E., “Who Put the Ridge in the Rhodesian Ridgeback?,” American Kennel Club, 2015.
Wakchaure, R., et al, “Importance of Heterosis in Animals: A Review,” ResearchGate, 2015.