Jul 31, 2009
The Rhodesian Ridgeback is a dog breed indigenous to Southern Africa. Its European forebears can be traced to the early pioneers of the Cape Colony of southern Africa, who crossed their dogs with the semi-domesticated, ridged hunting dogs of the Khoisan people (referred to by the colonists as “Hottentots”).
In the earlier parts of its history, the Rhodesian Ridgeback has also been known as Van Rooyen’s Lion Dogs, the African Lion Hound or African Lion Dog—Simba Inja in Ndebele, Shumba Imbwa in Shona—because of their ability to harass a lion and keep it at bay while awaiting their master to make the kill.
The original breed standard was drafted by F.R. Barnes, in Bulawayo, Rhodesia (modern day Zimbabwe), in 1922. It was based on that of the Dalmatian and was approved by the South African Kennel Union in 1926.