10 Things You Didn’t Know about the Thai Ridgeback

When it comes to unique dog breeds, the Thai Ridgeback will rank near the top of the list. There are several reasons for this, including their personality and their physical appearance. But as you will see from this list of things you didn’t know, this unique breed is not for everyone. As their name suggests, the breed originates in Thailand, though its exact origins aren’t known. As they say, often it’s what you don’t know that makes all the difference, so read on.

1. One of the easiest ways to recognize the dog is by looking at its back.

This is important to know because if you are looking for a dog to buy you want to be sure they have the genuine genetics. While not all variations of the Thai Ridgeback have a signature ridge of hair running down their back, you can be sure the ones that do are the real deal. The back hair has 8 different patterns, so know which pattern is unique to your dog.

2. The absence of the signature hair pattern is a telltale sign about the breed.

There are Thai Ridgebacks that lack the back hair pattern, and they will likely have a plush coat to go along with the missing pattern. For this breed it is considered to be a flaw, so be careful before buying the plushy type unless you are not being particular about having genuine genetics.

3. Rumor has it they hate Elvis Presley music.

Actually, the lyrics of his “Hound Dog” song are particularly annoying to the true bloods of this breed as they take offense to being characterized as “cryin’ all the time.” In fact, Thai Ridgebacks are some of the quietest dogs you’ll find around, barking only when they sense danger. That makes them a great watchdog because when you hear them bark you can be sure something is definitely wrong.

4. When they are puppies, socialization can be challenging.

Ridgebacks need to be properly socialized, but many vets strongly urge Thai Ridgeback owners to limit exposure to not only other dogs but to public places in general. The reason is they are prone to catch diseases such as rabies or distemper until their puppy vaccines have completely kicked in. This is a kind of isolation, which means owners will have to create other ways to start the socialization process.

5. Trying to fence them in may be impossible.

This will connect to a personal characteristic of the breeds down the list, but you need to know that if you are going to try and keep the dog in a yard or particular enclosed area you will have to build it high and secure. They tend to escape from fenced enclosures, and it has been reported that one of those technologically created underground electric fences isn’t enough to keep them in. The shock that they get may not be enough to slow them down if there is something they want to chase.

6. They play favorites.

The problem for the owner is, they usually prefer one person over everyone else. It’s not certain how they make that choice, but if you’re the one then expect they will be coming to you for just about everything. Think walking the dog at 9 p.m.

7. There is a reason they are fenced yard escape artists.

Thai Ridgebacks are very smart and very independent, which makes them very difficult for new dog owners to handle. Breeders say that the dog will push you to your limits, and if you are a pushover the game is over. It may be impossible for you to assert your authority with any consistency, even if you just let them win once. They see owners and fences as challenges to overcome.

8. They actually are very low maintenance when it comes to grooming.

While the breed sheds all the time, their short coat makes short work of any maintenance. Just a weekly brushing is all it takes, something which you’ll be glad to do if they have chosen you as their Number One. A couple of baths a year will do the trick if they get dirty, but that’s about it.

9. Owners will have to have an active lifestyle.

Thai Ridgebacks are not the type of dog to keep in the house, locked up, where the only thing to do is to look nice. A minimum of one hour a day of strenuous exercise is what they need to be happy and healthy. Actually, a couple of hours is better. So if you’re a couch potato, look for a different breed.

10. They have only been around for about 20 years.

Specifically, they have only been in the United States for about 20 years. Back in 1994 was when the first Thai Ridgeback made its appearance. But it didn’t take long for the American Kennel Club to recognize the breed, introducing it to its Stock Service only 3 years later.


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