Do Rhodesian Ridgebacks Like To Cuddle?

Rhodesian Ridgebacks are large, beautiful dogs that can make for amazing pets if you are willing and able to put in the time and effort that is required for their care.

But are they the sort of dogs that enjoy a good cuddle now and then? 

To answer this question, we will need to take a look at the general temperament of the Rhodesian Ridgeback breed as well as how they tend to behave with people, both children, and adults. 

It is important to note that every dog is different and whilst some might enjoy cuddling, others may not be as receptive.

Every dog breed has a general temperament, but make sure to remember that every dog is unique! 

You need to get to know a dog and gauge its personality, as well as do your research on the temperament that the breed is known for.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at whether Rhodesian Ridgebacks are a dog breed that you can cuddle with.

Deciphering The Temperament Of A Dog

As mentioned above, every dog is different, and it is essential to understand what makes the Rhodesian Ridgeback tick.

The first thing to consider when looking into the temperament of any particular breed is their overall disposition in regard to both humans and other animals.

This can include various factors, such as whether a dog is scared, aggressive, shy, playful, etc. 

For example, many dog breeds have been bred for hundreds of years to fight off predators such as wolves and lions, so they might naturally have a more aggressive temperament towards other animals. 

Other breeds were bred for the protection of various livestock animals against wild predators, so they are likely to have a natural instinct that makes them unafraid of farm animals. 

Some breeds are bred to work alongside people – such as police K9 units, military working dog teams, etc. – so these breeds of dogs are likely to be trained more easily and have a closer kinship with humans.

Depending on the type of job they were bred for and their natural instincts, the temperament of a dog can vary massively. 

That being said, you also need to consider how a dog has been brought up alongside their natural-born instincts.

If you rescue a dog who has been abused, for example, they might find cuddles much more intimidating than a dog who was brought up in a loving and caring household. 

Remember to keep note of both the natural temperament of the dog and their background and upbringing.

The Temperament Of The Rhodesian Ridgeback

When it comes to the Rhodesian Ridgeback, they are generally considered to be very friendly dogs.

They are incredibly social dogs that enjoy being part of a pack, often described as having an outgoing nature.

However, they can still be wary of strangers and should not be left alone with someone who is unknown to them. 

It’s important to remember that Rhodesian Ridgebacks are working dogs that need lots of exercise and mental stimulus.

Therefore, they don’t necessarily want to spend all their time inside. Instead, they prefer to be active. They are more likely to be happy if they get a fair amount of exercise and play. 

As long as they receive regular walks and are able to engage in a wide range of exercises, a Rhodesian Ridgeback can easily make for a happy and healthy addition to any family

Do Rhodesian Ridgebacks Enjoy Cuddles?

We’ve looked at how Rhodesian Ridgeback dogs behave, their interactions with other animals and people, and their temperaments.

We have also discussed how they are happier when they are more active. Let’s get into the main subject of today’s post: whether they enjoy cuddle time! 

There are two types of dogs when it comes to cuddles: those that like to be cuddled and those that don’t. 

Those that aren’t as big fans of cuddles tend to be more independent and self-sufficient.

They can live quite well without human contact, and they may even find it irritating if you try to hold them too much. 

On the other hand, those that do like to be cuddled are usually more affectionate and trusting.

They are likely to want to spend more quality time with people and are likely to have a need to be cared for in order to thrive. 

Rhodesian Ridgebacks can fall anywhere in between these two categories.

It all depends on their individual personalities, so as long as you get to know your dog, you should have an understanding of whether your Rhodesian Ridgeback is partial to a cuddle or two. 

Cuddling Your Rhodesian Ridgeback 

As mentioned earlier, the Rhodesian Ridgeback has been bred over hundreds of years to be a working dog, and so naturally they are not going to want to spend all of their time lying around on the couch.

However, they are certainly prone to cuddling, particularly if they feel a bond towards the person giving them cuddles. 

There are a few ways to tell if your dog is feeling happy and content before going in for a hug. Make sure that they are relaxed and calm.

A wagging tail and a relaxed posture – such as with the ears back – should be evidence that your dog is feeling happy in your presence and comfortable with you. 

Make sure that you don’t overdo it with your cuddles, particularly if your dog seems uncomfortable as you start cuddling.

That means no squeezing too hard, either! Gauge your dog’s reaction carefully, and only continue with your cuddling if you are certain that your Rhodesian Ridgeback is content. 

Cuddling Rhodesian Ridgeback Puppies

The same rules apply when cuddling a Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy. Remember that the pup will need to be relaxed and calm before you start to cuddle them.

Keep in mind that young puppies are still learning about the world around them, so be kind, calm, and gentle to ensure that they only associate cuddles as positive reinforcement for good behavior. 

It is best to avoid hugging them too tightly initially, though. Start off by gently rubbing their tummy and then slowly moving onto the head and shoulders.

This will help the pup get used to pets from people. Once they start feeling more safe and secure with you, you can start giving them proper cuddles. 

If you are thinking about buying a Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy, always make sure that you meet the breeder beforehand.

Some breeders enforce strict rules, only selling puppies to approved homes following the successful completion of various forms and after the provision of references.

Other breeders will happily let prospective buyers come to see their breeding kennels, so they can meet the puppies. 

Either way, meeting a breeder is important when it comes to understanding the temperament of a breed.

Final Thoughts

Rhodesian Ridgebacks are wonderful companions and family pets, as well as highly intelligent and loyal dogs. Their roots as hunting dogs also make them particularly good watchdogs and guard dogs.

The intelligence of the breed makes them very easy to train, but this active nature means that they aren’t always content with lazing around the house. 

That doesn’t mean that they can’t enjoy a good cuddle session from time to time, though.

Make sure that you have a good idea of your dog’s temperament, personality, and mood before you go in for the hugs. 

As long as you respect your dog’s boundaries and get to know them, you should have a cuddle buddy for life with a Rhodesian Ridgeback!