Tips to buy a Puppy


Why buy a Rhodesian Ridgeback from a VDH-affiliated breeder club?

Rightfully so, “puppy mills” (a.k.a. puppy farms) and dog traders keep falling back into the spotlight of the media. Without any controls, they produce dogs and puppies, which are isolated from human contact and surroundings. Puppies are whelped and kept in stables, cages, balconies or basements. Dogs whelped and raised under such conditions won’t be fully capable of becoming a reliable, environmentally responsible social partner for humans.

Before you can breed within the VDH (German Breeders’ Association), a whole series of prerequisites must first be fulfilled. The premises, in which a litter of puppies is to grow, is closely examined to guarantee, not only for extensive human contact, but also for gathering experiences outside under the sky. The parent dogs have to prove their conformity with the standard and in their nature, which occurs at exhibitions (dog shows) and through their breed-compliance test (ZZP). Additionally, a radiographic examination and assessment of the hip joints and forelegs is mandatory. All of these are prerequisites must be met before a pairing is allowed to take place. This is done to create the highest possible probability of healthy Ridgebacks with the typical characteristics of its breed. As with all living things, there still can be no guarantee here. But the VDH, with its rules and regulations, creates good conditions for a dog bred with quality. Such conditions, dear dog friend, you will find nowhere else, especially not by the unbounded "breeder" around the corner.


Within the VDH, our DZRR is the Ridgeback association with a largest number of breeders, all of whom have set themselves to the goal: to breed healthy dogs true to the characteristics and nature of its breed.


Dear Dog Friend

You are sure, that you not only want to take a dog into your life, but also meet his temporal, spatial, financial and personal requirements for it. 

Now you have decided for our breed, the Rhodesian Ridgeback. So let us take a look together as to whether this decision was made correctly, not just through feelings, but also through reason. We certainly don’t mean this pompously, but we want to help make the dog-human relationship happy and satisfying for both partners.


  • Please remember that the Rhodesian Ridgeback is a big dog. For this reason alone, it is essential to integrate the dog into our increasingly dog-hostile society through good obedience. Are you the type of person who can raise an original, independent and intelligent dog? Are you a patient and consequential person, who likes to think what the partner dog is thinking?
  • Please refer to the * bibliography * on this page.
  • If your decision to buy the Rhodesian Ridgeback was made due to the outward appearance of the dogs, please consider the following: short-haired dogs shed too. Although the short, straight hair in the apartment is not so noticeable, they do however adhere stubbornly to all textiles.
  • No Ridgeback looks like the other! If you have "fallen in love" with a particular type, please bear in mind that dog breeding is not like a porcelain factory. Puppies are "surprise packages". You don’t always see in a puppy as to how it will develop physically. Luckily the breed standard is very broad. The spread includes everything from the Greyhound-like, dainty forms up to the verge of a Rottweiler-type.
  • The wonderfully athletic physique will only develop when the dog can move freely! An adult Rhodesian Ridgeback should have at least one one-hour walk daily.


Are you impressed by the characteristics of the Rhodesian Ridgeback?



Please consider



  • Nature has a long maturation period for the sovereign, loyal partner and protector. Do you really understand that? Do you have the patience to wait for the slow development of his personality? Are you prepared to invest in the development of your Rhodesian Ridgeback? That means right from the very start with good leadership, knowingly that the rewards for this work will be enjoyed much later?
  • Rhodesian Ridgebacks are intelligent dogs. This not only brings pride, but also brings work! An intelligent dog, whose abilities and talents are not promoted or stimulated, becomes disturbed, destructive and aggressive. For the most part, the problem of male aggressiveness could easily be solved, if the owners did not just let their dogs run away on their walks! Search games, obedience exercises, small tracks, retrieving, all this makes a Rhodesian Ridgeback stable, satisfied and socially acceptable.

So, if you have thought about it again as to whether a Rhodesian Ridgeback really suits you, your family and your lifestyle, and you came to a positive answer, then contact the DZRR puppy broker. Rhodesian Ridgebacks are not an assembly line product and our breeders plan their litters very carefully. So please understand that you cannot immediately put your decision into action. You will get a list of breeders from our puppy broker, who are either planning a litter or already have puppies available. You can then contact these breeders by phone or e-mail to arrange a first, non-binding visit. Don’t be angry if a breeder asks you many and very personal questions! We are proud that our breeders do not sell away their puppies inconsiderably to just anybody. Don’t hesitate to visit several breeders. That way you can get a complete picture and compare the various possibilities. 

At each breeder, the puppies are checked by trained breed-wardens ("litter-audit"), so that only inspected and healthy puppies are handed over to the buyers. 

And when it comes time to adopt your Rhodesian Ridgeback and take him home, please do not forget that the DZRR (German Breeder’s Association Rhodesian Ridgeback) offers you the opportunity to seek expert advice. Often articles about obedience problems are printed in the club’s periodical magazine, " Obmann für Ausbildung und Leistung ", which offers practical exercises. Shows, walks and lectures by scientists compliments the DZRR offer. Although our club is called a "breeders' community", it is naturally also for dog owners. You are certainly welcome, even though there’s no consideration of breeding your Ridgeback. The wide range of information and events is not only interesting for breeders! A membership in the DZRR is possible for every Ridgeback friend. 

One could write so much more about the Rhodesian Ridgeback. But we think that enough has been said to help guide you. However, if you have any further questions, we would be pleased to hear from you.


We wish you and your future dog all the best and a harmonious human-dog relationship!