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Desiree's Response about Sophie the SAR Ridgeback in Training

Desiree's Response about Sophie the SAR Ridgeback in Training

Allex Michael's Response about Ridgeback Training Part 4

Desiree and Sophie the SAR dog at 11 months of age.


Sophie at 11 months of age. Sophie carries her own pack, which channels some of that energy into something productive. NOTE: As you can see, Sophie's backpack isn't very heavy. Dogs should not carry much weight until at least 14 to 18 months of age when they are physically mature.  > © photo by Desiree's Husband.

Allex Michael: I'm sure you use positive training for SAR, but training a ridgeback must always be done positively and fairly. The few times I lost all patience, Ebbey did not react well. With an 'I can easily find another owner' attitude, she would then try to run away. She's soft but also obstinate if that's possible.

Consistency and habit works well, so the ritual of search and rescue may work well once your dog gets it. It's just how much additional time will be needed to train a dog breed rated at fair to average for obedience training.

Re air scenting or trailing. I would compare Ebbey more to a bloodhound as she always has her nose on the ground. Ridgebacks were developed from several different breeds including bloodhounds, so I imagine there is some behavioral variation within the breed depending on lineage.

Ridgebacks are very independent minded (stubborn), and Ebbey's scenting abilities are very intense. A stubborn sniffer could be valuable if you are a good enough trainer to refocus that stubbornness to finding a lost person. I'm sure you're aware that ridgebacks are considered sight and scent hounds and Ebbey will sometimes look for prey when she loses the scent trail.

Recall is still unpredictable if chasing prey and has taken over 18 months. But Ebbey always comes back AFTER chasing the bunny. Ridgebacks are also noted for high prey drive and some breeders suggest you never take them off leash unless within a fenced area.

I'm sure non tracking scenes for the film SEARCH DOG'S RAVEN have taken twice as long to shoot because of Ebbey's slacker attitude towards obedience. However, she has a lot of personality and it shows on screen. Difficult actors can give a great performance, but they don't tell you about the ulcers you get from working with them.

Introduction Read This BEFORE Getting a Rhodesian Ridgeback.                                            A thumbnail photo showing Sophie the 11 month old Rhodesian ridgeback. Desiree's Response about Sophie

Search Dog's Raven Poster
Playing the search dog, Ebbey has a leading role in the eerie action thriller Search Dog's Raven. Her character is paramount, because the key to unlocking the film's unique twist turns out to be the 'Search Dog's...Raven.

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