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Unread 11-13-2008, 08:21 AM   #1
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Default The Ridge in Rhodesian Ridgebacks

Yes, to an extent it was sensationalist, but that's what a lot of TV is about now. To it's credit, it's hopefully given some breeders the 'kick up the bum' required to stop ignoring the welfare of the animal in the aim of producing champions. I've had first hand experience of this - and personally know of champion dogs who are still being put out to stud despite proven genetic problems that lead to (at best) much reduced quality of life for ~10% of their offspring. It is these breeders who need to open their eyes and stop breeding from these animals. I know that it is certainly not all breeders who are at fault and many breed to produce healthy animals, but I think the problem many have are with the KC standards, which may be conceived to promote 'appearance over welfare'. Again I'm afraid I have to refer to the Rhodesian Ridgebacks who's ridge is produced by a very mild form of spina bifida; without the ridge (and without spina bifida), the dogs don't conform to KC standards. This suggests that they are not 'good specimens' of the breed. I understand that Ridgebacks are so-called because of the ridge, but in light of this knowledge, shouldn't we act a little more responsibly?
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Unread 11-13-2008, 11:19 AM   #2
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Yes, to an extent it was sensationalist, but that's what a lot of TV is about now. To it's credit, it's hopefully given some breeders the 'kick up the bum' required to stop ignoring the welfare of the animal in the aim of producing champions. I've had first hand experience of this - and personally know of champion dogs who are still being put out to stud despite proven genetic problems that lead to (at best) much reduced quality of life for ~10% of their offspring. It is these breeders who need to open their eyes and stop breeding from these animals. I know that it is certainly not all breeders who are at fault and many breed to produce healthy animals, but I think the problem many have are with the KC standards, which may be conceived to promote 'appearance over welfare'. Again I'm afraid I have to refer to the Rhodesian Ridgebacks who's ridge is produced by a very mild form of spina bifida; without the ridge (and without spina bifida), the dogs don't conform to KC standards. This suggests that they are not 'good specimens' of the breed. I understand that Ridgebacks are so-called because of the ridge, but in light of this knowledge, shouldn't we act a little more responsibly?
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I guess that will all depend on what articles you read...as far as I am aware it is not the ridge that is the course of dermoid sinus (or spin bifida)

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The ridge is NOT “a mild form of Spina Bifida” Some Vets/Scientists believe that the dermoid sinus condition found in Rhodesian Ridgebacks is related to the human condition of spina bifida. Dermoid sinus can be palpated shortly after a puppy is born – it does not “burrow down to the spine or skull” but is the result of malformation of skin tissue development in utero


Dermiod sinus has also been found in other breeds (and humans) that do not have a ridge, it is not exclusive to the RR. It has also been found in ONE ridgeless puppy in the UK,
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Unread 11-13-2008, 03:39 PM   #3
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But I think that one ridgeless puppy is less then the amount of ridge backs who do have it.
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Unread 11-13-2008, 04:29 PM   #4
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But I think that one ridgeless puppy is less then the amount of ridge backs who do have it.
The point being is that Dermot sinus, is not 100% proven to be related to the ridge on the RR... if it is also found in ridgeless pups.. and you cant know how many or not do suffer with this condition as there are no records of dermoid sinus kept in the UK.. on dogs with this condition, you cant say more dogs with ridges suffer than those without.

The statistics that are quoted for dermoid sinus are the result of one small study from Sweden.... not the UK.... and different countries will and can have different health issues (or should I say more prominent )within a breed..

Dermoid sinus is a condition that is detected at birth, and from what I understand in the code of ethics , such dogs should not be bred from.
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Unread 11-13-2008, 04:40 PM   #5
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No I know that I can't prove that more dogs with ridges have it if there is no records, but I would of thought that breeders who get a dog with that problem would not even contemplate breeding a dog with that problem anyway, its just one of them things that happens, but every dog breed has its own problems, but if it is proved that more ridges have it then I think that the ridgeless ones should be more breed from, and TBH I can't see any reason why now they are not allowed to be shown if they confirm to the rest of the standard.
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Unread 11-13-2008, 04:58 PM   #6
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This is an intersting link

http://www.rhodesianridgebacks.org/
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Unread 11-13-2008, 05:05 PM   #7
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This is an intersting link

http://www.rhodesianridgebacks.org/
Yes, I read that, also read the report form Sweden but not sur eif terms of service will allow me to post it..

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Unread 11-13-2008, 05:06 PM   #8
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Yes, I read that, also read the report form Sweden but not sur eif terms of service will allow me to post it..

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You could post a link to the article if you wish to.

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Unread 11-13-2008, 09:28 PM   #9
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Personally I do not know alot about this breed, so I am looking and reading about it.
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Ridgebacks have a strong, smooth tail, which is usually carried in a gentle curve backwards. The eyes should be round and should reflect the dog's color—skin pigment, not coat color: dark eyes with a black nose (regardless of coat color), amber eyes with a liver nose. The liver nose is a recessive gene. It is not as common as a black nose; some breeders believe the inclusion of livernoses in a breeding program is necessary for maintaining the vibrancy of the coat.
The original standard allowed for a variety of coat colors, including brindle and sable. The modern FCI standard calls for light wheaten to red wheaten.
Other breeds with a ridge of fur along the spine include:[edit] Ridgelessness

The only disqualification in the AKC standard for this breed is "ridgelessness". This term refers to the purebred offspring of heterozygous parental animals which do not inherit a copy of the ridge mutation from either parent and are, in effect, normal dogs which do not have a ridged back. The most current research suggests that the ridge mutation is autosomal dominant with complete penetrance. However, while the few studies which have analyzed the issue do not agree on the incidence of ridgelessness within the breed, they all show a ridgeless rate which is significantly lower than 25%, which cannot be explained using the Punnett square model for single gene/two allele inheritance.
Traditionally, many ridgeback puppies were culled at birth for numerous reasons, including ridgelessness. Some breed parent clubs and canine registries have even made the culling of ridgeless whelps a requirement. The Kennel Club which has for many years annually ratified the British parent club's code of ethics which states "Ridgeless puppies shall be culled.", is currently reviewing that portion of the parent club's code of ethics. Alternatively, growing numbers of contemporary breeders opt for surgical sterilization of these offspring to ensure they will not be bred but can live into maturity as non-showing, non-breeding pets.
It is important to note that culling does not necessarily mean euthanizing a pup, instead it refers to removing a pup from the breeding pool. This includes spaying and neutering, thus technically, any pup that is spayed or neutered is "culled." Most Rhodesian Ridgeback breeders today "cull" ridgeless pups by offering them as pets with contractual mandatory spay and neuter requirements of the new pup owners
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhodesian_Ridgeback
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