Golden Retriever Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix

Updated June 8, 2023

The golden retriever Rhodesian Ridgeback mix, also known as Golden Ridgeback, is a relatively rare cross that deserves more recognition.

Goldens and Rhodesian Ridgebacks are simultaneously very similar and distinctly different temperament and appearance-wise.

Because of apparent similarities in the parent breed look, the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever cross has some standard traits, but there may be variations in coat length and color.

But while most Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix puppies look alike, their temperament is always unique.

Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix is an excellent family, service, and hunting dog. However, it isn’t low maintenance, so prospective owners should be willing to invest the time in grooming, exercising, and training their pets.


Rhodesian Ridgebacks and golden retrievers are somewhat similar, so the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever cross appearance is predictable. All puppies have drop ears, elongated snouts, broad skulls, and round dark eyes.

Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix ranges from 21 to 27 inches in height and weighs 55 to 90 pounds. Females are shorter and leaner than males, but there may be variation.

The Golden Ridgeback coat type depends on which parent a puppy takes after. Goldens have long fur with a dense undercoat that sheds heavily year-round. In contrast, Rhodesian Ridgebacks have short hair without an undercoat.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks shed like all dogs, but the shedding is not nearly as noticeable as that of goldens because of the hair length.

Golden Ridgeback color can be red or gold, usually solid, but some puppies may have a distinct “mask” on the face like Rhodesian Ridgebacks and a signature line on the back.


Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix temperament depends on which parent’s genes were dominant and whether the breeder was socializing the litter.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks and goldens have some personality traits in common that they are guaranteed to pass on to their cross, including playfulness, high energy levels, curiosity, confidence, fearlessness, and love for cuddles with owners.

However, Golden Ridgebacks many vary in attitude towards strangers, other animals, and protectiveness. Goldens won’t hurt a fly – they have a low prey drive and quickly make friends with people, cats, dogs, and small pets.

On the other hand, Rhodesian Ridgebacks may be aloof with strangers, albeit not as much as guard dog breeds. They have a high prey drive and may chase cats and other smaller animals.

Goldens make poor guard dogs because they are too credulous and lovely. Rhodesian Ridgebacks are significantly more protective of their owners and territory.

Overall, both parent breeds are excellent family dogs, and so is their cross. However, some Golden Ridgebacks may be impatient and too exuberant for babies.

Intelligence & Trainability

Both golden retrievers and Rhodesian Ridgebacks are very intelligent dogs, so their cross is bound to be brilliant.

Goldens rank fourth and Rhodesian Ridgebacks 52nd among 138 breeds participating in Stanley Coren’s working dog intelligence study.

These dogs are quick to memorize commands and have a high obedience rate. Because of its hunting heritage, the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix has an excellent work ethic and is rarely stubborn or frivolous.

Golden retrievers regularly prove their right for such a high ranking by winning American Kennel Club obedience championships, so the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever cross should be easy to train.

Because Rhodesian Ridgebacks were bred to hunt lions, they acquired the ability to act independently and instantly assess the situation.

These dogs have impressive problem-solving skills and are highly empathetic, making them excellent therapy dogs.

While training such an intelligent and obedient dog is easier than a stubborn and uncooperative one, note that they need plenty of mental stimulation. Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix can quickly get bored and become mischievous.


Crossbreed dogs are generally healthier than purebred ones, but the golden retriever – Rhodesian Ridgeback mix can still inherit some genetic conditions from its parents. Other diseases develop throughout the lifetime and cannot be predicted.

Both parent breeds are prone to hip dysplasia, widespread among large dogs and affecting mobility.

When a puppy’s joints develop improperly, they become dislocated and cause discomfort when moving. In severe cases, hip dysplasia leads to a complete loss of mobility.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks and golden retrievers are also susceptible to thyroid issues, causing them to become hyperactive and experience increased thirst. One cannot predict or prevent hypothyroidism, but it can be managed.

Cancer is the most common cause of death in golden retrievers. While the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever cross is at a lower risk, owners should be aware of the symptoms to seek timely veterinary help if necessary.

Like all dogs with drop ears, the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix is prone to ear infections.

The problem is prevalent in dogs that love swimming because moisture trapped in the ear canal creates an environment beneficial for bacteria growth.

To prevent ear infections, clean your dog’s ears regularly after swimming with a vet-approved solution.


Rhodesian Ridgeback and golden retriever grooming needs are the opposite. The dense, long fur of goldens required daily brushing.

During seasonal shedding, owners should use a de-shedding tool to remove dead hairs stuck in the undercoat and prevent matting.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks are low maintenance when it comes to grooming. They only need occasional brushing to evenly distribute skin oils. The Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever cross grooming depends on which parent a puppy takes after.

Regardless of the coat length, all Golden Ridgebacks need regular bathing. How often to bathe a dog depends on how frequently it swims, rolls on the ground, and walks in public places.

Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix doesn’t need haircuts and should never be shaved, but long-haired dogs will benefit from feather trimming.

Like any dog, the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix needs regular dental care, ear cleaning, and claw trimming – this should go without saying.

Exercise Needs

Golden retrievers and Rhodesian Ridgebacks are hunting dogs that were used for different purposes, and their exercise needs reflect that. Goldens were bred to retrieve waterfowl and need at least an hour of walking daily.

They are natural-born swimmers and evolved to have webbed feet and water-repellent coats. Rhodesian Ridgebacks were used for hunting lions, so they evolved to have immense stamina and need at least two hours of physical activity daily.

As a result, the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix needs at least two hours of walking daily and will appreciate swimming sessions once in a while. These intelligent dogs also like mentally stimulating activities such as games.

Puppies don’t need as much physical activity – in fact, too much exercise can cause hip dysplasia, preventing the dog from moving properly at an adult age.

As a rule of thumb, provide your puppy with five minutes of exercise for each month of its life. Senior dogs, too, tend to be less active, but there’s no standard exercise duration because it depends on a particular dog’s health state.

Life Expectancy

Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix lifespan is 10-12 years on average, which is equal to the lifespan of purebred golden retrievers and Rhodesian Ridgebacks.

Although crossbreed dogs are generally healthier, 10-12 years is a standard lifespan for dogs of this size. Still, owners can prolong their pet’s life with a healthy diet and sufficient activity.

Behavior Problems

Golden retriever Rhodesian Ridgeback cross behavior problems depend on a particular dog’s temperament, but knowing the common issues of parent breeds can give you an idea of what to expect.

Goldens are people-oriented dogs that hate being alone, so they often suffer from separation anxiety.

Separation anxiety is characterized by destructive behavior, excessive vocalization, increased guarding instinct, potty accidents, and attempts to escape.

Under-socialized goldens may be scared or anxious when exposed to unfamiliar environments, situations, or people.

Many goldens and Rhodesian Ridgebacks pull on the leash and jump on people because of their curiosity and bursting energy. Fortunately, owners can train their dogs to behave well because Golden Ridgebacks are responsive to training.

Some Rhodesian Ridgebacks have an overly high prey drive and chase kids and small pets. Others may be aggressive towards strangers or bark too much. In most cases, socialization in puppyhood and training resolve behavior issues.


Goldens are among the most popular dog breeds in the U.S., and Rhodesian Ridgebacks are rapidly gaining recognition, although not yet as widespread.

Despite such a high demand for parent breeds, the Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix is relatively rare.

Firstly, the demand for this cross isn’t high because not many people know about it. Secondly, Rhodesian Ridgebacks aren’t available in every state. Finding a puppy may take time and dedication.


The Rhodesian Ridgeback golden retriever mix price starts at $800 and can exceed $1,000 because both parent breeds are expensive due to high demand.

A puppy’s price also depends on its unique temperament traits, appearance, health clearances, breeder’s reputation, and location. Puppies tend to cost more in states where Rhodesian Ridgebacks are still fairly rare.

Puppies with champion bloodlines typically cost more because they will likely inherit the temperament traits that made their ancestors excel.

Although crossbreed dogs cannot participate in dog shows, champion parents ensure that a puppy will be trainable and intelligent.

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