Colkeririn Rhodesian Ridgebacks

Quality Rhodesian Ridgebacks, Derbyshire, E‚Äčngland

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Colkeririn RRs on Twitter

Posted on March 11, 2015 at 9:17 AM Comments comments (338)
Although we've had our Twitter account for a while, we've never really done much with it.  However, in an attempt to spread the Colkeririn love, we are giving it a go to Tweet a Tweet every day for a couple of weeks, to see if we can build any interest.  

Be sure to find us at

..... if you have any interest in following us, that is!


Posted on March 11, 2015 at 9:03 AM Comments comments (613)
CRUFTS 2015 - What a day for Colkeririn!! (Show ring photos by kind permission of Lena Piehl)

The world's largest dog show attracts the biggest breed entry of our year at Championship Show level.   With visitors in attendance from all over the globe, we wanted to step into Breed Specialist Gill Lawless (Faahac)'s ring in the best condition we could, so in January ramped up our training to ensure we were all in tip top shape!

Although Colby qualified, we decided to focus on Kamba and Rio for Crufts 2015.  Kamba was first off the benches and gaited confidently into the ring to take his place in the 16 strong Post Graduate Class, he demonstrated his form enough to take the class and win our first ever Crufts red ribbon! (Rio won a RBCC in 2012 as the 2nd placed bitch in Open Class).  A short time later Kamba was back in the ring for the Dog Challenge.  

Standing amongst some truly magnificent dogs and soaking up the wonderful atmosphere which surrounded our ring was a magical feeling enough, but when Gill walked up to us and asked for a down and back to assess his movement one more time we felt elated.  Kamba rose to the occasion and gaited enthusiastically with his powerful reach and drive, we stood back in line and watched carefully as Gill considered her line up.  She awarded her DCC to her Open Dog class winner, a handsome dog from The Netherlands, and then to our absolute delight awarded the Reserve Dog CC to Kamba.  Gaining a Kennel Club Stud Book number under a breed specialist of Gill's calibre at Crufts just doesn't come any better!

Rio was the very next class of the day and amongst all the excitement we were both a little over exuberant and after flying round the ring were delighted to be awarded 3rd Place in Veteran Bitch behind two spectacular Grand Dames who we've stood alongside in the ring for several years now.  

Our beautiful Lana who we co-own with Jane Hawkins and John Smith was next up in Yearling Bitch and with tears in my eyes as I watched Jane and Lana standing to perfection, let out a shriek of excitement when they were awarded 2nd Place in a 12-strong class.  Not only that, Kamba and Lana's litter brother had also won 2nd Place in the Yearling dog class earlier that morning, so all in all the pops just couldn't stay in the bottles any longer!  We enjoyed a toast with friends from far and wide to our fabulous dogs, to Indie (at home) whos babies had won a 1st, RDCC, and two 2nd places, to Rio on teaching Kamba how to take it all in his stride, and to the great success of a fabulous day!  Congratulations to all who qualified, placed and won top honours on the day and thanks and gratitude to our judge Gill Lawless for her impeccable ring management and manner with our dogs.  

Kamba's Critique from LKA Championship Show 2014

Posted on March 2, 2015 at 8:39 AM Comments comments (810)
It seems a long time ago now, but we ended 2014 on a high, and really enjoyed our day out at Ladies Kennel Association Championship Show, where we had the pleasure of presenting to Breed Specialist Sue Campbell from the famous Nyassa Kennels.   

Sue awarded Kamba 1st Place in Post-Graduate - here is the exciting critique Sue wrote for him:

"PG (6,2) 1 Hodge’s Colkeririn’s Sunlight, 17 month l/w dog. Lovely type, in excellent condition & well muscled. Nice upstanding boy, strong bone & excellent feet, good topline & well ribbed back .Strong quarters used well on move, best mover in this class, nice boy maturing nicely."

I am particularly thrilled to read "Lovely type", which shows up often in Kamba's critiques.  To have a breed specialist of Sue's experience acknowledging his type is a real compliment.  We're thrilled to bits!  

Colkeririn Indigo Lightly at Lonaza - Welcome Lana!

Posted on February 11, 2015 at 7:09 AM Comments comments (1266)
Lana is Kamba's full litter sister and we are lucky and very grateful to co-own her with Jane Hawkins and John Smith.   Too good to not include on "Our Dogs" page, Lana now has her own entry, which Jane, John and I had great fun writing together!  Be sure to check her out (she likes nothing more than being in the spotlight!)   

Here she is the day she left our home to go and live with Jane and John.  Cheeky then, and even cheekier now.

We are lucky she comes and stays with us regularly, and coming up very soon, her human entourage will all be going to cheer her on at the Kent Super Dog 2014 competition to which she qualified for winning BEST PUPPY IN SHOW at the East Kent Society Open Show in 2014 under Mike Spencer (Bannonbrig).   We are so proud of Lana and Jane for this fantastic win.

Wish us luck - photos to follow!  

Rhodesian Ridgeback Breed Standard - Size / Height

Posted on February 9, 2015 at 12:41 PM Comments comments (2893)
Whilst I've never been in the conformation ring and seen a judge measure a Rhodesian Ridgeback, I have heard judges say that to hunt lions, Rhodesian Ridgebacks need to be big.  Another thing I hear a lot is the misconception that Rhodesian Ridgebacks are bred to kill lions.  Neither are true of our breed.  Rhodesian Ridgebacks are a protecting breed, and are the only hound to hunt using both sight and scent (think Whippet as a sight hound and Bloodhound as a scent hound).   Rhodesian Ridgebacks were bred to protect and thus keep lions at bay.  (You may hear the term "bay lions", which is exactly what this means).    

Hunting large game requires a Rhodesian Ridgeback to have endurance, agility, speed, a keen prey drive and an overall willingness and ability to work.  Size does not determine any of these disciplines and we must remember that our breed standard states 24-26" from floor to withers (end of neck at shoulder) in bitches and 25-27" from floor to withers in dogs.  

Having watched Rhodesian Ridgebacks on the coursing fields in the USA, and my own dogs playing on the fields of our farm, I know they work in packs.  The larger dogs have one role and the smaller dogs have another. Somehow (seemingly telepathically) within the pack, they work out the individual roles of each pack member.   My smallest pack member is Verde - who stands 24" at the withers, and whilst she's moderate in size, she's mighty in her ability to turn and twist whilst on the run, follow the chase, and her overall agility leaves many in her shadow.  No, Ridgebacks do not need to be big to perform the job they were bred to do.  

Here she is "digging in" during a game with her daddy Colby.  A photo that captures her speed, agility and spirit.  And in my opinion, a dog needs plenty of spirit to bay a lion!


Health Testing Rhodesian Ridgebacks - Early Onset Adult Deafness (EOAD)

Posted on February 9, 2015 at 3:38 AM Comments comments (565)
I am a advocate of health testing and research for Rhodesian Ridgebacks, and  this conclusion of Early Onset Adult Deafness research by ProjectDog in California, USA summarises my feelings welll. “It has been indicated that the gene responsible for adult onset deafness in the Ridgeback is highly likely to be responsible for a similar deafness in humans. Specifically, human genetics literature suggests that this human deafness affects infants before they learn how to speak, thus sentencing these children to a lifetime of challenges in communicating. It is hoped that a successful conclusion of this research will enable Rhodesian Ridgeback breeders to improve the health of future generations of dogs, and beyond this, have important implications for improving human health as well. Dr. Neff and his team have expressed deep appreciation for the long term commitment and patience by the Ridgeback community, and for the continued support of this important research”. 

I am happy to report that having forwarded a donation to ProjectDog and DNA for 3 Colkeririn Hounds, results are: 

Colkeririn Your Good Elf - Verde:              High Confidence CLEAR 
Colkeririn’s Sunlight - Kamba:                  High Confidence CLEAR 
Colkeririn Indigo Lightly at Lonaza - Lana: High Confidence CLEAR

We are proud to support the research at ProjectDog and thank the generous donors from the RRCUS community who enabled the DNA sequencing and analysis, research and to subsidize DNA testing against the hereditary basis of Early Onset Adult Deafness in a large number of Rhodesian Ridgeback dogs.   

Rhodesian Ridgeback Depth of Chest

Posted on January 18, 2015 at 3:35 AM Comments comments (612)
The depth of chest in a Rhodesian Ridgeback is hugely important to our breed.  The rib cage hosts the heart and lungs which need good space to work in and, if necessary, for long periods of time.  The chest of a Rhodesian Ridgeback should reach the elbow - and the measurement from Withers (bottom of neck) to Elbow should be exactly the same as the measurement as Elbow to Floor.

Here is the entry in the UK Breed Standard for the chest region:

"Chest not too wide, very deep and capacious, ribs moderately well sprung, never barrel ribbed. Back powerful, loins strong, muscular and slightly arched."

Demonstrating this measurement perfectly is Lana (Colkeririn Indigo Lightly at Lonaza) (Indie x Bhali) who we co-own with Jane Hawkins and John Smith.  This is beautiful Lana at 18 months.  Give it a try - measure her for yourself and you'll see she's spot on!  (Photo Lena Piehl)  

Ridgeback Movement

Posted on January 11, 2015 at 3:09 PM Comments comments (309)
If movement is your thing, here are the entries for movement in the UK Rhodesian Ridgeback Breed Standard and in the USA Rhodesian Ridgeback Breed Standard (we have included both, because our dogs are a blend of American and British pedigrees:

UK:  "Gait/Movement Straight forward, free and active."

USA: "At the trot, the back is held level and the stride is efficient, long, free and unrestricted.  Reach and drive expressing a perfect balance between power and elegance.  At the chase, the Ridgeback demonstrates great coursing ability and endurance." 

Here's an abstract photo of Kamba an I on the move when he was almost 12 months old. He demonstrates a balanced outline showing equal reach at the front and drive from behind, with a good head, neck and tail carriage and holds a strong, level topline. 
A correct moving Ridgeback should cover the most amount of ground with the least amount of effort.  Since moving to the UK I have learnt the saying "moving with daisy cutting action" which conjures up the most wonderful image of our breed moving effortlessly through beautiful summer pastures.  

Greetings 2015!

Posted on January 1, 2015 at 7:15 AM Comments comments (403)
Happy New Year to all our followers - the Colkeririn pack have enjoyed a wonderful holiday of good company, good food, plenty of new toys, great walks and lots of fun in the snow.    

We thank our lovely puppy owners who shared photos, cards, videos and their love of their dogs with us over the festive season, its wonderful to see so many happy families.  We are excited to be making new friends with those interested in our upcoming litter between Kamba and Verde, and love the fan club Kamba has with friends and followers far and wide - he's one special boy.   

His first experience of snow was great fun to be a part of.  After he dug, muzzled, jumped and ran like the wind in it all, he stood still for me to take this photo  - perfecting his aloof look as if to say "snow, what snow?".   

Colkeririn's Sunlight News

Posted on September 30, 2014 at 4:54 AM Comments comments (322)
Kamba has been shown lightly over the summer this year, and has placed well in the  shows he's attended.  We enjoyed reading his critique written by breed specialist Gillian Hutcheson who judged us at Bournemouth Championship Show in early August (he was 13 months and a week old at the time) where he placed 2nd in Junior Dog:

"Hodge's Colkeririn's Sunlight.  Handsome red dog, lovely crest of neck leading to a good front assembly, this boy just needs to drop in brisket, good body proportions with a lovely turn of stifle. Moved and handled beautifully."   Thank you Gillian for going over our boy so diligently and for such encouraging words.