Best Dog Food For Rhodesian Ridgeback in 2020

rhodesian ridgeback food

The Rhodesian Ridgeback is a medium to large dog breed that originated in southern Africa, where it was originally bred to hunt lions and other large game. What’s the best dog food for Rhodesian Ridgeback breeds?

Rhodesian Ridgebacks can live up to 13 years.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks are strong and intelligent dogs that require lots of calories to maintain their level of activity. This breed is known to have a long lifespan and is generally not fussy with its food.

If you’re the lucky owner of a Rhodesian Ridgeback, this guide will help you figure out how to feed your pet to ensure that he stays strong, healthy, and happy.

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Best Dog Food for Rhodesian Ridgeback Comparison

Rhodesian Ridgeback Food and Nutrition

Rhodesian Ridgebacks are loyal, confident, and strong-willed dogs. They are known to be protective of their owners, which makes them cherished family pets. They’re extremely athletic and have a dignified appearance that can be perceived as threatening, which is why they’re often trained to be guard dogs.

Because this medium to large breed is affectionate and even-tempered, it’s also suitable as a companion for children. Rhodesian Ridgebacks have an independent streak and can be stubborn but are generally easy to train. These dogs rarely bark and have a gentle temperament.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks have an average lifespan of 10 to 13 years. They are known to be a generally hardy breed. According to the American Kennel Club, Rhodesian Ridgeback breeders should screen their dogs for eye problems, elbow dysplasia, hip dysplasia, and thyroid issues.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks are one of the breeds that are most affected by thyroid problems. Dogs that suffer from this condition experience a range of symptoms that include fur loss and weight gain.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks are also prone to gastric dilatation-volvulus or what we know as bloat. This is a serious medical condition that requires immediate treatment and can be fatal.

When choosing dog food for Rhodesian Ridgebacks, you need to take all of these into consideration. The age of your dog and the type of dog food he was brought up on (if you acquired him as a puppy) are also important.

Here are some other factors to consider when buying dog food for Rhodesian Ridgebacks.

Choosing Rhodesian Ridgeback Food

Rhodesian Ridgebacks are large breeds that can weigh up to 85 pounds. They have strong muscular bodies and are highly active dogs. To keep your pooch in tiptop shape, you’ll want to give him dog food that was formulated specifically for large breeds.

Large breed dogs are susceptible to orthopedic conditions like elbow dysplasia and hip dysplasia. Large breed formulas help prevent these diseases by providing your dog with the right amounts of certain minerals.

Too much calcium in your dog’s diet can lead to increased bone density. This is known to contribute to hip dysplasia in dogs. A dog’s diet must also contain the proper balance of calcium and phosphorus to prevent disorders in bone formation.

For these reasons, dog foods for large breeds typically have lower levels of phosphorus and calcium. Large breed dog foods are also usually formulated to provide just the right amount of calories to fuel the daily activities of these bigger breeds without causing them to gain excess weight.

Nutritional needs

Because Rhodesian Ridgebacks are large dogs and powerful athletes, they tend to always be hungry and needing to fuel up. To keep your Rhodesian Ridgeback sufficiently fueled and energized, you’ll need to give him dog food that satisfies his significant caloric needs every day. However, the best dog foods for Rhodesian Ridgebacks are those that don’t rely on cheap carbs to supply the needed calories.

Low-quality dog foods are those that have carbohydrates like corn and potatoes as the largest component. Grains like corn are problematic because they tend to trigger food allergies in dogs. They are also difficult to digest.

Top dog food for Rhodesian Ridgebacks is based on high-quality protein sources like venison, bison, fowl, lamb, chicken, and fish. These provide sufficient levels of protein for growth and development. Large breed dog foods should have just the right amounts of protein so that the legs of your Rhodesian Ridgeback don’t grow too fast, causing muscle and bone damage.

Another source of energy in dog foods is fat. Concentrated sources of energy like chicken fat, fish oils, and plant oils are necessary for sustaining active Rhodesian Ridgebacks. Omega 3 fatty acids are also crucial, as these keep your dog’s coat soft and glowing, improve his cognitive function, and keep his heart disease-free.

The most nutritionally complete dog food for Rhodesian Ridgebacks also includes folic acid, which helps lower the risk of your pooch giving birth to puppies with dermoid sinus, a common health issue in Rhodesian Ridgebacks. Another important mineral is zinc, which helps keep your dog’s teeth and bones strong and healthy.


Because of their deep chests, Rhodesian Ridgebacks are susceptible to bloat. This is a dangerous condition in which the dog’s stomach becomes filled with food, gas, or fluids. It then expands and starts putting pressure on his other organs, including his heart.

One of the easiest ways to prevent this life-threatening illness is to avoid feeding your Rhodesian Ridgeback dog food that contains grains. In your dog’s stomach, grain ferments and causes excess gas that can cause bloat.

best dog food for rhodesian ridgeback

Heart disease

Rhodesian Ridgebacks have a tendency to develop heart problems. While this may sound alarming, it’s actually not that hard to prevent cardiovascular issues in your dog. One of the best ways to improve your pet’s heart health is by giving him the right dog food.

With Rhodesian Ridgebacks and other large breeds, you should keep an eye on their salt and fatty acid intake. To keep your dog’s heart in good shape, you should make sure that he’s not ingesting too much salt. Check ingredient lists for added salt and for ingredients that are naturally salty.

Your Rhodesian Ridgeback needs dog food with a good balance of calcium and phosphorus.

Omega fatty acids are great for cardiovascular health. Choose dog food for Rhodesian Ridgebacks that contain a good mix of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. Look for ingredients like flaxseed, fish oil, and canola oil, all of which naturally contain omega fatty acids.

Rhodesian Ridgeback Dog Food Reviews

CANIDAE Grain Free PURE Dry Dog Food

“Simple recipes for sensitive tummies”

  • Real lamb is the first ingredient
  • Wholesome ingredients for good digestion
  • Grain-free
  • Enhanced with vitamins and minerals
  • No preservatives and artificial flavors

This is one of my favorite dog food for Rhodesian Ridgebacks because it addresses many of the health issues that plague this breed and other large dogs.

First, the main protein source is lamb, which provides the lean protein essential to large breeds. Second, it contains probiotics for a healthy digestive system. Third, it has chickpeas and peas, two excellent sources of much-needed folic acid that can help prevent dermoid sinus in puppies.

What I love about Canidae is that it’s made with the finest natural ingredients and is manufactured without preservatives and cheap fillers like chicken by-product meal. It’s also completely grain-free, helping protect your Rhodesian Ridgeback from the dreaded bloat. I always recommend these Limited Ingredient recipes, which are specifically designed for dogs with food sensitivities.  

Earthborn Holistic Primitive Natural Grain Free Dry Dog Food

“Grain-free gluten-free high-protein goodness”

  • High-protein grain-free recipe
  • Gluten-free
  • Balanced ratio of omegas
  • Contains probiotics and antioxidants
  • No preservatives and artificial colors

In my opinion, there are few commercially available dog foods that can top this one. Earthborn Holistic Primitive Natural Grain-Free Dry Dog Food just ticks all the boxes: high-quality ingredients, good price point, perfect variety and balance of vitamins and minerals, and a taste that dogs can’t get enough of.

This particular dog food blend contains turkey, chicken, and whitefish. There’s also tomato, blueberries, apples, spinach, peas, carrots, and even cottage cheese — only real ingredients here for your pooch! There’s a nice ratio of omegas for healthy skin and coat, along with L-carnitine for converting fat into energy and lean muscle.

Another really admirable feature of this dog food is the resealable packaging, which is BPA-free and 100% recyclable through the Earthborn ReBorn program and TerraCycle. Earthborn Holistic dog foods are all made with only the highest quality ingredients in the company’s family-owned kitchens in the USA.

Taste of the Wild High Prairie Grain-Free High-Protein Dry Dog Food

“Taste that your dog craves”

  • Made with real premium meat
  • Antioxidants for overall health
  • Contains species-specific probiotics
  • A special blend of omega fatty acids
  • No preservatives and artificial flavors

I routinely recommend Taste of the Wild because they use premium ingredients with an emphasis on food safety. And it doesn’t hurt that dogs love the taste of their products.

This Canine Recipe with venison and bison has real buffalo meat as the first ingredient. It also contains lamb meal, chicken meal, roasted venison, roasted bison, and ocean fish meal. The blend of protein sources ensures that your Rhodesian Ridgeback grows strong and lean.

Aside from the proteins, Taste of the Wild also contains fruits and vegetables for their antioxidant content, omega fatty acids, and probiotics. The formula is made without wheat, corn, fillers, and other nasties. Instead of grains, this dog food provides highly digestible energy from sweet potatoes and peas.

Merrick Grain-Free All Breed Dry Dog Food, Real Chicken and Sweet Potato Recipe

“Real wholesome proteins and carbs”

  • Grain-free
  • Chicken is the first ingredient
  • Leading levels of omegas
  • Farm-fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Award-winning recipes

Merrick is another one of my favorites, primarily because of their wide product range. I like this one for large breeds like the Rhodesian Ridgeback because of the lean protein sources and the mineral content that addresses the common health issues of large breeds.

rhodesian ridgeback food

The first five ingredients in this recipe are deboned chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, sweet potato, and potato. The first three are for strong muscles and bones while the last two are for energy. The formula is grain-free and easily digestible.

A key feature of this particular dog food blend is that it contains industry-leading levels of chondroitin and glucosamine, which are crucial to preventing joint problems in large breed dogs. The formula is also rich in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids to keep your pet’s skin healthy and his coat smooth.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks do best on a protein-based diet.

There are so many different types of dog food on the market that finding the best dog food for Rhodesian Ridgebacks can be overwhelming. I hope you find this guide helpful in navigating the various dietary needs of your beloved pooch.

About the author

Sarah Andrews

Hi I'm Sarah, dog lover and blogger. I was born into a dog-loving family and have been a proud doggy mommy ever since I can remember. I love sharing my dog knowledge and love being an active part of the dog-loving community.