Ridgebacks & Friends

Dedicated to rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming Rhodesian Ridgebacks and Ridgeback mixes in California. Potential adopters must meet the dog(s) prior to adoption.

The purpose of Ridgeback & Friends is to save Rhodesian Ridgebacks and Ridgeback mixes in California and place them in suitable homes. While the focus remains on saving dogs from California's high-intake shelters, some of the dogs come into rescue as owner surrenders or homeless strays. All dogs are carefully screened for good behavior and receive proper veterinary care, including spay/neuter surgery and vaccinations, before being matched with appropriate adopters. The group provides sanctuary to a limited number of sick and/or under socialized dogs.  

We are 501(c)(3) tax-exempt public charity. 



Cover photo courtesy of Andrea Altman. 

To inquire about adopting one of our dogs, please fill out this form.

ADOPTION PROCESS: We require an interview, reference check and home safety check. We also require that all potential adopters, as well as all family members (including canine), meet the dog prior to adoption. We do not have a kennel or boarding facility; all dogs are with foster families. 

Koda is a 2-year-old purebred Ridgeback whose owners surrendered him to us because they were having a very difficult time diagnosing his intestinal issues. In addition to his health challenges, Koda has some separation anxiety when left alone and because their work schedules were about to change in December, leaving Koda home alone even more, they made the painful yet selfless decision to surrender him to rescue. Our vet scoured the dossier of medical records and it was decided to try him on a course of Prednisone. If his issues improve, it will confirm that he has IBD which is manageable with diet and immunosuppressives. As for his separation anxiety – his foster mom reports that as long as he’s with another dog he’s shown zero signs of separation anxiety. Koda is a huge boy and when we get him to his ideal weight will be over a 100 pounds. He is a complete sweetheart. His previous owners did an amazing job of socializing him so he can go anywhere with anyone and do anything. His temperament is one of the best we’ve ever seen. For Koda, we are looking for a home that has at least one other dog he can play with or hang with and a doggy door so he can have access to the backyard. We don’t require the adopter to have experience with IBD but we’d love someone willing to become an expert on it. He is currently fostered in Los Angeles CA.

WOOFER is a loving, 99-lb lap dog looking for his forever lap.  He is a sweet oaf who loves people.  Woofer is available for adoption in Southern California.  He is a “Ridge friend” - a retriever mix who looks like the embodiment of Clifford the Big Red Dog.   He’s 10 years old and pretty mellow - but has lots of energy and loves to play. He is fully housebroken and has no destructive tendencies.  He likes long walks but is just as happy on the couch or by your feet.  He’s very obedient and will “go lay down” upon direction. He loves people but does well with other large dogs.  He would also be happy to be a solo dog. He has a high prey instinct so would not do well with cats or small dogs.  He is gentle on a leash but his walker has to stay vigilant for the errant squirrel, car or dog that comes in his path.  Do you have the perfect forever lap for Woofer?

JEFF Jeff is 44 lbs, 3 years old, neutered, chipped and up to date on shots. He's been living with an 11 year old Ridgeback and a 5 year old lab mix.   He is crate trained, housebroken, good with all dogs EXCEPT SMALL ONES (and no cats).  He's fine on leash once you get going and a great yard protector from those dastardly squirrels, gardeners and pool men.  Jeff can be an anxious dog so we're looking for a home  that is quiet yet active.  He thrives on consistency.  He is super smart but also super sensitive.  His trainer has called him 'a genius' and she never says that about any of our dogs.  Many a time she has said (about other dogs) 'you're screwed.'  Jeff loves to work hard and please so he's easy to train..  His ideal home would be with another nice dog to play with, a great backyard with 6' walls, no young kids (or adults for that matter) that are still in the squealing or screaming phase, and someone to do agility with.  He's fostered in Studio City, L.A.  

AMADEO/RANGER - Amadeo is a sweet 7 year old Pit/ridgeback mix full of love and a willingness to please. He loves people and appreciates you taking the lead role in the relationship. He is happy hanging in the sun all day while you are at work or snoring on his bed while you are watching tv. He doesn't sleep in your bed, but if you are not feeling well he likes to sleep next to the bed on the floor in case you need him. He is the kind of guy who will follow you around the house and will also hop and get excited when he knows it's time to eat. He loves to chew on empty water bottles, the crunch of the plastic makes him very happy. If you show him love he will look at you with adoring eyes and snuggles. Sometimes he will test you like if you leave food within his reach or if you drop something on the floor. He will scoop it up faster than you can imagine and maybe growl to keep it but if you distract him from it, say with a water bottle, he will drop it. On walks you need to take the lead, he feels confident with you if you are confident and focused. You can't be on the phone or distracted. He is fine if he passes other dogs either behind the fence or on the sidewalk but if a dog lunge at you, not him, from behind a fence he will defend you.  Overall he wants to protect and love his humans. He wants to take care of you and love you. He is loyal, smart and wants to please. He is an amazing companion and will be such a great addition to any family. He is fostered in Los Angeles, CA.

Red is a beautiful 5 year old 95lb male purebred Ridgeback! He was rescued after landing in the shelter as a stray. After having a large growth removed and being neutered, Red has been recovering with his foster family for a few weeks. He is now ready for his forever home!  Red is a mellow guy with a heart of gold. He loves people, kids and other dogs large and small. (No cats!) He's a smart boy, potty trained and he knows sit and stay too.  Red loves food and is great on leash. He has a few vertebrae that have fused but he loves to go on short walks and trot along despite a little stiffness in the hips. Red also loves naps and being a couch potato whenever possible. Most of all, Red loves to be with his people! He follows his foster family around the house, watching over their every move and never sitting more than a few feet away. Red will be the best most loyal canine companion for a loving family. Are you his furever home? Red is being fostered in Anaheim CA. 

Huey is a 1-2 year old (adolescent) Mastiff/Lab(?) mix. He is housebroken, good with dogs and cats and loves all people. He is very big and exuberant so he needs very basic obedience training and may be “too much” for small children and shy/anxious dogs. He is currently located in San Diego CA.

His foster mom wrote: “He knows how to sit. He didn't get into anything in my house, no interest in trash or dirty clothes. Fully housebroken.  Will sit to go outside and put on his leash. He doesn't pull much on walks, but did with force when other people or animals came by. Eventually with the verbal command (aght) before pulling happened he left people alone, but he still needs to learn better manners for when other dogs approach. During the day with cars and people he was harder of hearing and was distracted by his love for everything going on and treats only helped a little in this training.  He can be jumpy and mouthy, but its mostly when he is starting to want to play. We were also working on down and wait (he will wait, but not when he is wanting to go out the door with you).  He wasn't responding much to food as motivation, but he did to treats. Like a typical mastiff he could be stubborn and training sessions were kept short because he would lose interest in listening. He *loves* everything and everyone. Did not bark at the mailman and wanted to play with the FedEx delivery guy. With other dogs there was the occasional trying to hump, but he showed no aggression at all even when being humped, barked at, or neck bites. He is a very gentle beast with his mouth. He wanted to play with cats, but I think he needs to learn boundaries with them, to just not bother them so his face doesn't get injured. He loved the dog park and sometimes was ganged up on with a few dogs around him and his tail was going the fastest I've ever seen it go. He loved to run full speed at the park back and forth. Even though he doesn't know his name, he has good recall. I think that it is because he has some separation issues. Not destructive but does not like to be left alone. When I left for work I would crate him and he would bark for a few minutes then would settle down. When I would get home he was calm and relaxed . If I went outside without him (not in his crate) he would bark for like 5 minutes and then lay at the door with occasional yelps. I put up a gate to keep him out of one area of my room and he was not okay with me being over there without him. He would yelp-bark at me. He slept anywhere he wanted and he was totally fine and didn't destroy or bother anything in my house.   He also seemed to like men a little more than women.”

Burbon, now called Lenny, is estimated to be a 5 year old purebred ridgeback (ridgeless) or very RR mix. He is doing great with his foster mama, had a good training session the other day, and is enjoying a week of R&R out in the desert. We are starting to assess him around other dogs but are optimistic about his future placement in a permanent home. He’s calm and loving and sweet.  He is located in Los Angeles CA.

Brandy is getting along fabulously with her foster pack, even snugging on the couch with her foster brother. Her foster mama says: “Brandy would enjoy a peaceful human companion who takes her out for walks. She’s always smiling as soon as I pick up the leash and she’s happy to go out and about for however long I wish. She walks like a lady on the leash, too. No pulling at all. She’s such a darling, sweet, affectionate dog, I think she would really enjoy someone who works from home and who is willing to keep her socialized in the neighborhood. She’s good with all dogs and I would never call her aggressive. Brandy is great!” We are currently working with potential adopters to find Brandy’s best home. She is located in Orange County, CA.