Ridge Changes?

For 38 years, I knew about ridges. For 38 years, I knew that a ridge was set from before birth and would never change - what you saw in those first moments from birth, was what that's puppy's ridge would always be.

Now, I find out that I was wrong!

My pick bitch puppy from my last litter had everything I wanted in structure, head and had so much type. Only thing wrong was her ridge. She had a long ridge, good crowns, but the sides were not well defined, ie, the hair on the side of the ridge did not curve smartly around and curl towards the head. Instead, hers  only had a slight curve and each hair sorta of met it's partner on the opposite side in the middle, making a dark line. There was no forward growing hair except in the fan area.

I was so disappointed, I was at the point of praying for one forward growing hair in the ridge. I finally gave up when I found her a nice home with good people to love her and let her go as a pet. When she was almost 4 months old she came to stay for a couple of days while her new family went to a family reunion. I was stunned to see that her ridge seemed to be tighter on the edges and there was now FORWARD GROWING HAIR within the ridge! How could this be? I wish now, that I had photographed her then, because now she's back for a few days.. just shy of her 5 months birthday and she now has a SHOW RIDGE! See for yourself in the photos below.
ridge at 8 weeks
Ridge at 8 weeks
ridge at 5 months
Same pup, ridge at almost 5 months

She was one of the pups with a lot of lighter hairs along her back and in the ridge. Several pups in the litter had this. I had only had one pup before exhibit this "lightening" - it came in by 8 weeks and was gone after 4 months and the same with these pups. Check out the "Roan Puppy?" page.

I posted this interesting ridge changed to NextGeneration Ridgebacks email list and got a response from another lister who kindly sent these two photos that illustrate the same thing. Like me, she didn't recall the position of the hairs within the ridge as it was born, only the length and crowns. Ah hunh...Guess we will ALL be paying a bit more attention now that more are aware of the problem!In the photo on the left, you can see that the ridge edges are not tightly curled, the hairs simply meet in the middle of the ridge. In the second photo on the right, the ridge has "corrected" itself. Thanks to Norah Ormerod, of Glenaholm RRs  for these next photographs.
8 week old lazy ridge pup  second photo same dog, ridge corrected
NOTE: The other oddity about this pup is the change of color between 8 weeks and adulthood. The pup
has reddened considerably from a light, golden color to red wheaten.

Yet another oddity in the same litter is this pup, who's lower half of it's ridge is "lazy" and the upper edges are correct.
 Again, after 5 months the lower part corrected itself!
photo 1 photo 2
adult showing corrected ridge If anyone else has had this phenomena happen on one of their litters, let me know at
Kalahari RR