AKC Rhodesian Ridgebacks Ethically Bred and Raised in our Home. Therapy and Show Dogs raised with Children.

    The amazing and not to be missed Rhodesian Ridgeback Rodeo !


If I shared nothing else with all of the Ridgebackers and potential Ridgebackers THIS is one important event!  Karen and Eric Watson of TerraCotta Kennels host an incredible dog adventure for Rhodesians every year.  The Watsons own a lovely game reserve on what was once an Amish farm.  Once a year they throw the RR Rodeo and people show up from all over the country, last year we had participants from Canada too ! Camping on site in RVs, trailers, tents,  or taking a room in a near by motel. It is 4 days of activities and fun.  More of a Vacation than just working with your dog.  Your dog does not  have to be a show dog.  It is a gathering of people and fun  the likes of which are hard to top.



Last year the Rodeo had nearly doubled in attendance !  More events had been added and people came eager to try their hand and their dog's paws at things that would be cost prohibitive at a regular show.  Classes and instruction are available in agility, rally, conformation,  tracking, lure coursing, basic obedience  and problem solving issues with your hounds. You can get certificates and titles in several things, herding, racing, lure coursing, hunting, Temperament testing, CGC and more!  Talented masseuses available to ease the days aches out of your back  or  your Dog's .  Experienced breeders who will offer you an evaluation and discuss with your the strengths and faults of your dog helping you understand the breed more completely.

There is an Amazing raffle with all proceeds going to Dog Charities.  Hayrides with your dogs through the reserve at twilight, they love it as much as the people do. Bon fires on two nights with a wonderful guitarist who takes requests and sings for hours.  The meals are 5 star quality, steaks cooked to order and fresh breads made by the Amish Community, fresh, local  veggies MMMMMMMMM!   Last year we added a real Southern Shrimp Boil, Bob and I brought massive amounts of Fresh Gulf of Mexico shrimp and made margaritas, every dime above the cost of food going to Health and Genetics to help all of us keep the dogs we love  around that much longer.

The point of the Rodeo is to give folks a chance to really spend  quality time with their fur kids.  At a regular dog show or even the National Specialty  the number of entries and the complications of having the different activities scattered all over can make it hard to do every thing you would like to.  In fact, few dog shows have the facility or resources to allow you to just "try" things out. I spoke with a lovely young couple who had bought the basic agility set up and purchased the plans to build the things that did not come with it. They spent months trying to assemble and get the back yard ready for training their much loved dog for agility. Then had to find a class to help train, since the dog balked at every thing they attempted to teach.  Once they had sunk this very large amount of money into the project they knocked themselves out trying to make the dog happy with the new game.  Finally They sold everything at a big loss on e bay when it was at last accepted their dog was not  going to be impressed by the sport.  Had they had a chance to try the activity out before they invested so heavily they could have saved themselves a lot of money and heartbreak.  Conventional dog events simply do not have the ability to allow you to keep returning to any given activity , to try it out , talk with experts and learn enough to justify many of the investments we make. The Rodeo gives you 4 days, every level and the most pleasant of surroundings to explore to your heart's content.

 Try to do everything..... Wander the reserve and possibly  allow city dogs off lead,  for the very first time.  Exchanging tips and tricks , asking questions and just allowing yourself and your dog to grow closer. This is networking at it's finest.

Hanging out and cheering each other on...  you are not competing against the others  for points,  you are simply giving yourself and your dogs a chance to learn and excel and all for a very small fee in a tremendously positive place !  How could we not leave the Scattergun regretting only that is was too short and you can't do it again for another year? 

Making new friends, trying new things,  exploring the incredible intelligence of the breed.  Swapping stories at the end of the day when you are exhausted and feeling such accomplishment. Laughing with folks who understand the dog's personalities and tricks. Skilled photographers on site who will work with you on documenting your dog in ways you may never have a chance to again.  Spending a weekend playing, learning and even obtaining a title or certificate to add to your dog's name is a wonderful way to get the most bang for your dog and vacation dollars.

Karen and Eric are always willing to try new things for the Rodeo. They are happy to give folks who feel confident in their area of expertise or passion a chance to share their knowledge with the group.  If you are a vendor contact them about setting up a booth, If you train dogs in anything , contact the Watson's and see if you may offer a session or class.

Weather you are the proud owner of a show dog , or a wonderful companion THIS is the vacation you will never forget! Hayrides and Bonfires, our very own Rodeo Songbird who strums her guitar and coaxes even the most shy to sing along to the music we all grew up with. Skilled handlers willing to teach you and spend that extra time you can not get in a regular class. Agility, tracking, coursing, racing, hunting, scenting, CGC, TT, HIC, need I say more?


Gaynl and Paul Bachman -Smith drove 3 dogs all the way from the Wine country in California for a chance to play in the rodeo!! One dog, Katie is an older Rescue, the other two dogs, Cruiser and Song are both retired show dogs with both AKC and International Titles. They went home with many new titles to add to the dogs' names ! CGC ( Canine Good Citizens) TT Temperament Tested ( this is done less than 100 times a year in the United States so just finding qualified evaluates and Judges is tough enough!)  And I would be remiss if I forgot Song's  Herding Certificate  ! 

The Rodeo will be the End of July this year.  It fills up Fast and this truly is the One event you want to have bragging rights to having attended.  Young or old, Companion or Show the chance to really see your Ridgeback in this environment is not passed up.   If you would like to contact the Karen or Eric you can reach them at: 

Eric and Karen  Watson

TerraCotta Kennels
20884 Beaver Center Road
Conneautville, PA 16406



Most shows make it difficult to be a full participant. Taking only your entry then holding you at arm's length. Again the rodeo is different ...Please consider donating a prize to the Raffle or Trophy Table, it can be done in memory of a lost love or to celebrate an accomplishment of a dog still with you.  Items of high quality are all welcomed. If you are an artist or vendor you may consider  donating as an opportunity to allow the RR community to become more familiar with your work ,  your prize will be photographed and written about in both National and International Blogs and publications.





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